HTC's bone-shaking BoomSound front facing speakers are making their way to Windows Phone later this year. The 8XT, which appears to be a slightly tweaked variant of last year's 8S, will launch on Sprint's 4G LTE network for $99.99 with a two-year contract -- after a $50 rebate card. Powered by a 1.4 GHz dual-core Snapdragon 400 processor paired up with 1GB of RAM,
we want to say the 8XT has the same 4.3 inch 720p screen as its older cousin, but the spec sheet in our hands merely says "crisp". The front of the phone has a 1.6-megapixel camera, while the rear has an 8-megapixel shooter. You'll also have to make do with 8GB of memory for your music, but microSD expansion means you can easily make room for more.
Update: We can now confirm the 8XT has a 800 x 480 pixel resolution screen.
HTC 8XT press images
Sprint Plans Summer Launches for First Two Windows Phone 8 Smartphones to Feature Truly Unlimited 4G LTE: HTC 8XT and Samsung ATIV S Neo
Sprint (NYSE: S) and Microsoft Corp. today outlined plans to launch the first two Windows Phone 8 smartphones to offer Truly UnlimitedSM Sprint 4G LTE this summer – HTC® 8XT and Samsung ATIV S™ Neo. Customers will appreciate access to the advanced features and capabilities of these devices with the benefit of unlimited 4G LTE (available in select markets) data, text and calling to any mobile with no metering, no throttling, and no overages, all while on the Sprint network.
HTC 8XT will be available for $99.99 with a new line or eligible upgrade, two-year service agreement and $50 mail-in rebate via reward card1. ATIV S Neo will be priced at $149.99 with a new line or eligible upgrade, two-year service agreement and $50 mail-in rebate via reward card1. Exact availability dates and full feature lists for both smartphones will be shared at a later date. Customers can preregister for more information and email updates about Windows Phone 8 from Sprint and HTC 8XT and ATIV S Neo at www.sprint.com/windows8.
"We know our customers are anxious to get their hands on these Windows Phone 8 smartphones, HTC 8XT and ATIV S Neo," said Fared Adib, senior vice president-Product Development, Sprint. "Without a doubt, they will rival any smartphone on the market today. Our customers will appreciate being able to use them all day, every day without worrying about overages or data caps."
Windows Phone 8 won the PC Magazine Readers' Choice Award for best mobile operating system in March 2013. The only phone with Live Tiles, Windows Phone 8 offers a truly personal smartphone experience designed to keep customers connected to the people and things that matter most. Windows Phone brings together the best of Microsoft with the same modern look and feel, including Bing, Office, Xbox and Skype, for a rich customer experience. In addition, the Windows Phone Store includes more than 160,000 apps to choose from, with hundreds added daily.
"We are excited to be bringing the most personal smartphone experience to Sprint customers this summer," said Terry Myerson, corporate vice president, Microsoft Windows Phone Division. "With compelling hardware from HTC and Samsung, coupled with unlimited 4G LTE from Sprint, these Windows Phones will offer the complete package."
Must-Have Features from HTC
Music-lovers will appreciate the amazing sound capability of HTC 8XT with HTC BoomSound™, introducing for the first time on Windows Phone 8 dual front-facing stereo speakers with a dedicated amplifier that brings people closer to their music, videos and games they love. In addition, Beats Audio™ enables studio-quality sound, so listeners hear music the way the artist intended with unique audio tuning that delivers thundering bass, soaring midrange and crisp highs. And HDR recording uses advanced dual microphones and audio processing to capture clean, rich sound that is worthy of high-definition video.
"Inspired by the design that won the prestigious 'red dot award: product design 2013,' the new HTC 8XT brings a truly crafted smartphone with brilliant color, soft-to-the-touch texture and tapered design to be comfortable in the hand," said Mike Woodward, president North America, HTC Corporation. "A pleasure to hold and a pleasure to hear, the front-facing stereo speakers are a first for a Windows Phone and deliver sounds that demand to be heard."
HTC 8XT is also ideal for photo buffs with an 8-megapixel main camera with autofocus and LED flash, and a front-facing 1.6-megapixel camera. The main camera takes great photos in bright-light and low-light situations, and the ability to shoot video and take still pictures simultaneously. It also offers multishot burst mode to help capture the best picture of a moving photo subject, and a dedicated Windows Phone camera button to open the camera quickly, even when the phone is locked or sleeping, so users never miss an opportunity to capture life's most important moments.
Inside the beautiful HTC 8XT is a Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 400 processor with 1.4GHz dual-core CPUs supporting 4G LTE and 1080p video capture, 1GB RAM, 8GB ROM memory, microSD™ memory card slot with support for up to 64GB memory cards, a crisp 4.3-inch display, Wi-Fi®, Bluetooth®, GPS support and 1,800mAh lithium-ion battery.
Advanced Features from Samsung
ATIV S Neo will offer a 1.4GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, microSD memory card slot, international roaming, 4.8-inch high-definition display, Wi-Fi and 2,000mAh lithium-ion removable battery. Sharing is easier than ever with ATIV S Neo featuring ATIV Beam using near field communication (NFC) to share photos, music and video with other Windows Phone 8 and select Android™ devices. ATIV S Neo includes the Samsung exclusive Now feature, which highlights top news, weather and relevant information at a single glance.
"Samsung is committed to offering smartphones across a variety of platforms and the rich Windows Phone 8 experience on the ATIV S Neo is a testament to this effort," said Kevin Packingham, Samsung Mobile chief product officer. "The ATIV S Neo makes it easy to stay in-the-know while connecting with friends, family and colleagues, through new sharing features and powerful productivity applications."
Having ATIV S Neo in your pocket means users can do more with their smartphone camera. It will offer an 8-megapixel main camera with LED flash and a front-facing 1.9-megapixel camera for video chat. It will include a variety of camera apps preloaded, including the Beauty Shot mode for smoother looking skin in headshots, Manga Camera to give pictures a fun twist by turning friends and family into cartoons, and built-in Photo Editor that allows the user to edit, color, effect, decorate or share their pictures quickly and easily.
These smartphones also make it easy for customers to stay productive with Office Mobile for Windows Phone. With Office Mobile, people can access, view and edit Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents from anywhere. Plus, customers can count on Office Mobile to keep content and formatting intact so documents still looks great when back on a PC, Windows tablet or Mac.
Microsoft Office 365 offered by Sprint is available for small and mid-sized businesses. It includes Sprint's unique Carefree Cloud migration and onboarding assistance, end-user level support, predictable monthly costs with no up-front infrastructure expenses, pay-as-you-go plans, savings by bundling all of the necessary tools and advanced options to simplify management further, all with a single bill and single point of contact. Sprint recently announced expanded plans available with Office 365, including enhanced audio conferencing and availability at select Sprint retail stores.