Amid flagging sales, HTC announced its HTC One line of phones at the Mobile World Congress on Sunday. The new Android 4.0 phones look similar to prior models with a unibody chassis, but have many improvements that could help the company regain its sales momentum. And as a premier launch partner, T-Mobile will be the first U.S carrier to see the HTC One S variant when it arrives this spring in the U.S.
During a phone conversation I had with Desmond Smith, a T-Mobile Sr. Product Manager of phones, last week, he told me the HTC One S is all about delivering great user experiences for T-Mobile customers. Thus, the phone has the most recent and intuitive version of Google’s Android operating system supplemented by HTC Sense 4.0, a complementary set of user interface functions. Smith tells me that Sense 4.0 is very complementary to the improved Android 4.0 software.
With consumers taking more pictures with smartphones, the HTC One S is focused on — no pun intended — capturing great images and quickly sharing them. Along with the 8 megapixel camera sensor and very wide f/2.0 aperture (excellent for low light), the phone’s time for a first shot is 0.7 seconds and it can capture each successive image 0.2 seconds later. During my call with Smith, he held down the shutter button for a few seconds, and it sounded like a gatling gun was continuously firing rounds.
The HTC One S is a 42 Mbps phone, meaning that it’s capable of maxing out on T-Mobile’s network on 42 Mbps coverage areas. That’s helpful for pulling down videos on the 4.3-inch 960 x 540 Super AMOED display. And the handset has Beats technology — which HTC paid $300 million for last year — integrated for all sound output. Beats is a high-end sound brand with Dr. Dre’s name behind it.
Although we’re seeing new phones out of MWC with a quad-core processor, the One S will use a 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 chip with two cores. I doubt that will hurt the experience T-Mobile is trying to deliver.