It’s an inhaler… It’s a periscope… It’s the HTC RE!
It captures breathtaking photos/HD videos, and it’s waterproof!
“Is that a camera?”
That’s the first question from everybody when I roaming around events like Comic Fiesta 2014, friend’s wedding actual day and social gathering, pretty much everywhere! Even the Mamak’s chef shows his interest!
There’re these 10 things that HTC got it right on the HTC Re.
1) The Design
An upside-down inhaler, submarine’s periscope, a PVC waterpipe~
The tube-shape and bright coloured design is indeed a curiosity-magnet, designed to look fun, cute and gets people to poke fun of the look with.
Made to be use single-handed-ly, small lightweight to fit in my hand, but never feels like it’s going to slip out of my grasp. A big silver button to shoot a photo in a short press and long press for video capture. Another button in front for instant “Slow-Motion mode”, and that’s all the buttons it has!
Ever get annoyed in an event by participants who took photos using big DSLRs, big video cameras, big phones, big tablets and even long selfie sticks, that average “Uncle Bob” most photographers/videographers hate? With the HTC RE, you shoot almost in the shadow, like a NINJA.
It’s ready for action right after you grab it! You won’t find any power button on the RE. Turning it off is totally unnecessary!
Really handy for people who loves to take quick snapshots. It’s so handy, I left my other phone camera out cold most of the time. (Sorry, HTC Desire EYE)
Get action anywhere, get action underwater too!
IPX-7 certified, it’s able to dive 1 meters deep into the water for 30 minutes, right out of the box, without a casing! Oh, cover flap for that USB charging port not needed!
Going even deeper? Attach the optional HTC Re waterproof cap (comes with HTC Re Protection Pack), get instant upgrade to IPX-8 protection! 3 meters deep in the water for 120 minutes!
5) 146 degree Wide-Angle lens!
Taking a shot without a viewfinder might need some time to get used to, but when you get a hold of it, it’s MAGICAL. The field of view is so wide, you feel like you can capture the whole world with it!
Taking a selfie? Just AWESOME.
Taking a self-group-photo? Get ALL your friends, I MEAN ALL into your shots, you’ll be surprise how many people you can fit in using only the HTC Re!
6) Easy to use
Saw an epic moment? Just hold it up, aim and press the button to shoot, it’s that easy. Never get distracted by viewfinders and LCDs, LIVE-IN-THE-MOMENTS!
But be warn, because of the easy to use nature, it will turn you into a selfie-addict too!
7) Android and iOS compatible
The companion RE app is supported on both Android and iOS! Just download the HTC RE app from Google Play Store or Apple App Store.
But don’t get me wrong here, the HTC Re works STANDALONE!
8) Slow Motion & Time-lapse Video
Watch your dog ran for their food and your cat’s silly jump from one table to another in slow-mo, make a time-lapse of you drive to a destination, or that awesome sunset outside of your hotel windows when you travel!
*Do switch to 720p for better viewing experience*
There’re some official accessories already made available for HTC Re. Bar Mount, Clip-On mount, Charging Stand which doubles as a time-lapse stand, suction mount and RE Protection Pack which comes with 4-piece kit includes a waterproof-enhancing cap, protective lens cap, and neck and wrist lanyards.
Have a cool camera tripod lay around? The HTC Re has a standard camera screw mount for that. Ever feel like get it higher up with a Quadcopter? Making a weird DIY stand for your creative shots? there’s UNLIMITED possibilities to mount it!
10) Updates and more features
More features will come to the camera thru software and hardware updates.
HTC mentioned that they will launch a Open SDK for 3rd party developers, which opens up even more features for people to explore.
Update : Shortly after my review, the live streaming via YouTube was launched, which enables real-time live broadcasting from the HTC Re.
Most of them are straight out of camera. (Some has some contrast adjusted)
The best-selling phone in both Japan and Taiwan – the HTC Butterfly series, gets a follow up – the HTC Butterfly 2!
Why I said Nihon-style in the title? The series is originally design for Japan as HTC J Butterfly, HTC’s ambitious plan to take over Japan! (HTC: “Muahahahaha-desu.”). The reason why the Japanese-inspired-design in it. It later gets an international release in other Asian market as HTC Butterfly. (and a rogue one in US as HTC Droid DNA)
It’s pretty much the same hardware and the familiar HTC Sense 6.0 as the HTC One M8. But the beautiful HTC Butterfly 2 Official Splash Site.is still worth to have a look.
I’ll focus more on the difference compare to M8. Thanks HTC Malaysia once again for the phone review opportunity!
