Feeds

Gr8, it's the new M8! Ideal for that celebrity funeral selfie

A camera that lets you chat online

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Grubby Mitts On Taiwanese phone-maker HTC unveiled its quad-core HTC One M8, the snappily named successor to the M7, on Tuesday.

Predictably, it's powered by a 2.3GHz ARM-compatible Snapdragon 801 chip from Qualcomm with 2GB of RAM, and runs Android KitKat 4.4. The battery isn’t removable, it has 16 or 32GB of on-board storage, and it can access up to 128GB from the microSD slot. It has a five-inch 1080 x 1920-pixel touchscreen, measures 146 x 71 x 9mm (5.76 x 2.78 x 0.37in) and weighs 160g (5.64 oz), and so on.

Phones have become so homogeneous, they struggle for differentiation. But there are some things that lift the M8 a little from the pack.

It is very nice to hold. The single-piece metal brushed case works well in giving a quality feel. It’s a bit slippery despite the “gentle curves and tapered edges” pointed out by HTC's design veep Scott Croyle.

The metal going right up to the glass screams repair nightmare, especially given the trade’s qualms about HTC’s repair turnaround time. Still, they do have a good reputation for reliability.

There is some real engineering going on here: HTC uses the metal case as an antenna, so more than 90 per cent of the back can be metal. This is quite an achievement; many phones that people think are metal are actually well-painted plastic. The M8's design also incorporates more space for the stereo speakers that, combined with a clever audio DSP, sounds pretty good, and those speakers are used for voice calls, too.

There are some interesting camera features. The main cam is a dual 4-megapixel design (2688 x 1520 resolution) with flash and an f/2.0, 28mm lens. On the other side, there's simpler 5Mp part capable of recording 1080p video. Apparently, though, they are not just pixels but HTC Ultrapixels, and so in some way better.

What makes the primary camera worthy of extra note is its dual-sensor arrangement that makes it capable of Lytro-style depth sensing. This allows automatic application of a range of special effects including the fashionable bokeh that keeps the subject of the picture in focus and blurs the background, or vice versa.

There are filter effects that can be combined with this to give a pencil effect or cartoon. Unlike the Lytro, you can’t save the photos with depth-of-field metadata from the camera hardware, but HTC is opening up a software interface to developers so there is an opportunity for someone else to do it.

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Xperia Z3: Crikey, Sony – ANOTHER flagship phondleslab?
The Fourth Amendment... and it IS better
Don't wait for that big iPad, order a NEXUS 9 instead, industry little bird says
Google said to debut next big slab, Android L ahead of Apple event
Microsoft to enter the STRUGGLE of the HUMAN WRIST
It's not just a thumb war, it's total digit war
Back to the ... drawing board: 'Hoverboard' will disappoint Marty McFly wannabes
Buzzing board (and some future apps) leave a lot to be desired
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
A drone of one's own: Reg buyers' guide for UAV fanciers
Hardware: Check. Software: Huh? Licence: Licence...?
The Apple launch AS IT HAPPENED: Totally SERIOUS coverage, not for haters
Fandroids, Windows Phone fringe-oids – you wouldn't understand
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.