Category Archives: HTC

HTC One M8 Hits Stores In India On May 7, To Cost 49,900 INR

The HTC One M8 is one of the hottest devices of this year, and come May 7 it will be available in stores across India for  49,900 INR. The One M8 is HTC’s Android flagship for 2014, and builds on the beautiful aesthetics of the 2013 HTC One. This time round there’s even more metal, a faster Snapdragon 801 quad-core chip clocked at 2.5 Ghz, and this processor is paired with a Adreno 330 GPU and 2GB of RAM. 

HTC One M8 India Launch

The display now measures 5″, and retains the 1080p resolution. You get 16 GB of internal storage, a microSD slot with support for cards upto 128 GB in size and 50 GB of Google Drive storage. A 2600 mAh battery powers this brute, and HTC’s also built in an ultra power saving mode to help you squeeze that extra usage. This should come in handy as the M8 also has support for Indian LTE networks, making it one of the few devices to support the 2300 MHz band on the FDD-LTE network that both Airtel and Reliance Jio are rolling out. In comparison, the Samsung Galaxy S5 only leaves you with HSDPA support, while both the iPhone 5C and 5S also feature Indian LTE capabilities. 

Continue reading HTC One M8 Hits Stores In India On May 7, To Cost 49,900 INR

How Use The HTC One To Create Video Highlights Of Pictures & Video Taken On Another Camera

One of the nicer features of the HTC One is its ability to create Video Highlights. Highlights are nothing but 30 second videos created from the pictures, Zoes and videos that you have shot on the HTC One. By default, a video highlight is created for each ‘Event’, and the HTC One automatically creates events based on the geo-tags of the photos and videos. But if you want to merge events, there’s also an option to do that, so you can have a single event spanning a week, which includes all your holiday photos.

I love these video highlights, they look great, have great animations and the best part is that they are automatic. If you don’t like the highlight that’s been created, just hit shuffle and the One creates another one. You can also choose from a bunch of themes. The result is videos like this or this.

Fortunately, you can use the HTC One to create Highlights from pictures and video that you have taken from other devices as well. For example, I created a Highlight from photos that I have taken from an iPhone in 2012. For good measure I also threw in a video taken on a Nokia N8. Here’s how:

  • Attach your HTC One to the computer in the ‘Mass Storage’ mode. (I’ve used AirDroid to connect wirelessly).

How Use The HTC One To Create Video Highlights Of Pictures & Video Taken On Another Camera

  • Navigate to the Pictures folder on the phone, and create a Folder. Name it whatever you want the name of the event to be. Copy the photos and videos into it. Note that only .mp4 files are supported. The Gallery doesn’t see .mov files.

How Use The HTC One To Create Video Highlights Of Pictures & Video Taken On Another Camera

  • On the phone, the photos and video will show up as an ‘Event’ in the Gallery app.

How Use The HTC One To Create Video Highlights Of Pictures & Video Taken On Another Camera

  • Open the event and the video highlights will be waiting for you. If you like what you see, you can directly share to HTC Share, YouTube or any other destination that you may like. If not, hit the shuffle button, play around with the themes etc. You can also save the video to the phone without sharing it to an online service. An average video highlight is 1280 x 720 and weighs in at 12-14 MB in size.


HTC One India Launch Pushed To End Of May

If you’ve been feverishly waiting for the HTC One to launch in India, there might be some bad news headed your way. The official word is that the One will not be hitting stores in India before the 4th week of May. This information is based on HTC’s response to an email sent by a consumer.

HTC One India Launch

The Galaxy S4 just went on sale in India over the weekend, and any further delay will only make HTC’s task of succeeding in India harder. Samsung has the marketing muscle, while HTC has a great product. If only they’d put it on sale.

If you’re lucky and already own a One, be sure to check out our must know HTC One tips and tricks.

Hat tip to Amit for the email!

