By Dan Seifert, an editor overseeing The Verge’s product reviews and service journalism programs. Dan has covered the giải pháp công nghệ world for over a decade at The Verge.

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The classic Oreo cookie is a wonderful thing. (By classic, I mean the Double Stuf, let’s be real here.) It’s the right combination of crunchy & soft, sweet and, well, more sweet. It’s the best cookie ever & I won’t hear any arguments.

But that hasn’t stopped Nabisco from messing with the formula. The company has released dozens of variations on the idea: different cookie flavors, different filling, different experiences. Some have been a great success, others never should have left the lab. But the thing they have in common is they are all Oreos, and you can spot one as such instantly.

The smartphone htc One M8, launched earlier this year, is lượt thích that classic Oreo. Its design, performance, và usability make it one of the best, if not the best, game android phones released this year. It’s an iconic flagship that holds together the rest of HTC’s lineup. & just lượt thích Nabisco, smartphone htc has released a variation of the One M8 that’s the same on the outside, but wholly different on the inside. The One M8 for Windows has the exact same hardware and design as the original M8, but in place of app android 4.4 KitKat, it’s running Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8.1. It’s available from Verizon Wireless now for $99.99 with a new two-year agreement.

Each time Nabisco releases a new, different Oreo, it runs the risk that the cookie will be a dismal failure. (I’m looking at you, cookie dough Oreo.) Same goes for HTC: the M8 for Windows could be a failure that never should have seen the light of day — or it might be a wonderfully tasty alternative khổng lồ the original.



a:hover>:shadow-highlight-franklin dark:<&>a:hover>:shadow-highlight-franklin <&>a>:shadow-underline-black dark:<&>a>:shadow-underline-white">Hardware và design

As I noted already, the hardware of the One M8 for Windows is exactly the same as its apk counterpart (it’s the “cookie” in our Oreo comparison). It has the same unibody, aluminum design, same 5-inch, 1080p display, same high-end, quad-core Qualcomm processor, same 2GB of RAM, same 32GB of storage, same microSD thẻ slot, same 4-megapixel UltraPixel camera with same secondary depth sensor (aka HTC’s Duo Camera). The M8 for Windows can even work with HTC’s Dot View case. Save for the camera, which is merely okay, that’s all good news: the One’s screen is fantastic, the thiết kế is gorgeous, the front-facing speakers are loud và sound great, & the processor is fast & powerful.

The M8 is far more elegant. It’s just nicer to hold in my hand than recent hãng nokia phones lượt thích the Lumia Icon / 930. Hãng nokia does make some well-designed phones, but its plastic devices aren’t up to lớn the caliber of the M8’s premium all-metal body.

But I’m not going lớn dwell too much on the hardware here, since the main difference between the original M8 & the M8 for Windows is the software. For a great rundown on the M8’s design and hardware, read our đánh giá of the Android mã sản phẩm and watch our interview with former điện thoại htc head of thiết kế Scott Croyle.

Plus the software experience, just like the creme of the Oreo cookie, is what really makes or breaks a smartphone.


a:hover>:shadow-highlight-franklin dark:<&>a:hover>:shadow-highlight-franklin <&>a>:shadow-underline-black dark:<&>a>:shadow-underline-white">Software và features

The One M8 for Windows comes with Windows Phone 8.1 Update 1, the latest version of the platform from Microsoft (you could also gọi it Windows Phone 8.1.1, which is way easier to lớn understand). The new software includes a notification center, folders on the start screen, & Microsoft’s virtual personal assistant Cortana. Save for the new folders, it’s not very different from Windows Phone 8.1, which we covered in depth earlier this year.

Windows Phone 8.1 is a significant step forward for the platform, bringing it up to speed with many of the features found in quả táo or game android these days. I’m particularly fond of Cortana, which does an excellent job of blending Google Now’s functionality with Siri’s personality. It’s proven itself more useful than Siri on a number of occasions, such as setting location-based reminders or getting an overview of my day.

Yet despite the advancements in Windows Phone as a platform, it still falls short in the third-party tiện ích department, và this becomes painfully obvious when you compare the Windows M8 next khổng lồ the app android version. Though Microsoft has worked very hard khổng lồ expand the Windows Phone store’s options khổng lồ over 300,000 apps and has gotten some big-name apps on the platform, such as Instagram and Uber, the Windows Phone versions are almost always inferior to lớn their app android or tiện ích ios counterparts. For example, while Instagram for Android and iOS has had the ability to lớn record đoạn phim and tweak images extensively for some time, the Windows Phone version of the ứng dụng offers neither of those features. You get the basic filters và nothing more. The same can be said for Twitter, Facebook, & many others.

