While we don't know anything for sure about the HTC One M9 (other than the fact that it's coming), a number of leaks and rumors are starting to trickle through and it's starting to look like it could be heavily based on the the MIA HTC One M8 Prime.
That phone was supposedly going to have a QHD display, a Snapdragon 805 processor, 3GB of RAM, a waterproof body and more megapixels in the camera, all of which would make sense for the HTC One M9 and with the exception of a waterproof body they're in line with some of the recent rumors, though there are conflicting leaks too.
But whatever its specs end up being we're sure it will be great, after all the HTC One M8 is sitting pretty at the top of our list of the ten best phones in the world. Not even the iPhone 6 could unseat it and we were similarly fond of the original HTC One last year.
Updates: More rumors about the HTC One M9 are flooding in including possible dimensions and our first look at the display panel.
Cut to the chase
- What is it? HTC's next flagship
- When is it out? Probably March 2015
- What will it cost? Likely at least £549 / $649 / AU$849
News and rumors
A number of spec rumors about the HTC One M9 have emerged and they sound pretty convincing. A report out of China claims that it will have a 5.5-inch 2560 x 1440 QHD display, a Snapdragon 805 processor, 3GB of RAM and a 3500 mAh battery, all of which are upgrades on the HTC One M8.
Unsurprisingly it's rumored to run Android 5.0 Lollipop and apparently it will also have a 16MP camera with optical image stabilisation, which would suggest HTC is abandoning its UltraPixel technology.
Audio is seemingly still a focus though, as the report states that HTC is partnering with Bose for the phone, while the chassis will apparently be an aluminium silicon-carbide composite, though there's no word on what the actual design will be.
Another interesting piece of news, this time from sporadic-leaker @upleaks, has stated that HTC will drop the M9 moniker. They've now followed that up with more specific information, claiming that the next flagship will be called the HTC Hima. That wouldn't be a bad thing, given the M8 suffix isn't the most attractive - but let's be honest, that's clearly a codename.
This latest nugget of news was also accompanied by a specs listing, which is somewhat at odds with what we'd heard previously.
According to @upleaks the HTC Hima will have 3GB of RAM and an octa-core 64-bit Snapdragon 810 processor, with four cores running at 2.0GHz and four at 1.5GHz, allowing it to switch between them depending on what it's doing, using the slower cores to conserve battery when the extra power isn't needed.
Speaking of battery, it will apparently have just a 2840 mAh juice pack, but that's still an upgrade on the One M8's battery and combined with a more efficient processor it could get the job done, especially as the same source claims that HTC will be sticking with a 5-inch 1080p screen, rather than moving to QHD.
With the same size screen as the One (M8) comes similar dimensions apparently, as the HTC Hima is said to be 144.3 x 69.4 x 9.56mm, making it marginally shorter but actually slightly fatter than the 146.4 x 70.6 x 9.4mm HTC One (M8).
Rounding out the specs the Hima will apparently have a 20.7MP main camera, either a 13MP or 4 UltraPixel front-facing snapper, Cat.6 LTE support and Android 5.0, overlaid with Sense 7.0. For the most part that sounds mighty promising.
However, following the 5.5-inch and 5.0-inch rumors there's now talk that the HTC Hima could meet them in the middle and have a 5.2-inch screen. That's according to Nowhereelse.fr, which even has images purportedly showing the display panel to back it up.
HTC One M9 release date
As for when we'll see the HTC One M9, that's something that we can at least take an educated guess at. HTC tends to release its flagships within a few weeks of MWC, which next year is happening on March 2-5 and the HTC One M8 was announced on March 25 2014, so we expect the HTC One M9 will be announced sometime in March.
@upleaks has provided some more specific theories, claiming that the HTC Hima won't arrive at CES in January and nor will it come to MWC, instead they tweeted that "I think HTC won't announce Hima at MWC 2015, it may be announced at their special event…", before clarifying in another tweet that the phone would likely arrive in March.
Having said that, it's possible that the phone will be using a Snapdragon 810 and businesskorea.co.kr is reporting that the chip is having issues which could cause manufacturing delays, though Qualcomm claims the chip is on track.
Hopefully the M9 is worth the wait, because as good as the HTC One M8 is, it isn't perfect, there's always room for improvement and technology has moved on since it launched, so with that in mind here's what we want to see in the HTC One M9.