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HTC One Variant for China has Removable Back Plate and MicroSD Slot

htc one china

Well, that’s not fair. HTC, don’t you know that we love microSD card slots too?

According to an image posted to Weibo, a Chinese forum, the HTC One variant for at least one of China’s wireless carriers will include a removable back plate, dual-SIM slots, and a microSD slot for expandable storage. As you all should know by now, the European (international) and U.S. variants are quite the opposite. Both include a full “zero-gap” unibody aluminum housing, which means there is no removable…anything. They also do not include a microSD card slot and instead offer up internal storage only. While the 32GB and 64GB options should be plenty of storage or most, there are those in this world who can’t live without the ability to hot-swap a card for more.ย 

Personally, I’m not sure that I’m a fan of the removable backside. There is something about a unibody design with zero moving parts that intrigues me. Plus, if you are going to allow us to remove a back plate, then you may as well go all the way and give us the option to swap out batteries too.

What do you guys think – removable back plate with expandable storage or straight up unibody casing?

Via: ย Engadget

  • NemaCystX

    If I recall, the HTC Fireball, (known in the US as the HTC Droid Incredible 4G LTE) was a special variant of the HTC One S for China, Verizon later got it shortly after it leaked that China was getting one of its own.

    Could this be why Verizon didn’t want a microSD slot on the DROID DNA? hmmm

  • Dylan Patel

    This is fake. It is a copy cat. If you look at a teardown of the HTC ONE, the phone’s battery is in front of the motherboard. They literally would have had to redesign the entire phone just to get it to be like this. Plus the fact that the battery would have to be smaller to fit comfortably with the back plate on and the microSD taking up space in the phone.

  • jomama

    If a phone does not have access 2 a removable battery I don’t want it or a card slot don’t want it but that’s me!

  • Harold Goldner

    No removable storage; no removable battery; no purchase. At least for me, it’s that simple. And right now, with no Verizon, that’s an easy choice to make.

  • times like these im thankful for still clinging to unlimited. no problem with the cloud…for now..

  • Sunday Lacrymosa


  • tomn1ce

    If this is a real HTC One….HTC has shot themself on the foot once again….They first altered the J Butterfly to bring it to verizon with the lack of sdcard slot and now this…Good job HTC.

  • justapotato

    dont care about removable battery but ill take the SD Card. Kinda like our HTC DNA vs the butterfly. COME ON bring back SD Cards to the american market….ya i hear you Galaxy owners…but I want hardware

  • Ricardo Pena

    What are you doing that is making the backside of your phone move? I like being able to expand my storage and it also helps with managing my increasing number of apps I have installed since using Android. I don’t understand cloud storage as a defense for lack of SD support, most people don’t want to deal with the hassle of syncing or data managing. I also don’t understand how using a Micro SD is old fashion, I prefer to have everything with me off the network and be able to simple swap the card in on a new phone or tablet. It’s easier and faster

    • primarchlion

      I agree. Another argument is that internal memory is getting so large you don’t have the need for an SD card. I could see that if 64 and 128GB phones were the norm. With a 64 GB microSD card any 3 year old Android phone has more storage than the best phones available now. Shouldn’t we want better than that?

      • laren31

        I agree as well. the only way to get the same results as an old android phone is for me to root it and use apps like directorybind or foldermount. I would rather to not have to do all that hard work to accomplish something that was built into the os a few years ago. it makes no sense. and also didn’t that guy answer his own question as to why HTC did this by stating that he doesn’t like moving parts? the iPhone has brain washed a lot of the consumers in these parts and many would gladly trade form for function. it’s not like the old days where you didn’t care that your treo 600 was fat and just generally larger than other phones because you knew what it was capable of compared to the rest of the feature phones.

      • kg215

        Totally agree, especially if the 64gb and 128gb phones with no sd slots were the same price as 32gb or 16gb phones with sd slots. In that case I would be perfectly fine with no sd slot. Of course the 64gb usually cost a lot more and 128gb isn’t an option, but there are people who still defend the no sd slot (some people actually are confused just by having it, they posted that here) or say they use cloud/no storage.

  • RaptorOO7

    I would consider that model just to put in the 64GB SD card with my 64GB internal. But no not in the US, why would we want that.

  • Perhaps the Verizon variant will have wireless charging?

  • mechapathy

    They should call it the HTC One SD+

  • andrew galvin

    id rather have the unibody design. swapping batteries and SD is so gingerbread.. With quadcores, bigger batterys and 32/64gb + cloud there is no real need for either unless you are being stubborn and are unwilling to accept new technology and design.

