HTC One (M8) grabs some Apple, Samsung converts

Nearly 45% of trade-ins for innovative HTC device in one survey are old iPhones and Samsung devices

The innovative HTC One (M8) smartphone first went on sale a month ago and appears to be attracting plenty of buyers looking to upgrade olderApple or Samsung smartphones.

The innovative HTC One (M8) smartphone first went on sale a month ago and appears to be attracting plenty of buyers looking to upgrade older Apple or Samsung smartphones.

The HTC One M8 smartphone.

Of more than 500 smartphone owners seeking to upgrade to the 5-in. display HTC One (M8) in April, nearly 45% said they were trading in an old Apple iPhone or an old Android device from Samsung, according to CompareMyMobile, a gadget recycling comparison site.

That rate of churn from competitor's devices is "amazing" and much higher than expected, said Ashley Turner, co-founder of the site.

Slightly more iPhone users than Samsung smartphone users were upgrading to the new HTC One -- with 23.74% traded in an old iPhone and 21.29% an old Samsung device. About 7% traded in an old iPhone 5, while nearly 8% traded in a Galaxy S4 by Samsung.

The largest group seeking to trade for a new HTC One (M8) were users of older HTC devices -- 46.18% -- with 13.24% trading in an original HTC One to upgrade to the new M8.

Almost half of the buyers were upgrading from an HTC handset, which suggests great HTC brand loyalty, CompareMyMobile said.

In a previous survey, one-third of people upgrading to Samsung's new Galaxy S5 were previously iPhone owners.

U.S. carriers have been offering the HTC One (M8) for $200 with a two-year contract.

Reviewers have widely regarded the new HTC One (M8) as HTC's best smartphone, with refinements to the earlier version. HTC officials have made a big point of the phone's all-aluminum body, indirectly comparing it to the new Galaxy S5's plastic case.

HTC has also guaranteed OS upgrades for the device for two years, setting it apart from other Android phones, and said it will replace a display broken within the first six months of purchase.

The new phone runs custom HTC software based on Google's Android 4.4.2 (KitKat), features front-facing stereo speakers, 32 GB of internal storage, a 2.3 GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor and 2 GB of RAM, and a 2600 mAh battery. A dual camera set-up in the rear allows for unusual photo effects, as described in this review by Computerworld's JR Raphael.

HTC hasn't officially disclosed sales figures for the HTC One (M8), but an unnamed industry source told Digitimes that HTC expects to ship 3 million to 5 million M8's in the second quarter.

Last year, Samsung shipped 10 million Galaxy S4 smartphones in one month, while Apple sold 9 million iPhones over one weekend in 2013.

HTC doesn't intend to sell the most phones, but instead wants to build high quality phones and a strong customer base, an executive said recently in an interview with BGR.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His email address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

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This story, "HTC One (M8) grabs some Apple, Samsung converts" was originally published by Computerworld.

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