Dedicated followers of the latest smartphone hardware may recall reading about the HTC J Butterfly, a Japan-only tablet/smartphone hybrid with a very special screen, when it was announced back in October. Now, the J Butterfly has flown all the way to the USA, where it has lost the bizarre name and become the Droid DNA.
Announced at a brief event in New York, the Droid DNA is a Verizon network exclusive, which sadly means in won’t work in the UK. That doesn’t mean we can’t gawp at the amazing specification though.
The standout feature is the 5-inch super LCD 3 touchscreen, which has a 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution, or 1080p. This puts it well ahead of the current 720p phones, and is the first device of its type to be announced in the USA.
It’s powered by a 1.5GHz, quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, which is the same monster chip found in the LG Optimus G, the forthcoming Asus Padfone 2 and the new Nexus 4. There’s also 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal memory, plus the operating system in Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with HTC’s usual Sense 4+ user interface over the top.
The specification continues with an 8 megapixel camera, a forward-facing 2.1 megapixel video call lens, NFC, Bluetooth, 4G LTE connectivity, Beats Audio and a separate amplifier for the headphone port and the speaker. There are two disappointments though, the first being the lack of a microSD card slot, and the second the feeble sounding 2020mAh battery, which has a lot of serious hardware to power.
It’s priced at $199 with a two-year contract in the USA, putting it just above the LG Optimus Vu and below the Samsung Galaxy Note II. It’s set for release on 21 November.
Just because the Droid DNA hasn’t been announced for the UK yet, doesn’t mean we won’t see it in the future. Other “Droid” branded phones – the original Droid became the Motorola Milestone here for example – have been converted over, and given HTC is struggling to keep up with Samsung, it’ll want it’s new super phone for sale in as many markets as possible. We’ll just need to have some patience, and see if it becomes the leaked HTC DLX/HTC X5.