The HTC Desire 816 was a phone that flew under the radar for most of the Western world, but managed to go big in countries like China. A seemingly innocently middle of the road plastic phone with few discerning features, it seemed to resonate well in Asian markets.
So to that end HTC has decided to reboot it just six months later, with the Desire 820 offering all-new power, a fancy camera and a clever new manufacturing process. However, that doesn't mean that you should necessarily care about it.
The HD screen at 5.5-inches isn't the sharpest on the market by a long way, with the same thing usually seen on phones with a display an inch smaller. It's designed to be affordable and be kinder on the battery, which the low-res screen should allow it to do, but it's still hard to stomach on a larger screen.
The phone itself is well-designed though, as it comes with a new manufacturing process from HTC that's allowed it to make a handset with a good build quality and a two tone look.
This means that the two coloured elements are fused together, creating an 'iconic' look with the flashes around the camera and the seams, and does give it a sense of identity.
The polycarbonate used to make the Desire 820 is pretty sturdy indeed, but nothing that I've not seen before. However, HTC reckons it won't fall apart or start creaking over time (something demonstrated in the presentation with a dig at a broken Samsung Galaxy S3 handset) so that should at least offer some comfort to those looking for differentiation.
The big news with this phone is two-fold though - well, I say news, but it's the headline features that HTC is shouting about. Whether they're big news is up for debate.
The first is the new high-power front facing camera, which is now boosted to an impressive 8MP with backside illumination in the sensor. It's a lot to pack into something that was just an afterthought not long ago, and shows HTC is pushing this towards the youth / Asian markets, which are really getting into the self-photography craze.
And I'll admit it's a great camera - I abhor the current craze, but there's no denying it's a thing and brands should follow consumer desires - and beings quick and clear photos. Being able to click the screen and have a countdown to set yourself is handy indeed too.
Beautification makes an expected return, and now you can adjust the amount of skin smoothing and make up in real time. I won't launch into the full diatribe about how this is skewing our perspective on gender balance (why does smoother skin and make up need to be a thing?) but it's shame to laud it as a real highlight.
However, if you're someone that's desperate to make yourself look slightly creepy, especially if you're male, then it works very well.
A better feature is the ability to fuse faces. It's a clever software trick that lets you take two pictures and place one face on another, with morphing tweaks allowing you to essentially see what a baby between you and another person would look like.
The results are often relatively frightening.
However, these little tweaks are the sort of thing that HTC will be able to use to sell this phone, and the result is really impressive.
The other big element to the Desire 820 is the inclusion of one of the first 64-bit CPUs on an Android handset, through the Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 chipset.
Combined with the fact the processor is also octa-core, this is a very well-specified phone for a mid-range market.
It also means that it will be one of the first to take advantage of Android L when it appears later this year, which has 64-bit support built right in.
However, how this power will be used is still yet to be seen. The Desire 816 doesn't have the 4GB of RAM necessary to really exploit the grunt a 64-bit processor can realise, but it does make the phone look better.
And that's the key thing here: while the specs are impressive, they're not really the sort you'd imagine for a phone pushed at this level.
It's clear that HTC is following the trend of making a phone that will satisfy consumers in Asia, who have a much higher lust for a faster processor and the speeds that go with it. Whether that will come at the cost of battery life or price remains to be seen, but I'm not sure that the Desire 820 is the phone that will launch Android into the next wave of existence.
The HTC Desire 820 is a solid phone that loses some of the premium feel of others in the range, but still delivers well on its promises.
The front facing camera is powerful and likely to win a lot of admirers, and the software tweaks on offer are impressive and fun to play with.
It's a shame HTC hasn't bothered to put the Ultrapixel camera on the rear of the phone (although that would have added to the cost) as the off the shelf 13MP effort doesn't quite have the same clout.
But if this does come to the Western world in a big way, the Desire 820 should be a quiet winner for HTC, depending on how hard it's pushed in your local phone store.