Let’s get a couple of things straight: the HTC One A9 isn’t a flagship phone, which explains why so many iconic elements have been left out. And yes, it looks a lot like an iPhone 6S.
But that would miss the point of this phone. It’s a ‘fashion’ device, one for those who want a slightly cheaper smartphone with decent build and some attractive specs, sitting apart from the usual bun-fight for attention that happens twice a year when Sony, Samsung, HTC, LG and Apple throw their new phones into the ring.
I’ll get to the points about design later on in the review, but let’s deal with something now: this is an iPhone in shape to the untrained eye, something most people commented on when they saw the handset.
The argument is already raging about whether or not this is HTC’s DNA in the phone (the brand did popularise the metal-body-with-plastic-strips look on the original One) but the fact is that it looks like an iPhone 6S.
HTC One A9 review
Whether Apple copied HTC or HTC copied Apple is irrelevant. The iPhone is the world’s most popular single device, and as such is easily identifiable. Any brand that makes a phone that looks remotely similar does so with both eyes open.
The desire to have this specific ‘flat body, rounded edges’ look on the One A9 has led to a few things going missing – things that are iconic elements of the HTC brand. The biggest loss is the Boomsound speakers on the front of the phone, which were an integral part of why I loved to recommend HTC devices.
HTC One A9 review
These have been replaced with a small mono speaker at the bottom, as HTC tried to find ways to slim the device down while also including a fingerprint sensor on the front of the phone.
HTC One A9 review
Let’s leave the ‘who copied who’ debate though, and focus on what this phone actually is: a well-made Nexus phone with a few touches of HTC’s smarts. Because it won’t be a phone that any fan of the Taiwanese brand will recognise on a software level, such is the integration with Android Marshmallow.
The interface is much, much closer to stock Android than ever, with loads of HTC’s apps being dropped in favor of just presenting the Google options; this is a phone that’s designed to be sleek when it comes to software, with HTC elevating the best parts of the new Android OS instead of putting its own stamp on the phone.
It’s stripped-back, clean and easy to use, with just a hint of HTC’s touch on top. It’s a Nexus with less of a Google stamp on it, with more freedom from the manufacturer to create the phone it wants.
There’s an issue around price though. In the US the HTC One A9 will be retailing at $399 until November 7, after which the price increases to $499. In the UK, however, it’ll launch at £429, which is about $650 – and that’s for a lower-spec phone.
In the US, there’s 32GB of storage and 3GB of RAM; in the UK, 16GB and 2GB. I’ll get on to what that means in terms of performance later on, but it’s an incredibly odd strategy to make the lower-spec model more expensive in certain parts of the world.
Is this a phone that’s only designed to compete in the US? With the raft of excellent low-cost phones from Motorola, OnePlus, Huawei and more in Europe it seems that HTC is already giving up the fight with such a high price – which is a shame, as this is a phone that treads a new path for the brand and, mostly, does it very well.
I’ve always been a fan of what HTC has done: tried to make Android into a workable thing in a shell that doesn’t look horrible.
The Desire, Hero, Legend, One S and then the ‘proper’ One line all have that heritage, and people shouldn’t care who much this looks like an iPhone – more how well it works in the hand.
HTC’s got very confused with how much the phone is and how powerful it should be, which is an indication of how little sway it has in the markets around the world – it’s a shame that it needs to kowtow to the desires of retailers who dictate how this phone should sit on shop shelves, as it’s actually a very decent smartphone.
Similarities aside, the design of the One A9 is the thing that marks it out so well. It’s well made, uses strong materials to create an excellent build quality and offers a delightful look and feel in the hand.
If you want to be blunt about it, you could say it’s the perfect phone for those that want the iPhone 6S look but prefer Android.
The camera is upgraded and takes decent stills when your work with the Pro mode to get the snap you want, and there are some cool other features on there to make it worth playing with. It’s certainly a step up from the One M9, which is the key thing here as that camera simply didn’t impress at all.
The audio capabilities are also strong and above expectations here – the amplifier that HTC has employed in the past has been upgraded to improve things sonically and it really shows, bringing an even further dimension to songs (and reiterating that it’s a really sad thing that the Boomsound speakers aren’t being used here).
Closer-to-native Android Marshmallow is also a great addition to the mix, and it’s nice to see how well it improves things. I’m not a massive fan of stock Android, but it does allow you to customise it as you see fit. And being able to still use things like the HTC Calendar is nice, given then offer genuine upgrades over the stock Google one.
