HTC Windows Phone 8X and 8S announced – first thoughts on HTC’s new devices

Yesterday, HTC announced 2 new devices, the Windows Phone 8X and 8S.  They will be available in November this year on a whole host of carriers and both have some compelling features (depending on price) though the 8X will take most of the attention being the flagship.

Here’s a quick comparison chart:

Windows Phone 8X Windows Phone 8S
Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Dual Core 1.5Ghz Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Dual Core 1.0Ghz Processor
1GB RAM 512MB RAM
16GB Memory (not expandable) 4GB Memory (expandable via SD card)
4.3″ Super LCD 2 screen 4.0″ Super LCD screen
1280 x 720 resolution 800 x 480 resolution
8MP auto-focus camera with LED flash 5MP auto-focus camera with LED flash
1080p Video capture with stereo sound 1080p Video capture with stereo sound
2.1MP front facing camera  -
1800mAh battery (not removable) 1700mAh battery (not removable)
Integrated Beats Audio with extra amplifiers for 3.5mm jack and loudspeaker Integrated Beats Audio
WiFi b/g/n, Bluetooth 2.1 and NFC WiFi b/g/n, Bluetooth 2.1

The 8X looks great and sits with good company in the Lumia 920 and Samsung Ativ S on the high end of the Windows Phone tree. The 8S is more comparable to existing windows phones, spec wise, and will compete with the Lumia 820 for the middle tier. On the Android side, the One X would be flagship and the One S high end, but with o One V equivalent here, the 8S feels much more a mid/lower-mid tier device.

The 8X comes from the same school of design as Nokia’s devices dating back to the N9 – a solid polycarbonate pillow, in a variety of colors, with minimal interruption in terms of controls and ports. However, rather than emphasize the camera (though they still believe it is a very good one), HTC is focusing on how it sounds, and their partnership with Beats carriers on here. Sadly it has only 16Gb of internal memory to store that music on (with no SD card support) but lots of people listen via streaming services today anyway (not that this should excuse them on a high-end device).

The 8S does have Micro-SD card support, which is good because it has only 4GB of built in memory – pretty much all your media will be on the SD card. It also comes in a range of colors, with a different color for the cap at the base.  So another distinctive, colorful design.

We don’t know much about what HTC specific software will ship pre-installed, but many of the press shots show a huge clock live tile. That could make all the difference, especially for the 8S.  HTC have supported Windows Phone well since the first launch and it’s no surprise to see them come out with 2 compelling devices (for 2 very different price points) here. I am certainly looking forward to taking a look in person at these devices once they are released.

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About bluechrism

I am a software developer with most professional experience in the Windows .Net realm and I'm currently a WPF developer with Starkey Labs. However, I have wanted for some time to start the mobile developer journey properly and being an N900 owner, this was to be in the realm of QT. Job hunting, moving to Minnesota and changing jobs put my plans on hold 6-12 months but things are starting to settle now, just as I'm getting sorted to start some things, Microsoft and Nokia merge. This blog is about my novice mobile development experiences and hopefully will end up complete with links to download some apps on various platforms, but obviously by the name, Sybian, Maemo/Meego and Windows Mobile. In other stuff, I am English, I support Everton FC, I have visited Glastonbury music festival 5 times and recommend it to anyone. I am married and my wife and i have a dog called Friday.
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