Last time we checked in on the HTC One E8, the plastic version of HTC’s flagship was on sale in China and southeast Asia as a lower-cost version of the HTC One M8, which is covered in a machined aluminum unibody. But it looks like the device is headed to the United States after all, according to a promotional video posted to Sprint’s official YouTube channel.
The HTC One E8 is essentially a carbon copy of the well-reviewed HTC One M8, but there are a few differences, starting with a less expensive plastic cover, instead of the machined metal that lends the M8 its premium feel. But it’s a little lighter, it comes in colors, and it’s still a fast phone with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor, so depending on price it might be a good Android alternative to Apple’s iPhone 5C as the holiday season approaches.
Sprint is a logical carrier for the phone and the E8 variant heading to the US is a good candidate to support Sprint’s Spark network. In China, the device is sold through China Mobile and it supports TD-LTE, and Sprint is the only carrier to utilize that technology in the United States.
HTC is at a crossroads: Faced with disappointing summer sales of the HTC One M8, it could really use a new piece of hardware to drive demand through the holiday season. The E8 on Sprint and the expected Microsoft Windows Phone version of the M8 expected this fall might not be the answer to HTC’s problems. But you’ve got to hand it to HTC: the Taiwanese company recently (but barely) returned to profitability through aggressive cost cutting, and getting three expensive phones out of one design certainly is efficient.