Must Know HTC One Tips & Tricks

The HTC One packs a quad core Snapdragon 600 chip, 2 GB of RAM, an incredible 1080p 4.7″ IPS display  and runs Sense 5.0, a new iteration of Sense that trims down the UI to a very large extent, while not taking away too much from the default Android experience. With its premium aluminium construction, there is hardly anything you won’t like about this device.

HTC One Tips Tricks

The HTC One is definitely one of 2013’s top smartphones, and as is the case with most devices these days, there are features that are obvious and then there are some that take a bit of finding. Over the last few days that I have been using the HTC One as my primary device (review coming soon) I have come to learn a few nifty shortcuts and tricks that every HTC One user should know.

If you can’t see the video embedded above, hit this link to go to YouTube. If you’d like to see some of these tips & tricks in text instead of video, read on.

  • How Use The HTC One To Create Video Highlights Of Pictures & Video Taken On Another Camera: Details here.
  • Capacitive Buttons: Because the One only comes with two capacitive buttons, instead of the 3 button default Android setup, the home key has some added responsibilities. A long press of the key launches Google Now, while a quick double tap, ala iOS, launches the multitasking app switcher. From there you can kill apps by simply dragging them off the screen.
  • Screenshots: Taking screenshots is very easy, just hit the home button and the power key simultaneously and a screenshot will be saved to the gallery. The One also has the ability to take screenshots while a video is playing. So if you want to quickly grab an image, just tap the screen once while the video is playing and hit the camera button that appears. A 1920 x 1080 screenshot will be saved to the gallery.

Must Know HTC One Tips & Tricks

  • Homescreen Setup: By default, whenever you press the home button the first thing you’ll see is Blinkfeed. There is no way to turn Blinkfeed off, but fortunately you select another homescreen to be the default screen. To do this, pinch the homescreen and you’ll be presented with the following screen. Now choose the homescreen you want to set as the default by pressing down on it and dragging it to the ‘Set As Home’ option that appears.

Must Know HTC One Tips & Tricks

  • Jump To Top: Very hand for long lists, wherever you are to quickly jump to the top, hit the notification bar once. This works in all sorts of lists – Contacts, Blinkfeed, Music Player and so on. 
  • Secure Inbox: If there are certain messages that you’d best keep from prying eyes, the HTC One has you covered. Long press on the message you so wish to hide, and select the move to Secure Inbox button. Then when you wish to goto that message, choose ‘Secure Inbox’ from the list and enter your password. Note: The password is set the first time you enter the Secure Inbox.

Must Know HTC One Tips & Tricks

  • Two Finger Scrolling: Scrolling with two fingers on any list displays the corresponding alphabet as you scroll along. Great when you want to stop at a particular letter in say, the Contacts app. In the messages app, a two finger scroll results in the dates being displayed as you scroll along.
  • Bluetooth Remote for the Camera: A bluetooth headset can act as a remote for the camera. Mount the One of a tripod and be part of the shot. Makes you wonder why didn’t anyone implement this earlier.
  • NFC & Usage: Buried in the settings menu under the ‘More’ heading is a toggle for NFC, turn it off if you’d like to save that every bit of battery life. The Usage option lets you restrict and monitor the amount of data your device is using. You can also keep tabs on your cellular minutes and text messages. Very handy if you don’t have unlimited data.

Must Know HTC One Tips & Tricks

  • App Gallery: By default, the Sense UI displays a grid of 3 x 3. Thankfully you can change this to 4 x 5.  Also present is an option to hide certain apps completely. So all the operator branded junk that you never open can now easily be removed from sight. Also, you can list apps alphabetically, or by the date they were added. You can also have a custom setup if you like.

Must Know HTC One Tips & Tricks

  • Power Saver: The HTC One has a power saver mode, use it. It throttles the CPU, reduces the brightness, makes the data connection goto sleep for small intervals, and turns vibration off. Based on experience, just letting the phone throttle the CPU and suspend the data connection makes a lot of difference. Enjoy that screen, don’t skimp on the brightness.

Must Know HTC One Tips & Tricks

  • Stop Google Play from auto creating shortcuts: If like me, you hate it when an app is automatically added to your homescreen the moment you installed it, this tip is for you. Goto Google Play settings and uncheck the auto-add widgets button.

