HTC One M8

1. HTC One M8

What to say about the HTC One M8? They often say the second album is the hardest, but the follow up to the all-conquering HTC One takes the best of that phone and yet still re-invents things enough to make it a massive recommendation over the old model.

We love the speed of the camera, the Duo Camera is smart as a tack, the Boomsound upgrade is impressive and the design... well, you have to hold it.

The Snapdragon 801 processor has boosted battery dramatically compared to the 600 of last year, and that means that photos also process much more quickly as well - even the front-facing camera is much better.

Gaming, movies, photography, browsing all work really well, and in a phone that that's easily going to destroy whatever anyone else can design. LG ran it close with the G3, and unless Apple has got some dark sorcery up its sleeves when the iPhone 6 appears later in the year, HTC has got 2014 sewn up.

Quick Verdict

If we were to criticise the One M8, it would be the camera's lack of a megapixel upgrade, which means pictures are a little less sharp than they might otherwise be.

That said, it's a minor point in a phone that has barely any flaws. The lower megapixel camera means faster shutter speeds, and if you don't want to zoom in a lot, most will enjoy the depth perception and background de-focus ability to make some pro-looking snaps.

We urge you to hold this phone for a few seconds and try not to feel at least a small flicker of smartphone attraction. It's got great specs, a splendid design and some clever hardware innovation where the competition is relying on software to do the same thing.