Deal: Unlocked HTC One (M8) in Gunmetal Grey for $449, Plus Free Shipping

Been considering the HTC One (M8)? A daily deal running today out of eBay has a price on an unlocked version that is $200 below HTC’s $649 asking price. At $449 (with free shipping) for a “manufacturer refurbished” unit in gunmetal grey, you could be an HTC One (M8) owner.

This model comes with 32GB of storage and should work perfectly on AT&T’s network since it comes “in an AT&T retail box.” Either way, the unlocked version of the M8 does indeed work perfectly on AT&T’s network.

Still on the fence? Check out our HTC One (M8) review to see our thoughts on this year’s flagship from HTC.

eBay Link

Monday Poll: Does a Smartphone Design Need to Contain Metal?

I don’t know who we should put more of the blame on – Apple for their chamfered edges and metal design choices with the iPhone, or Samsung for using the cheapest feeling plastics on the planet to build their smartphones with, but people seem to refer to all plastic embodied phones as “cheap” these days. The Nexus 5 certainly doesn’t feel cheap, neither do the G3 or Moto X or OnePlus One, yet they are all made of plastic. But here we are today, talking about Samsung’s new Galaxy Alpha with its metal banding, chamfered edges, and “premium” design, because metal means premium, or something.

I can tell you one thing I know for sure about metal phones – they can be insanely slippery and frustrating to deal with. I spent more than enough time with HTC’s last two flagship phones, the One (M7) and One (M8), both of which were unusable at times because of their lack of grip. Apple could have worked some different metal magic with the iPhone to make it less slippery, but I sort of doubt it. iPhones just happen to be small smartphones that are easily held, whereas Android phones are all oversized and at times tough to hold anyway.

You also have to worry about radio issues with metal phones, wear and tear, weight, etc. In my opinion, metal isn’t exactly the greatest material available for building smartphones.

So I’m curious about this metal thing. Is a metal phone or design that includes metal a requirement when you buy a phone? Is this whole “metal is premium” thing overblown by Apple-leaning tech journos? Feel free to vote below, then hit up the comments.

Does a Smartphone Design Need to Contain Metal?

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HTC Might Have Leaked Upcoming Android Wear Smartwatch in Official Video

Another leak out of HTC is making the rounds, this time surrounding its reportedly upcoming smartwatch powered by Android Wear. Android Wear is Google’s smartwatch platform, which is already available running on the Samsung Gear Live and LG G Watch smartwatches.

The leak is taken from an official design video which HTC released, focusing on the company’s unique take on hardware design. While a few narrators are going on about HTC’s craftsmanship, the camera focuses on a worker at his station, going over a few 3D images, with a smartwatch in plain view sitting next to him. Is it HTC’s upcoming Android Wear watch? It very well could be.  (more…)

HTC Begins to Break Down Firmware, Releases Sense Keyboard to Google Play

Like Google and Motorola before it, HTC has uncoupled a system app from firmware. HTC Sense Input, the default keyboard on HTC devices, made its unceremonious debut on Google Play this morning.

Predictably, Sense Input is only compatible with the HTC One (M7), HTC One (M8), and the latest phones in the Desire series. Sense seems to be a requirement, too – the keyboard won’t install on Google Play Editions of either One.  (more…)