Must Know HTC One Tips & Tricks

  • Gracenote Integration: Thanks to its Gracenote integration, the One automatically adds album art to the music you’ve copied to the device. That’s not all, it will even pull the lyrics down from the Internet and display them – synchronised.

Must Know HTC One Tips & Tricks

  • Unresponsive/Reset: If the HTC One ever hangs, or becomes unresponsive you can’t really pull the battery out. The way around that problem is holding the power button down for 10 seconds. The phone will reboot and hopefully your problem will be fixed.
  • Changing Shortcuts in the Dock: You can change the default apps in the dock, and even add folders. However, this cannot be done from the homescreen and you’ll have to be in the app drawer to make changes.

In addition to these, there are a ton of other must know things – Zoes, Video Highlights, IR Blaster for controlling the TV. Which ones are your favourites? Sound off in the comments section below!

Editorial: We Need Better Photo Sharing & HTC’s Zoe Is Pushing The Envelope

Camera phones have been around for ages, so the concept of sharing photos and videos digitally is not new at all. But over the years the most popular way of sharing photos continues to be email. There is Facebook, but for times when you want share only with a select few most people choose email. Things like private albums in Flickr and Picassa exist, but that’s not exactly being intuitive.

The problem with email, and even Facebook is that you are bound by the their interface, there is no room to becoming creative. There is no real way to show your media off remotely and beautifully at the same time. Therefore when Apple launched Journals with iPhoto on the iPhone and iPad, I bought the app for that functionality alone. Essentially, all you do is select a bunch of photos, pick a theme and hit create Journal. The app automatically creates a collage which you can edit, add captions, location etc to and share. The sharing is handled via iCloud, and in the end you get a link that you can share with friends and family. Only those people with the link – can see the collage. For example, this is a collage of pictures in San Francisco that I made in less than 5 minutes.

This functionality hasn’t really gone anywhere since it first came out. I’d hoped Apple would bring it to iPhoto for the Mac, but that hasn’t happened yet. Nor is there video support.

HTC Zoe Sample

Enter HTC. They’ve finally pushed the envelope further with the Zoe functionality on the impressive HTC One. In the Zoe mode, the camera takes a 3 second HD video containing 20 images. The result is that if you open the Gallery and look at photos you’ve taken, its like you’re living in Harry Potter land where photos move. Think of it as a Vine, but without the effort. Infact, the best part about HTC’s Zoe is that it takes editing out of the equation. So at the end of a trip, your photos in the Gallery will be sorted by events and opening each event will show you a 30 second highlight reel using using the photos and video that you took at a particular location. You can the  edit this if you like, but since HTC adds the fancy transitions on its own – chances are it’ll already look quite good.

Its all very well to see great looking Zoes on the HTC One itself, but concern was as to how would HTC take this experience and make it social? Fortunately, they haven’t disappointed. You can simply share it using a brand new service called Zoe Share, which is hosted by HTC. Just like iPhoto’s journal you’ll get a link at the end that can be opened on a phone, tablet or PC.When you open the Zoe link, the video buffers and you’re shown the same 30 second highlight reel that would have been visible on the phone, after that the screen turns into a collage like the one above. The top left corner gives you information about the number of Zoe’s, videos and photos in the share and you can then look at them individually. What is also cool is that the Zoe’s keep looping (remember a Zoe’s like a 3 second video clip), making the entire page feel very modern, and lively. A far cry from zipping photos and emailing them, or looking at them in a bland Flickr or Facebook gallery.

I haven’t gone into detail about what else HTC’s Zoe implementation can do – remove unwanted object, change faces etc (similar to Smart Shoot on Nokia Lumias) or the other million things the software can do as this post is about sharing. While this Zoe Share implementation has it own set of challenges, like needing a high bandwidth, its certainly pushing the envelope further.

Here are a few sample Zoe Shares, 1, 2, 3. Let us know what you think.