back to article Gr8, it's the new M8! Ideal for that celebrity funeral selfie

Taiwanese phone-maker HTC unveiled its quad-core HTC One M8, the snappily named successor to the M7, on Tuesday. Predictably, it's powered by a 2.3GHz ARM-compatible Snapdragon 801 chip from Qualcomm with 2GB of RAM, and runs Android KitKat 4.4. The battery isn’t removable, it has 16 or 32GB of on-board storage, and it can …


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  1. Steve Knox

    The battery isn’t removable


  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Are they going to bother to advertise it like Samsung will the GS5?

    Or will it sink into oblivion with most people never having heard of it just like the One X?

    1. localzuk Silver badge

      Re: Are they going to bother to advertise it like Samsung will the GS5?

      This is their main problem - they don't have the funds to compete with marketing. Samsung's marketing budget for 2014 was $14bn! That's more than HTC's entire revenue. OK, that won't all be spent on phones, but it shows the difference between the companies.

      What HTC really need to do is get the carriers pushing their products better. Give better kick-backs to them for selling the phones or something!

    2. Hairy Spod

      Re: Are they going to bother to advertise it like Samsung will the GS5?

      Where does that myth come from?

      I must have seen the jumping out of an plane skydiving and making a documentary on the phone advert for the One X about a million times after it was released a couple of years ago

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Are they going to bother to advertise it like Samsung will the GS5?

        Its no myth.

        I saw some numbers a few days ago showing smartphone advertising spending for 2013 for Apple and Samsung (Samsung a shade higher than Apple) and HTC with like 1/6th of Samsung's spend.

        The idea that HTC "can't afford it" is silly. If advertising did nothing to increase sales, then that would be true, but if that was true then the entire advertising industry would have been found out as a fraud and gone under decades ago.

  3. ted frater

    Wheres the proper keyboard?

    you know, all smart phones now follow fashion at the expense of function.

    Also why does a phone try to be a camera? why cant

    it just e a phone? and do what a phone does best

    these are just 2 of the 3 disadvantages of current offerings.

    now i want a proper keyboard, can i find one? no. eventho all the main makers can make anything they want.

    its because its cheaper and thus more profitable to do everything in s/ware and to hell withhe real needs of people.

    Im going to bang on about this till someone makes what Im prepared to pay for.

    there, thats got that off my chest and a good start for the day.

    1. localzuk Silver badge

      Re: Wheres the proper keyboard?

      Why comment about a phone with a touchscreen and a good camera if those aren't things you want or need?

      The reason the phones with keyboards have disappeared? They don't sell in enough numbers to make their development worth it. They're a niche product, and for HTC, who are are struggling, they aren't going to waste time producing something with a tiny potential market.

    2. DaLo

      Re: Wheres the proper keyboard?

      Where have you been for the past 5 years?

      There have been plenty of Android phones with hardware keyboards including some that have a nice flipout mechanism. However they weren't great sellers.

      Manufacturers aren't going to make phones in their thousands for a niche market who wouldn't be prepared to pay niche prices, they will make them in the millions for the popular masses.

      However if you want one then take a look here!BqL78 for starters.

    3. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: Wheres the proper keyboard?

      Ah c'mon ted frater, is it possible that you're being slightly arbitrary?

      You bash phones for trying to be cameras, yet you then bash them for not trying to be Psion organisers.

      For sure, a Psion-style keyboard would be nice, but you could carry a discrete bluetooth/OTG keyboard with you. You could carry a discrete camera with a big lens, and a dedicated sat-nav, a separate calculator, and a stand-alone personal media player, too. Why these gadgets have converged into one unit is because they require many of the same hardware elements - battery, screen, speakers, DAC etc.

      You could buy an old-school dumbphone and a 7" tablet.

      My own preference is for a 4" Android phone, a wristwatch, a Lumix LX camera and a Sandisk Clip media player. Each of the discrete devices is slightly better than the phone for its specialist function- plus the phone's battery lasts longer! If I needed to conduct time and motion studies, or regularly tot up figures, I would probably invest in a stopwatch or calculator, too.

    4. CaptainBanjax

      Re: Wheres the proper keyboard?

      Damn it Ted. Its because most people want to capture moments not take pictures.

