Today, after a lengthy delay, HTC One pre-orders will kick off in the United States, ushering in the company’s new flagship smartphone that will be arriving to take on the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S4 and iPhone 5. We’ve heard quite a bit about this phone in terms of features, from its high-resolution display to its speedy quad-core processor. However, we think there are more important things that consumers should know before buying. Here, we take a look at five of the more important things that consumers should know about the HTC One.
In February, in New York City, HTC took the curtain down from around its latest flagship smartphone, the new HTC One, a device that the company hopes will be a serious challenger to other high-end phones like Samsung’s brand new Galaxy S4. And while it has arrived in many regions around the world, including the United Kingdom, the device has yet to arrive in the United States.
Today marks the first time that a U.S. carrier has taken orders for the HTC One with AT&T beginning pre-orders ahead of its April 19th release date. Sprint will be taking pre-orders tomorrow ahead of an April 19th release while T-Mobile still hasn’t made its plans known. Regardless, we know that the HTC One won’t be touching down for at least a few weeks, giving consumers ample time to weigh their options.
That said, there is no doubt that the HTC One will be one of the top upcoming smartphones. It features a number of high-end features that will assure it of that status. At HTC’s launch event, it focused on many of them, including its 4.7-inch 1080p display, its full metal design, its quad-core processor, and its Sense 5 skin that will bring not only a new look but some new features like HTC BlinkFeed and HTC Zoe.
However, it isn’t just those features that are going to make it unattractive or attractive to smartphone shoppers. No, there are other, less talked about features lurking under the surface that potential HTC One buyers should be aware of before buying. Here are what we consider to be the five most important things to know about the HTC One.
Verizon HTC One Is Coming
One of the bright spots of the HTC One launch was the fact that HTC managed to get the HTC One on a number of U.S. carriers. Last year’s HTC One X and HTC One X+ only came to AT&T. This year though, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile are on board and will be releasing the device on their 4G LTE networks in the coming weeks.
While the future looked bright, there was a bit of a dark side to that news as well. Verizon, the nation’s largest 4G LTE service provider was seemingly left out of the fun. That doesn’t mean that a variant isn’t coming to Big Red though.
Since the HTC One was unveiled, there have been numerous rumors regarding the arrival of an HTC One variant for Verizon’s network. While HTC and Verizon haven’t confirmed anything, a host of rumors have signaled that something is coming in the future.
A release date has been pegged at one to two months after the other carriers get the HTC One and rumors have suggested that it will have similar specs as the other models. These rumors come from established sources so it seems clear that Verizon will get a similar device down the road.
Point is, a Verizon HTC One, or something like it, is on the way so those that wanted a Verizon HTC One don’t have to settle with another carrier. It may be a bit of a wait but smartphone shopping has always been a waiting game.
64GB is AT&T Exclusive
Consumers looking for a 64GB HTC One on Sprint and T-Mobile will not find one, at least not at first. That’s because AT&T has an exclusive on the 64GB model and likely will for quite some time. For many phones, like the Samsung Galaxy S4 for example, this wouldn’t be an issue. However, it is an issue with the HTC One.
That’s because the HTC One does not come with a microSD card slot which means that owners are stuck cloud storage and either 32GB or 64GB of storage space. In the case of Sprint and T-Mobile HTC One owners, it will be the former.
For many people, that simply won’t be enough storage space for photos, videos, apps and other files. For others, it may not be that big of a deal.
It is though, something to definitely keep in mind before taking the plunge, especially when the Galaxy S4 16GB is the same price as the 32GB HTC One and not only can take advantage of cloud storage but also offers support for 64GB microSD cards.
Cheap Deals After HTC One Release
The HTC One might be coming with steep price tags, $199.99 and $299.99 for the 32GB and 64GB models respectively. And for many, that might be affordable. However, for many others, that’s a steep investment for a smartphone.
Those that are going to have problems with those price points should not purchase the HTC One on release day. Instead, it’s best to wait a few days or perhaps even a few weeks after the HTC One’s initial launch. That’s because retailers like Amazon typically host deals for these big name smartphones with prices that are much cheaper than they are through carriers.
We aren’t sure how much they will be charging for the HTC One but we expect the pricing to be discounted at least $20-30 at the start and dip to $50-$100 in the weeks after the HTC One’s initial arrival in the United States.
AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile, despite the discounted prices, will likely keep their pricing the same for the months to come.
T-Mobile Will Have Odd Pricing
While carriers AT&T and Sprint will have standard on-contract pricing of $199.99 and $299.99, the latter of which is again an AT&T exclusive, T-Mobile is going to have some different looking pricing.
The Magenta carrier has yet to announce a specific HTC One release date but it has revealed pricing. The carrier revealed that it will be charging $99 for the HTC One. At first glance, this may seem like it’s undercutting the other carriers with a cheaper on-contract price. That of course is not the case. Instead, $99 refers to the minimum down payment that consumers can make for the HTC One.
T-Mobile recently switched from on-contract plans to off-contract plans meaning it won’t be offering the HTC One with subsidized pricing. Instead, buyers will be able to get it off-contract and will need to pay the full price of the phone. It will cost $579 in total with consumers having to make $20 payments for 24 months should they pay the minimum.
So when T-Mobile says $99 for the HTC One, don’t be fooled by the odd-looking pricing.
Don’t Be Scared Off by the 4MP Ultrapixel Camera
Finally, there has been a ton of chatter about the camera on the HTC One. While the Samsung Galaxy S4 will be coming with a 13MP camera, the HTC One will be coming with a 4MP camera. Consumers who may be afraid of the low mega-pixel count on the HTC One’s Ultrapixel camera should not be alarmed. It will be able to hold its own.
As we’ve seen, the HTC One camera is able to take extremely rich, detailed photographs. It also will be able to perform well in low-light environments, something that is big for mobile photographers.
HTC also has said that it selected a smaller MP camera so that photos would not come with massive file sizes. This not only helps to ease storage issues but it also means that users can freely take advantage of the camera’s HTC Zoe feature which allows users to take photos and video simultaneously. Files would have been massive with a larger MP camera.
So not only can it take good photographs and video, but it can also make use of some powerful software. Don’t be afraid of it.