The HTC U19e & Desire 19+ are the brand's latest overpriced devices

The HTC U19e & Desire 19+ are the brand's latest overpriced devices
HTC U19e

This year has been a pretty quiet one for HTC’s smartphone business so far, but during a press conference earlier today the Taiwan-based company took to the stage to announce two new devices – the HTC U19e and HTC Desire 19+.

The HTC U19e – not a Galaxy S10e competitor


Following in the footsteps of last year’s flagship, the HTC U19e is equipped with a large 6-inch display featuring an 18:9 aspect ratio. It’s surrounded by the same large, symmetrical bezels above and below but, due to the smartphone’s lower cost, the resolution of the panel has been downgraded to 2160 x 1080p.

Looking at the rear of the smartphone, HTC has opted for the common vertical dual-camera setup positioned in the top corner. According to the company, there’s a primary 12-megapixel snapper paired with a 20-megapixel sensor that seems to enhance portrait photos and a dual-tone LED flash. The setup supports 4K video recording, automatic HDR, and a variety of unspecified AI enhancements. Regarding the selfie snappers that sit up front, there’s a 20-megapixel camera accompanied by a 2-megapixel sensor that allows for Iris Recognition Unlock.

The HTC U19e & Desire 19+ are the brand's latest overpriced devices
Despite the HTC U19e’s name – the ‘e’ would suggest a Galaxy S10e rival – the device is actually a mid-range offering. It’s powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 710 paired with a respectable 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, the latter of which is expandable via a microSD card slot. Completing the entire setup is Android 9 Pie paired with HTC’s custom overlay, a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner, and a 3,930mAh battery with support for quick charging. There’s also a built-in ‘Game Assistant’ that can boost performance when playing games and limit distractions.

The Desire 19+, HTC's first notched smartphone


Representing a first for HTC, the Desire 19+ features a large display paired with a waterdrop notch. The panel measures in at 6.2-inches and offers a resolution of 1520 x 720p, but this time it isn’t accompanied by two front-facing cameras. Instead, HTC has opted for a single 16-megapixel snapper that supports Face Unlock.

Over on the rear, the Desire 19+ adopts a new triple-camera setup comprised of a main 13-megapixel sensor, an 8-megapixel camera coupled with a wide-angle lens, and a 5-megapixel depth sensor. There’s also a fingerprint scanner towards the center of the rear panel.

The HTC U19e & Desire 19+ are the brand's latest overpriced devices
HTC’s latest mid-range device is equipped with MediaTek’s Helio P35 which is slightly more powerful than Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 630. The chip is paired with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage which, once again, is expandable via microSD cards. If this isn’t sufficient, a separate model with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage will also be available to purchase. Like the HTC U19e, the Desire 19+ ships with Android 9 Pie and HTC’s Sense UI pre-installed. It features a 3,850mAh battery and doesn’t support fast charging.

HTC U19e and Desire 19+ price and release date


The HTC U19e will be available to purchase on June 12th in both Modest Green and Extraordinary Purple. Sales will be limited to Taiwan and there's no word on an international launch. Prices don't typically translate directly, but the smartphone has been priced at TWD 14,900 ($475 or €420) locally, pretty high considering the specs HTC has included. For reference, the Pixel 3a can be purchased for around TWD 14,500 ($461 or €410) and the flagship Xiaomi Mi 9 costs TWD 13,999 ($446 or €394).

Regarding the HTC Desire 19+, this smartphone is priced just as highly. The 4/64GB model is set to cost TWD 9,990 ($318 or €280) while the 6/128GB variant will retail at TWD 10,990 ($350 or €310). Regardless of the chosen storage option, consumers will be able to buy the device in either Star Can Blue or Jasmine White. The smartphone will be available at some point in July and will once again be limited to Taiwan initially. It's unclear if HTC has plans to launch it globally.

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23 Comments

1. shield

Posts: 815; Member since: Sep 12, 2015

Low spec, big price. HTC is dead.

6. BL4NKF4CE

Posts: 122; Member since: Aug 06, 2017

$14 more than the 3a. Has 128GB Storage, the 3a has 64GB. Has the Snapdragon 710, the 3a has the 675. How is it "big price"? With the screen size, it actually competes with the 3a XL. Which makes it cheaper than the direct competition.

10. BearHug

Posts: 20; Member since: Jan 27, 2017

But does it have the 3a camera?

18. BL4NKF4CE

Posts: 122; Member since: Aug 06, 2017

Not everyone cares about the camera. Yes, the pixel camera is great, but some people prefer storage and can deal with a good (not perfect) camera.

2. User123456789

Posts: 561; Member since: Feb 22, 2019

$14 more than Pixel 3a ( not XL) and overpriced? You can do better PA ....

5. wthja

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 11, 2019

Considering the fact that pixel is with 64 GB of storage, but htc with 128. On top of that it is more of rival for Pixel 3a XL because of the screen and battery size. Then it is hard to call it overpriced.

8. joshuaswingle

Posts: 489; Member since: Apr 03, 2018

I probably should have added more comparisons. The Pixel 3a is listed as an example of a decently-priced device in the same price category. It offers almost identical performance but also flagship-level cameras, significantly better software support, and a headphone jack. The only advantage the U19e has is the storage and RAM. The HTC U19e's specs basically mean it's competing with devices from Xiaomi, Redmi, Realme, and other low-cost brands. Why would you buy the HTC when you can get the same from another brand for less? You can even get the Xiaomi Mi 9 for TWD 13,999 and that's powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 855.

