After weeks of waiting, the HTC One U.S. release has finally become an open book which means that those preparing to buy the new HTC flagship, or even those that are thinking about buying it, can now rest easy. Like many Android releases, including the Samsung Galaxy S4‘s, the HTC One’s U.S. release is a little bit tricky when it comes to release dates, pricing and more.
In late February, February 19th to be exact, HTC announced the oft-rumored HTC One, a device that had seen its fair share of leaks, speculation and rumors in the days leading up to HTC’s announcement. Much like Samsung’s Galaxy S4 launch, HTC opted to use the bright lights of New York to launch the HTC One, a device that will replace the HTC One X and One X+ and has been in the spotlight ever since. Unfortunately, until today, the spotlight was on it for all the wrong reasons.
At the HTC One launch event, HTC announced that the device would be hitting shelves across the globe during the month of March. And while a few select regions saw it arrive, many were left to deal with a delay that was said to be caused by production issues. One of those regions was the United States that was originally said to have been getting the HTC One last month.
In February, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile, along with regional carrier Cincinnati Bell, confirmed the smartphone for their LTE networks. However, in the weeks since they remained silent about many of the details. That is, until recently, when the big three finally confirmed most of the pertinent HTC One U.S. release information. That said, there are still some HTC One mysteries that have yet to be revealed, despite all of the recent announcements.
So, for those that are thinking about getting the phone, here is everything that we know, and don’t know, about the HTC One U.S. release.
AT&T HTC One
Just a day ago, rumors suggested that AT&T HTC One pre-orders would start on April 4th ahead of its release date. That information also suggested that the device would start at $250 on-contract. Turns out, only part of that was right.
The AT&T HTC One will be coming in two different models, 32GB and 64GB, with the 64GB model being a carrier exclusive. It’s unclear just how long it will be an exclusive or if it will be permanent. AT&T will offer the 32GB HTC One on-contract for $199.99, a price that may undercut the Samsung Galaxy S4 which has been announced at $250 on contract.
AT&T will be taking pre-orders for the device on April 4th, with a release date pegged for April 19th. To sweeten the deal, AT&T will be offering pre-ordering customers a free HTC Media Link HD which lets users stream videos, music, photos and other media to their TV without connecting a HDMI cable to the phone itself.
So far, it only looks like AT&T will carry the HTC One but don’t fret. Retailers like Amazon should get on board on release day, and if not release day, shortly thereafter.
The release date will come just three days after the Samsung Galaxy S4 pre-order starts.
Sprint HTC One
Like AT&T, Sprint also announced its HTC One details today confirming that it will be only offering the 32GB HTC One and that it will be offering it for $199.99 on-contract, same price as AT&T.
Pre-orders for Sprint’s version of the HTC One will start on April 5th, a day later than AT&T’s, and it will, like AT&T’s model, officially arrive on shelves once April 19th arrives.
It’s unclear whether Sprint will ever get the 64GB model. It’s also unclear just how this timing coincides with the Sprint Galaxy S4 release which is coming but is currently without any official details.
T-Mobile HTC One
Last month, at its UnCarrier event, T-Mobile announced that its HTC One would be “coming soon” for a price tag that starts at $99. What we mean by starts is that that is the minimum down payment that customers can make for the device. Remember, T-Mobile has moved away from traditional subsidization in favor of unsubsidized plans. So those looking to sign a contract for a subsidized price will not find one.
That said, T-Mobile did not confirm a release date for the HTC One and even with the confirmations today, the carrier has not revealed when it will release the HTC One. The carrier did tell Gotta Be Mobile that it plans to release it sometime this Spring, no details given.
Oddly enough, the T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S4 is the only U.S. bound Galaxy S4 that has an official release date and it will be coming out on May 1st. We imagine that the HTC One will hit T-Mobile’s 4G LTE network before that, its sign up page seems to hint at that, but thus far, we don’t have any sort of official release date.
Verizon HTC One
One of the biggest mysteries surrounding the HTC One U.S. release is whether or not Verizon will be getting the device. So far, we’ve seen rumors suggesting that it will get the HTC One, just one to two months after the other carriers. Further, it appears that the device may be branded as something different, perhaps the Droid DNA 2.
Leaked specifications that are said to be for the Verizon HTC One look similar to the other HTC One models so it’s unclear if it will simply have different branding or a different design. It’s not clear.
What is clear is that the Verizon HTC One will likely not be arriving any time this month as neither HTC nor Verizon have confirmed it for arrival. We also haven’t see HTC announce the HTC Butterfly 2 which could very well be the basis for Verizon’s HTC One.
It’s all a bit confusing but expect Verizon to get an HTC One-type device sometime in the next few months.
There is another U.S. carrier that will be hosting the HTC One on its network. Regional carrier Cincinnati Bell will at some point offer the device but it’s not certain when its release date might arrive.
The carrier has announced that it will be arriving sometime during the middle of Spring but thus far, it has not confirmed a specific release date. We expect pricing of the device to be comparable to the other prices.
The carrier says that it does not have plans to offer the Samsung Galaxy S4 at this time.
What This All Means
This means that, at the very least, AT&T and Sprint will offer the HTC One during the month of April. T-Mobile will almost certainly follow suit and we expect Cincinnati Bell to announce its plans in the near future as well.
T-Mobile will more than likely announce its plans in the next few days though it’s possible that it may not offer a pre-order for the HTC One. It has not yet announced a pre-order for the Samsung Galaxy S4.
As for those looking to snag the phone on Verizon, there is no clear sign of the HTC One touching down on the nation’s largest 4G LTE network any time soon which means consumers will be in for a bit of a wait.
All in all, the HTC One will finally hit the United States this month and it’s looking like April 19th is the lucky day.