Ant Pruitt: On HTC Desire Eye, Re Cam and No Nexus

HTC held its Double Exposure event and announced the HTC Desire Eye and the Re camera. Ant Pruitt comments. – Double Exposure. A way to combine two different images into one image, right? Well, yes and no. According to HTC, it’s when you take the stage in New York to announce your latest smartphone updates and photography features. Wednesday’s Double Exposure event demonstrated a range of new photography focused products, including the Re camera.

HTC group shot

What’s the big deal?

As a reader of aNewDomain, you may know I love smartphone photography. So hearing the title of this announcement piqued my interest from the get go. First, the camera software in Sense UI will continue to get better. The ability to switch between camera modes and settings are more seamless than before. Even switching the camera is as easy as swiping the screen. The Zoe feature has also been tweaked for performance and UX. Zoe is also coming to Apple iOS.

HTC showed off how easy it was to create a short cinematic video. Once you’ve gathered your collection of snapshots and videos taken with your HTC smartphone, you can do a mashup of your media and it will stitch a video together for you. Third party apps like Magisto won’t be necessary anymore.

Speaking of video, video chatting will be a much more crisp experience for HTC smartphone users. Facial tracking has been integrated to help keep user faces on mobile devices in focus. We have all been on a Skype call on our mobile phone and had to watch someone’s face slide off the screen because they moved. Hopefully those days are long gone. Video chatting will also offer screen sharing. Perfect for productivity. 

The Desire Eye

Ok, we have a perfect opportunity to grab some great smartphone photography with the Desire Eye as it touts 13mp cameras on both the front and back cameras. From a design standpoint, the HTC Desire Eye will have a 5.2-inch screen, boom sound and noise-canceling microphones for sharper call quality. The smartphone consists of two plastic pieces molded together, forming the body of the device.

To be honest, I flat out don’t like the design from a first look. It doesn’t have the HTC quality build we’ve come to know. The metal edging on the current HTC devices look great and feel great, so I wonder why they changed it up for the Desire Eye.

HTC desireEye

Is that a camera?

Why, yes, it’s definitely a camera. The Re camera is the new device from HTC. The Re camera certainly looks … interesting. At first glance, the camera looks like a pepper spray canister. Jason Mackenzie says that HTC “sees a massive opportunity for a new kind of device.”

The Re Camera is a response to the GoPro. It’s an unobtrusive camera designed to capture all the spontaneous shots of your life with a 16mp camera. You can also shoot video with the Re. I’m not sold on the device, as I personally can’t see how much more convenient this device is when compared with my pocket smartphone. Heck, it doesn’t even have a viewfinder! Yeah, sure, it has a 16mp wide angle lens to pick up almost everything in sight, but I’m still not sold.


No Nexus

Many of us Android lovers were hoping for a Nexus smartphone announcement from HTC. As a matter of fact, we’re still hoping — HTC didn’t mention a Nexus device. Which is fine, as the company wanted to focus solely on photography and video recording. I mean, the event was called “Double Exposure.” Hopefully we’ll get another update soon on the Nexus front.

Availability of these devices is “later this year.” One can assume they’ll be released during the holiday shopping season. The Eye Experience on the camera will be rolled out via updates in November. Will you dive in to buy the Desire Eye or the Re camera? Leave a comment below with your thoughts.

All Screenshots: Ant Pruitt

Based in Charlotte, NC, Ant Pruitt is an IT pro, a columnist and a senior technologist and aNewDomainTV. Look for Ant on his Smartphone Photographers Community and on Yet Another Tech Show. Follow him @ihavnolyfe or via Google+. Email him See all Ant’s articles on by following this link.


  • I’m somewhat surprised that you are underwhelmed by the Re Cam. Apparently, you can use your phone as remote viewfinder via Bluetooth and/or wi-fi. If it works the way it’s supposed to, that’s pretty cool. You now have the ability to reach over and around people and things to take the shot. Less chance of someone’s head getting in the way of that action shot you just took! A device like this is something I might want to take a look at.

    • Indeed, Bob. The remote capability is a nice feature. I fear that the GoPro folks will kick them out of the game. Hopefully not. It’s going to be interesting to see application in the wild. Thanks for reading and your comment, Bob!

      -RAP, II