HTC is once again preparing the launch of a flagship Android handset, according to a previously reliable source, among whose cutting-edge components will reportedly be several industry firsts. Known by its codename, M7, the top-of-the-line device will debut at a critical juncture for the Taiwanese manufacturer, as it looks to reverse a series of disappointing quarters.
Like the One X before it, the M7 is supposedly slated for a Mobile World Congress unveiling — and although it won’t quite match the One X’s bar-raising inclusion of a quad-core processor, the M7 will be one of the first full HD handsets in the 4.7-inch class, giving it a reported pixel density of 468PPI (over 40% higher than the iPhone 5, with which it will share optical lamination technology). What’s more, this so-called SoLux display is said to offer a number of visual improvements over the previous generation Super LCD2, boosting viewing angles, outdoor visibility, and color accuracy.
Supposedly powering the M7 is a second-generation quad-core processor from Qualcomm, clocking in at 1.7GHz per core, alongside 2GB of RAM and 32GB of internal flash storage. The LTE-capable device is expected to ship running Android Jelly Bean, skinned with the latest iteration of HTC’s love-it-or-hate-it UX enhancement, Sense 5.
As a natural progression to this year’s One series — marketed with the tagline “Amazing camera, authentic sound” — the M7 will attempt to take both image capture and audio playback to new levels. Whereas the One X/X+ features an eight-megapixel sensor and f/2.2 lens, the M7 has been tipped to sport a 13MP CCD and even larger f/2.0 lens. The improved image sensor, dubbed Cinesensor, promises both increased image quality and improved features such as super slow-mo and video HDR. Both the rear camera and two-megapixel front cam should be capable of 1080p video capture.
In terms of sound enhancements, the M7 is said to offer a dedicated, Beats-designed amplifier, as well as a feature to increase call clarity called Clear Words. Audio output should come courtesy of stereo speakers.
Besides the expected array of sensors and radios, M7 will also boast support for the next-generation Wi-Fi standard, 802.11ac, whose theoretical throughput is three times that of 802.11n WLAN networks.
In the US, M7 is scheduled to join the lineups of at least two national carriers — Verizon and Sprint — and may be the first HTC handset since the Touch Pro 2 to find a home on the top four American operators.