Designing for the selfie generation [New Straits Time (Malaysia)]
(New Straits Time (Malaysia) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) NEW WAVE: The selfies trend is changing the way smartphones are designed. Justin Zhang, head of product portfolio of HTC South Asia, shares his views on HTC's move to capture the selfie generation with Chandra Devi Renganayar
Question: How has the selfie phenomenon changed the way users interact with their smartphones as well as make purchasing choices?
Answer: It is one of the most fun ways of using the front-facing camera today. We are seeing more and more people becoming obsessed with the idea of taking their own pictures with the front-face camera. Everyone, from entertainers to political leaders, has embraced the selfie culture.
In the recent Google I/O developers conference, it was mentioned that there are close to 93 million selfies taken per day.
Improved front-face cameras have contributed to the rising selfies trend. Users are making purchasing choices with selfies in mind. So, now it is just not the rear camera that matters. The front- face camera is equally important for users. HTC is very focused in this space to provide the best experience for users.
Question: What is HTC's move to attract the selfie generation?
Answer: We have taken into consideration this trend and created some amazing products. We have included great camera features not just on the main camera, but also have paid particular attention on the front-facing camera.
This year at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, in March, we announced the HTC Desire 816 which has been touted as the world's best selfie phone. It has a powerful five megapixels (MP) front- face camera and a 13MP rear camera. The HD screen is 5.5-inch.
Just two months later, we announced the HTC One (M8) with not just a 5MP front-face camera, but with a ultra-wide angle lens.
With a wide-angle capturing capability, users no longer need extendable monopods.
Consumers are now saying that our cameras take the best selfies.
Question: Is a 5MP front-face camera good enough for selfies? Will it produce sharp pictures?
Answer: The 5MP front-face camera is sufficient for selfie shots. The front camera on the HTC Desire 816 smartphone is amazingly sharp and users can capture more around them when taking selfies, especially when taking selfies with their friends, and also the scenery behind them.
A selfie mode is available on the device or you can simply switch to the front camera by swiping from the left to the right of the screen.
A timer is also available which can be activated by tapping anywhere on the screen.
The camera takes the photo after the countdown.
Question: Is the HTC One (M8) model popular with consumers? How has it helped change consumers' perception about HTC?
Answer: We introduced the HTC One (M7) last year which won multiple awards, including Smartphone of The Year 2013. We took all the experiences and feedback we received on that model and built one of our most exciting smartphones yet, the HTC One (M8) this year. We have received positive reviews from the media and praises from industry experts.
On the consumer side, the smartphone has gotten a lot of positive feedbacks with demand exceeding supply when the phone was first launched in Australia and Singapore.
With its premium build and sensible features such as the BlinkFeed, BoomSound and Duo Camera packed into a user-friendly Sense 6 user interface, the HTC One (M8) reinforces the ethos of HTC's quality and commitment to smartphone innovation.
The HTC One (M8) features a premium metal finish with one of the highest specs in the market. On top of that, the clean Sense 6 user interface allows users to interac t and multitask with the phone which by far, is said to be the smoothest user interface among Android smartphones.
The Duo Camera is a first of its kind feature on board a smartphone that allows users to capture and edit professional- looking photos. They need not worry about configuring advanced setting for effects.
Question: Will HTC focus on releasing low-priced smartphones to attract consumers and compete with other manufacturers?
Answer: Earlier this year, HTC released several of the latest smartphones at exciting price points, from entry level, to performance value. These have been well received by our customers and in some countries like India, Russia and Indonesia, we have seen very brisk sales.
We believe in giving our customers the best experience possible even at low price range. Hence, our award-winning features are also seen in the entry-level and mid-range smartphones.
For example, you can see such features in the HTC Desire 310, an entry-level smartphone that is free when bundled with the Maxis package.
Our mid-range smartphones, the HTC Desire 610 and LTE-enabled HTC Desire 816 have some similar features of the high-end HTC One (M8).
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