You can expect a fair amount of mobile news next week at Mobile World Congress, and we’ll be there reporting on it as it happens, but before all eyes go to Spain for that, HTC is one of many companies showing what’s coming to Australia shortly.
So what’s coming to Australia shortly?
Why a new phone, with HTC launching another entrant to its now not-quite-flagship range that is the Desire range.
This time it’s the Desire 820, a phone sporting a 5.5 inch HD display (1280×720) and an eight-core Snapdragon processor running at 64-bit, something few phones support in Australia that could bode well for faster operations.
We’ve yet to see many apps — really any at all — that take advantage of 64-bit processing on Android, but when they come out, this could make the devices very efficient and quite powerful.
Beyond the new 64-bit eight core hardware (which will likely also appear in slightly more powerful configurations on the flagships set to be announced next week at Mobile World Congress in Spain), HTC is including some pretty large cameras on this model, with a 13 megapixel shooter included on the back, while the front sports an 8 megapixel selfie camera.
There’s no flash on the front like there is on the Desire Eye, and all in all, this Desire looks very similar to the Desire 826 that launched at CES, but with a lower resolution running on the screen and a different front facing camera.
That said, you will get 4G connectivity running at Category 4, providing as much as 150Mbps down and 50Mbps up (network dependent, of course), while some of HTC’s other features are also here, including a version of the loud speaker tech known as “BoomSound”, the photo and video automatic sequencing from “HTC Zoe Highlights”, and support for the HTC Dot View case, which will launch specifically for this model alongside it.
“Our users are increasingly looking for bigger screens, faster processors and network speeds, and outstanding battery life,” said Ben Hodgson, Country Manager for HTC in Australia and New Zealand. “They are creating and consuming rich video and want greater freedom to personalise their smartphones.”
“We know they love the flexibility that comes with expandable memory,” he said. “At only $499, the HTC Desire 820 delivers the latest technical features with an outstanding user experience in a sleek, slim package.”
If Ben’s quote hasn’t given it away properly, the $499 price is the recommended retail value HTC has gone with for the Desire 820, though Optus will also be getting it on plans first in case outright isn’t something you did.
From a first glance, the Desire 820 feels like it could be the next generation of last year’s Desire 816, especially since the screen is more or less the same, as are some of the features, even if the front camera and processor have both changed.
Still, we’re keen to see what this will perform like, and if you can’t wait for our review, you’ll see this one in Optus stores from next week.