      There is a vast difference between the two, a difference that most arty farty togs dont grasp.

      Sure a DSLR can get you star trails and accurate lighting capture plus all the other fancu shit nobody notices but with the time it takes to set it up the moment is gone and all you have is a staged line up of grinning chimps set to a lovely backdrop.

      Phones need decent cameras to point and snap.

      If someone shows me a picture I want the taker to be able to tell me a story...not which fucking lens he used and how it took 4 hours wait for the light to be right.

      People with a photography fetish ruin nights out.

      1. ted frater

        Re: Wheres the proper keyboard?

        Ok lads points taken, the thing is there isnt a choice. I use a keyboard on my Dell latitude laptop, and id like to type a lot on my handset. regrettably ive large hands so all the keyboards on handsets on offer over the past few yrs are too small for me to use.

        Also, Id be happy to pay for a handset that meets my needs. along with lots of other folk who grew up with the written word, ie black type on white paper.

        i have to document everything i quote for in my business so writing it up is just part of the job.

        When out of the office i lkie to text on a proper k/board. So i concentrate on what i say not on how

        I do it..


  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No OIS, no chance

    A supposedly high end camera phone without OIS? They're taking the p surely.

  5. muttley

    Another shiny HTC, another poor camera

    What is there to get excited about here?

    This One has a poor camera for 2014 by all accounts.

    My Desire HD has a poor camera, my just-finishing-contract One X has an only-just-good-enough camera.

    No rush to upgrade on the first day. It's rooted, running CM and network unlocked so I'll pop a PAYG sim in there and sit on my hands until something interesting (Android, Nok 1020-esq camera) hits the market.

    Are we there yet?

    1. localzuk Silver badge

      Re: Another shiny HTC, another poor camera

      Have you used the camera on the HTC One? Its pretty darn good! A huge improvement over the Desire HD (I've had both).

    2. Lazlo Woodbine

      Re: Another shiny HTC, another poor camera

      It's not all about megapixels you know. Use the same size sensor with 4mp & 20mp and I'm willing to bet the 4mp sensor will give a better image quality.

      Besides, just how big an image do you want to upload to Instagram & Facebook, considering both services downsample all images.

    3. Alastair MacDiarmid

      Re: Another shiny HTC, another poor camera

      The camera on the m7 is gorgeous, it's not all about loads of pixels M8.

  6. frank ly

    re. bokeh

    " ... the fashionable bokeh that keeps the subject of the picture in focus and blurs the background, or vice versa."

    There's more to bokeh than that:

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: re. bokeh

      >There's more to bokeh than that

      Yeah, you need at least a really expensive full frame DSLR or medium format camera and $6000 f1.2 lens otherwise you aren't doing it properly. Can't have anyone thinking these cheap smartphones will get anywhere near a plausible bokeh effect, it's just not cricket.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: re. bokeh

        A proper Leica owner can tell the difference in gradation between a picture taken with a UV filter and one taken without, so long as it's taken on a Leica. [/sarcasm]

        Oddly, we managed without the term "bokeh" until 1997. It actually covers - conflates - a whole lot of independent factors in image quality - the size and shape of the circle of confusion, control of aberrations, and depth of field - which photographers used to fuss about independently too. Your f/1.2 lens won't be as good at image quality at full aperture as a really well corrected f/2 lens, because increasing the aperture adds tradeoffs which cannot be avoided for any sane amounts of money. But if you care about these things, you certainly are not taking your pictures with a phone. You are probably spending more like £700-1000 on something like a micro 4/3 camera with a good primary lens, which is still much cheaper in inflation adjusted terms than a middle of the road 35mm SLR of the late 90s.

        I expect the camera on my phone to be adequate, not magical.

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: re. bokeh

          There's a fair chance that most phone users just want a subject's head to 'stand-out' from the background. Artists they aren't - they just want a nice picture of their friends. They won't be too fussed if this is bodged in software.

          As we know, many Reg readers aren't most people.

          It reminds me of the days of hand-rendering product designs - the object is drawn sharply, but often presented against a smudged pastel background (or similar). It makes the product images 'pop' out from the page for more impact.

