A man using his smartphone
A man using his smartphone (Representational picture)Reuters

Despite getting critical acclaim across all platforms for its 2013 flagship model HTC One, Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC incurred operational loss of late. Many feel the company lost focus on a niche area of the market, especially the mid-segment phablets, which are very popular in emerging markets like India (as well as China), the top two biggest smartphone markets in the world.

Well, during this year's first quarter, HTC seems to have changed its business model, by launching mid-range smartphone Desire 816 in India, along with the marquee device HTC One M8.

HTC Desire 816 is a bit late to enter the affordable phablet market, whereas rival MNC counterparts Nokia and Sony have already made inroads in India, by launching Lumia 1320 and Xperia T2 Ultra quite early in the year.

All three devices come from tier-1 smartphone brands with competitive price tags, giving themselves an edge over the domestic competitors, which face flak from consumers over their bad after sales service.

Prospective buyers planning to upgrade their smartphone with affordable MNC branded big-screen phablets might be interested in HTC Desire 816, Nokia Lumia 1320 and Sony Xperia T2 Ultra.

Here is a brief description of HTC Desire 816, Nokia Lumia 1320 and Sony Xperia T2 Ultra:


The new HTC Desire 816 flaunts a 5.5-inch HD (720x1280p) screen with pixel density of 267 ppi (pixels per inch).

Sony Xperia T2 Ultra comes with a much bigger screen 6.0-inch HD (1720x1280p) TFT screen, boasting the company's proprietary TRILUMINOS and BRAVIA Engine 2 display technology. Due its bigger screen foot print, the pixel distribution gets reduced to 245 ppi.

Nokia's Lumia 1320 also sports a same 6.0-inch size but with an HD (1280x720p) display resolution, having pixel density of 245 ppi.

Processor, RAM and Storage:

In this aspect, HTC Desire 816 takes lead thanks to Snapdragon 600 series quad-core CPU with 1.6GHz speed, whereas Sony Xperia T2 Ultra packs slower 1.2GHz quad-core processor and Lumia 1320 houses a less energy efficient dual-core chipset, but makes up with the faster 1.7GHz clock rate.

HTC phone is backed by 1.5GB RAM with 8GB inbuilt storage with options of expanding up to 128GB. On the other hand Sony and Nokia devices feature 1GB RAM and 8GB storage expandable up to 32GB and 64GB respectively


Sony Xperia T2 boasts of 13.0-megapixel main camera with pulsed LED flash support, Exmor RS sensor, 16 X digital zoom, HDR support for both videos and picture, whereas on the front side, it houses 1.1-megapixel camera.

HTC Desire 816 too comes loaded with 13.0-megapixel camera with LED flash, Geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, simultaneous HD video and image recording, HDR, full HD video recording and on the front, it packs a 5.0-megapixel camera with HD video recording ability.

Nokia's Lumia 1320 though sporting a simplistic 5.0-megapixel camera boasts two-stage auto focus, LED flash and full HD (1080p) video recording features. It also boasts of a 640x480p camera with f/2.8 aperture. And on the front side, it packs a 640x480p camera with f/2.8 aperture.

With introduction of premier Refocus camera app (has to be downloaded separately, its free), the mid-range Nokia phone owners can now enjoy rich photography user-experience seen in PureView camera based Lumia phones.

Last week, Google too has introduced stock Camera app for non-nexus phones, bringing Lens Blur, Photo Sphere and other value-added photo taking options. Only down side is that the application is compatible with v4.4 KitKat OS, so users must wait till their device get the new chocolate-wafer flavored Android OS update.

 [Note: higher pixel number in camera does not guarantee good photo, it depends on the type of lens and aperture size, wider the better]

Mobile Operating System:

In this aspect, HTC and Sony phones come on top as they run on the ubiquitous Android Jelly Bean OS.

Though Lumia 1320 ships the updated refreshing tiles based interface and secured Windows Phone 8 OS (with Lumia Black), it still lags far behind the Android platform in terms of apps and game collection, giving Desire 816 and Xperia T Ultra edge over the Nokia phone.


HTC Desire 816 is priced ₹23,990, and the device is expected to hit stores this weekend or early May.

Nokia's Lumia 1320 was launched in January for ₹23,499 but the price is currently hovering around for ₹20,599 in the market, whereas Sony Xperia T2 Ultra is priced around ₹23,900.

(Ed: VP)

Key specifications of HTC Desire 816, Nokia Lumia 1320 and Sony Xperia T2 Ultra:


HTC Desire 816

Nokia Lumia 1320

Sony Xperia T2 Ultra


5.5-inch HD (720x1280p) screen

Pixel density: 267 ppi (pixels per inch)

6.0-inch HD (720x1280p) IPS LCD screen with pixel density 245 ppi (pixels per inch), Corning  Gorilla Glass shield

6.0-inch HD (1720x1280p) TFT screen with TRILUMINOS and BRAVIA Engine 2 display technology


Android (version not revealed ) with Sense v5.5 UI

Windows Phone 8 with Lumia Black update

Android v4.3 Jelly Bean OS


1.6GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 series CPU

Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor with 1.7GHz CPU speed

1.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon quad-core CPU

(chipset: MSM8928)






8GB, expandable up to 128GB

8GB, expandable up to 64 GB

8GB, expandable up to 32GB


Main: 13.0-megapixel camera with Flash support

Front: 5.0-megapixel camera

Main: 5.0-megapixel camera with LED flash, two stage auto-focus, f/2.4 aperture, full HD video recording

Front: 640x480p camera with f/2.8 aperture

Main: 13.0-megapixel with pulsed LED flash and auto, HDR (for both video/picture), 16X digital zoom, Sony Exmor RS sensor

Front: 1.1-megapixl camera (720p resolutions)


2600 mAh;

Talk time: up to 21 hours (3G)

Standby mode: close to 737 hours (3G)

3400 mAh;

Talk time: up to 25 hours (2G) & 21 hours (3G)

Standby time: close to 28 days

3000 mAh (Li-Ion);

Talk time: up to 24 hours

Standby mode: close to 44 days


2G & 3G

2G & 3G

2G & 3G


Nano-SIM, Bluetooth v4.0,  Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n), GPS, micro-USB, microSD card slot

Micro-SIM slot, Bluetooth v4.0 with A2DP, Wi-Fi (802.11 a/b/g/n), A-GPS, GLONASS, microSD card slot, USB v2.0,

Bluetooth v4.0, Wi-Fi, NFC,  USB v2.0, GLONASS/A-GPS for  navigation, FM radio with RDS


156.6 x 78.7 x 8 mm

164.2 x 85.2 x 9.8 mm

165.2 x 83.2 x 7.65 mm


165 g

220 g

171.5 g





*prices are subject to vary with time and also with the local tax structure.