One day before the official start of the World Mobile Congress in Barcelona HTS revealed its newest top-end smartphone, the One M9. The new model is a touch smaller and thinner than its predecessor One M8 but with its dual-tone metal unibody the design language is very similar. There are also a few welcome improvements to be found under the hood.

In the camera department HTC has finally dropped the 4 "ultrapixel" sensor of the predecessors that produced only very mediocre image quality results in our testing. The new model comes with a 20MP BSI CMOS sensor and at F2.2 a slightly slower lens than the M8. The lens offers an equivalent focal length of 27.8mm and is covered with scratch-resistant sapphire glass. The M9 is also the first One model that is capable of recording 4K video. Like the M8 the M9 has to make do without an optical image stabilization system. It has also lost the M8's secondary camera that captured depth information which means that the M8's Duo Cam features are not available on the M9.

Next to the lens you'll find a dual-tone flash unit for a more natural color response when shooting with flash and the front camera features a comeback of the ultrapixels with a 4MP BSI unit and wide-angle view. As with previous ultrapixel incarnations HTC promises improved low light performance over the competitio for this camera. Other technical specifications include Qualcomm's new Snapdragon 810 system chip and a microSD slot that can take cards with a capacity of up to 128GB.

There are also a few new features on the software side of things. HTC's Sense 7 UI now includes a gallery app that consolidates all your images from various cloud-services, Flickr and the local camera roll to give you access to all your images, independently from where they are stored. New camera modes include a double exposure mode. Looking at the specifications the new HTC One M9 does not offer any outstanding innovations in the imaging department but should be a clear improvement over its predecessor and we are keen on getting our hands on a review model as soon as possible.

Key Specifications:

  • 20MP BSI CMOS sensor
  • F2.2
  • 27.8mm focal length
  • 4K video
  • Sapphire glass covered lens
  • Front camera with Ultrapixel BSI sensor, F2, 26.8mm
  • 5-inch 1080p screen
  • Android with HTC Sense
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 octa core 64-bit
  • 3GB RAM
  • 32GB storage
  • microSD up to 128GB
  • HTC Booumsound with Dolby Audio
  • 2840 mAh battery
  • Dual-tone metal unibody design