  7. JDX Gold badge


    Another article I read claimed this phone DID let you take pictures and then alter the focus in the built-in apps. El Reg seems to be claiming it doesn't (yet)?

    1. Simon Rockman

      Re: DoF

      You can change focus on the phone, but they don't have a Lytro style file format which lets the viewer change the focus after it has left the phone.

    2. ElReg!comments!Pierre

      Re: DoF

      Technically you can't alter the focus, just add some artificial blur. The 2 lenses are just here to get "distance" information, which lets you blur similarly objects that are the same distance away. There are some cameras that really let you "alter" the focus after the fact, but they are rather more sophisticated, relying on proper lens arrays (which means that you don't "change" the focus as much as "define" it after the fact). They also tend to be low-def and to be absolutely horrid as soon as the light goes slightly down -well, that or they are humongous and cost the price of an appartment. I bet this thing, although not really being able to define the focus after the shot like a proper lighfield camera, is much better on the resolution and low-light fronts.

      Comparing it to the lytro is just plain wrong; this here thing is just adding "distance" information to the picture, letting you apply a wonky blurring filter selectively to objects that are the same distance away from the lens.

  8. sorry, what?

    Getting closer

    Having added the micro SD card now all they need to do is make the battery replaceable and they will have a device that I'd be interested in again.

    I actually like HTC and Sense - I am still using an antique 2010 HTC Desire which works well, can take micro SD cards, can change the battery, etc. The main issue is that the amount of RAM and ROM is so low I can't install enough apps and can't upgrade Android + Sense beyond 2.2 (well, there is a 2.3 if you DIY).

    1. Test Man

      Re: Getting closer

      Time to get real and get a proper mobile - you wouldn't have any problems if you actually took your head out of the clouds and got a current-gen HTC mobile.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Getting closer

      Omgosh a desire.. how do you survive, i had to power mine on to work around a 4.4 noise cancellation issue with a recent s3 rom.

      I nearly cried waiting for it to do anything (even when running on a class 6 sd card and kitkat).

      It was a great phone for its day, but boy it feels so small and like a toy phone in my hands now compared to modern phones.

      Honestly, i have to agree with you, i had a htc phone right the way up from WM5.x until i had my desire... The new phone does look nice.. but for me thats where my affection stops.

      After they made the desire then they lost it for what ever reason, took the SD card slot away and decided to secure the battery away inside the device so it couldn't be upgraded for a bigger cell.

      Sense ui i would always run away from screaming.. thank god for akop roms, yes i loath touchwiz nearly as much (although i do have to admit sense has always made my blood boil quicker).

      I really cant understand why htc dont make two version of the phone, one with a removable battery one without and let the purchaser make the choice and see what sells, maybe the return of the sd card is them starting to see the light...!

      Stereo speakers, meh, does that small amount of separation matter at a reasonable distance, ok its good for films/vide. Alu case, its going to live its life in a rubber bumper if i have it so double meh, camera blurring effects trying to produce some bokeh effect that i could just do in a paint package... triple meh

      It always comes down to, CPU, RAM, SD Slot, Battery upgrade.... but htc always appear to put being prettier than an ibone and then other things come second, samsung might not always feel so premium in comparison (like i said once it in a rubber case could i care), but they always make a device i can slap the biggest battery i can into it (normally a zero lemon cell) and slap in a big sd card in.

      The other thing is samsung despite some initial dragging their heals have kept on offering updates for most devices, the S3 is even getting an official kitkat (apparently) where as htc had in the past (not so sure these days) give you a couple of revisions, stopped all support for a device and refused to opensource/provide the source to the drivers, leaving devs to mostly try and reverse engineer or make older drivers function under what ever later rom to keep a device supported.

      And dont kid yourself into thinking htcs build quality has always been fantastic.. its been good and yes better than some, but ive had a far few with design faults I had to replaced screens / key pads / etc more than once before the device got retired due to an upgrade.

      As the reg pointed out putting the metal right upto the glass might look pretty, but drop that in the right way and what going to give first the screen or the bezel... at least with a softer plastic the screen makes it through the ordeal normally and you end up with a nick out of the plastic. But it a bumper to protect it and so it doesn't slip out of your hand constantly and you are of course safe.. but then you cant see all the shiney goodness so i say meh again to shiney goodness.