HTC has worked khổng lồ develop its own apps for Windows Phone, so the M8 for Windows is able khổng lồ take advantage of its special hardware features and HTC’s services. Sense TV, which offers an interactive guide lớn what’s on TV right now and lets you control your entertainment system with the M8’s IR blaster, has been rebuilt for Windows Phone. BlinkFeed, HTC’s news reader & social aggregation service, has also been brought over khổng lồ Windows Phone, residing in a live tile on the start screen. It looks and behaves just like BlinkFeed does on Android, and it doesn’t really conform to the Windows Phone style of design. But it works just fine and I actually prefer it as a tile on the start screen rather than hidden behind another trang chủ page as it is on Android.

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HTC also built in tư vấn for some of the M8’s gesture functions, such as double-tap-to-wake, & the Dot View case can display time, weather, email, messaging, and calendar notifications through its translucent panel. You can also launch Cortana & perform voice actions by just swiping down on the front of the Dot View case when it’s still closed.

But the most important thing điện thoại htc did for the M8 for Windows was build its own camera ứng dụng to tư vấn the M8’s chất lượng depth-sensing Duo Camera. With HTC’s camera app, you can control things like exposure và filters, or refocus your images và create 3D-like effects after the fact. The interface is exactly the same as it is on Android, which is mostly a good thing, và it’s fast and easy to use (and the game android design doesn’t really clash with Windows Phone here). The only thing that’s really missing from HTC’s camera ứng dụng is the ability khổng lồ record Zoes, short movie clips that can be shared to HTC’s social platform. Unfortunately, the camera itself isn’t any better on Windows than it is on Android, with many images lacking the sharpness found on other smartphones. If pictures are a number one priority for you, you’re still better off going with one of Nokia’s Windows Phone options.

a:hover>:shadow-highlight-franklin dark:<&>a:hover>:shadow-highlight-franklin <&>a>:shadow-underline-black dark:<&>a>:shadow-underline-white">Performance

Though the M8 for Windows has the same processor & RAM as the Android mã sản phẩm (it’s a 2.3GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801, for those interested), it doesn’t perform as smoothly or as quickly as its app android counterpart. Everything feels a little slower on the Windows version for some reason, with animations that stutter & hesitate. It’s a bit out of character for the M8, which is a very fast và responsive game android phone, và for Windows Phone in general, which is usually snappy and responsive on even the most basic hardware. Perhaps htc has some tuning to vị to make Windows run better on the M8’s hardware.

Fortunately, the M8’s solid battery life is as good or better on the Windows version. I was able lớn get through a full day of moderate usage without having khổng lồ charge it, và if I used it less often, getting the M8 lớn last into day two wasn’t an issue. The battery life on the M8 is as good or better than any of the recent Nokias I’ve used, including the gargantuan Lumia 1520.

So which Oreo is the One M8 for Windows? If the Android model is the classic Double Stuf, the Windows model is the chocolate creme Oreo. It’s not bad by any stretch, but it’s not as good as its forebear, and it’s not the right One for most people.

That point is exacerbated by the fact that you can buy the Windows version of the One M8 only from Verizon right now, while the Android mã sản phẩm is available across every other US carrier và in many countries across the world. (AT&T has announced that it will carry the One M8 for Windows in the future, without naming an exact release date. Sources familiar with the matter tell me that Verizon’s exclusivity window may be as short as 60 days, which means a few more people could have the option lớn buy it relatively soon.) htc hasn’t been able to lớn tell me anything about international launch plans for the Windows M8, which is disappointing because there is greater interest in Windows Phone overseas than here in the US.

Further, while you can get the apk version of the M8 in a variety of colors, the Windows mã sản phẩm is only available in graphite gray, which, like the chocolate Oreo, isn’t a flavor for everybody.

Fortunately though, the One M8 for Windows does have a lot of good qualities, & if htc is able to lớn improve the few performance issues I saw via software updates and fixes, it could be a compelling option for a select number of people interested in Windows Phone but looking for something other than Nokia’s offerings.

And hey, at least it’s not the cookie dough Oreo.

7.8Verge Score

HTC One (M8) for Windows

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The Good

Great designGreat displaySolid battery life
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The Bad

Performance not as good as app android versionSo-so cameraLimited availabilityMissing some of Android's best features and apps
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