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Print 28 comment(s) - last by EasyC.. on Jun 7 at 7:38 AM

HTC looks to expand on its flagship success with a cut down budget model

HTC Corp.'s (TPE:24981080p flagship "One" smartphone is a hit, moving 5 million units in its first month on the market -- and sales are still accelerating.  A thirsty HTC is ecstatic at the success, hoping to leverage it to put its struggles of the last year and a half behind it.  Critical to that plan is regaining ground in the middle end -- and that's where the HTC One's "little brother" -- codenamed either the HTC One Mini or the HTC One M4, depending on who you ask -- comes in.

The rumored 4.3-inch, 720p  (1280x720 pixel) handset leaked in the wild via pictures from an Estonian website, forte.delfi.ee.  The site confirms the rumored scaled-down spec that previously leaked.

The phone offers 2 GB of DRAM, a dual-core ARM processor, and 16 GB of NAND flash storage. The camera is an UltraPixel design (as rumored) with a 4 megapixel resolution (a somewhat misleading number in that this is the same sensor as the full-size HTC One, which offers picture quality akin to most 13 MP cameras).

HTC One
[Image Source: forte.delfi.ee]

The handset will reportedly launch worldwide in August, exactly half a year after the launch of its full-size predecessor.  The price in Europe for an unlocked handset reportedly will be around €400 ($523 USD) -- somewhat pricy, given that the "Senseless" HTC One is available for $599 USD unlocked from Google Inc.'s (GOOG) Play Store.

HTC One Mini

HTC One
[Image Source: forte.delfi.ee]

HTC's rival Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd. (KSC:005930) recently announced its own "Mini" handset -- the Galaxy S IV Mini.  Launch in late June, the device will feature a 4.3-inch qHD (960x540) screen, a 1.7 GHz dual-core processor, 1.5 GB of DRAM, 8 GB of NAND flash, and an 8 megapixel rear-shooting camera.  Comparatively HTC's Mini variant, if confirmed, will beat the Galaxy S IV Mini in most categories.

Source: Forte



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The camera is the same resolution...
By cditty on 6/5/2013 1:39:39 PM , Rating: 2
You say the camera is relatively low... In comparison to what? It's big brother is 4 MP as well.




RE: The camera is the same resolution...
By superflex on 6/5/2013 2:15:43 PM , Rating: 2
Jason being Jason.
He no likey the One so he intentionally misleads.
Just like his story on the black One having anodization problems. No link to support that claim either.
Another day in Jason's life hating on HTC.


By EasyC on 6/7/2013 7:35:46 AM , Rating: 1
Is Jason one of those lonely reviewers who actually thought the S4 was a better all around device?


RE: The camera is the same resolution...
By BRB29 on 6/5/2013 2:23:13 PM , Rating: 4
people who say 4mp is too low for a phone camera doesn't know how a camera works. The increasing mp war is purely for marketing intended to fool people. People need a metric to judge how good a camera is and Megapixels made the most sense at that point.

When I carry my DSLR or MLC around, people always ask me how many megapixels it has. When i say 16, they immediately think their 20mp point and shoot is better.


By fic2 on 6/5/2013 4:45:45 PM , Rating: 3
You should just tell them it has 37 ultra pixels and that ultra pixels are better than mega pixels because they are ultra.


RE: The camera is the same resolution...
By Solandri on 6/5/2013 5:47:12 PM , Rating: 2
For my DSLR, I agree the MP war is pure marketing. 4 MP is about all you need for a decent 8x10 print.

For a fixed focal length camera, more MP means I can take a picture, then crop tightly to make it identical to a telephoto shot. The noise will be worse than a true telephoto, but it's better than a pixelated enlargement.

So the more relevant metric is MP / noise level. If you can hold the noise level constant, then more MP is always better.


RE: The camera is the same resolution...
By BRB29 on 6/5/2013 6:09:23 PM , Rating: 3
Yes but how do you measure that. Small sensor cameras and especially smart phones uses heavy noise reductions to make their pictures look better. Most people don't realize that there's so much post processing automatically being done. I had to show them by taking a picture with my camera at the same resolution in raw and show them the details they missed. It's night and day difference.

The tiny sensors and cheap lens in the phone cameras don't even need 4 mp. The HTC One has a bigger sensor and still have to use pretty high ISO at 4MP and plenty of post processing to get a decent picture.


RE: The camera is the same resolution...
By cyberguyz on 6/6/2013 6:33:17 AM , Rating: 3
Good points.

However high density sensors let you take a large-area shot, then crop down to emphasize your subject. It is a technique I use often. When you have >10 mp to work with, you can be a little sloppier composing your shot and do a pretty good job of fixing it afterward. You have enough image available to blend out noise and crop in to recompose your subject.

Low density (4mp) sensors really don't give you a lot of cropping or color-blending headroom (this requires a lot of adjacent pixels to look good) so what you shoot is pretty much all you are going to get after you have worked your creative magic.

Are cell phones a replacement for dedicated compact or dslr cameras? Hell no. They were never meant to be. But sometimes you need to fix up your pictures after you had to jump on those once-in-a-lifetime photo opportunities with your cell phone (because you forgot to bring your hulking D4 full-frame dslr with you). This is where the high pixel density shines and the low density leaves you a little flat.

So my own taste is to get as much image to begin with and turn my creativity loose afterward. Works for me both my dslr and my cell cameras.


By BRB29 on 6/6/2013 8:26:12 AM , Rating: 2
Ok, you must be talking about DSLRs. But why would you take a high MP shot just to crop it? You're losing details that way. What you want to do is change your lens so that the picture is exactly what you want with no cropping. That way you get as much details as the camera can give you.

