HTC Desire 500 announced: a pricey entry-level phone with Sense 5

July 23, 2013
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HTC just made official the Desire 500 in Taiwan. Featuring mid-range specifications and a design inspired by last year's One series, the Desire 500's price tag is on the expensive side.

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All eyes are on the One, One Mini, and the upcoming One Max, but HTC is quietly (brilliantly?) coming with a series of unassuming models in the low to mid-range segment, which is becoming more and more important to phone manufacturers.

After the Desire 200 and the Desire 600, HTC today unveiled the Desire 500, a entry-level 4.3-inch model powered by a Snapdragon 200 processor and running Sense 5, just like its flashier kin, the One. Aside the quad-core processor, the HTC Desire 500 comes with 1GB of RAM and just 4GB of internal storage, though the microSD card slot should help alleviate the problem. The 8MP camera features an LED flash and HTC’s ImageChip processor. The 4.3-inch SLCD display is slightly disappointing at 480 x 800 resolution.

In terms of design, the Desire 500 looks like a hybrid between the One S and the One SV, both launched last year, though the device features a plastic case instead of the aluminum enclosure of the One S.

HTC transplanted a few of the marquee features of the One, including BlinkFeed and Video Highlights, though obviously the hardware dependent ones are absent. Most notably the Desire 500 lacks the much touted BoomSound speaker system that can be found on the HTC One family, the Butterfly s, and even the Desire 600.

The HTC Desire 500 will sell in Taiwan first for a relatively pricey $400. Engadget’s Richard Lai speculates that the stingy price tag might have something to do with HTC’s partnership with local carrier Taiwan Mobile, thus being a way to push people towards the carrier’s subsidized offer.

We don’t have any info on the HTC Desire 500’s availability and price in international markets, but a recent leaked roadmap of the German carrier O2 included the HTC Desire 500, giving us hope that the phone will be more than an Asian exclusive. Hopefully, that price will go down a notch too.

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