HTC announced their new flagship the HTC 10. Full specs can be found on HTC’s website – click HERE.
Firstly, I thought HTC did a rather clever job of announcing the new flagship without a big live event. In fact, at 1pm UK time, all the content just appeared on HTC’s website along with a 13 min introduction video to the new flagship and what makes it special.
At the same time, all the major website also released all their content on the HTC 10 along with first impressions. Full reviews are likely to follow soon as well.
So instead of reproducing the same content as every other website, I am going to discuss the high and low points of the HTC 10 and then provide my thoughts re the competition.
HTC 10 – My First Impressions
A typical unibody slab of metal from HTC which will help it feel and look premium in the hand. The effort HTC’s went to task to simplify the software with Google will mean this phone will be super fast to use. However, for some and probably me included this could also mean a boring phone with no added extra software perks. The next stand out feature is the Hi-Res Audio and Hi-Res Headphones. This is for playback and recording via the microphones. This is really excellent if you like your music. The loudspeaker setup is a tweeter at top and bass/subwoofer at the rear. This should sound reasonable. 12mp rear camera f/1.8 1.55 microns pixel size, with OIS, two tone flash and laser auto focus. To me this sounds like the Nexus 6P rear camera but with OIS. Expect good photos. The front 5mp camera has OIS too. The rest of the specs are all run of the mill for a flagship phone. Apart from Airplay support built in. Unusual for an android phone. Due to all the software optimisations with Google, battery life should be one day. Handy Quick Charge 3 is included. Another claim to fame is the HTC 10 holding the top rating for its camera with DxOmark. I also liked that the HTC 10 had adoptable storage.
HTC 10 vs The Competition
Nexus 6P – I would pick the HTC 10 over the Nexus 6P. That is unless you wanted to ensure fast and quick firmware updates directly from Google. The HTC 10 should have better cameras and audio.
Samsung Galaxy S7 – Whilst the HTC 10 has larger pixels in its rear camera, the S7 has a f/1.7 vs a f/1.8 for the HTC 10. Both rear cameras are 12mp. Personally the S7 would be my choice for camera due to its incredibly fast focus. The S7 is also water and dust resistant. If selfies are your thing, then maybe the HTC 10 would be a better option. The HTC 10 gets the thumbs up from me on the audio front and the fact it has adoptable storage. On paper I still think the S7 Edge looks more premium. It also has a better screen and battery. Whilst Samsung include lots of extra apps, some are really useful and add extra functionality.
Xiaomi Mi 5 – HTC 10 has the camera and audio edge. The Mi 5 features an IR blaster and is a lot cheaper. But it is not as readily available world wide.
LG G5 – I still think the 16mp rear camera on the G5 is my preferred choice over the 12mp HTC 10. Whilst the G5 doesn’t offer a front camera with OIS it does offer a higher resolution at 8mp. The 8mp wide angled rear camera is unique. Audio quality will be better on the HTC 10, even with the G5’s DAC module potentially. However, bluetooth audio on the G5 should be better than the HTC 10 due to the G5 supporting APT-X High Definition codec. The G5’s modules offer something different to the HTC 10. The HTC 10 is far more premium looking. An IR Blaster is still included with the G5 and not present on the HTC 10.
Huawei P9 – I think the P9 will have a tough time competing against the HTC 10 except for the fact the P9 at launch will be £100 less in price. The P9 also has a unique dual rear camera lens setup. But these lenses do not feature OIS meaning blurrier shots will happen more frequently.
iPhone 6S – Apart from the iOS vs android debate, I really think the HTC 10 beats the iPhone in audio and camera, at least from a specs point of view.
Microsoft Lumia 950 – Whilst the camera on the 950 may be respectable I believe the HTC 10 would be a better all around option.
It is worth remembering these are my initial thoughts. I have yet to see the HTC 10 in person and like everything the specs may look good, the promotional material may shine, but does the phone deliver on what it promises! Time will tell but it really does look like HTC have delivered a decent offering this year.
If you order directly from HTC there are discount codes available as follows –
– USA – Code – HTC1008 – Saves $100 – Price reduced to $599 from $699
– Canada – Code HTCCA1008 -Saves $100 – Price reduced to $899 from $999
– UK – Code – HTC10 – Takes 10% off. New price is £512.99 from £569.99 – Also selecting Express Shipping instead of standard, makes shipping free.