Hands-on with the new HTC One M9 [VIDEO]


Talk about the HTC One M9 at AndroidForums.com!

Yesterday the HTC One M9 was officially announced at Mobile World Congress. We were in attendance at the event, and we had a chance to check out the device in person. The One M9 looks a lot like the One M8. In fact, it’s pretty much identical. From the front they look the same, but the back and insides are what set the M9 apart.

Specs are a very important part of any phone, but even more so for the One M9. Since HTC didn’t change the outer design they have put all the focus on the specs and software. The M9 has a 5-inch 1080p display, 20.7MP camera (2 “UltraPixel” front), Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor, and 2840mAh battery. Check out the full HTC One M9 specs here.

HTC One M9 DSC08389

On the software side you’re getting Android 5.0.2 and Sense 7. Like the design of the M9, there aren’t many visual changes in Sense 7, but the functionality has big changes. The biggest change is a new “Sense Home” widget that you’ll find on the home screen by default. HTC tries to predict what apps you’ll need for certain situations and put them in this widget.

If your phone detects that you’re at work it can fill up the widget with productivity apps, and when you’re home it will display entertainment apps. At least that’s the general idea. If you don’t want HTC to try to figure all of this out for you it can be set up manually. There are also “Smart Folders” that automatically organize things for you.

Another cool new software feature is custom navigation buttons. By default you have back, home, and recent, but you can add a virtual power button, notification shade shortcut, fullscreen button, and quick settings, and more. It’s a really cool idea that we’d love to see more manufacturers embrace.

The One M9 lacks the excitement of previous HTC phones, but this is still an excellent device. The M9 will be one of the top devices of 2015. Do you think HTC did enough to improve from the M8? Will you be buying the HTC One M9? Let us know what you think about this device!

Joe Fedewa
Ever since I flipped open my first phone I've been obsessed with the devices. I've dabbled in other platforms, but Android is where I feel most at home.

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  1. I feel like HTC has really grown up. Yes the Galaxy line are starting to make better looking devices but I feel like touchwiz is far behind LG and HTC. These are just my opinions.

    1. I am with you. It did not seem like they “dummied” it down any to make it more stock android. It seems like good ol regular touchwiz. i’ll add what you said tho, these are just my opinions!

      1. No, sorry, they are OUR opinions!

  2. This is neat but I also wish they implemented the options to have the buttons on the HTC bar like the m7. Opto 1 has this option and I think it would have been prefect for this phone

  3. well I think the small improvements are great. the HTC logo is on the hideous side but something tell me they needed something to go there or it would look like dead space. I’ve never owned an HTC device so i’m curious about how good this phone is. Are the speakers really better?? is the camera a huge upgrade?? or is it moderate? Toshiba and camera phone lens in the same sentence worries me a bit (although I dont know anything about it)

    1. The lumia 1020 has the same sensor as this phone.

      1. that sounds very promising then!

        1. The software us off so it need a good fix before we can justise the lowlights performance

          1. I cant wait then. I had the nokia 935, I know its not the same phone, but I got spoiled in camera quality before jumping back into android 2 months after trying windows phones. Hope HTC has something special coming with this lens now! -=) Thanks Duong!

    2. As far as the boom speakers are concerned after you play some really good music or video you won’t want to listen to any other phone audio.. Voice mail and speaker phone mode.. Is lst class.. but as far as software the way it reacts to quality the way it feels in the hands

      1. I have a Nexus 6 and the stereo speakers are AWESOME. Best I’ve actually heard, but I’ve never heard the boom speakers to be honest. every review puts the N6 right behind the M8 in every category. Its become a “want” for future phones so i’m pretty excited to hear them! I just want to see how well the camera is at the end of the day….I think this is something that will be my determining factor on my future phone

  4. HTC Rep: “Something you’ll probably never see in a smartphone?” Well, that’s certainly not true. Custom ROMs have been customizing the navigation bar for 2 years or so and the OnePlus One allows this out of the box.

    1. also the g3 to some extent

    2. I don’t think it’s fair to compare to custom ROMs, even though a lot of new features are always seem to be based off custom ROMs.

  5. Mehhh…

  6. Samsung never again. Reception was heinous. HTC Incredible was a great phone. Motorola also great reception.

    1. The Inc was my very first Android phone. I miss it. I shouldn’t have sold it :(

  7. They need to add an option to hide the nav bar on command with a gesture or something. That would help ease the pain people have with the onscreen buttons being there.

    Or Android needs to have it built into its UI. The function should be off by default so people won’t accidentally turn it off and not know how to get them back. LoL!!

    1. One thing I really like about the LG G3 is the ability to go into Settings and actually hide the onscreen buttons per app. Then within that app, the onscreen buttons are not present at all unless you swipe up from the bottom and then they reappear. It allows the app to fully own the screen unless you need the buttons to appear.

      1. Yea ever since I got my g3 I didn’t understand why android lollipop didn’t include home screen button editing by default especially since LG shares patents with Google for free with their latest deal. The notification shade pull down button solves 90% of people’s complaints about a screen being too big. Its cool HTC added a few more options. Plus being able to rearrange the buttons allows me to put the back button on the left where god and the droid1 intended it.

      2. Really!? This is a function on the phone? I never knew that!! OEM’s take note!!

        I wonder how many people *don’t* know this. This pretty much solves everyone’s woes about on-screen buttons.

        Does it work fluently? I know the root method, some apps act… wonky when you do that.

        1. I haven’t seen any adverse affects in any of the apps in which I’ve hidden the buttons. Doesn’t mean it might not be wonky in some app I haven’t tested out, but nothing I’ve observed up to this point.

          1. One app I had issues with is this game called Xelorians. It’s a shootem up game, think Galaga in a way.

            The nav-buttons stay, but if I’m moving my finger across the screen, I sometimes hit Recents or other buttons. When I remove the buttons, I can’t even move the spaceship.

            I’ve had some apps place nicely with it, though. While others are just like “I don’t like change!!” LoL!!

  8. If the camera is as mediocre as most of the early reviews are saying, I’m hanging up my HTC devotion. I’ve dealt with a purple hued nightmare on my M7 for over a year now, and I’m not about to take a chance on an unproven unit on the M9. Toshiba? Sony? Which is it?!

  9. Phandroid… thank you for showing a feature I’ve been dying for since the M8 and that no other reviewer. Them adding the option to hide the nav bar is absolutely brilliant. That software feature alone makes this device completely worth it!

    1. I should have watched the video. ._.
      I’m sad I keep coming on this site while at work. >.>

  10. Does the phone get really hot like the M7 does? Hesitant to get another metal phone, my M7 becomes unusable in summer other than for a quick check of notifications.

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