HTC One (M8) for Windows (Verizon Wireless)
- Great build
- Very good sound quality on speakerphone
- Top-of-the-line front-facing camera.
- Battery life is below expectations
- Main (rear) camera is not impressive
Price: $99.99 (Two-Years’ Contract)
HTC One (M8) for Windows is a best-looking and most feature-rich Windows Phone. However, it has nothing strikingly new except for the Microsoft's slick UI slapped on top. It offers greater hardware diversity for a Windows Phone. The price tag of $99.99 (with two-year contract) is however debatable, though not too heavy for such a top-notch phone. It design is identical to the One (M8) --the same well-built aluminum body, 5-inch 1080p LCD, and BoomSound speakers. Since the design is almost the same the differentiating factors become:call quality, performance, camera quality, and, of course, the OS.
The One (M8) for Windows supports Verizon's CDMA/1xEVDO Rev. A (800/1900MHz) and LTE (700/1700MHz) networks. The Call quality is upto the mark with plenty of volume in the earpiece and clean transmissions through the mic. Noise cancellation has been found to be average however.
The battery on-board is a 2,600mAh battery which in users’ experiences lasted for just 10 hours, 50 minutes of continuous talk time. There is an embedded battery saver software which works for Windows Phone. However, there is no extra power saving mode available which could add a significant number of hours to the battery life.
M8's quad-core, 2.3GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 SoC works proved lively when tested in real scenarios. The animations run smoothly and apps launch swiftly. However there is nothing extra ordinary to count for. The browsing speed is also pretty good.
The One (M8) for Windows OS is Windows Phone 8.1, which is an updated version of Microsoft's OS. The salient features are : Cortana, a Siri and Google Now competitor, as well as a pull-down Action Center that has the notification panels on Android and iOS. The tile-based UI remains the identical, but you can now clutch apps into folder tiles on the home screen.
There's no skinning on Windows Phone, so there's no Sense 6 now. In its place, HTC ported over some of its major custom features in app form. BlinkFeed, HTC's social media and news aggregator, are pre-loaded, but in its place of swiping right to get to it from the home screen, you'll require to launch it by a normal Windows 8.1 tile. With the exclusion of Windows fonts and somewhat changed scrolling action (even scrolls instead of retorting to tiles), it looks identical here as it does on Android. You can bond your Facebook and Twitter accounts and select which news topics you like . Sense TV is also included, taking benefit of the built-in IR emitter to switch an extensive range of home theater devices.
M8 for Windows has the similar untraditional UltraPixel and Duo Camera sensors as in the Android version. The camera interface seems essentially identical with the exclusion of some Windows Phone iconography and "lens" compatibility. Toggles for exposure compensation, ISO control, and white balance adjustments are the same. Ufocus allows you adjust focus after the fact, Lytro style; Foregrounder lets you add filters that highlight objects in the foreground; and Dimension Plus lets you tilt to change perspective, which is certainly fun.
The rear-facing 4-megapixel camera is more unreliable on the Windows version than Android. Its focus is usually soft, requiring a very stable hand to take sharp photos in low light. However, in outdoors and in good lighting, shots get equally sharp on both models. Colors seem warmer and more saturated with the M8 for Windows compared to the Android version.
HTC has also included a few additional tweaks, including Motion Gestures and Dot View case compatibility. Double tapping anywhere on the display wakes the phone from sleep. However, there are no extra swipe gestures here to launch straight into BlinkFeed or the Camera. One can see the time and current weather conditions without opening the case or waking the device.
The total memory included is a 32GB out of which 25.36GB is available to users. Many preloaded Verizon apps devour a lot of memory but luckily they are removable. An additional microSD card slot is also included where you can top up your memory size upto 64GB.
The M8 for Windows is a top-line Windows smartphone with modern specs, great design, fabulous body, very good front-facing camera. This is a great gadget by HTC for Windows lovers and is priced at $99.99 per month for a 2-years Contract (Verizon).