Desire 500 black 3V HiRGB Render

HTC hasn't abandoned the market for small phones, as shown by their One Mini at a (relatively) tiny 4.3 inches. But that's still on the premium side, and those who want both a small size and a small price need some love too. Enter the Desire 500, a 4.3" phone with a mixture of features from this generation of HTC hardware and the last one. It's currently slated for release in the UK sometime in August, but HTC has been mum on a price and wider release details so far.

Desire 500 black 3V HiRGB Render Desire 500 black Horizontal Oblique HiRGB Render

Despite its small size, the phone comes with a quad-core processor, though the Snapdragon 200 is clocked a bit low at 1.2Ghz. There's 1GB of RAM and just 4GB of storage space, but that can be augmented with a MicroSD card (thank God). The screen is a bit disappointing with a WVGA resolution - that's 800x480, in case you can't remember your Galaxy S II spec sheet. The rear camera is 8MP with a 1.6MP front shooter. Since the Desire 500 is designed with the European budget market in mind, it foregoes LTE (which is still somewhat sparse across the pond) but some markets will be getting a dual SIM version and/or NFC model. The battery is just 1800mAh, but it can be removed and replaced.

Desire 500 black Perspective Left HiRGB Render Desire 500 blue 3V HiRGB Render Desire 500 blue Perspective Right HiRGB Render

The Desire 500 is a bit chunky as 131.8x66.9x9.9 millimeters. Styling is an interesting mix of the HTC One X and the newer One models - note the curvaceous body and the two-button control scheme, with the HTC logo moved to the top of the phone. Beats audio gets its compulsory branding on the back. HTC hasn't said what version of Android is included, but since it's showing off Blinkfeed, I'll guess that it's a slimmed-down version of Android 4.2 and Sense 5.

HTC has announced black and white models for the UK, with the latter trimmed in a fetching "Glacier Blue" color. The company website is also showing a similar red-on-white version.

London, 7 August 2013 – HTC, a global leader in mobile innovation and design, is launching the recently-announced HTC Desire 500 in Europe. The Desire 500 is a powerful mid-range model featuring a 1.2GHz quad-core processor, HTC BlinkFeed and Video Highlights, which collates your images into a 30-second themed video reel. Available in the UK, with full details including stockists and launch date to be announced in due course, the HTC Desire 500 is designed for those who demand a superior mobile experience at an affordable price. The HTC Desire 500 will be available in Lacquer Black and Glacier Blue giving it a sleek and sophisticated look.

Your life through a mobile lens

Shoot and share every moment with the Desire 500’s 8MP camera, which combines with the dedicated HTC ImageChip processor to create spectacular stills and HD video. A 1.6MP front-facing camera also makes high-quality self-portraits easy. Capture the perfect smile automatically with face and smile recognition, transform your shots with a selection of creative filters, then share them immediately with friends, family and followers on your favourite social networks – all without needing to connect to a PC.

Changing the way we share special moments forever, Video Highlights also takes your stills and videos from one event or days’ shooting and compiles them into a 30-second reel, set to music according to one of six themes. By working with professional music editors, the image transitions for each theme are specifically timed to the tempo to ensure a professional result with zero effort.

Your favourite content live on your home screen

The HTC Desire 500 brings HTC’s acclaimed BlinkFeed to the Desire range. Transforming the home screen into a customisable stream of live information, HTC BlinkFeed is displayed on a stunning 4.3inch display and aggregates social streams and news, providing the freshest content at a glance.

Drawing on local and global content, BlinkFeed links to more than 10,000 articles per day from some of the world’s leading media companies including AOL, ESPN, MTV, The Financial Times and Reuters.

Smartphone performance that keeps up with the busiest lifestyle

Sporting a 1.2 GHz quad-core processor, the HTC Desire 500 offers high-speed multitasking, super-fast web browsing and graphic-intense gaming on the move and, with support for microSD cards of up to 64GB, you need never run out of space for the photos, videos, apps and games that matter most.

EMEA Availability

The new HTC Desire 500 will be available with mobile operators and major retailers in select markets from August 2013.

The HTC Desire 500 will also be available with dual SIM support and NFC in select markets.

Additional Info: HTC.com

Jeremiah Rice
Jeremiah is a US-based blogger who bought a Nexus One the day it came out and never looked back. In his spare time he watches Star Trek, cooks eggs, and completely fails to write novels.
  • Floris

    The One S with a lower res screen, minus some storage and with another Snapdragon came to say hello (the front looks strikingly similar). The 2 buttons also look quite strange on such a large black surface.

    Oh, and an update to 4.3 will probably be announced soon, and canceled shortly thereafter. But you know, people buying this won't care about it.

    • Guest

      I thought exactly the same. Seems like you're a fooled One S user too.

      But this Desire will have Sense 5 while One S users won't. It may be the cause of the end of One S support.

      • Floris

        I'm not, actually, but I know someone who owns that device, who is very disappointed with htc.

        At your second point; this is released as a midrange device, with midrange specs, while the One S was (at release) a bit more on the high end. I don't think this is meant to replace the One S, more something like the One V.

        • Banal

          I too am disappointed with HTC, all my smartphones were HTCs (since 2003, 7 devices) but I think the One S will be the last one. A quite good phone but this update policy doesn't fit with the price I've put in it.

          When the One S was launched, the hierarchy was clearly V, S and X, even if the S was quite near the X (except in terms of size).

          • Mike Reid

            Yes, I think One V was low end, as least for western markets: North America and Europe. It was the 3rd and lowest of the 2012 "One..." series.

            It was released with ICS and is forever stuck on ICS, at least in stock form. That's a pretty common thing with low end: no updates. Released April 2012 with MSM8255 SOC.

            Sometimes people who have or had a given phone think it's one step up the "... end" ladder due to their inherent bias. True though that the One S was pretty close to a One X, which may qualify it as "upper mid-end" in early to mid 2012.

  • sri_tech

    The problem with HTC is they price their phones way above the competition and still has mediocre specs.

    Desire 600 which also has snapdragon 200)cortex a5) processor, qHD display is priced at Rs 26K in India. For the same price you can get Galaxy S3, Nexus 4(sold by LG and no subsidy from Google) and even HTC One X.

    Why would anyone buy it at that price? They used to sell low to mid range handsets in good quantities. In the last year they fall way behind because of steep launch prices.

  • Derail Doax

    Hey. 4.3" WVGA! It sounds like a new version of the EVO 4G.

  • Joshua

    Needs a bigger bottom bezel. /s

  • http://my.opera.com/rafaelluik Rafael

    One word: fugly.

    I think HTC smartphones are the prettiest but this one is simply the ugliest phone I've seen.

  • someone755

    Dear OEMs: Please make your Mini, 4.3" models as powerful as your big, 4.7" phones, with only the Mini's 720p and smaller screen to be different.
    Is it really that hard? I don't want to buy an Asus Transformer to make phone calls! What I want is a 4.3" screen with 720p. But no cheap specs. If you make your top model Snapdragon 600, make the Mini just as powerful.