HTC was once the toast of Android, with the One M7 and One M8 in particular lauded for their looks, performance and camera credentials. The One M9, however, was really disappointing. The Taiwanese firm needs to come up trumps with its 2016 release, or else risk falling further behind the likes of Samsung, Apple and LG.
It looks like it’s ready to ring in the changes, starting with the handset’s name. HTC is getting all streamlined and slick by dropping the ‘One M’. The move had to come sooner or later. The thought of an HTC One M13 sends shivers up my spine.
We’ve gathered everything we sort of think we know about the HTC 10, so get ready to gorge yourselves on all of the truths, half-truths and complete bollocks below.
HTC 10 Design: Bringing Sexy Back
A design overhaul is certainly overdue. HTC hit the nail on the head with the M7 and M8, but its current flagship represents a backwards step. While it looks very similar to its predecessor, the M9 got rid of the unibody and introduced a naff two-tone finish along the edges. The 10 must look better.
Thankfully, it will. Renders and leaks show off an attractive, yet familiar-looking handset, similar in appearance to the rather sexy (but otherwise uninteresting) HTC One A9. The HTC 10 will be clad in metal too, and will feature a fingerprint scanner and bottom-mounted speakers.
There have also been whispers of waterproofing and wireless charging, though they may just reflect wishful thinking rather than genuine hope. Both would get our thumbs up, regardless.
HTC 10 Specs: 5.15 Inches of Glory
A 5.15-inch, QHD AMOLED panel is likely to be the order of the day. It’s unlikely that HTC will follow in the Sony Xperia Z5’s flashy 4K footsteps, and equally unlikely that the 10 will go for a Full HD display. That said, we haven’t had the chance to ogle any official screen-themed leaks yet, so there’s a small chance HTC could surprise us. Curved screen, anyone? Give it a couple of years.
HTC 10 Processor: Dragon Power
The M9 reportedly had a few issues in the performance department. A few people said they experienced overheating issues, which may have been down to the Snapdragon 810 processor or another hardware issue.
The 10 is obviously set to pack more of a punch than its older brother, and that extra grunt is likely to come from the Snapdragon 820 chip paired with 4GB of RAM. That’s the same setup inside the LG G5 and excellent Samsung Galaxy S7.
HTC 10 UI: Soft Software
Android 6.0 Marshmallow, with a dash of HTC Sense UI. Expect more contextually-aware features, no doubt, and some added customisation and fancy photo library tricks. Sense really divides people (Gerald loves it), so it'll be interesting to see if HTC can make it worthwhile over increasingly called-for stock Android.
That said, HTC last year announced that it wanted to align Sense UI more closely with stock Android. That would enable the company to roll out Android updates faster than its competitors, which would certainly be a sweetener. Most Android handsets are currently stuck running Lollipop, despite the fact that Marshmallow’s been out for half a year.
HTC 10 Camera: Better, duh. (Hopefully).
Camera performance and battery life are obviously pretty important too and, from what we've heard, HTC is making massive efforts to improve its next flagship’s credentials in both departments. There have been innumerous conflicting reports about the HTC 10’s main snapper, though a 12-megapixel sensor seems likeliest.
HTC will keep its “UltraPixel” camera (basically bigger pixels for better lowlight) for the selfie camera on the front, and says its two cameras—front and back—are ‘world class’. Samsung will watch on with mild interest.
HTC 10 Release Date, Price and Launch: Late to the Party
Previously believed to be in line for an MWC unveiling, it’s now looking unlikely that we’ll see the HTC 10 later, just before April. As mentioned above, the company seems to be taking longer than anticipated to perfect the formula, but hopefully it doesn’t end up missing the boat. After all, LG’s made the decision to bring forward the launch of the G5, after years spent following its rivals to market.
The latest gossip points to an April 11th launch in London, which would likely seen the 10 released in May. That's still a long way off. There are no price leaks to speak about yet, but something around the £600 mark is a sensible estimate.