Sigh. Battery life again isn’t brilliant – and the stupid thing is it’s a decent performance. It’s just not a big enough power pack to be able to keep this phone going all day long despite the higher efficiency.
Make the phone slightly thicker HTC. It surely wouldn’t hurt that much. At least it means that when the One M10 appears, Android Marshmallow and the battery optimisations will have helped to the point of being able to last more than a day. Hopefully.
While the design is good, there are still some loose elements in the phone that shudder when you tap the screen – not what you’d expect even for a slightly cheaper phone.
The decision to split the spec of the One A9 across the globe really irks as well. Europe and parts of Asia just aren’t getting a phone that’s good enough really, where the more powerful model seems to be a much better performer.
While we’re here, the price is too high as well, especially in Europe where the lower-spec model costs more than the higher-spec variant in the US. Go figure.
I still feel like media could be handled better here too. Letting Google have its way with apps is fine if they’re brilliant (like Google Mail) but the movie and music experience is still sub par, and HTC could still have made a much better model.
I’m still not entirely sure what this phone is all about. It’s a well-crafted device that’s almost a flagship in many ways, and yet goes in a completely different design direction to the M line-up.
Yes, it looks like an iPhone, and HTC should have done more to avoid that if cries that it’s a mere coincidence are to be believed. That said, there are those that want the iFrame and Android together at last – this is that phone.
It’s a good tag that the One A9 is one of the first non-Nexus phones to come with Android Marshmallow, but that’s a title that won’t last very long and soon other brands will come with better variants.
The size of the phone is one of it’s big selling points though. Combined with a decent finish, this is a very tactile and usable handset, and the lower-spec chipset doesn’t really harm it most of the time.
The key question here: does the HTC One A9 warrant the cost? It’s hard to say yes beyond the polish the fact that paying more for a phone made by a top brand usually removes some of the worry about whether you’re getting a good one.
The One A9 works well, but there are many, many other more powerful and better specified phones out there, with equal effort put into design.
HTC screamingly needs a win, but despite trying to go back to basics here it hasn’t quite managed it in a way that’s going to make the One A9 stand out on the shop shelves.
The HTC One X9 sports a 5.5 inch capacitive touch screen 16M colors display with a screen resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels and 401 ppi screen density. The phone has dimensions 153.9 x 75.9 x 8mm and weighing approximately 170 grams.
The HTC One X9 operates on the Android OS v6.0 Marshmallow platform and is equipped with a octa core cortex-A53 processor, PowerVR G6200 GPU, MediaTek MT6795 Helio X10 chipset, and is coupled with a 3 GB of RAM.
On the media front of the phone, the HTC One X9 features a 13 mega pixels primary camera with LED flash, geo tagging, auto face detection , HDR, panorama and a 5 mega pixels secondary camera, and comes with an internal storage capacity of 32 GB, expandable up to 200 GB via microSD card.
The HTC One X9 offers Wi Fi, Bluetooth 4.1, GPS, FM Radio, and microUSB v2.0 connectivity options.
The HTC One X9 features accelerometer, proximity, compass sensors and is powered by a non removable Li-Ion 3,000 mAh battery. The device is available in white and black colors.
The next flagship smartphone from the Taiwanese tech company HTC, known as the HTC One M10, is reportedly set to debut during the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2016 to be held in Barcelona, Spain late in February.
It has been the annual tradition of HTC to launch its flagship smartphone during the MWC event since the HTC One M7 was launched back in 2013 so unveiling the HTC One M10 in the same event next year would not be surprising.
What seems to be quite unique and surprising is the report that the upcoming HTC flagship smartphone shall debut with Android 6.1 Marshmallow out of the box, notes The Times of India.
The report could be a little tricky since previous reports about the firmware update to Android 6.0 Marshmallow indicate that it would likely come out in June 2016.
Thus, it is unlikely therefore that the HTC One M10 could debut with the latest Google mobile operating system onboard when it is launched in late February. The safer bet is that it could come out with Android 6.0 Marshmallow onboard.
Interesting rumored features
Another interesting information about the HTC One M10 is the fact that it is reportedly being called under its code name as HTC Perfume. In addition, it shall also feature HTC’s Sense UI version 8.0.
As far as specifications go, the reports suggest that the HTC One M10 would come out with a 6-inch screen with 4K resolution, a microSD card slot that is capable of expanding up to 2TB, a generous 4GB of RAM, and dual SIM support.