You're getting it wrong anyways. Pixel density in smartphone camera sensors are high. It is a tiny sensor pumping out the same megapixels as regular cameras with bigger sensors.

If you're saying get the GS4 with the 12mp camera and crop down then you're crazy. That IQ is going to be as good as a web cam of the 90s.

High density pixel sensors doesn't make sense when you don't have enough light coming through that pinhole of a lens. Small sensor + small lens = bad IQ. Most of the smartphone improvements in cameras have been software in the past few years.


By SPOOFE on 6/6/2013 6:13:46 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
For a fixed focal length camera, more MP means I can take a picture, then crop tightly to make it identical to a telephoto shot.

Err, no. "Identical" is certainly not an accurate description. You're fighting against the diffractive nature of the lens when you crop aggressively, especially with a camera with such tiny elements.

This is a major misconception in the camera world; "crop in post" is useful, but you need very good glass to make the most of all those megapixels.


For that price....
By Director12 on 6/5/2013 4:38:48 PM , Rating: 2
...wouldn't the Oppo Find 5 be the better option?




RE: For that price....
By Haydon987 on 6/5/2013 5:05:04 PM , Rating: 2
For price alone, possibly. The point is, not everyone wants a 5 inch screen phone. I include myself in this and it is the biggest reason I'm not out buying a SGS4 or HTC One or Oppo Find 5 right now. I'm waiting for a flagship level phone that doesn't make it look like I'm calling someone on a tablet (and is also not an Apple phone).


RE: For that price....
By Director12 on 6/5/2013 5:50:55 PM , Rating: 2
OK, thanks, didn't realise they were that big. Still using the Wildfire myself. :)


RE: For that price....
By Spuke on 6/5/2013 6:02:25 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I'm waiting for a flagship level phone that doesn't make it look like I'm calling someone on a tablet
You'll be waiting a LONG time.


RE: For that price....
By BRB29 on 6/5/2013 6:10:12 PM , Rating: 2
Galaxy S4 mini


RE: For that price....
By Spuke on 6/6/2013 12:58:32 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Galaxy S4 mini
Ummm..that has the same size screen as this one. The guy was clear in stating that 4.3" is too big. Like I said, LONG wait for a "small screen" top end phone.


RE: For that price....
By cyberguyz on 6/6/2013 6:54:01 AM , Rating: 2
I think he was saying 5" is too big. He's looking for a flagship-level phone with a smaller than 5" screen. I would feel the same about any phone bigger than 5" (most folks have their line in the sand - 5" is mine).

Some of the older HTC, Samsung, LG or motorola phones might interest him if the 'mini' phones don't.


RE: For that price....
By EasyC on 6/7/2013 7:38:36 AM , Rating: 2
Hooray 960x540 and meh speaker!


Except for the camera?
By Concillian on 6/5/2013 1:42:40 PM , Rating: 2
You mean except for the number of pixels in the camera, which we already know is a pretty meaningless number. It's a little early to declare a 4 megapixel camera inferior isn't it? I mean the full size One camera is superior to the SGS4 camera despite having fewer pixels.




RE: Except for the camera?
By stm1185 on 6/5/2013 1:49:31 PM , Rating: 2
From Anandtech's One Review

quote:
With the One camera, HTC has gone the other way entirely, instead moving up the scale to bigger 2.0 micron pixels while others move down to 1.1, while last year everyone primarily shipped at 1.4 microns. They’ve branded this the ‘UltraPixel sensor’, but really the important thing to think about is that the pixels are 4 square microns (2.0 x 2.0 micron) compared to the flavor-du-jour 1.21 square microns (1.1 x 1.1 micron) and thus have just over 3x the area. The result is, like anything else, a tradeoff but in the other direction - improved low light sensitivity and dynamic range at the expense of spatial resolution. At 1/3" sensor size, use of 2.0 micron pixels translates to 4.0 MP of resolution.


Who wants to be it's the same Camera. Which from the comparison shots is better then most 13MP cameras.


March Launch?
By joedon3 on 6/5/2013 1:51:42 PM , Rating: 2
If its rumored for a March launch, we're going to have to wait a while, and by then, it'll be a low end device....




RE: March Launch?
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 6/5/2013 1:55:29 PM , Rating: 2
It's August. Mistake fixed.


Size matters
By Argon18 on 6/5/2013 4:24:23 PM , Rating: 2
Does anyone else find it funny that a phone with a 4.3" screen is considered 'Mini'? I guess big is the new mini, and humongous is the new large?




RE: Size matters
By fic2 on 6/5/2013 4:47:56 PM , Rating: 2
The Starbucks naming model.


My HTC
By half_duplex on 6/5/2013 4:51:13 PM , Rating: 2
My HTC camera is the best I've seen on a phone. Not just great in low light. The exposure time is insane also. It'll take pics as fast as I can tap it.




You're good
By bug77 on 6/6/2013 5:35:44 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
The price in Europe for an unlocked handset reportedly will be around €400 ($523 USD) -- somewhat pricy, given that the "Senseless" HTC One is available for $599 USD unlocked from Google Inc.'s (GOOG) Play Store.


If you think you can compare US to EU prices like that, I invite you to come over here and try to buy something.




Is it just me
By EasyC on 6/7/2013 7:36:50 AM , Rating: 2
... or does that comparison pic show us that there's nothing "mini" about the phone, other than the screen size. It looks virtually the same size...




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