If you're a fan of Windows Phone and you want a high-end flagship, your options are pretty slim (basically limited to a handful of Nokia Lumias). Today, though, HTC added a high-profile release from the Android side of the aisle to that list. Meet the HTC One (M8) for Windows.
As its name suggests, the HTC One (M8) for Windows is the company's excellent Android flagship, the One M8, only swapping out Android 4.4 KitKat for Windows Phone 8.1. Otherwise it's the same aluminum chassis on the outside, same specs on the inside and the same 5-in 1080p display sitting pretty on the front. HTC's front-facing (BoomSound) speakers and UltraPixel camera also make the leap to Windows Phone.
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Considering Windows Phone's relatively skimpy market share and inferior app library, the Android flagship's leap to Microsoft's OS might not sound like much of an upgrade. And for many shoppers, it probably won't be.
But, despite that weaker app selection and lack of any Google apps, we think there's a lot to like about Windows Phone. Its tile-based UI, dripping with modern Segoe UI fonts, is a much bigger departure from iOS and Android than either of those are from each other. And Microsoft has been aggressively pushing the software's feature set forward. Customers don't seem to be quite catching on, but Windows Phone is still a very nice mobile operating system that's worth a look.
Unfortunately, if you want a look at the One M8 for Windows, your options are extremely limited. As a Verizon exclusive, anyone who lives outside of the US, or is committed to another US carrier, may never even get the chance to buy this handset. It could technically run on international CDMA carriers, but HTC hasn't yet announced any plans to sell it outside of Verizon.
The HTC One (M8) goes on sale later today through Verizon. It will ring up for US$100 with a new two year contract (which will likely mean around $600-650 at full retail).
For more on the Android version of the One M8 (which is, of course, still available), you can hit up our full review.
Product page: HTCView gallery - 3 images