Continuing their trend of delivering updates to services via app updates, HTC has unleashed Sense 7 for the M7 and the M8.
One of the more anticipated new features from the M9, Sense Home provides easy tools to customize and skin the Sense skin overlay on HTC handsets. They’re also building a community around sharing wallpapers and skins.
Sense is also more predictive now and, like launcher Aviate, it will try to offer up apps and services you might want to use in that moment, while also using your location for restaurant suggestions.
It’s also a nice consideration that this functionality is coming not only to last year’s M8, but is running pretty snappily on my two year old M7.
We still don’t have a lot of information on what will be coming for HTC’s next flagship phone. No confirmation on screen size or resolution. We don’t even know yet if it will use Qualcomm’s new 810 chipset.
This leaked line up of cases from OtterBox however do show some detail as to what we might expect from HTC. Cut outs show they’ll be keeping the front facing stereo speakers. Also the button arrangement looks like HTC will yet again be “inspired” by Nokia, which would be a welcome change from the top mounted power buttons on the M7 and M8.
Most interesting however is the large square-ish cutout for the rear camera. We don’t see a secondary port for a duo camera sensor.
My biggest complaint with the M8 came from the camera quality, walking away from Optical Image Stabilization (a feature which greatly improves video and low light photos) in favor of a fun gimmick which developers never really embraced. We obviously don’t know the particulars of what will go into HTC’s next camera, but a return to a single sensor with OIS would be a welcome change.
And I’m always glad to see accessory manufacturers ready to support new phones. OtterBox’s Commuter case has seen regular rotation on my M8.
We’ll need to wait until March for the full scoop! What are you hoping to see in HTC’s next flagship phone? Drop us a comment below!
It’s the season of giving and HTC is playing Santa.
Every Tuesday starting now through December, HTC will be running crazy savings on a limited quantity of phones and tablets. If you’re ready to jump in at 12pm Eastern, you might be able to score a Nexus 9 for half price ($199), or take $350 off a no-contract M8. It looks like each deal will only stock around 200 units for the day, so you better be quick with your browser.
The HTC “W8” will join the most complete collection of Windows Phones offered up by any USA carrier, and should give some of those Nokias a run for their money.
While I’m really looking forward to see how HTC customizes the WP8.1 experience, I still think the name of this phone is tragically confusing. As I said in my VZW write up, “M8 FOR Windows” makes it sound like some kind of accessory for a Windows PC. I was really hoping to see a sleek sophisticated ad where the “M” in the M8 title flips upside down to become a “W”. Sigh… But I digress…
The phone is real. The phone looks good. The name is still kinda dumb.
Sorry Big Red, I just can’t bring myself to call this “The HTC One M8 for Windows”. I mean “HTC One M8” is already clunky enough, but “For Windows”? FOR Windows??? It makes the phone sound like an accessory FOR a Windows PC. Even “With Windows” sounds better. From here on out I will now be referring to HTC phones as the M8 and W8. No more “One” this and “For” that.
That said, the W8 looks like a great crossover to the Microsoft side of the fence. HTC’s build quality is second to none, and the changes made to the Windows Phone OS (allowing manufacturers to more easily swap over Android hardware) appear to be working.
Plus, many of the apps developed by HTC already have that modern minimalist look, which should help them blend in with Live Tiles. Blinkfeed for example already looks like a Metro app.
Lastly, it’s just nice to see another company giving Nokia a little competition in this space as we wait to see if Microsoft and Samsung will ever settle their licensing squabbling.
We’re you considering switching to a Windows Phone? Does an HTC W8 sweeten the deal for you? Drop us a comment! And catch Verizon’s teaser vid below.
Love them or hate them, Carriers are looking for “value added” partnerships and updates like these provide opportunities to expose consumers to new applications and services.
Like the recent update for the Galaxy S5 (which did actually help improve my battery life, but included additional apps which can’t be uninstalled) the M8’s update includes some fixes and enhancements to Bluetooth and an Extra Power Savings mode to give more run time.
Interestingly, the update also includes the FitBit application. HTC doesn’t make an app like Samsung’s S-Health which can track fitness and sleep. M8 owners will need to invest in some kind of FitBit to make use of the app, and it looks like a strategic partnership between AT&T and FitBit to offer up a solution for HTC customers.
If you own a Galaxy, you can pick up one of the many Gear smartwatches, but HTC hasn’t entered that market yet, so while shopping accessories, it’s up to AT&T to provide a solution both in-store and on-device.
Of course, if you’re not into fitness apps, or use a competing service, many will chalk this up to “more bloat”.
HTC delivers a unique experience with the design of the HTC One M8, so you would expect they would also deliver a novel experience with the case they’ve designed for the M8. Let’s take a look at the official HTC flip cover!