HTC’s smartphone business has already been in the red and the COVID-19 pandemic last year did it no favors. It hasn’t launched a premium flagship yet, at least not one under its “U” brand, but it seems to still be pushing through with its Desire line of affordable mid-range phones. This year won’t be different, at least not at the start, and HTC’s first smartphone for 2021 is the Desire 21 Pro 5G which, admittedly, at least looks the part of a decent phone.
In terms of specs, the HTC Desire 21 Pro 5G definitely fits the bill when it comes to mid-range 5G phones. That capability is delivered by the Snapdragon 690 which, until just recently, was as low as you could go for a 5G-capable Qualcomm chip. It is joined by 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage which can still be expanded using a microSD card.
In terms of appearances, the Desire 21 Pro 5G puts its own unique spin on the now common camera bump, using a dual-tone design to separate three of the four cameras on the back. The front houses a 16MP camera underneath a punch-hole cutout. The cameras, however, might not meet some people’s expectations but it remains to be seen in the real-world.
Aside from affordable 5G, the phone doesn’t have much in terms of special or notable features. Sure, some might consider the large 5,000 mAh battery as an important feature, as is the side-mounted fingerprint scanner underneath the power button. One misfeature, however, is that it still ships with Android 10 from 2019.
The HTC Desire 21 Pro 5G is launching in Taiwan for 11,990 TWD, roughly $430. While that’s an enticing offer for a mid-range 5G phone, it will be up against the OnePlus Nord N10 as well as the new Samsung Galaxy A32 5G, both of which are priced more competitively though with varying specs.