HTC Could Launch 64 GB 'One M9' Model As Storage Prices Continue To Fall

When HTC announced the "One M9" flagship smartphone two weeks ago, the company only mentioned a 32 GB model. According to a leak from an HTC ROM developer, there will also be a 64 GB model, which will be launched "later this year," but only in some markets.

In the past few years, HTC has launched its flagships with an option for 16 GB and 32 GB models, just like most other smartphone manufacturers. This year may finally be the year when 64 GB of internal storage becomes more mainstream, even if it doesn't come as the default option.

64 GB of storage should cost less than 16 GB of storage cost in 2010, thanks to Moore's Law and about a 50 percent decrease in storage prices every two years, which would make a 16 GB module cost 25 percent of what it did in 2010-2011. Put another way, it would put a 64 GB module at roughly the same price level as the 16 GB module in 2010.

Unfortunately, most OEMs haven't kept raising the default storage amount at the same rate the prices have fallen, either because they want to take in that extra profit they're now saving on storage, or because they're compensating with other components (such as cameras or processors) that are slightly more expensive than their equivalents were in 2010.

The 64 GB HTC One M9 model should cost anywhere from $50 to $100 more than the 32 GB model, if HTC wants to keep a high margin on that extra storage. The OnePlus One has proven, as recently as last year, that it's possible to add 48 GB more storage (on top of the default 16 GB) for only $50 more.

A year later, we're only talking about a 32 GB increase over the default storage option of the HTC One M9, so there's no reason for HTC to raise the price more than $50, which would still give the company a healthy margin on the handset.

The two HTC One M9 models should otherwise be identical and include specs such as a Snapdragon 810 chip, 5" 1080p screen, 3 GB of RAM, 20MP rear camera, 4MP UltraPixel front camera, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, a 2840 mAh battery, and Android 5.0 Lollipop. The 32 GB model should start selling in some markets this month. The company hasn't announced a price yet.

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Lucian Armasu
Lucian Armasu is a Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware US. He covers software news and the issues surrounding privacy and security.