The wait for the HTC One (M9) smartphone will be over in less than 24 hours. The 2015 flagship device from HTC goes on sale Friday at midnight.
The Taiwanese manufacturer announced Thursday that the HTC One (M9) will be available exclusively online, at htc.com, during its first two weeks on the market. The premium smartphone will sell for $649 unlocked and will also come with HTC's "Uh Oh Protection," a one-time free phone replacement within the first 12 months in the event of a crack or water damage. It also covers replacements for a user who chooses to switch mobile networks and needs a compatible phone. If the "Uh Oh Protection" warranty isn’t used, HTC will give buyers a $100 credit towards a future HTC One purchase.
The HTC One (M9) will be available in stores for carriers including AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon, and for retailers including Amazon, Best Buy, Best Buy Mobile, Costco Wholesale and Target beginning April 10. Carriers and retailers will announce their individual launch information including exact specifications, colors, availability and pricing at a later date.
By selecting this launch date, HTC has established competition with Samsung, which will also launch its Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge smartphones April 10. HTC and Samsung also both announced their new flagship devices on March 2, prior to the World Mobile Congress in Barcelona. Most of the carriers and retailers that will carry the device have not revealed launch information for their models of the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge; however, Verizon has announced it will begin accepting preorders for the devices April 1.
The HTC One (M9) features a 5-inch Full HD (1920x1080 resolution) display, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 chip, 3GB of RAM memory and 32GB of internal storage, as well as a 2840 mAh battery. HTC claims the battery provides as much as 21.7 hours of talk time and as much as 402 hours of standby time on a 3G network.
The smartphone also has some significant software upgrades, especially with the new HTC Sense 7 user interface, which includes updates to its gallery that lets users search social media for images of a person. It also allows them to set up custom themes based on photographs they have taken and shows users apps that may be useful for their current location.
HTC's themes feature allows users to create a custom look and feel for the M9 smartphone by snapping a photo. Sense 7 will then generate a full theme with the image as wallpaper, including a custom color palate based on the photo and unique app icons that match the photo and color scheme.
Sense can also detect when a user is in a location for the very first time and make suggestions of local establishments to visit.
On the exterior, the HTC One (M9) features a dual-tone color scheme, which has a hairline finish on the back panel and polished-mirror finish on the front and sides. The device will ship in silver, gunmetal gray, pink and gold options.