It shall also come with a 20.7-megapixel rear-facing camera and a 5-megapixel front-facing snapper. It shall also feature a 3,500 mAH battery. There are reports that it shall also come with a smaller 5-inch variant.
According to Expert Reviews of UK, the HTC flagship smartphone may be launched in the MWC 2016 event in February alright but it is likely to make it to the retail markets either in March or April.
Still, that does not qualify it to come out with Android 6.1 Marshmallow for its mobile OS so it is likely that it will come out with Android 6.0 Marshmallow instead.
HTC has a long history of using Qualcomm Snapdragon processors for its flagship smartphones. It is likely that the Taiwanese tech giant will keep its tradition and use the top-of-the-line Snapdragon 820 processor.
The new chipset is the first to be manufactured using a power-efficient 14nm process, something that should boost the battery life of the handset, which is an improvement over the HTC One M9, whose battery drew flak from users when it came out in April this year.
The chipset also features a new Krio 64-bit processor which promises to provide lots of power while remaining cool, another improvement from its predecessor, which suffered from overheating.
The new processor also features better 3D performance because of the new Adreno 530 GPU, a faster modern chip for quicker mobile connections, better camera image processing, and a new audio processor for better surround sound virtualization.
HTC would like to be recognized in the smartphone business as one of the better handset makers in the world so when its HTC One M9 was released to the markets in April this year and got all sorts of complaints, the company knew it had to do something to redeem itself.
Immediately going back to the drawing board and buckling down to work, reports have it that the HTC One M10, the next flagship smartphone of the Taiwanese tech company, is almost ready. And the ceaseless leaks and information about its specifications and features appear to be based on something concrete.
Latest reports say that the HTC One M10 is to be the best offering from the company yet because HTC wants to erase the stigma of the complaint-ridden HTC One M9 from its memory.
htc one m10
High among the changes that the HTC One M10 shall bring forth is its more reliable and long-lasting battery, which is to be a great improvement from the underwhelming performance of its predecessor. In addition, the upcoming flagship smartphone of HTC will reportedly feature wireless charging.
As far as release date is concerned, there are reports that the HTC One M10 will come out after the launch of the midrange HTC One X9 which is due to be released in the first quarter of next year.
If HTC One M10 is to be launched late in February during the MWC 2016 event, then it is possible that the HTC One X9 shall come out either in January or early February next year.
The speculation about the release date for the upcoming flagship smartphone of HTC was triggered by a post on Twitter by known HTC ROM developer LlabTooFeR who said that the HTC One M10 will come out some two to three months after the release of the HTC One X9.
Accordingly, the Taiwanese tech company will hold a spring launch for the HTC One M10 to give the two handsets a reasonable gap.
There are also reports that the company is also planning to roll out HTC One M9s sometime next year, which is rumored to be launched after the HTC One M10.
As its name implies, HTC One M9s is a variant of the country’s current flagship smartphone which indicate that it is going to have flagship specifications.
The HTC One M9s will be a budget smartphone with decent specifications and features. However, the same report also indicates that the upcoming HTC One M10 is drawing inspiration from the features and specifications of the upcoming HTC One M9s.
Smartphones are becoming more and more powerful with every generation, but the batteries seem to be the same as they were a few years back. Unfortunately, in order to maintain the thin bodies of the smartphones manufacturers need to make some compromises, and in the majority of the cases, the batteries were the first one that had to suffer because of this. A bigger battery means a thicker smartphone and none of the high-end smartphone manufacturers want to deliver bulky devices. So we have thin smartphones with small batteries, and the HTC One M9 is no exception from this rule.
The One M9 is equipped with a rather large, 2840mAh battery. This is larger than the majority of the batteries high-end smartphones are equipped with, but it still isn’t large enough to be able to power the 5-inch 1080p display and the Snapdragon 810 processor combined with the Adreno 430 GPU. The smartphone is quite powerful, so it will also consume a lot of energy, meaning that the mobile phone won’t last for a very long time on a single charge. This is why it is important for One M9 users to learn how to manage their energy consumption the best they can and to fix certain issues that can come up in relation with the battery of their smartphones.
