Taiwanese manufacturer HTC is preparing the release of its 2015 flagship on March 1st at Mobile World Congress (MWC 2015). As usual, HTC fans are looking forward to the new unveil, with many wondering whether or not HTC can make a rise to the top of the Android world once more.
First on the list is the HTC One M9, HTC’s flagship for this New Year. The HTC flagship, dubbed “Hima” by employees, is set to feature the same 5-inch display and 1080p resolution (Full HD display) as last year’s One M8.
HTC has improved on the device, however, bringing 32GB of memory storage out of the gate (no 16GB version in sight, though there could be one later), 3GB of RAM (23GB available out of the box), with the controversial octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor, a 12MP front camera that records Ultra HD video, and a 19MP back camera with the same Ultra HD video recording experience (4096 x 2160) in tow. The new One M9 is set to debut with Android 5.0.1 Lollipop, the very latest of Google’s newest operating system.
There is a bit of confusion about the One M9, particularly when you place it beside another HTC device in testing that many are calling the HTC One M9 Max. The “Max” nomenclature seems to be a misnomer when you consider that the second device has a slightly wider display than the Hima (5.1 inches vs. 5), the same front and back cameras (12MP front, 19MP back), RAM and memory storage as the One M9, with a Quad HD resolution (2,560 x 1,440p) instead of the Full HD resolution on the One M9 and a reduced video recording resolution (though still within the realm of Ultra HD).
The second device in benchmarks also features Android 5.0 Lollipop instead of the incremental 5.0.1 update that the One M9 boasts when it arrives to the market. This isn’t that big of a deal, but it seems a little odd as to why HTC would prioritize either device when the company could update both to 5.0.1 at the same time.
What is particularly striking about the second device in testing is that it utilizes a different CPU and graphics processor than what many believe to be the One M9: whereas the One M9 has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 810, this device comes with a MediaTek octa-core processor — considered to be a bit more inexpensive than Qualcomm’s processor. The second device in question lacks a barometer, unlike the One M9, which has one.
This second device is called the One M9 Max, but it seems as though this second device is a variant of the One M9 flagship– not a worthy Max contender. The MediaTek processor makes this device intended more for emerging markets than countries such as the US and UK.
It could be a Max, intended for non-North American countries, but we wish it would have better cameras and a display more akin to the size of the One Max released in years past (with a 5.9-inch display). The 5.1-inch display doesn’t make this a Max, but more of an HTC One M9 Plus.
All in all, we applaud HTC for ditching its 4MP back camera for a 19MP camera that we hope is better, but we see this 5.1-inch device as more of a “Plus” than a One M9 Max. Still, the benchmarks show us that HTC’s learned from its mistakes in the past and is ready to push forward in 2015.