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Surprise! HTC launches two new midrange smartphones

HTC has surprised everyone by launching not one, but two new Android handsets.

Okay, maybe not a complete surprise: the Taiwanese company had hinted that something would be unveiled yesterday, and sure enough it’s the HTC U19e and U19 Plus.

If two phones from a company many considered to be finished in the smartphone space is a surprise, then the actual form they’ve taken is less so: these are distinctly midrange affairs, without any ambition to take on Apple and Samsung at the top of the tree.

First up, there’s the HTC U19e. It’s a 6-inch Snapdragon 710-powered device, with 6GB RAM, 128GB of onboard storage and a 3930mAh battery. Specswise, that sounds remarkably similar to the Oppo RX17 Pro, so maybe check that review for a preview on performance.

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One area it differs is the camera, though. The U19e has a dual-camera array on the back, with a 12-megapixel f/1.8 snapper supported by a 20-megapixel f/2.6 2x telephoto lens. Round the front there’s a 24-megapixel f/2.0 selfie camera, accompanied by a 2-megapixel iris scanner for another way of unlocking.

Oddly considering the name, the HTC U19 Plus is the cheaper handset – something made extra confusing by the fact that Samsung puts an ‘e’ at the end of its cheapest Galaxy S10. Anyway, the U19 Plus is a 6.2-inch device, powered by a MediaTek P35 processor, backed by 4/6GB RAM and a 3850mAh battery.

Related: Best smartphones

Interestingly for a midranger, it comes with a triple-camera setup, with a 13-megapixel main sensor, supported by an 8-megapixel ultrawide angle lens and a 5-megapixel depth sensor.   

Both phones will be on sale in July, but we’ve only had a release in HTC’s native Taiwan confirmed so far. The U19e will go for TWD 10,990 (around £275), while the U19 Plus will sell for TWD 9,990 (around £250).

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