HTC Reveals Two New Windows Smartphones
Taiwan's HTC has unveiled its first smartphones powered by Microsoft's Windows operating system.
The brightly coloured phones - the Windows Phone 8X and the Windows Phone 8S - will pit HTC directly against another Microsoft partner, Nokia, which earlier this month also launched two Windows phones.
Peter Chou, HTC's chief executive, said: "We've been inspired by Windows Phone 8 to create new smartphones that give the platform the iconic design and personality it deserves.
"Windows Phone has clearly emerged as one of the top mobile ecosystems and is competitive against any other smartphone platform in the world."
The HTC devices have a design based on the Windows Phone Live Tiles and will come in colours including California blue, graphite black, flame red, and limelight yellow.
They have an ultra-wide angle front-facing camera that allows up to four people and more to be captured at once, which also has the capacity for high-definition video capture.
Both phones will have displays of at least four inches, matching or exceeding that of the new iPhone 5, and will use the newest version of Corning's lightweight Gorilla Glass.
The Beats Audio on the devices "provides authentic, studio-quality sound that delivers the spirit of the original recording", HTC said.
Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer said: "Consumers are going to love these phones, and we're committed to reaching them in a manner that's clear and direct.
"Together we are offering customers a clear choice and a truly unique experience. I'm thrilled to take our longstanding partnership to the next level."
The companies said the HTC devices would be available from November through more than 150 carriers in at least 50 countries.
Both HTC and Microsoft are under pressure to generate strong sales with the 8X and 8S.
The phone manufacturer has lost ground to Samsung and Apple in recent years while Microsoft has been left behind by Apple and Google in the software market.
Michael Gartenberg of technology industry analysts Gartner, said both HTC and Nokia had been smart to brand their devices as something different to the iPhone.
"The best thing about these device ranges is that neither looks like an iPhone," he said.