We've heard about the newest HTC Butterfly before from Japanese carrier KDDI, but now HTC is officially welcoming it into the Butterfly family. That's not a name you hear much in the US, but it's one of HTC's premier brands overseas. This device will be known as the J Butterfly HTL23 in Japan and the Butterfly 2 in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and throughout Southeast Asia. It's a reasonably high end device, but it's not all metal like the M8.
Owners of HTC's latest flagship on Verizon have been patiently (and sometimes not so patiently) waiting on the promised update to Android 4.4.3 for some time now, but it looks like they'll be waiting a little longer. Even though the T-Mobile One M8 got its update today, HTC's US president Jason Mackenzie has confirmed on Twitter the OTA is currently targeted for mid-September on Verizon.
If you've been eagerly awaiting the Android 4.4.3 update for your T-Mobile One M8, wait no more: it has arrived. The update brings a slightly newer version of Android, security fixes, wireless optimizations, and updates to several stock HTC applications. If you're not able to pull the update over the air, XDA user sapplegater has uploaded the OTA to Mega.
As always, if your device is rooted this particular update might be one to skip - the ever-present "security fixes" packed in this OTA often plug up exploits that allow root access, and Android roots are becoming increasingly hard to discover as Google and OEMs refine their software.
When HTC first released the One M8 in India, it decided to disable the phone's 4G LTE radio. So despite having a Snapdragon 801 SoC and all the necessary hardware in place, Indian users couldn't connect their phones to LTE networks and enjoy higher internet speeds. The company has been promising to release an OTA update to fix the issue on August 15th, and they've fulfilled their commitment.
HTC's One M8 is a solid phone. It's packed with high-end specs, and has a high-end build to match. Of course, all that also equates to a high-end price tag. In an effort to build an equally powerful phone with a much smaller price, HTC swapped out the M8's aluminum body for a much subtler plastic frame. The result is the One E8, a much more affordable M8 trapped in plastic shell.
Perhaps you noticed that AT&T started selling the low-cost HTC Desire 610 late last month for just $0.99 on-contract and $200 without. That was apparently only the first step in HTC's attempted conquest on the mid-range device market in the US. The 610 is now on sale direct from HTC and the Desire 816 is launching on August 12th (tomorrow) on Virgin Mobile and direct from HTC.
For all the issues with the Duo Camera on HTC's flagship One M8, the selective focus thing is pretty fun to play with. With the newest update to the HTC Gallery app in the Play Store, M8 owners can share Duo Camera images to the web that anyone can use to change the focus. It's sort of like those Lytro camera embeds. We have one below you should try out.
The HTC One M8 is one of the more desirable Android phones available at the moment, and if you're looking to find a good deal on one, "qualitycellz" (may not a be a real name) is happy to oblige on eBay. The seller has at least a few refurbished AT&T-branded One M8 models going for $449.99, a full $220 off of the new retail price at AT&T. You can have any color you want, so long as you want silver.
HTC's Butterfly series is an interesting one. While this particular range of models rarely makes its way outside of Asia, HTC often uses it as a testbed for new technology and features, and some of the highlights of these phones make it into the primary international lines on the next go-round. The latest version of the J Butterfly, which will launch exclusively on Japanese carrier KDDI next month, has some additions to the basic One design that might be worth watching.