I’ve spent the better part of the last two weeks with HTC’s new One M9. It’s the latest flagship from the once-powerful smartphone maker and the successor to last year’s One M8. The M9 is exceptionally similar to its forebear: it’s nearly all aluminum, has a 5-inch, 1080p screen, has really loud speakers above and below that screen, and is unmatched in build quality, craftsmanship, and design in the Android world.
The M8 was a great smartphone — it was beautiful and fast and featured inoffensive software, great sound, and a sharp screen. The M9 has all of those traits, but it’s also been specifically designed to right the M8’s two major faults: a finish that was too slippery to hold and a camera that took sub-par pictures. Of those two things, the camera is far more important: the M8’s disappointing camera was the big factor holding it back from being great.