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HTC Desire 816 review: a mid-tier phone with flagship DNA

By Joe Levi May 30, 2014, 5:42 pm
HTC Desire 816 review

Devices in HTC’s Desire line have never been intended as flagships, but phones sporting the vaunted “D label” have usually been quite well received. Rather than going all-in and stacking the spec list with high-end line items, Desires sit much closer to the middle. Such is the case with the Desire 816 – but it’s also packing more than a few pleasant surprises under the hood.

Did HTC make too many concessions with its mid-tier phone, or did it manage to find the perfect balance between specs and user experience?

Let’s find out in our Desire 816 review!

Video Review · Specs & Hardware · Software · Camera · Performance

 Pros/Cons · Pricing/Availability · Conclusion · Scored For Me


Desire 816 Review Video



HTC Desire 816 review

Like we said before, the HTC Desire 816 isn’t going to win any performance contests. What it is going to do is turn heads. It’s big, it’s beautiful, and it performs very well, despite having been pigeon-holed as a “mid-tier” device. The speaker grills look different than those on the One M8, but we actually like the way they look — and we love the way they sound.


Overall, the HTC Desire 816 is a very enjoyable phone to use. It’s big enough to comfortably watch movies on, with a bright screen and wonderful speakers to back it up, but it’s not so big that it can’t be comfortably carried and used as a “normal phone”. Sure, HTC had to cut some corners, but did so to keep the price down.

All factors considered, we feel the sacrifices are well worth it. The Desire 816 is much closer to a flagship than it is to a mid-tier phone.


Scored For Me

HTCV Desire 816 Scored for Me


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