HTC debigulates One M8, delivers One Mini 2

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Ready for your dose of yearly shrink ray? As is the custom for mobile makers to take their products and make them smaller, HTC will be releasing a new model of its One Mini to look and feel more like its 2014 One.

Get that shrink-ray out (it’s not a freeze ray or a death ray), because one of HTC’s best selling phones is getting a tiny version to play big brother to.

Yes, HTC is making a miniature version of the new One, taking the metal unibody of the current phone and cutting it down to size, crafting a smaller handset for people who might prefer a phone of a not-so-big size yet packing a reasonable punch.

“I love this compact superphone,” said Ben Hodgson, Country Manager for HTC in Australia and New Zealand, adding that “the 4.5 inch screen is about the right size for many customers who may have an older 3.5 or 4 inch phone.”

“The HTC One mini 2 is a powerhouse, full featured smartphone in a slim and beautiful all-metal chassis,” Hodgson said. “It can provide multi-day battery performance and fits nicely into the back pocket of even the tightest pair of jeans. At an RRP of $599, it is exceptional value for money.”

We’ll be curious to see if it does manage to survive the tightest pair of jeans since that can be an issue for some smartphones, but more than anything, we’re curious to see how this follow-up to last year’s HTC One Mini stacks up.

A brief look at the specs tells us some things haven’t changed since last year’s One Mini, such as the 16GB storage and 1GB RAM, with the chip a minor difference, now a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 instead of last year’s dual-core variant.

There’s still plenty of 4G connectivity and 802.11a/b/g/n (no 802.11ac here), with Near-Field Communication now joining the Bluetooth 4.0, and the screen slightly bigger at 4.5 inches but still running the 720p (1280×720) resolution, which keeps the pixel count pretty much spot on with the Retina grade panel used in the iPhone 5S and 5C (326ppi).

The cameras are a step up, however, and differ vastly from even the One M8, with the front-facing camera on both a 5 megapixel shooter while the rear camera on the One Mini 2 isn’t that 4 megapixel — sorry, Ultrapixel — camera, but rather a 13 megapixel camera.

Outside of these mostly minor changes, the design has been brought into 2014 and now matches the new One (M8), with a microSD slot also supplied, and the SIM now running the nanoSIM format that all new HTC’s appear to be shipping with.

In Australia, Telstra has the exclusive on this pint-sized One, with the HTC One Mini 2 in both gold and gunmetal grabbing a recommended retail price of $599, several plan prices at Telstra stores, and an outright price of $528 at those Telstra stores from September 2.