HTC’s Ace in the hole: A plastic flagship to undercut Samsung’s Galaxy S5

Generally known for producing well-designed metal handsets, HTC may be turning to plastic for a least one phone. Leaked photos of the HTC M8 Ace appeared in early April and on Monday, Engadget says it’s the real deal. While a plastic phone from HTC might not sound appealing, you might reconsider based on the price and internal hardware: The phone is expected to cost for $480 off-contract but have the same components as Samsung’s $600 Galaxy S5.

I’d actually consider the HTC One M8 to the truest competitor to Samsung’s newest phone; it too shares many similar hardware components with the Galaxy S5. But the biggest visual difference on the outside is the metal unibody design of the One M8 as compared to the Galaxy S5 polycarbonate body.
Those two phones cost roughly the same off-contract although HTC offers double the internal storage with 32 GB. Yet that’s not likely enough to outsell the Galaxy S5. A less expensive HTC M8 Ace could help, provided customers are willing to sacrifice a metal phone body and live with plastic for a discount.
Engadget notes that the phone could launch next month in China so there’s no official word from HTC on the M8 Ace; it’s entirely possible that HTC only brings the plastic handset to certain markets to combat Samsung’s flagship. Would you sacrifice HTC’s metal handset construction to save $120 and still get a great experience? I think many people might, and if so, the M8 Ace could boost HTC’s bottom line.