We have reviewed both the HTC One M8 and the HTC One E8; two devices with a similar soul, yet bodies that are aimed at different markets. While they hold their slight differences, we have previously mentioned the One E8 is essentially a plastic M8. This holds true in most aspects, but there is more to these devices than such a general statement would entail.
These devices work as a team, which is why we wouldn’t consider this comparison a battle. Instead, it will serve as an helping hand for those trying to decide which of the two HTC devices is the best, based on their own preferences and needs. Should you go metal or plastic?
Let’s start by pulling out the big guns. Design is where these two devices mostly differentiate themselves from one another. You will be able to distinguish them from blocks away.
The HTC One M8 sports an aircraft-grade aluminum housing that has given it its popularity within Android and tech community. It keeps the device feeling as premium as a luxurious jewel, while giving it one of the strongest build qualities we have seen in mobile devices. This doesn’t deem the M8’s design perfect, though. Many users complain about the device’s slippery nature (it sometimes feels like it’s made of butter).
With the One E8, HTC takes a completely different approach. The device is obviously much more wallet friendly, which is the main reason for deviating from a metallic build. This doesn’t mean using polycarbonate doesn’t have it’s advantages. The material is lighter and smoother. And even if it doesn’t feel as premium, it does offer a less slippery surface and better customizability.
The HTC One E8 is obviously much more wallet friendly, which is the main reason for deviating from a metallic build
The HTC One E8 comes in a variety of colors, including both matte and glossy finishes. The bad news? Both are equally friendly with fingerprints.
Sizes are relatively similar, with only fractions of a millimeter of difference in most measurements. They do sport slightly different backs, which might sway you one way or another, depending on your preferences.
The One M8 has a rounded back, making it a better fit for your hand, but not stable enough when placing it on a flat surface. Meanwhile, the One E8 has a flat back, making it great to interact with while laying on a surface, but not as palm-friendly.
Ports and button placement are nearly identical. The only difference can be found on the top of the devices, where the HTC One E8 has a centered power button and the M8’s is placed further to the right. Likewise, the backs will be a bit different, where the M8 has a Duo Camera and the E8 sports a single 13 MP shooter.
Once you are done admiring the external differences, you will find these devices are much more similar than their exteriors exhibit. They both run Android 4.4.2 KitKat, layered by HTC Sense 6. Most HTC applications are included in the lower-end device. TV Remote happens to be the only one missing on the One E8, due to its lack of an IR blaster. You might also struggle to find any features that take advantage of the Duo Camera.
Once you are done admiring the external differences, you will find these devices are much more similar than their exteriors exhibit.
Hardware-wise, you will be hard-pressed to find differences between these devices. They both tout a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor, 2 GB of RAM, an Adreno GPU and a microSD card slot. A small difference may be found in their storage options. The One M8 has 16 GB and 32 GB options; the One E8 has a single 16 GB option.
Now let’s jump into the second biggest difference between both smartphones – the cameras. The HTC One M8 boasts its unique 4 MP Ultra Pixel Duo Camera set-up, while the HTC One E8 proudly wears its 13 MP shooter. These sensors are quite different, holding different aspect ratios (6:9 vs 4:3) and different flash technology (dual LED vs standard LED).
All of that is nothing but mumbo jumbo at the end, though. What matters is how well the images look. While we would love to say one of the cameras produces better photos, this is simply not the case. Both have a “hazy fog” around them, and color reduplication is quite inaccurate. Low-light situations will only make it worse, making for flat and grainy images. At the very least, the HTC One M8 does have cooler features like UFocus.
The battle for the design winner is a subjective one. Only you can decide which one you think feels or looks better. The HTC One M8 will definitely have a more premium feeling to it, but some may not treasure build quality enough to pay a higher price.
At the end of the day, these devices will give you a very similar experience, both in terms of software and hardware. Even the cameras are nearly as bad, unless you love the Duo Camera features. One thing is for sure, you won’t go wrong with any of these two smartphones. We may dare to say the One E8 does sport a better build quality compared to other flagship smartphones (*cough* Samsung!).
And how about you – does HTC’s latest offering have what it takes?