The HTC One finally has a companion as HTC, after weeks of rumor and speculation, finally announced the new HTC One mini, a smaller version of the popular flagship and one that consumers will likely be weighing against a number of smartphones including HTC’s flagship itself, the HTC One.
In April of this year, HTC released the HTC One into the wild. The device replaced the HTC One X and HTC One X+ as the face of the company’s smartphone lineup and it did so with a number of big time features including a launch on three of the United States five largest carriers. The device ranks amongst the best smartphones in existence and its arguably the best smartphone ever made.
So, it should come as no surprise to anyone that HTC is looking to capitalize on the success of the HTC One and bring consumers some more HTC One options.
One of those options is said to be the HTC One Max, a larger version of the HTC One that is thought to be arriving with a 5.9-inch display sometime in September. The other was said to be the HTC One mini, a smaller version of the HTC One that could be attractive to those that want some of the HTC One’s features but don’t necessarily like the size of the 4.7-inch beast.
Well, after months of silence, HTC has finally spilled the beans on one of the two new HTC One variants. Today, the HTC One mini became official and it will soon become available to consumers in regions around the world including the United Kingdom and the United States.
The device is as expected which means that it’s looking like it will be a very capable smartphone and one that should attract those in need.
Consumers, of course, will likely be pitting it against the larger HTC One and here, we take a look at the five most important things that buyers need to know about the upcoming battle between the HTC One and the HTC One mini.
HTC One Mini Is Bigger Than iPhone 5
Buyers should know that the HTC One mini is going to be smaller than the HTC One. It almost goes without saying. While the HTC One is about 9.3mm thin and weighs 143 grams, the HTC One mini checks in with a frame that is 9.25mm thin and about 122 grams in weight. So it’s both slimmer and lighter than the HTC One.
However, the HTC One mini name doesn’t exactly mean that it’s a miniature phone. In fact, the HTC One mini is actually larger than Apple’s flagship, the iPhone 5 and will likely be larger than the upcoming iPhone 5S which is said to retain the design and display size of the iPhone 5.
Apple’s iPhone 5 also uses a metal build, like the two One variants, but it checks in at 7.1mm thin with a weight of around 112 grams, making it one of the slimmest and lightest smartphones in existence.
Furthermore, the HTC one mini’s 4.3-inch display is .4-inches smaller than the HTC One’s 4.7-inch display though it’s .3-inches larger than the iPhone 5’s display. So while those heading into stores might be thinking that the HTC One mini is some kind of miniature phone, it’s not. It may be smaller than the HTC One but it’s larger than the iPhone.
The HTC One ushered in a new era of HTC smartphone displays with its fantastic 4.7-inch display that offers 1080p resolution and 469 pixels-per-inch. Both of those are extremely high-end and represent the best that the market has to offer right now. Unfortunately, the technology did not trickle down to the HTC One mini, likely due to the high cost of high-definition displays.
Instead of offering 1080p resolution, the HTC One mini offers a 4.3-inch display that features 720p resolution instead, resolution that came on last year’s crp of devices including the Samsung Galaxy S3 and HTC One X. It does, however, have 341 pixels-per-inch which should mean that the quality of images, video and more on the HTC One mini’s screen won’t look bad.
In fact, 720p is going to be fine for those who don’t need top-of-the-line looks. Still, buyers should know that there will be a difference in quality between the display on the HTC One and the display on the HTC One mini.
Believe it or not, the HTC One and the HTC One mini will be running the same software. The HTC One just received its upgrade to Android 4.2 Jelly Bean and that will be the software that the smaller version runs right out of the box. More importantly though, the HTC One mini will be using the same HTC Sense 5 as the HTC One.
The device will be coming with the main features of HTC’s Sense 5 including HTC BlinkFeed which is the company’s social home screen and HTC Zoe, which allows users to shoot short video clips to go with photos. Zoe is arguably the best feature found in Sense 5 and users will likely be using it quite often with the device’s Ultrapixel camera. Yes, they have the same rear camera.
Of course, as we’ve pointed out, because these are HTC devices, users are going to have to endure the possibility of some software let downs. HTC is not the best when it comes to keeping its devices updates, particularly mid-range devices like the HTC One mini. Translation: There is no guarantee that HTC will keep support going through the duration of a contract.
That’s something that buyers need to think about before signing the dotted line, particularly when there are devices like the iPhone that will get software support for three years.
HTC One Deals
It’s not clear just how much HTC will be charging for the HTC One mini in the United States. The company says that it will be releasing pricing later on this summer which means that we should see pricing arrive before the tail end of September.
Because it’s a smaller device, the HTC One mini will likely carry a smaller price tag than the HTC One. How much of a discount, we can’t be sure, but certainly expect there to be one.
That said, buyers should know that there is a very good chance that the price won’t beat the pricing that we’ve see for the HTC One through retailers like Amazon. Amazon has had the HTC One on sale for as low as $50 on-contract, almost unheard of for a phone of the HTC One’s caliber.
Point is, if its a discounted price that’s the most intriguing aspect of the smaller HTC One mini, then it may not be worth the wait.
Buyers should not expect the HTC One mini to arrive on all of the same carriers as the HTC One. While the HTC One has arrived on AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile and sometime later this summer Verizon, the HTC One mini is has only been rumored for T-Mobile with Verizon unlikely to have it available at launch, if at all.
What this means is that T-Mobile could wind up replacing the HTC One S with the HTC One mini. The HTC One S was a mid-range HTC One model from last year that came to T-Mobile and T-Mobile only. What that means is that AT&T, Sprint, and U.S. Cellular could be out of the picture.
We’ve seen American carriers pass on smaller devices like the Galaxy S4 Mini and so buyers should temper their expectations here with the HTC One mini and expect it to only arrive on a couple of U.S. carriers when it touches down.