Taipei, March 12 (CNA) HTC Corp. (宏達電) said Thursday that its One M9 will go on sale in Taiwan March 16, making its home market the first in the world to sell the newest iteration of its flagship smartphone, two weeks after the launch.
The One M9 will be initially available in three colors -- dual-tone silver and rose gold, single-tone gunmetal grey and single-tone gold -- and priced at NT$21,900 (US$692) for a 32GB model and NT$23,900 for a 64GB model, HTC said in a statement.
Unveiled at the annual Mobile World Congress show on March 1, the HTC One M9 features a dual-tone unibody metal design, a 5-inch full-HD 1080p display, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 64-bit octa-core processor, 3GB of RAM, a micro-SD card slot for up to 128GB external capacity, a 2,840 mAh battery and 4G LTE connectivity.
Other highlights of the M9 include BoomSound dual-front speakers with Dolby 5.1 surround sound and an HTC Sense 7 software upgrade that offers a more personalized experience on the BlinkFeed live-streaming home screen app based on the user's location.
Jack Tong (董俊良), president of HTC North Asia, said that last year's flagship One M8 was well received by the market with "hundreds of thousands" of units sold in Taiwan in 2014, making it the bestselling flagship smartphone in the domestic market based on figures from research firm GfK.
Tong expects the One M9 to outperform its predecessor in local sales this year, which he said would help boost HTC's second-quarter revenue in Taiwan by double-digit year-on-year growth, following estimated growth of more than 50 percent in the first quarter.
Faced with mounting competition from Apple Inc's big-screen iPhones and Samsung Electronics Co's new Galaxy phones, HTC is still targeting a record-high market share of 30 percent in Taiwan this year, compared with nearly 20 percent in 2014, which would back the company's efforts to become Taiwan's top vendor by the end of the year, Tong said at the Taiwan launch of One M9 at the Chimei Museum in Tainan.
(By Jeffrey Wu)