HTC Delivers Cheap Mid-Range Desire
HTC’s Desire 610 comes complete with Android KitKat 4.4.2, a quad-core 1.2GHz Snapdragon 400 CPU, 8GB storage, 1GB RAM, microSD card slot that can take 128GB cards, 4.7-inch 720P screen, an 8 megapixel rear camera that can take 1080P HD video and 1.3 megapixel front camera.
There’s also Bluetooth 4.0, GPS, Wi-Fi, DLNA, Boomsound speakers, Blinkfeed interface and 4G LTE Cat-4 compatibility that also works on Telstra’s new 700MHz 4G spectrum delivering up to 150Mbps download speeds.
The device has a power button on the top of the phone like the iPhone, and coming in the same 4.7-inch screen size the iPhone 6 is expected to see one of its models sporting, the Desire 610 feels quite light in the hand thanks to its plastic construction.
As it takes its design cues from the metal cased HTC One series, it still looks like a premium phone despite the $312 price.
Like the iPhone, the Desire 610 is a sealed unit, meaning no removable back to change batteries, with a simple flap covering the nano SIM and microSD card slots.
Ben Hodsgon, HTC Australia Country Manager said: “Our Desire range presents unparalleled value for customers who want a best in class 4G smartphone, with no compromise on quality, at an affordable price.
“We have worked closely with Telstra again to ensure the HTC Desire 610 supports Telstra’s ultra-fast 700MHz network band which will allow people to stay connected deeper in buildings or on the edge of the network in rural areas.”
Andrew Volard, Telstra’s Director of Devices added that: “the HTC 610 Desire is a smartphone with signature HTC features such as stereo front speakers.
“It’s also the fourth smartphone in our line up to be compatible with our new 700MHz spectrum which we’re currently trialling in select locations and will roll out nationally from January 2015. Once it is switched on in their area, HTC Desire 610 owners will automatically enjoy the benefits of better in-building coverage and faster internet speeds when the coverage becomes available.”
HTC’s Blinkfeed delivers updates from social media and other news sites, while HTC’s refined Sense UI delivers an Android look and feel that looks similar to LG’s UI implementation, with both looking more modern than Samsung’s TouchWiz UI.
The Boomsound front-facing speakers that HTC is famous for deliver a louder sound that phones with speakers at the bottom or on the back, and even have built-in amps to boost the volume further for an “immersive smartphone audio experience” HTC says “you have to hear to believe”.
You also get advanced photo editing capabilities built-in, as well as software that can automatically highlight the best bits of videos you’ve taken, so you can “share and show-off your photos and videos in amazing quality every time”.
Available on Telstra’s $55 Mobile Accelerate Plan with no additional handset payments over the 24-month contract, the minimum cost is $1320 over that time, with Telstra noting a standard 2-minute call on this plan costs $2.38.
For those that don’t want such expensive sounding call costs, the phone is available for purchase outright at $312, and would naturally work with a SIM from a mobile virtual network operator like Boost, which offers unlimited national and mobile calls for $40 per month.
That said, Telstra naturally wants people to sign up with it directly, and will give Mobile Accelerate Plan customers an extra 500mb of data each month.
Another benefit of being a direct Telstra customer is its “Peace of Mind Commitment” with unlimited calls, SMS and MMS to Australian numbers, as well as a whopping 25GB of data, all in the first month, to help customers set up their new smartphone properly and get all apps, email and everything else installed without worry of busting through data limits.
Telstra Business customers also have the option of the $65 Telstra Easy Share Business Plan, also with no additional handset repayments over the 24 month contract, with a minimum cost of $1560.
Finally, the HTC 610 Desire is also available on Telstra’s “New Phone Feeling” plan that lets you upgrade to a brand new smartphone every year.
More information from HTC here and from Telstra for consumers here and Telstra business customers here.
HTC Desire 610 specs are as follows:
Size: 143.1 x70.5 x 9.6 mm
Display: 4.7 inch, qHD
CPU Speed: Qualcomm Snapdragon 400, 1.2 GHz, quad-core CPUs
Platform: Android HTC Sense and HTC BlinkFeed
SIM Card Type: nano SIM
2G/ 2.5G: GSM/GPRS/EDGE on 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
3G/3.5G: WCDMA on 850/900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 42 Mbps
4G: LTE on 700/900/1800/2100/2600 MHz
Total storage: 8GB, available capacity varies
Expansion card slot: Supports microSD memory card for up to 128GB additional storage (card not included)
GPS: Internal GPS antenna
Ambient light sensor
3.5 mm stereo audio jack
Bluetooth 4.0 with aptX enabled
Wi-Fi: IEEE 802.11 b/g/n (2.4 GHz)
DLNA for wirelessly streaming media from the phone to a compatible TV or computer
micro-USB 2.0 (5-pin) port
Dual frontal stereo speakers
Main Camera: 8MP, BSI sensor, f/2.4, 1080p video recording
Front Camera: 1.3MP, FSI sensor, 720p video recording
Audio supported formats:
Playback: .aac, .amr, .ogg, .m4a, .mid, .mp3, .wav, .wma (Windows Media Audio 9)
Video supported formats:
Playback: .3gp, .3g2, .mp4, .wmv (Windows Media Video 9), .avi (MP4 ASP and MP3)
Embedded rechargeable Li-polymer battery
Capacity: 2040 mAh
Talk time: Up to 15.8 hours for 3G
Standby time: Up to 650 hours for 3G
Voltage range/frequency: 100 ~ 240 V AC, 50/60 Hz
DC output: 5 V and 1 A
Telstra Outright Price: $312