HTC and Sprint teamed up today to announce the latest in the EVO line: the EVO 4G LTE. So, not the most novel name, but it gets to the point. The 4.7" device is carved out of an aluminum space frame, anodized to an all black finish with red accents and an exposed silver edge. And along that prominent red band across the back? That's right, the kickstand's back. But don't call this part of the One series. This is a Sprint EVO device through and through. 

Inside the EVO 4G LTE is Qualcomm's MDM8960, Snapdragon S4 per PR parlance, mirroring the HTC One S, but with some additional features enabled to separate it from the One line. Most predominantly, per Sprint, is the introduction of the US market's first HD Voice phone. In addition to the requisite noise cancelation features, Sprint will now be supporting EVRC-NW (Enhanced Variable Rate Codec - Narrowband-Wideband), which extends the voice codec from EVRC's 3,600-300 Hz to an impressive 7,000-80Hz. This system will be backwards compatible with their current EVRC codec, and will be a nice fall back when Sprint moves towards a VoLTE system. 

HTC has also seen fit to update the camera over prior EVO devices with one of the most well specced optics we've seen on a phone, with what they're calling HTC ImageSense, which features an f/2.0 lens, and a dedicated imaging ISP. We did get HTC to confirm that they'll be using their own silicon for the imaging ISP, foregoing Qualcomm's capable ISPs, though we don't know whose IP HTC is leveraging for this silicon. ImageSense will be seen in the One line, including the f/2.0 lens, so this will not be an EVO exclusive for long. The pictures look good on the phones 4.7" 720p Super LCD screen, we'll see how they look at full-size when we get to sample the devices. 

Sense 4.0 is featured atop Android 4.0, and HTC was all too eager to mention just how slimmed down Sense had become. The interface seemed snappy enough, no doubt helped by Krait's potent CPU and ICS's GPU acceleration hooks. Oddly, the phone will launch during the second quarter of this year (so, before July), but Sprint's LTE network won't launch till sometime in the second half of 2012. It's unclear what sort of lag there will be between the phone's launch and the network's launch, but we may be visiting our Kansas City readers in order to test out the device when the time comes. The HTC EVO 4G LTE will be priced at $199 on-contract, when it does launch. Paired with Sprint's dedication to unlimited data plans (sans throttling) even on LTE this could be a bargain route to Krait. 

Hands-on With The EVO 4G LTE
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  • Impulses - Thursday, April 5, 2012 - link

    Why? SLCD isn't inherently inferior in any form except for black levels... And most subjective opinions seem to indicate this display is better than the Galaxy Nexus' own. I'll reserve final judgement until Anandtech's in-depth analysis, but I don't expect the screen to be disappointing in any way. Samsung tends to ship their AMOLED equipped phones with terribly uncalibrated colors anyway...

    Frankly, the new EVO's specs make it sound like a near perfect device... Only way it could be any better is if it was a world phone and the battery was removable, but it has a bunch of improvements over the One X while retaining the same dimensions. MicroSD, kickstand, covers button, larger battery... I'm very surprised all that + LTE didn't lead to a chunkier phone (guess we have Krait to thank for that).

    Going with a mix of plastic and aluminum construction probably left just a bit more internal room than the One X's polycarb unibody (which I assume is thicker than aluminum).
  • Impulses - Thursday, April 5, 2012 - link

    Meant camera button, not covers button... I'm surprised that didn't get more press btw... I believe I read on an Engadget article that it even lets you bring up the camera while the phone is locked, much like WP7 devices (and unlike the EVO 3D and it's much advertised dual stage camera button).

    Have any Android phones ever had a camera button with that ability? I guess it's less noteworthy now that even stock ICS has a lockscreen camera shortcut, but it still seems really neat.
  • Beerfloat - Thursday, April 5, 2012 - link

    ..not that bad, really :)
    For all of amoled's positive press, I bet 8 out of 10 unprejudiced viewers will pick the substantially brighter, more colorful SLCD screens, even against non-pentile amoled (which aren't available in HD res yet).
  • Reikon - Thursday, April 5, 2012 - link

    No AMOLED is :)

    All the ones I've seen are oversaturated and have too high of a color temperature, i.e. too blue. Less hassle of making everything dark to conserve battery too.
  • piroroadkill - Thursday, April 5, 2012 - link

    Stop making so many phones. Jesus christ. Put the docking connector on this, the EVO 4G LTE, and get rid of the One X. This is better, as it is has: microSD port, larger battery, Krait, and even a kickstand.
  • ggg777 - Thursday, April 5, 2012 - link

    Will this phone or others powered by the S4 chip be compatible with Canadian LTE networks? The Rezound was a Verizon only phone, yet it is now known to work on every network, same idea with the Amaze 4G, does this next generation of SoC also include capabilities not openly advertised?
  • fteoath64 - Thursday, April 5, 2012 - link

    The only LTE network it probably does not like is the Australian LTE. The Krait is going to be the king of cellphone chips for 2012 until possibly the end of 2013. It seems to be sipping very little power due to its power management cores in the chip. A sure winner for smartphones and tablets alike. I would like to see it scale to 2.6Ghz.
  • NeoteriX - Thursday, April 5, 2012 - link

    So is the camera button single stage or dual stage?
  • Impulses - Thursday, April 5, 2012 - link

    Dual according to engadget.
  • s1175290 - Thursday, April 5, 2012 - link

    They had me until:

    "The battery is inaccessible"

    I'm all for slim phones, but I can't ever imagine buying one where I can't replace the battery. I would gladly trade a slightly thicker phone for the ability to change/replace the battery.

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