HTC Launches The HTC One A9 — Specs & Details
At an event in New York, HTC took the wraps off its latest smartphone, the HTC One A9.
The HTC One A9, at first glance, looks like an iPhone. Specifically speaking, the back of the HTC One A9 bears uncanny resemblance to the iPhone 6’s back. Now, HTC greatly emphasized that the design of the A9 is evolutionary, as it borrows the “signature design language of the HTC One family” and builds upon the original HTC One M7‘s full metallic unibody design. But there’s still no denying that the one can confuse the One A9 with the iPhone 6 rather than with the One M7. Design-wise, the phone features a thin metal frame with pleasing curves on the sides, but a rather flat back which is unusual to HTC devices as they tend to sport gentle curves on the back.On the front, you’ll find a deep-set capsule-shaped fingerprint sensor, but not the much-acclaimed front facing stereo speakers as the single speaker grille has now made its way to the bottom of the device.
The bottom of the device also features an off-center standard micro-usb port (not Type-C), a microphone hole and the headphone jack. On the right of the device are the volume buttons and the power button, which featuree a ridged design and texture, making it easier to identify just by touch. The left side of the device features the slots for the SIM tray as well as the micro-sd card tray. The top of the device is barren, while the back features the rear camera module at the top centre with a dual tone LED flash.
Moving on to specifications, the HTC One A9 sports a 5″ FHD AMOLED display with Corning Gorilla Glass 4, which coupled with what HTC claims to be an edge-to-edge display (although it’s clearly not), should make for a decent sized phone. For the processor, the phone rocks a mid-range Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 octa-core processor, with four Cortex A-53’s clocked at 1.5GHz and another four clocked at 1.2GHz. This is accompanied by Adreno 405 in the GPU department. The RAM of the device varies depending on the storage option, with the 16GB internal memory variant coming with 2GB of LPDDR3 RAM and the 32GB storage variant getting a bump to 3GB of RAM. There is also micro-sd card expansion, which is a good addition to see these days, especially in phones that follow the metallic unibody design language. The phone comes with a 2,150 mAh battery with Quick Charge 2.0 support out of the box, with Quick Charge 3.0 also supported, making the device a bit more relevant for the future. The standard edition of the device comes with Android 6.0 Marshmallow (and HTC Sense) out of the box, making it the first device from a major manufacturer outside of Nexus to do so.
HTC also emphasized greatly on the camera prowess of the One A9. The phone features a 13MP rear facing camera with an f/2.0 aperture, OIS and PDAF (Phase Detection Auto Focus), along with a dual tone LED flash. The phone also supports RAW image capture, along with one-touch auto processing for these images. The camera can also record videos in hyperlapse, where essentially the entire video is sped through in a dramatic manner. For the front camera, HTC retains its 4MP UltraPixel camera with a f/2.0 aperture.
HTC’s decision to give stereo speakers a bottom stage may disappoint the fans that it made for its prominent front-facing speakers from the M lineup. However, HTC has improved upon personal audio experiences with an improved audio jack, which now features an increased output of 1V. With the other improvements in place, the sound output from the headphone jack should now have higher fidelity and better stereo separation, all of which should finally do justice to good earphones/headphones.
The HTC One A9 also has one more trick up its sleeve. In addition to carrier variants, HTC will also sell a completely unlocked variant of the device, which will not only work across all major carriers, it will also come with an unlockable bootloader, which will also not void the warranty of the device. The focus here is definitely a developer, as the phone is also promised to be updated to every version of Android released in the next two years, and that too, within 15 days of Google rolling out the update to Nexus devices. The unlocked edition will also come with a 6 month subscription to Google Play Music, and 12 months of coverage for accidental damage (including cracked screen replacements and water damage) under HTC’s Uh-Oh protection program for devices purchased via HTC.com. These phones will also come with a 30 day trial period wherein users can return the phone if they do not like it.
The HTC One A9 comes in four colors: Carbon Grey, Deep Garnet, Opal Silver and Topaz Gold. Three of these are available for pre-order in the USA starting today, for $399.99 for the base 2GB|16GB variant unlocked variant. Global availability is scheduled for first week of November, with more news on this front expected to come soon.
All in all, the HTC One A9 does seem like a very decent mid-ranger. It may not pack in the best of the specs, nor offer the offer the best bang out of buck. It does however, provide a different product for HTC fans and a another device to bank on for HTC.
Does the phone fit into your criterion of a good phone? Let us know your thoughts below or in our discussion!Check Out XDA’s One A9 >>