Hot on the heels of the HTC 10, Taiwan's favourite rival to Apple, Samsung, Sony and LG has a new mid-range handset for Australia. The Desire 825 is a big 5.5-inch-screened Android phone with HTC's signature BoomSound audio, but it's almost half of the price of 2016's current flagships.
There's a reason for that significant price drop, though. The Desire 825's 5.5-inch screen only has a 720p resolution, giving it a relatively low pixel density — although that has the trade-off of longer battery life. In its other hardware specs, the Desire 825 is either par for the course or slightly better than competitors; its speaker is BoomSound branded and has Dolby Audio processing as well as support for 24-bit Hi-Res audio, its rear camera is a 13-megapixel one and the front is 5 megapixels, and the 'HTC Sensor Hub' inside includes real-time fitness stats through the integrated accelerometer and motion-sensitive hardware.
Expandable storage rounds out what seems like a pretty decent mid-range smartphone package, with support for microSD cards of up to 2TB capacity when they finally become available, while the Desire 825's polycarbonate body — only available in Graphite Grey — should hide scratches and absorb knocks pretty well. The phone is already available from JB Hi-Fi, for a recommended price of $549. [JB Hi-Fi]