    • LionStone

      Agree! +100

    • chris125

      Well with tiered data plans the cloud isn’t an option for everyone, not to mention that and you need a connection for the cloud…

    • RaptorOO7

      There is nothing wrong with wanting to swap batteries and there are never cases on the market to support extended batteries since the mfg’s take 6+ months if they ever release an extd battery at all.

      How is wanting more storage and a swappable battery so “gingerbread”, I say its so iOS and with that users should go Apple if they want those kinds of restrictions.

      • andrew galvin

        ok, I have a nexus 4 and can get through the day with normal to heavy use no problem. After the nightmare battery life of the galaxy nexus, I became paranoid about drainage and having my phone die. I am slowly but surely accepting the fact that the battery life on my nexus 4 + franco is more than long enough to do what i need it to. I would rather have a phone that has great battery life from the get go than a phone that i need to swap batteries because it dies so fast.

        64gb of storage is PLENTY of space for the majority of your files and games. I have my entire library of music in 320kb or .WAV (150gb+) but i do not feel the need to carry 100% of my music library around with me on my phone. It is completely unnecessary to have the entire alice in chains discography on your phone at all times. I do however have access to them via google music. Most people use things like spotify, pandora etc to stream things they do not have on their devices. Sure tiered data is a PITA but if you mostly use the on device music and occasionally use the streaming you would be hard pressed to go over 5gb of data. So it sounds like you need to upgrade your wireless account instead of complaining that modern phones are removing outdated technology paradigms than only a small subset of power users want or care about.

        also.. HTC launching with mophie juice pack. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=0N-XEgEUkac#t=265s

        • laren31

          and your nexus 4 has 64 gb of space? manufacturers sometimes have to cut back on storage to keep costs low, hence the cost of the nexus 4. this is where the microSD comes into play. sometimes people don’t have the money to splurge on an expensive phone with 64gb of memory but still want a decent phone. isn’t that what makes Android a better option than ios in that the consumer has many choices? you may not feel the need to carry around all your music but don’t push your choices on others. maybe some one else wants to do so. why should you stop him because of your own beliefs? that’s not fair at all. you just said it yourself too. you now have to limit how you use your phone because you know it will die quickly. I remember when I had my hd2 and would watch movies on it if I had lots of time in between classes and wanted to keep my laptop alive for the classes. I would then just switch the battery after the movie. simple. and your position on using Spotify and Pandora, strong coverage doesn’t exist everywhere, data is expensive, quality of the song is not as good, drains the battery faster hence you just contradicted yourself on the case of removable batteries.

          • andrew galvin

            if the nexus 4 came in a $400 32gb and a $450-500 64gb model.. I would have gotten the 32gb. I agree 16gb is on the smaller side but it is not a non starter for me. 32gb would have been perfect and 64gb is more than enough. They did go with 16gb for costs but also because 90% of people dont use more than that. They also didn’t go with the external SD due to the technical way they partition the data in the OS. The concept of more storage for cheaper is good but it isn’t as fast as internal memory and splits the storage of your files into two separate drives. I just can’t think of a reason why any one would need more that 64gb of stuff on their phones at all times.

            I never said I have to limit how much I use my phone, my battery life is awesome. The HTC phone has a mophie pack available and also works with external chargers. swapping batteries is only necessary when your phone wont last you the entire day. Mine does. Non issue.

          • kg215

            Like anyone would offer a 64gb high end device for 450-500 off contract, if they did no one would complain. if they were going for what 90% of people use they would have gone for 32gb not 16gb, it was purely cost there for the nexus 4. Most people here aren’t saying a 64gb phone needs the sd slot, the problem is the cost/availability of a 64gb device. They always cost a lot and aren’t always available. The issue is phones like your nexus 4 (a great device for sure) but 16gb with no sd slot is just pathetic and htc did that/is continuing to do that. That isn’t even “gingerbread” that is eclair.

  • Austin Warren

    Doesn’t help us.

  • Detonation

    The unibody design may be nice, but I’ll take function over form. Most people will probably cover it up in a case anyways.

    I don’t know if this Chinese version is going to have cheaper materials over all, but if it’s not then its just greed from HTC knowing that they can charge a premium for more internal storage in a market where it’s already a successful trend.

    • Tech Pro

      My son dropped his phones so many times, the screen cracked. I spent $100 to have it replaced. On his second phone he dropped it fewer times and luckily screen stayed intact with some cosmetic damages on cases.
      He is on his third phone now for 6 months and he have not dropped his phone yet.

      I bought some cases for him but cases make phone heavier and bigger, harder to carry. He only used cases for a few weeks then remove them any way.

      It really depends on what phone you have. You have a ugly phone, you want to buy a case to cover it and make it look better. Even this would make it bigger and harder to carry. You have a good looking phone, you just use it and show it to people.

      Personally, I hate cases and like good looking phone for that.