Here are two introductory photos of HTC Butterfly 2 in a less conventional place. (Yes, it’s on a wet lilypad, soaked in pond water and splashes on top to make it look more dramatic)
And remaining photos of other angle on top of my hand. (the usual one)
Yet another elegantly-crafted phone from HTC, holds on palm comfortably thanks to the curved back with tapered edges.
I don’t usually talk about colours because it’s mostly personal preference. But this is UNIQUE.
Only two colours are available for Malaysia, the Canvas White and Rogue Red. (Sorry, no Blue love…)
Here with me for this review is the beautiful “Canvas White” HTC Butterfly 2 in Matt finishing polycarbonate shell. According to HTC, this white matt finishing has a unique anti-stain feature that it allows easy cleaning surface, the surface colour will not change over time.
For the “Rogue Red” colour, it’s specially coated with cunified colour treatment, the beautiful red colour will stay the same on every viewing angle. Downside is that it’s a lil bit fingerprint-magnet. For the OCDs, you can just wash it on tap water, or get the fucntional HTC Dot View case. (Get that case, you won’t go wrong with it.)
A really hard choice rite?
“I Aint’t Afraid of WATER!”
WATER RESISTANT IS BACK WITH VENGEANCE! Now with both IPX5 and IPX7-rating water-resistant and IP5X dustproof. You can now dip this phone into the water! (But don’t dive with it as the standard only covers water-resistance up to 1 meter deep for up to 30 minutes). Just take it for a breeze shower, playing favorite songs on Sportify, clean it up with fragrance soap or some bath tub selfie?
Surprisingly, it has no water-seal cover on the USB charging port, no more cover flap broken issue! HTC said nothing if Stark Industries is behind this, but that is really a good achievement! (A moment of silence to my HTC Butterfly waterseal flap…..)
Yup, dip it in the water and grab some shoot! (you can find the result below)
The excellent HTC BoomSound dual frontal stereo speakers formula is on it, straight to the ear experience, very good in terms of clarity and loudness. No complaints here.
World’s First 13MP Duo Camera
HTC decided to put a 13-MegaPixel Duo Camera instead of the “UltraPixel” camera used on the M8. Using a more conventional sensor with more pixels might be more appealing to some, but personally I still prefer the unique “UltraPixel” camera which has a larger sensor for low lights situation and is build with shooting 16:9 wide photos in mind.
On field test, it shoots ok on daylight (not surprising). But the focusing speed is not too ideal, I often missed a quick snap because the camera seems struggle to get things in focus fast enough.
I noticed some annoyance in the camera settings. The default 16:9 is not 13MP but actually a cropped from a 4:3 photo, So switch to 4:3 mode brings back the full 13MP resolution and it actually gives a wider field of view, but downside is the Duo Camera is forcefully disabled… same issue with 1:1 ratio which I use quite often(Instagram frequent user). A bit of a miss there. Really hope future updates can address this issue.
For the front camera, there’s a wide-angle 5MP front-facing camera that would do selfies just great, even group selfies!
Even with the “power-saver” mode off, the auto-brightness doesn’t seems to adjust the backlight according to the environment correctly, resulting in a too-dim display at most of the times. I’m forced to use manual brightness to make the screen readable and it became quite an inconvenience.
Battery results are very subjective to person’s usage pattern, but for me it last pretty well. I noticed my portable charger stayed in my bag out cold much often (a 10400mah portable charger is something I always carry with me as a dead phone is not funny). According to the battery history, it still have around 58% after around 8hrs of usage (Power Saver turn on with vibration on, never notice any performance issue). If you get into a situation where there’s no power outlet or portable charger when you’re low in battery, there’s an “Extreme Power Saver” that squeeze out even more battery life by turning off all non-essential functions.
And here’re some snapshots I done during my review(Sorry for being really random). Some photos are slightly tuned using Snapseed or HTC Photo Editor.
HTC Butterfly 2 – made a splashing launch in Malaysia as the successor to the HTC Butterfly series!
As usual, this is the Official ‘Splash’ Page from HTC
Yet another elegantly-crafted phone from HTC, that fits just comfortably on your palm thanks to the curved back with tapered edges.
Pretty much the same specs as the already very awesome HTC One M8, without the metal jacket, fitted with the-world-first 13MP Duo Camera, and oh wait, this thing can even dip into the water too! Water-resistant, dust-resistant with certified IPX57-rating baby!
Below are some of the photos of the launching event and the red HTC Butterfly 2 hands-on!