The first thing HTC One M9, and any other smartphone, users should do is to disable every connection they don’t use. This means disabling WiFI connections when not surfing the web, turning Bluetooth off whenever it is not necessary for transferring data, and also disabling cellular data whenever this is not used. Although some would think that these connections couldn’t use a lot of energy when they are not actively used, actually they do because the majority of the apps installed on our smartphones try to use these connections, draining your battery quite fast. Another thing that is really important in order to save energy is to disable all the apps that are not frequently used. When running in the background, these apps are trying to get updates and so use a significant quantity of energy that otherwise would prolong the battery life of the HTC One M9.
One other setting that could save a lot of energy is the one of the display’s brightness. The majority of the smartphones come with the brightness of the display set quite high, and dimming the brightness of the display can actually save some juice for other things you can do on your smartphone. Unfortunately, dimmed brightness usually also means less beautiful images, but then again, when normally used, the smartphone’s display brightness is not the most important feature of the smartphone, so users can compromise a little on this. Using dark or black background images also helps a little bit at saving energy, according to the majority of people. Naturally, live wallpapers are out of the question in case your aim is to save energy since animations use a lot more power than still images when displayed. Turning down your ringtone and media volume also helps when trying to reduce energy consumption. The louder the sound, the more battery the smartphone uses in order to reproduce it, so be gentle with your smartphone and tone your volume a little down.
Another way to use less power on your HTC One M9 is to make the right settings when it comes to background data and syncing. The less often the smartphone’s apps sync data, the better. In order to save energy this way, users need to tap Accounts& sync in the Settings menu and check what types of data are being synced in their online accounts. Syncing some data can be temporarily disabled in case users want to save energy. Disabling the location and GPS can also save some juice, so if you don’t need it, disabling it could be a smart choice.
Besides the aforementioned settings, HTC One M9 users should also learn bout their power setting that affect their battery life by browsing Power Usage in Sprint Zone. In order to do this, users need to access Sprint Zone, and then open Device Diagnostics. Power Usage will display your overall power usage level and power mode while in the Power Usage Details will display power usage over time and which features use the most energy. The settings that can affect battery life are displayed in the Current power Settings section, and in the same place users will be able to tap on the settings to change them in order to save valuable energy.
Changing power settings to low Power is also important and can save a whole lot of energy. In order to do so, users need to open Device Diagnostics from within Sprint Zone, tap the Power Usage button, Select Power Mode, and then review the Select Power Mode information and tap Continue. After tapping Apply, your power usage will be set to low, allowing your smartphone to last for longer periods of time on a single charge.
All of these tips and settings are easy to follow and can save a lot of energy, considerably prolonging you battery life. Even if each of these setting can add another 10 minutes of extra battery life to your smartphone, if you change every setting you can save a considerable amount of energy and enjoy using you smartphone for a longer period of time. This definitely wouldn’t hurt, and you have nothing to lose if you set your smartphone in such a way to save energy when using it.
HTC has given us some key details of its next flagship phone, the One X9. It posted on Chinese social network Weibo that the phone will have a 13-megapixel camera equipped with optical image stabilisation for steadier shots.
It will also have the option to shoot in RAW. This is a format that keeps all the data captured by the camera’s sensor, and gives you more scope for editing in programs like Adobe Photoshop. It does mean bigger file sizes, of course, so you have to weigh that up when shooting.
However, it didn’t name the handset as the One X9, though it did call the post “what’s next after A9”. The One A9 is its latest smartphone, and looks suspiciously like the iPhone 6S.
Rumours say the X9 will have a 2K screen, monster 4G of RAM and the forthcoming Snapdragon 820 chip. Which would make it an absolute beast. Hopefully we’ll find out for sure early next year.
In another leak, Chinese site Anzhuo posted what it claims are photos of the One X9.
HTC has released a new phone, the HTC One A9 – and it looks exactly like an iPhone.
From the aluminium casing, the rear antenna lines and the sticking-out camera lens, the new phone is a departure from previous designs, and one that looks oddly familiar to the iPhone.
However, focusing on the design would be unfair to what looks like a decent smartphone at a reasonable price.
The One A9 will run the latest Anroid operating system, Marshmallow, and has a 5-inch AMOLED screen, a Snapdragon 617 processor and 3GB or RAM.
Early reports say the phone is running a fairly normal version of Android, without all the HTC add-ons that have been a problem in earlier models.
It’s set to go on sale at the start of November (there’s no specific date yet), and will initially be available in carbon grey and opal silver, with the slightly flashier Topaz Gold and Deep Garnet colours coming later.
