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HTC’s Midtier Desire Family Comes To U.S.

Bellevue, Wash. — HTC is rolling out its Desire series of Android smartphones through several carriers to strengthen the company’s U.S. presence in the mid-tier market.

The Desire 816 and 610, both equipped with LTE and Android 4.2.2, were unveiled early this year at the Mobile World Congress.

The HTC Desire 816 will be available Aug. 12 through Virgin Mobile for $299 on any of Virgin’s Beyond Talk no-contract plans. It will also be available at various retail outlets later this month, the company said.

The HTC Desire 610 and Desire 816 will also be available through, where the 610 is free with two-year AT&T contract or for $199 with AT&T’s no-contract GoPhone service.

The new phones will be “the first of many HTC Desire smartphones coming to the U.S. market this year,” the company promised. The full HTC Desire family will be available in a variety of sizes, colors and different feature sets “across multiple carriers and retailers through the end of the year.”

With the launches, HTC will bring many of the features of the HTC One flagship family to new market tiers, added Erin McGee, marketing VP for HTC America. The features include premium-material chassis, BoomSound dual front-facing stereo speakers with audio enhancements, advanced camera features, and the Zoe feature that lets consumers create mini-movies complete with personalized soundtracks and visual effects. The list of features also includes the HTC Sense 6 UI and BlinkFeed, which aggregates user-selectable news feeds for display on the home screen.

The HTC Desire 610 features a 4.7-inch FWVGA display, 1.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon CPU, 1GB RAM and 8GB onboard storage with support for up to 64GB expandable storage. The 8-megapixel rear camera offers 1080p video capture, and the front camera features 1.3-megapixel sensor.

 The HTC Desire 816 steps up with 5.5-inch 720p display, 1.6GHz quad-core Snapdragon CPU, 1.5GB RAM, 8GB onboard storage and support for up to 128GB memory cards. The main camera steps up to 13 megapixels with 1080p video capture, and a 5-megapixel front camera features wide-angle lens. Both cameras feature a backside-illuminated sensor for enhanced captures in low-light conditions.