      Going back to your desire go over to xda develoers, root your phone, s-off your phone, flash an updated hboot, flash a recovery image, partition your sd card, flash a kitkat rom and some form of apps to sd (normally included with the rom) and your issue with limited internal storage (app space) will be a thing of the past...!

      Plus you can then run google chrome and hopefully transition from dalvik to art to gain some more speed :)

      1. Mark 110

        Re: Getting closer

        I am intrigued. Bit late to do a detailed reply but you seem to be saying you haven;t had a HTC since a Desire but you don't like their new phones. How would you know?

        On the battery front - I don't see the problem. Are you really ever that far from a plug?

        On the Sense UI front - if the last version you used was on the Desire then how do you know?

        Stereo speakers - horses for courses - not something I would ever use but not a reason to dislike the phone. Some people will like it (them pesky kids at the back of the bus)

        Automated photo effects - instead of doing them in a paint package?? Not something I use but why not. Better than wasting time doing them in a paint package when it could be automated.

        Pretty - nothing wrong with being pretty but its more than that - look and feel are what us humans live on. Look cheap and plasticy like a Samsung or sheek and metallic like a HTC or sleek and glassy like an iPhone? HTC won awards for look and build so hard to knock it so frivolously.

        Updates - my HTC One just got updated to Kit Kat. I doubt they will support updates for more than a couple of years but who else does?

        I am not sure why you are so down on HTC or what experience you have of recent HTC phones. Kinda feel like I am feeding a Samsung troll or something with this post. Oh well. Eat away.

        1. sorry, what?

          Re: Getting closer

          @Mark 110, the battery thing isn't always about being in range of a plug (and, no, plugs aren't very common when you're out for a whole day hike or when flying cattle class on cheap airlines), and not always about stuffing a higher capacity battery in instead.

          For me it is about enabling a longer lifetime of the device. All rechargeable batteries fail after so many recharges and I have had to replace the battery on my Desire once since I got it 4 years ago. A battery @ £14 compared to a phone at £400-500 makes a big difference (I direct purchase so make my phones last).

    3. CJatCTi

      Re: Getting closer

      If you are still using a Desire I think the main issue is you don't want to spend the £550 an New phone costs. The Desire like earler PC can't cope with newer software & should have been replaced 2 Yeats after release.

      As for fixed battery how many time in the first 2 years did you change the battery?

      Smart phones don't last a day of heavy use, most people just charge on the go, either via a PC or battery pack even if the batterycan be changed.

      I will be buying the dual SIM version of this phone or if its too tall to fit in my jeans pocket the Sony waterproof compact. And yes I do use both features my traveling phone is a Lenovo dual sim waterproof gem, but its a bit slow and the screen could be bigger.

      What % of the 'Not for me" writting in any comments area are REALLY as free with their cash as opinions?

  9. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge


    It's refreshing to see microSD back in top-model phones again. It's future-proofing a phone against the one component where the performance/cost ratio improves the most quickly.

    I'll be a troll and say that I don't care about removable batteries. They're fragile as hell. Late model phones charge so quickly that I'd rather bring a tiny AC adaptor or 5V USB power pack. My bicycle has a 3cm x 3cm x 1cm switchmode power supply attached to the lighting battery that can keep my phone showing a map all day and night long. Heck, I even have a 6W solar cell hat that can charge a phone.

  10. Anonymous Coward
  11. Tom Kelsall

    Batteries and stuff.

    I have had the M8 for a week now, and apart from the first day where I hammered the phone HARD, I haven't gone to bed with less than 50% charge yet. Last night was 64%. I am a moderate to heavy user and I'm getting (extrapolated) roughly 6 hours of screen-on time out of this phone. I get up at 7am and retire at midnight. Trust me the need for additional ergs is going to be unbelievably rare on this phone. And if the battery packs up and goes home before the first 2 years is up, HTC will replace it under warranty for free.

    As to photography: photography is about emotion and moments, not f-stops and pixel counts. This camera is sweet as - its "only" four million pixels deliver fantastic image quality, colour accuracy and light accuracy - and it is more than adequate to the needs of the millions of people who will buy this phone.

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