Other fairly run-of-the-mill features are the fingerprint scanner and the choice of either 16GB or 32GB of internal storage.
However, the phone also has an SD card slot, a useful feature that’s missing from a lot of new smartphones.
It’s capable of taking up to 2TB, but you’ll have to wait if you want to make full use of that feature – the largest commercially available SD card at the moment is only 512GB.
Are you rocking a flagship handset with an octa-core processor and 3GB of RAM? If so, then get the hell out of our site, you spec-weak peasant.
Just kidding, we think you’re pretty great. Honest. But our opinion of you would greatly improve if your handset had a deca-core (yes, ten-core) processor. Luckily, HTC’s next flagship will apparently have just that.
The HTC One A9 (or Aero) has previously cropped up online in the leaked photo above, and now it’s appeared again, in the form of leaked benchmark results. And they point to a deca-core MediaTek Helio X20 processor clocked at 1.96GHz.
As for why? Well, to have a bigger number on the box of course! Well, probably not just that, we hope. Technically, we could see some major power-saving gains, thanks to the configuration of the cores themselves.
Four could be dedicated to high intensity tasks like gaming, while another four will take care of, for lack of a better word, medium tasks. The final two processors should sit there and meekly sip away at the power reserves when the phone is idle.
If it all works well, then power consumption should be reduced, though we don’t expect any apps specifically designed for ten cores to be out for quite some time.
The powerful medium and weak core setup might be the reason why the benchmark score of 5884 is only marginally higher than the Galaxy Note 5’s 5084 effort, but we’ll have to wait for our final review to see what those number mean in the real world. You know, assuming this phone actually exists.
We expect to find out on 29 September, which is when HTC will hold a launch event, so stay tuned.
Oh, and it might also reveal a round smartwatch.
[via Pocket Now via Tech Radar]
HTC’s current flagship smartphone, the HTC One M9, was announced back in March and was made available on the same month. It succeeded 2014’s HTC One M8, one of the company’s most successful models to date.
While there are varying reports about whether or not the two handsets will receive Android 5.1.1 Lollipop updates, HTC executives have separately confirmed that both the HTC One M8 and One M9 will be treated with Google’s upcoming Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system (OS).
Keeping true to its OS release trend, the search giant has made the final Android M preview available to its own line of Nexus devices first. In August, Google has given developers the SDK (software development kit) needed to test the OS on the current-generation Nexus 5, Nexus 6, Nexus 9 and Nexus Player. Once developers are done with firmware tests, a public roll out to models from various manufacturers will soon begin.
Although the actual dates for those roll-outs has yet to be announced, it is observed that some companies tend to be consistent in sending out new firmware to their mobile devices early on. Since they previously partnered with Google to produce Nexus models, Samsung, Motorola, LG, Asus, and HTC, are among the first to get fresh Android updates.
The HTC One M9 was running Android 5.0 Lollipop out of the box when it began shipping. Now, the handset is reportedly receiving over-the-air Android 5.1.1 upgrade. However, the software is only available to One M9 units from Verizon. This is line with what Mo Versi, Vice President for Product Management at HTC, mentioned a few weeks ago that Verizon-registered HTC One M9 devices will soon be upgraded. The OS is said to deliver the needed fix for the dangerous Stagefright exploit along with network roaming support for the 4G LTE bands 3 and 7. Furthermore, the 5.1.1 Lollipop OS brings in a native Battery Saver, new animations for Quick Settings containing a flashlight functionality, as well as an improvement on the 64-bit ART Runtime complier, which will result to faster startup for the handset’s applications. Verizon users may check if the update is already available by heading to the Settings menu > “About” > choose “Software Updates” > and select “Check Now.”
For the 2015 flagship’s Android 6.0 update, an exact roll out date is still elusive but users can rest assured because Jeff Gordon, an HTC Senior Global Online Communications Manager, already confirmed earlier that the One M9 along with the One M9+ will indeed be upgraded to the much awaited 6.0 Marshmallow OS. Meanwhile, the device maker’s last generation flagship has been previously doubted whether it will receive an Android M update. However, Versi has also provided confirmation that the HTC One M8 will get the update as well. Once the One M8 receives the Android 6.0 Mashmallow OS, it will reportedly tag the HTC Sense 7 UI along. The HTC Sense is a user interface software that the company places on top of the stock Android OS from Google to make its devices’ performance smoother. Versi mentioned that Sense 7 “will be tied to the M release.”