Verizon began taking pre-orders on April 29th and is the first carrier to offer the device in the United States. If experience serves us right, this flagship HTC smartphone should be available in limited quantities throughout the early part of summer until all pre-orders have been sold and when second and third shipment batches make their way overseas.
The particular demo unit on display was the black 32GB model running Android 6.0.1 with HTC software version 1.19.605.9. As we mentioned on Monday, the first major update (1.30.401.1) for the HTC 10 brings some important improvements to the device that alleviate a few criticisms from early reviews. Aside from increased system stability, the update features a much better photo capturing experience in low-light settings, wider HDR light range sensitivity, improved Wi-Fi performance with Smart MIMO, and the removal of “purple noise” when taking photos in Pro Mode.
Out of curiosity, we took a picture with the HTC 10 running the original 1.19.605.9 firmware and compared it with an iPhone 6 running iOS 9. Even with stock firmware, the HTC camera still managed to deliver a much crisper picture although it exhibited a slight yellow tint. The folks at DxOMark highlighted this observation in their HTC 10 camera test and recommend applying a subtle blue filter in a photo editing app to offset the yellow casting that might occur.
HTC 10 software version 1.19.605.9 camera test (Larger image here)
Apple iPhone 6 software version iOS 9.0.2 camera test (Larger image here)
On May 4th, HTC posted to Twitter that it was now sending out pre-order units to its customers. These units are for customers who pre-ordered directly from HTC’s website. The company is selling the device at HTC.com in black and silver at a 32GB storage capacity for $699. At the same time, Verizon is currently selling the device in the same configurations for $648 with monthly installment options ($22.83 per month)
The smartphone will remain a Verizon-only unlocked exclusive this week until May 13th, when Sprint customers receive their orders. T-Mobile has also confirmed a May launch but has not given release date. Meanwhile, AT&T is not selling the device but claims the unlocked model is fully compatible with its network.