I was really looking forward to review the HTC One M8, which I thought was among the most innovative phones I had seen in a while. But that was not to be. However, I have got hold of an HTC Desire 816, an Android phone that brings in high-end specs to mid-range price points. The Taiwanese smartphone company seems to be banking a lot on this phone to improve its prospects in an important market like India. But does it have what it takes?
Quick Tech Specs: 5-5-inch 720 x 1280p (267 ppi) Super LCD2 display | Quad-core 1.6 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor | 1.5 GB RAM | 8GB internal memory, microSD up to 128GB | 13MP rear camera with auto-focus + 5MP front camera | Dual Nano SIM (GSM + GSM) | 4G, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4, DLNA | 2600 mAh battery | Android KitKat
Price: Rs 23,990
Design: The Desire 816 is a sleek, stylish phone. But then you can expect that from HTC, which has always had an eye for design perfection. My review unit was all-black, with just the power and volume buttons on the left getting rings of metal. However, the rear flap was too smooth for my liking and there is high probability of the phone slipping out of your hand. You can’t open the rear flap, so the two nano-SIMs and SD card slot are behind a neat little flap on the right side. The phone also has speakers on both ends, appearing as perforations. Despite the 5.5inches, the phone is not hard to handle or grip. A bit of real estate is wasted with the HTC logo just under the virtual keys at the bottom of the screen.
Screen: In this age of Full HD and even Quad HD phones, it is tough for a HD screen to make an impression. But the Super LCD2 of the Desire 816 does as good just even with the 720p resolution. The screen is very crisp and offers good viewing angles. It is also good for watching videos, something users will have in mind while buying a 5.5-inch screen.
Performance: The performance, powered by the Snapdragon 400, is at par with the other phones in this range. But then this is no flagship phone and that shows in the benchmark results. However, a regular user will have no reason to complain. The apps open without a