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HTC Desire Eye has the tools to light up your face (pictures)

We take a close look at the HTC Desire Eye, a 5.2-inch Android phone with a 13-megapixel front camera with a dual LED flash.

Andrew Lanxon headshot
Andrew Lanxon headshot
Andrew Lanxon
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1 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

This is the HTC Desire Eye, so called because of that big old lens on the front making it look like a cyclops.

It's actually a 13-megapixel front-facing camera, which is a huge amount of pixels for a front camera. It has a dual LED flash as well, making it possibly the best phone for selfies.

It also has a 5.2-inch full HD display, the latest Android KitKat software and a colourful, waterproof body.

It's due to go on sale in the US later in October and the UK shortly afterwards. Wider markets are yet to be announced and HTC hasn't given it an official price yet, saying only that it'll be "less than the One M8."

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2 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

The back of the phone is home to a 13-megapixel camera with a flash.

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3 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

You'll find exactly the same camera setup mirrored on the front of the phone too. That's the highest resolution front-facing camera we've seen on a phone so far and it's the first time we've seen a dual LED flash on the front as well.

It's clearly aimed squarely at the selfie-loving crowd.

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4 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

The camera software comes with some new features to help you have fun with your selfies. This dual-screen mode looks interesting.

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5 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

The 5.2-inch display has a full HD (1,920x1,080-pixel) resolution.

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6 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

It's made from a single piece of polycarbonate that's been given a two tone effect. You can get it in dark blue with a light blue edge, or white with a red edge.

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7 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

I'm quite keen on both hues, but I think the white and red stands out a little more.

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8 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

It's quite thin and easy to slip into a jeans pocket.

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9 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

The phone is waterproof to a depth of 1-metre for up to 30 minutes. That'll certainly keep it safe from a spilled pint of beer.

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10 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Front-facing cameras tend to be much worse than the ones on the back of the phone, but with the same camera units on both sides, you should expect to see very similar results.

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11 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

I'm keen on the two-tone effect of the phone.

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12 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

The Desire Eye's thin edge.

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Another new feature is the ability to cut yourself out of the front-facing image and paste it over the image from the rear camera. The idea is that you can digitally insert yourself into photos of your friends.

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14 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

The camera software is easy to use.

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15 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

The phone runs the latest Android 4.4.4 KitKat software.

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16 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Even the settings menu is easy to navigate. It shouldn't be too complicated for new Android users.

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17 of 17 Andrew Hoyle/CNET

HTC has loaded on its Blinkfeed news and social networks aggregator, but you can get rid of it if you want.

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