The HTC 8X and 8S are being positioned as high and mid-range devices respectively, with design elements which follow the manufacturer’s familiar stylings whilst still managing to evolve the aesthetics.
Peter Chou, CEO of the Taiwanese firm, took to the stage and declared that HTC has sold more Windows Phones than any other manufacturer and knows the platform better than its rivals.
The HTC boss added: “We have to take a completely fresh approach. We need a breakthrough. We need an iconic Windows Phone”.
As happened at the recent launch of Nokia’s Lumia 920 and 820 Windows Phone 8 handsets, Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft, also appeared onstage, showing off the new devices.
The HTC 8X was showcased first and revealed to feature a 4.3-inch, 720p HD Super LCD 2 display with a ppi of 341, along with an 8 megapixel camera, 16GB of internal storage and 1GB of RAM. Powered by a Qualcomm S4 dual-core, 1.5GHz processor and featuring the Beats Audio technology, the firm’s Windows Phone 8 flagship is an impressive device which brilliantly exhibits the new operating system’s user interface.
In the wake of Nokia’s claims about the photographic capabilities of its Lumia 920, HTC made a point of highlighting the 8X’s f2.0 lens, claimed to offer excellent performance in low light conditions. The new device also has a 2.1 megapixel front-facing camera also featuring an f2.0 lens.
Peter Chou wasn’t the only senior HTC staff member to speak at the event, with Scott Croyle, the firm’s head of design, also taking to the stage. In what could be regarded as a slur on Nokia, Croyle stated: “There’s been no phone that’s truly embodied the promise of Windows Phone”.
Following the unwrapping of the HTC 8X, the HTC 8S was revealed as a slightly smaller device, with the difference between it and its larger cousin being, at first glance, comparable to the difference between HTC’s One X and One S.
Sporting a 4-inch, WVGA TFT display, the 8S has a 5 megapixel camera and 4GB of internal storage, with HTC also having included Beats Audio technology.
Considering the distinctive appearance of the Windows Phone 8 user interface it’d be easy to mistake the two new HTC devices for the latest additions to Nokia’s range, given their physical resemblance to the recently launched Lumias.
One big difference between these and previous HTC smartphones however is the colour variants offered – whereas many of the firm’s previous devices were available in either black or white, the WP8 handsets are available in several different colours, all of which are bold and bright. It seems that the strong colours that are intrinsic to the Windows Phone design have been carried over to the hardware itself.
No firm information on release dates and pricing has been announced but HTC has said that both devices should be available in November.