HTC outs first Windows Phone 8 devices: Photos

HTC outs first Windows Phone 8 devices: Photos

Summary: HTC has released details of the first handsets it will release that run Microsoft's Windows Phone 8 mobile operating system: the Windows Phone 8 X and S by HTC.

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  • HTC has also brought some of the features from its flagship Android devices, such as the One X, to the WP8 X, including Beats Audio integration for better sound quality.

    Wheeler said the device had enhanced DSPs (digital signal processors) and an extra amplifier added to the audio-out in order to give a better volume range and make the sound crisper.

    Like Nokia, HTC is also giving a lot of attention to the cameras found in its high-end device. The WP8 X has a dedicated camera shutter button, and uses the same f2.0 lens and 8-megapixel sensor as the One series.

    Unusually for a smartphone, the front-facing camera also has a f2.0, 2.1-megapixel camera with a wide-angle lens for video calling. Naturally, it also comes with Skype pre-installed.

    "Skype is an important part of the OS," Wheeler said. "We believe video calling is going to be quite an important use within Windows Phone 8."

    Unfortunately few other OS details can be shared, as Microsoft is yet to reveal aspects of Windows Phone 8 — and hands-on time with the device at a recent briefing was limited to exploring the home screen.

    Image: Ben Woods

  • The second device, called the Windows Phone 8 S by HTC, comes with a slightly more modest spec list than the WP8 X — a difference that will presumably be reflected in the price tag.

    Under the bonnet it runs the same Windows Phone 8 operating system and comes with a 1GHz dual-core S4 processor. The display is 4-inches large and RAM is just half that found in the WP8 X, but the handset does offer microSD expansion unlike its bigger sibling.

    Also like the WP8 X, the WP8 S will come in a range of colours, including black/white, grey/yellow, red/orange and blue/purple.

    Image: Ben Woods

  • Somewhat perplexingly, HTC has decided to omit a forward-facing camera from the WP8 S, despite Wheeler's assertions that "Skype is an important part of Windows Phone 8".

    "It's about price points, [the WP8 X] is the flagship," Wheeler said. "[The WP8 S] is actually in an affordable price bracket, Beats and the music experience is something we believe is key."

    Without access to the underlying OS it's difficult to say how well the device worked or what lies in wait, feature wise. What we do know is that it comes with Beats Audio software tweaks onboard but it does not have the dual amplifiers found in the WP8 X.

    Image: Ben Woods

Topics: HTC, Microsoft, Mobility, Smartphones

Ben Woods

About Ben Woods

With several years' experience covering everything in the world of telecoms and mobility, Ben's your man if it involves a smartphone, tablet, laptop, or any other piece of tech small enough to carry around with you.

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  • HTC outs first Windows Phone 8 devices: Photos

    Nice slick looking phone but all WP8 are nice to look at. Microsoft is changing the boring square phone into something pretty.
    Loverock Davidson-
    • Who cares what it looks like?

      Does it work?
      Rodo1
      • Color is a nice touch

        It is changing from the boring black/grey phones everybody has. And once we know it works it will be nice to have it nice!
        lepoete73
        • True, but it's competition is actually other WP8 phones

          And the Nokia's have had this style for the last year on their meego's and now windows phones.

          Now that we're going to a three horse race, I think the OS is going to be a major factor in which device you use - especially from the OEMs that will be supplying droid and WP.
          MarknWill
    • I agree, breath of fresh air

      I give Samsung a ton of credit for popularizing the F700 look and feel of the smartphone, one that went on to be implemented on 90% of all smartphones sold today.

      Thank you Microsoft, Nokia, and HTC for coming up with this breath of fresh air. Think Different.
      toddbottom3
      • But 90% of smartphones don't have slide out 'boards?

        Seriously though I know to what you refer;
        http://androidcommunity.com/who-was-really-first-apple-vs-samsung-story-truly-debunked-20110420/

        But let's be honest, they all copy each other right, there are only so many ways to "do" touchscreen - looking at layouts there's a lot of similarity with modern smartphones and those early palm and newton pda's - once you get a touchscreen, the case'll be square around it!
        MarknWill
  • wooow! Rectangle is the new square

    "The designers took a lot of inspiration from the [Windows Phone] tile interface, they used that as the inspiration of the handset,"

    Loverock - "Microsoft is changing the boring square phone into something pretty."

    lepoete73 - "It is changing from the boring black/grey phones everybody has"

    Do people actually think about what they say? It's a boring 'phone that is 'phone shaped and the dimensions of it, are like most 'phones, dictated by the screen size.

    Nearly everyone I know will put this phone inside a protective case, either made out of leather, probably black, or some silicon/plastic affair that will most likely be brightly coloured, patterned or have a picture on it. Nothing new, been going on for years, what a phone looks like is practically irrelevant after it's covered in a protective case.

    So lets get down to the nitty gritty. This 'phone lacks an SD slot so is to all intents and purposes it's a load of rubbish. This manufacturer or another will bring out a similar or better WP8 'phone that will have an SD slot this one should be ignored.
    Pastabake
    • To case or not to case?

      I kind of agree but I think with the new, tougher glass that's coming out now, more people might try to get away with using their phone without a case. I have been using my phone without a case ever since I cracked the glass from dropping it with a case on. I figure it cracked anyway so why bother with the case? I plan to just buy the insurance and go without the case on my new phone. You know what would really be cool? These companies need to start designing a phone that is water resistant. I get caught in the rain or am out on a boat a lot and freak that my phone will die if it gets wet. Let's do what Casio did with the watch and get a G-Shock phone!
      MCTronix
      • Casio waterproof phone

        Casio has a waterproof/shock proof Android phone called: CASIO G'zOne Commando
        My friend takes his white water rafting with no problems.
        I would like to see a WP8 waterproof phone too.
        soylentgreen77
  • Hidden SD slot

    While it lacks an SD slot externally there is one under that removable bottom but it is limited to 16gb. Do you really need an exposed slot? Most devices don't respond well to having SD cards randomly removed and replaced.

    While the X model sounds fully featured I think the S model will not be very lucrative for HTC. Lacking a front facing camera is a hefty omission and reduced audio hardware is just as lack lustre.

    It's true that most people put their phones in a protective case although they will be outmoded quickly and still look perfectly new, adding colour is a gimmick if ever there was one. I suspect the lack
    Of an LTE version would the the deal breaker for me, and the fact that I will have no cash left after I upgrade to and iPhone 5.
    david66lewis
  • From a "geezer" who hs no phone

    1. I use Mac and non-Mac products
    2. I find problems and inconsistencies in both
    3. I find support issues with both
    4. My most reliable, feature rich, powerful device is a self built, Asus-based, current generation desktop
    5. I like products that really look nice because I am the one that I am buying the phone for
    6. I do not like Windows 8 tiles on my 30" monitor
    7. I love the look of them on the phone
    8. I am expecting to buy a Windows phone if the features, performance, and cost line up.
    9. Otherwise Android gives me the best bang for the $ now
    alkolkin@...