An awful lot of devices fall into the mid-range category if you just look at prices, but we're going to assume that a big screen is important to you, if you're looking at the Desire 816. Here are the big contenders that fall into the same weight class.
Nokia Lumia 1320
The price is right at around £300 and you can enjoy Nokia's good build quality and snappy performance, but there isn't too much more to recommend the Lumia 1320 over the Desire 816. It's another plastic slab smartphone in a variety of fun colours. It also has a 720p display, but it's a big bigger at 6 inches.
Things take a turn for the worse when we clock the dual-core processor and 1GB of RAM. There's also a 5MP main camera with just a VGA for selfies. Where are Nokia's famed camera credentials? Corners have been cut here.
You might like the idea of that extra half-inch of screen and we have to mention the stellar battery life. The Lumia 1320 will definitely outlast the Desire 816 in a long distance race, but there's one last factor that should decide it.
The final nail in the Lumia 1320's coffin is the Windows Phone platform. It doesn't come close to competing with Android in terms of apps, games, and features, and that makes the Lumia 1320 a very tough sell indeed.
Sony Xperia T2 Ultra
Sony's Xperia T2 Ultra is also crafted from glossy plastic, although there are some metallic highlights around the frame, including that signature power button. It has a 6-inch 720p display.
Moving inside we find a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 clocked at 1.4GHz and the same Adreno 305 GPU that you'll find in the Desire 816.
It also has 8GB of internal storage, but it's considerably more clogged with Sony apps and preloaded services than the Desire 816. This results in a lot less free space, although it too supports microSD card expansion, but only by up to 32GB.
It also has a dedicated camera button for the 13MP main shooter, but the front-facing camera is rated at 1.1MP. The T2 Ultra boasts a bigger battery at 3,000mAh. Price-wise it's about the same as the Desire 816 and it looks similar enough to give you a real quandary.
Here's a proper challenger for the Desire 816: a phone that really goes after the market for top smartphones at attractive prices.
The OnePlus One provides some of the same specs as the HTC Desire 816: a 5.5-inch screen, a 13-megapixel camera on the back and a 5-megapixel camera on the front. But that's where the similarities start to end.
Boasting specs that rival the HTC One M8 and the Samsung Galaxy S5 the OnePlus One costs less than the HTC Desire 816, but you get a 1080p Full HD screen, a 3100mAh battery (compared to the HTC Desire 816's 2,600mAh) and a phone that runs CyanogenMod, a tweaked version of Android that offers unparalleled customisation options.
The OnePlus One's 2.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor with 3GB of RAM means it runs swiftly and smoothly. This completely blows the HTC Desire 816's 1.6 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 with 1.5GB of RAM out of the water.
But with cut prices comes comprises. The biggest compromise here is the 16GB of internal storage with no microSD card port. If you're an app buying fiend or a true audiophile you might prefer the HTC Desire 816's 8GB with the ability to upgrade to a maximum of 128GB using a MicroSD card.