14. superguy

Posts: 410; Member since: Jul 15, 2011

I trust HTC more than the other ones. They're a known quantity in the US, while the others often have to be imported and may not have the proper band support for US networks. I think the HTC phones are overpriced. $400 would have been pushing it for the U19e IMO, with $350-375 being a fair price - especially given HTC's struggles. I wouldn't pay $475 for that when for a little more, I can get an OP 6T brand new that would blow the doors off of it. Or even a gently used 6T for less. HTC has always made solid phones. Perhaps not the most stylish, but they worked well and were dependable. Also had decent support on XDA. Their problem is that they think they can charge more than they actually can. They're not going to get what Samsung or Apple can get for a comparable phone. It's just not going to happen. They're going to have to compete on price for awhile - at least to re-establish themselves. Then maybe they could start charging more. But right now? Price is way too high.

21. vinnieti

Posts: 6; Member since: Feb 14, 2019

The Pixel 3a through the whole midrange market on it's head. No other competing device will match the camera and software support it enjoys. Really, nobody should buy anything but Pixel mid-rangers if you need the absolute best value for your dollar. With that said, the u19e didn't come across to me as overpriced considering the processor, RAM, display tech, and storage. Realistically, the SP 855 isn't that much faster than the 710. Unless using a benchmark, I dont think users will notice.

15. AnySmarterIdRunLinux

Posts: 2; Member since: May 04, 2015

I guess you're willing to spend $300 for samsung bloat? Or the same for an older generation SoC on a Google phone with less RAM, storage and battery?

3. Whitedot

Posts: 721; Member since: Sep 26, 2017

I think HTC U19e is a well speced device . Price is a little too high . I would say around 350 euros max. The worst thing is they software maintenance is limping very badly lately so no point of buying device that will get very little support.

7. BL4NKF4CE

Posts: 122; Member since: Aug 06, 2017

That makes the 3a XL extremely overpriced then. Since this is spec'd better than the 3a XL, and the 3a XL is more expensive.

4. ShadowWarrior

Posts: 156; Member since: Aug 08, 2017

Honestly the 19e doesn't look bad. Even the processor isn't so bad. I'm sure this will get really good battery life. I'd just have to see the other aspects like the screen quality, speakers, haptics, etc.

9. VigneshRaja

Posts: 47; Member since: Dec 17, 2014

Gsmarena mentions that U19e has OLED display. Is that true?

16. true1984

Posts: 864; Member since: May 23, 2012

Yes. I've also heard its a HDR display, but I'm Not 100% sure about that

11. Eclectech

Posts: 339; Member since: May 01, 2013

I hope they make it available for the U.S. I'd really love to own a new HTC phone.

12. alvxxxzmx

Posts: 21; Member since: Jun 07, 2018

What's with the hate? You people kept doing this to a non-Samsung/Apple/Huawei/OnePlus/Pixel devices. It has better specs than many phones out there with comparable specs.

13. kanagadeepan

Posts: 1219; Member since: Jan 24, 2012

On seeing the title, I expected the price to be above 600$. But it is NOT that bad pricing, imho...

17. MrMalignance

Posts: 184; Member since: Feb 17, 2013

Typical htc hate by phonearena

19. Altema

Posts: 9; Member since: Dec 26, 2014

I guess this makes the Pixel 3a obsolete already. Except for the camera, and even that is a maybe. Oh no! Did I just commit blasphemy? An HTC camera in the same league as the worshiped Pixel?!? What was that camera that could go toe to toe with the pixel and had faster focus, and better Bokeh, and full manual controls that real photographers prefer? That's right, it was the U12+...

20. Mr_Magma

Posts: 3; Member since: May 21, 2019

HTC fans are hilarious. 3a obsolete ^_^ u12+ better than the 3xl haha thanks for the laugh

22. Altema

Posts: 9; Member since: Dec 26, 2014

For the record, I own and use iPhones and Samsung's in addition to HTC's. Android Central stated that the U12+ absolutely could challenge the Pixel, and they are not alone. The better focus is just a matter of hardware because the U12 has dual pixel PDAF and laser AF, the Pixel is PDAF only. Several reviewers have confirmed the U12 is better at Bokeh, but that should not come as a surprise because HTC was doing artificial Bokeh before the first Pixel existed. Sometimes having the hardware to do real depth sensing, like the U12+ does, is better than AI guessing at it. DxOMark tested image quality, and their scores were as follows. Not that I put a lot of stock in formal testing, but it does show that these cameras have been formally tested and compared. U12+: 103 Pixel 3: 101 Pixel 2: 98 Pixel: 90 U11: 90 And as for the 3a, it has a slower processor, less memory, fewer features, cheaper build, cheaper haptics. So most people would think that qualifies the HTC as being better.

23. vinnieti

Posts: 6; Member since: Feb 14, 2019

U12+ is my daily driver and I can attest to that. It's pretty obvious that HTC and Google shared knowledge on their HDR processing since Google and HTC collaborated on the Pixel line of phones. The camera is just fantastic. My wife has the Pixel 2XL and the HDR photos from both phones look VERY similar. I would recommend HTC phones except I'm not sure they'll be making phones much longer.

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