back to article HTC seeks salvation with squeezy design

Former critics' darling HTC will unveil its 2017 flagship on 16 May, hoping that a squeezy case will win back buyers. HTC's M8 won many "Phone of the Year" prizes in 2014, being dubbed the "Alfa Romeo" of the phone world. But its lacklustre 2015 successor added little new, and contributed to a dramatic fall in sales. – HTC had …

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When?

When's the 5th of Quadridecember?

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Pontless tinkering

All these extras such as squeeziness, UI tweaks are only much good if someone stays with a given phone manufacturer and learns the quirks of their particular tweaks. If they move to a different brand, learning process begins again.

.. Phones are bad enough already where accidentally touching it the wrong way can accidentally fire off a gesture, squeeze triggered gestures sound a recipe for more grief, In bleak Winter with heavily gloved hands and so not the light sensitivity of normal holding phone in (bare) hand , I could see lots of scope for accidental squeeze gestures

Maybe there is massive brand loyalty to HTC that makes such things worthwhile, but I doubt it (my main memory of HTC, like most brands, was the unwanted uninstallable (if not root) crud they put on for "added value")

Flagship seems to be more about adding pointless extras than anything else these days.

And given I can buy a more than good enough for typical domestic use laptop for less than the price of a flagship phone I'll stick to the non flagship phones and save a lot of cash

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Re: Pontless tinkering

"All these extras such as squeeziness, UI tweaks are only much good if someone stays with a given phone manufacturer"

Congratulations on working out the concept of brand loyalty.

The manufacturers want consumers to keep coming back to them, not just purchase once and move on.

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Re: Pontless tinkering

"In bleak Winter with heavily gloved hands and so not the light sensitivity of normal holding phone in (bare) hand , I could see lots of scope for accidental squeeze gestures"

Forget winter, what about where most people carry their phones, in pockets.

"Sorry I haven't called in a week, but every time I sit down, the phone tweets "qwsdcvbjkplkjytfvbiolkhtrfvhuolkjytfvc jiokmndcv uytfvb.... " until the battery's flat.

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Re: Pontless tinkering

@tiggity, "Maybe there is massive brand loyalty to HTC that makes such things worthwhile, but I doubt it (my main memory of HTC, like most brands, was the unwanted uninstallable (if not root) crud they put on for "added value")"

I'd love to know where the massive brand loyalty to HTC is. My main memory of HTC was i) a Hero (ok but horribly underpowered) and a Sensation (random unexplained turn offs for the whole 18 months I had it with SFA help from HTC other than a factory reset which didn't resolve the problem). Both suffered from a lack of bug fixes and updates (El Reg stories and comments passim). I switched to another manufacturer for my smart mob and now get regular updates as well as reliable hardware and good support.

The one thing I get from HTC stories like this is, "Are HTC still a thing?". If they really want to differentiate themselves then perhaps they should offer their [remaining] customers decent support and regular software updates rather than gimmicks like squeezable handsets?

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Re: Pontless tinkering

And what manufacturer doesn't add uninstallable crud?

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Re: How to do non-pointless tinkering

I'll tell you what would lock in a loyal HTC following: continuous and timely OS updates, a la Google Nexus. If HTC would promise update support for its products, out to 3 years say, I think a lot of people would flock to the phones. They are beautiful, well made and rather cool to use. The problem is that HTC users feel locked-in: you buy an HTC and if you want any updates you end up having to buy something new.

Which leaves the purchaser open to looking at alternatives.

Fundamentally, HTC is not a company that listens well to its users. The termination of Blinkfeed, to be "replaced" by News Republic, is a PERFECT example: News Republic is one of the worst news apps out there, giving you news feeds that you set to ignore because, it seems, they just want to regardless. I got so fed up that I turned off [the remnants of] Blinkfeed, deleted News Republic and told HTC to "shove off". People complained...HTC didn't care.

People complained about Zoe's forced cloud profile requirements. HTC barely cared (they finally, too long afterwards, changed it).

People complained about a lack of security patches for known problems. HTC barely cared and didn't roll out patches to a large number of older devices, leaving them vulnerable.

HTC recently discontinued update support of their own built-in web browser on many devices (!! Imagine! Have an HTC One M7 (for example)? You shouldn't use the factory browser any more because HTC stopped caring about it!) Does HTC care? Of course not.

Therefore...my current phone is a LG, my first non-HTC phone in 7 years. Significantly larger screen in a body size that is only about 15% larger, burningly fast processor, snappy response, nice features and actual firmware updates.

Buh-bye HTC, I loved Sense but you made living with you just too difficult.

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I'm looking forward to this

Price is going to be crucial- at the moment I'm using a Motorola G4+ but I've had the full gamut of HTC devices down the years- some of which probably still work perfectly fine, if I were to plug them in. But...... my budget is not what it once was, I have no intention whatsoever of taking out a silly contract with a network- my current phone a Motorola G4+ is fine for what it is- I like the idea of the squeeziness of this phone- but I'm not willing to pay top dollar. I'm going to wait and see- and depending on price, probably wait some more- until it finally settles at a price point I can justify.........

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My dog really needs to know

Does it include a squeaker as well, or will that be done in software?

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It might be too little, too late

I absolutely loved my M8, but didn't find the HTC replacements really appealling. I have recently got myself a Huawei P9, and I do love the much better camera in that, although I miss the sound from the dual speakers in the M8. Plugging in quality earphones in the P9 largely sorts that problem out, however.

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My M7 is still going strong

The only problem is the USB port is a bit loose so I need to pay attention when connecting to recharge.

Other than that the battery life is still good, and it is in great nick.

Given I haven't had any reason to upgrade, and the later models have been a bit lackluster, if I can cope with the loose USB port I may skip the model(s) this year as well.

The *only* reason I have to upgrade is because the version of Android is falling behind. HTC tried for a while, and of course Verizon gets in there too, so I am still on Lollipop (5.0).

That is the major frustration, and going to a non-Google phone will have the same problem. I looked at the Pixel and wasn't impressed, at least at first blush.

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Re: My M7 is still going strong

Root it and install the Venom ROM?

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