HTC's glory days of Android smartphones may be well behind it, with other manufacturers stepping up to fill the void. Nevertheless, the Taiwanese manufacturer still occasionally churns out new phones, albeit at a glacially slow pace. The Desire 22 Pro arrived last year and failed to make an impact, despite being packaged with marketing buzzwords like the "first metaverse smartphone." Just a month ahead of that model's first anniversary, HTC teased the launch of yet another metaverse-focused phone. A set of leaked images now offers a closer look at this upcoming mid-tier device — reportedly named the HTC U23 Pro 5G — along with a smattering of details on the phone's hardware specs.
These images come courtesy of the Chinese publication ptt.cc, which claims that both the back panel and the frame of the U23 Pro 5G will be made from plastic — not particularly shocking, since this is a midrange phone (via u/Aquis_GN). There could still be some decent upgrades over the Desire, though, such as the move to an AMOLED screen.
Images of the U23 Pro 5G running the AIDA54 utility tool reveal it will run on Qualcomm's Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 chipset with at least 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage space. The primary rear camera should be a 108MP unit with OIS, but there's no word on the other sensors. The version shown here bears the model number 2QC9100, though leaker Abhishek Yadav has unearthed two more — 2QC9200 and 2QCB100 (via GSMArena). Yadav also claims the phone will run Android 13 out of the box.
A 3.5mm headphone jack is positioned on the top, with the SIM slot sitting right next to the USB-C charging port. There's also set to be a 4,600mAh battery, complete with wireless charging support. Since the Desire 22 Pro broke cover in June last year, it's not a stretch to assume that HTC could be thinking about a similar release timeframe for the U23 Pro 5G in 2023.
It's hard to get too excited about a phone that likely won't be accessible to a large part of the world. Still, we can't help but feel that twinge of HTC nostalgia, and hopefully this model still manages to attract a little attention — at least in the markets where it's going to be available.