HTC 10 launches with "world-class" camera and Hi-Res audio the main stars

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The HTC 10 is here and blends the looks of the HTC One M9 and the HTC One A9

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After Samsung, LG and Huawei, it's HTC's turn to launch its flagship phone for 2016: the HTC 10. The brand new handset brings a redesigned all-metal body, a camera that HTC calls the best in the world, Hi-Res 24-bit audio and a fingerprint scanner.

Update: Our hands-on with the HTC 10 is now live.

HTC's official teasers before today dropped some heavy hints about camera technology and battery life and the finished product follows those prompts. Backing up its claims of having "the best smartphone camera available on the market today," the HTC 10's 12 MP rear camera includes optical image stabilization (OIS), dual LED flash, an F1.8 aperture lens and laser focusing, as well as a selection of advanced shooting modes and RAW export capabilities.

The front 5 MP camera isn't too bad either, as it also has OIS and a special UltraSelfie mode that brightens up your selfie pics. The 10 sees HTC returning to the idea of UltraPixels – fewer pixels, but should in theory let in more light and make for a better shot.

As for how long you're going to be able to go between charges, the HTC 10 is fitted with a 3,000 mAh battery that its maker says will give you up to two days of use. Thanks to the fast charging capabilities built into the handset, you can get a 50 percent charge in just 30 minutes, according to HTC.

Of course there's nothing new in a manufacturer talking up the long life of its smartphone batteries and the quality of the images you can shoot with the camera (see Huawei, just last week) and so we can only really judge the HTC 10 when we get chance to give it a full review. We will be getting some hands-on time with the phone later today, so stay tuned.

The Taiwanese firm is also keen to promote the superior audio technology built into the phone. Hi-Res audio certified by the Japan Audio Society, 24-bit DAC and three amps for each stereo speaker and the headphone jack. There's even a pair of Hi-Res headphones in the box, so audiophiles might find their ears pricking up.

With a 5.2-inch screen, running at a QHD resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels, the display size sits somewhere in the middle of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus (though it packs in more pixels). As on previous models, IPS LCD tech is used for the screen, dubbed Super LCD 5. There's a fingerprint sensor under the recessed Home button on the front too.

Those are the headline features, but here's the small print as far as the internals go: a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 CPU, 4 GB of RAM and either 32 GB or 64 GB of internal storage (external memory cards up to 2 TB are also supported). Measuring 145.9 mm x 71.9 mm x 9 mm (5.7 x 2.8 x 9 mm), the HTC M10 weighs in at 161 g (5.8 oz) and adopts the new USB Type-C port tech too.

Android 6 Marshmallow is on board and according to HTC the new version of its Sense skin offers a "Freestyle Layout" feature that lets you break out of the usual grid format with your icons and widgets. The HTC 10 is up for pre-order for US$699.99 and will launch in a choice of four colors from later this month.

It's a marked upgrade from the HTC One M9 and gives HTC a fighting chance against the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S7 and the LG G5. That should be enough information for you to tell whether you're interested in the HTC 10 as your next phone or not, but watch this space for a hands-on and full review on Gizmag.

Product page: HTC

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