  • Horse Guy

    I can’t speak for anyone else but any phone lacking a removable battery and microSD card is a deal killer for me. We will be upgrading to a new phone this spring and another this summer. We always put on a skin and/or case so the looks of the back don’t matter to us.

    • Ryan

      Gotta move with technology. Everything is going cloud. in 5 years ppl are gonna look at you and laugh cuz you still have an SD card phone like i Laugh at my parents for a flip phone. If you lose your phone your SD card is in there.

      • Horse Guy

        Good comments. However, we live in a rural area with tiered broadband and now Verizon with tiered data plans so data usage can get out of hand when putting too much in the cloud. I am not complaining, and will take these limits any day over living in an urban area. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • RaptorOO7

        If you are on Verizon (like me) and you are stuck with shared data like most everyone is the “cloud” is not your friend. Data costs, security risks with storing stuff in the cloud why would I want to pay more when I can have my apps, music, videos and photos on my device. Relying on unsafe technology is not the way to go.

        • Daniel G

          Well said Sir. Its a pain in the ass to back things up to the cloud or use dropbox, and its more hassle then its worth. They should just sell the phone with an sd card slot, and have it prompt which memory you would like to save it on as a default. I understand everyone likes the cloud/dropbox but I personally prefer to have things on my phone. I shouldnt have to use my “limited data” to access things I already have. That defeats the point. So in technical terms I have to pay for data I already have because it is on the cloud/dropbox, and not everyone has unlimited data (or is capped).

      • laren31

        your comment about the microSD isn’t well thought out. as others have mentioned data plans are expensive and unreliable. you might get strong signal in one area and very weak signal in the next. I remember traveling from Florida to Georgia and there was nothing but woodlands at certain points. Can you guess what happened? nobody had signal at many points even the Verizon users had nothing. what would happen if I relied on the cloud for all my entertainment purposes?

        • Ryan

          try to enjoy the scenery and get away from technology lol. I need to do it more. But you can plan what you need for a trip. download it to your phone for your trip and sync when at home for wifi. uploading pics wont skyrocket your data unless you take thousands of pics.

          • kg215

            Lol so first it’s “everything is going cloud” even though that is bs. Then you imply we should be embarassed to have an sd card in a phone. Now it’s don’t use the phone and “try to enjoy the scenery.” Why so much fear and dislike for the micro sd slot, it would allow you to avoid using data and carry a lot more media with you. It doesn’t make the phone bigger, and you can just leave it alone if it confuses you having 2 places to store things. I guess you would be happier if they shrank internal memory too? 4gb/8gb phones more your taste?

    • I’ve got almost 100 GB of cloud storage. Anything I would put on my SD card goes directly there. I’ll take a healthy amount of internal memory over a removable SD card any day. The battery is a toss, though. I work in an office and can just plug my phone in when I need it. It’s less of a hassle than trying to juggle multiple batteries while keeping them charged. If you’re someone who likes to swap out the OEM battery for the extended battery then I can definitely see it being an issue.

      • kg215

        But they have rarely given us a healthy amount of internal memory in any device, and the few times they do it cost a lot more.

  • yes!

  • I bet it’s a Chinese clone. I just don’t see HTC re-engineering the phone for that. The tops and bottoms also don’t look like the One (to me)

    • mechapathy

      China is a super competitive market, so it makes sense.

      • NemaCystX

        i see what you did there lol

    • michael arazan

      A lot of manufacturers make phones for china and half of them are made with dual sim, one for business and one for personal use, they like to keep them separate. I’m guessing they want separate uses because of the censorship laws.

      • I don’t doubt it would be dual sim…I just don’t think they’d do this removable, but not back-plate and destroy the entire design of the phone over it.

  • Nick S

    “…with zero moving parts…”

    I suddenly imagined you pull-starting a phone like it was a lawn mower =)

  • รŸen Murphy

    That’s it! I’m moving to Canada!

  • eli

    I too love the look and feel of the unibody design. But not being able to swap batteries is pointless. It’s like large breasts on fat chick, it doesn’t count

  • eli

    I too love the look and fell of the unibody design. But a removable back plate with no option to swap batteries is pointless, It’s like large breasts on a fat chick, it doesn’t count…

    • Tirionfive

      Awesome analogy!

      • eli

        thank you sir!

    • NemaCystX

      I don’t think its possible since the Battery is sandwiched between the PCB

  • Maybe we can learn something from the “communists?”

    • Austin Warren

      You can’t be serious.

      • PhoenixPath

        Not at all. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • RaptorOO7

      Sure, how to rip off every other company in the world and not care because the gov’t won’t do anything about it. But in our democratic society, we allow corporations to rip off consumers and the gov’t doesn’t care.

  • and two sim slots too!