HTC One A9 image 002

Two days ago, HTC unveiled a new flagship phone, the $399 One A9, with most of the headlines calling the device an iPhone lookalike due to its two-tone design, the antenna bands and a protruding camera lens on the back. The device indeed bears a striking resemblance to Apple’s iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s smartphone series.

In an effort to set the record straight and maybe get a little more free press, the Taiwanese handset maker said that “it’s Apple that copied” its antenna design and unibody construction as HTC first released a smartphone with these features about three years ago.

Speaking yesterday at a press briefing in Taiwan, company executive Jack Tong was adamant that his company pioneered metal-clad smartphone design and the antenna bands seen on the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s series.

HTC indeed unveiled the original One M7 in March 2013 as its first smartphone with an aluminum unibody construction and unsightly antenna bands along the top and bottom of the device to improve wireless reception.

HTC one M7 silver three up image 001

“We’re not copying. We made a uni-body metal-clad phone in 2013. It’s Apple that copies us in terms of the antenna design on the back,” said Jack Tong, president of HTC North Asia. “The A9 is made thinner and more lightweight than our previous metal-clad phones. This is a change and evolution, and we’re not copying,” he insisted.

HTC One A9 The Verge 001
iPhone 6 at left, HTC One A9 in the middle and iPhone 6 Plus at right.

Tong did not comment on other design features of the One A9 that HTC seemingly copied from the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s. That being said, his nervous reaction is most likely a defensive PR move prompted by The Verge’s damning description of the One A9 as “the most blatant and highest-profile iPhone ripoff since Samsung’s original Galaxy S.”

“The Taiwanese phone maker decided to copy the most popular smartphone out there, and it prioritized the United States with its most appealing pricing and perks,” added the publication.

The One A9 is the first non-Nexus smartphone powered by Google’s Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system. It has a fingerprint scanner that works with Android Pay, a four-megapixel camera out the front, a thirteen-megapixel shooter out the back (with no 4K video capture), a speedy Qualcomm processor and more.

Available in Carbon Gray, Opal Silver, Topaz Gold and Deep Garnet color, the new HTC phone is available for pre-order and will be shipping later this year. The One A9 is priced at $399, sold unlocked and will be available on all major US carriers beginning in November 2015.

Source: Want China Times via BGR

  • iPhoneWINS

    lol….. hmmmmmmm

  • iPhoneWINS

    this is so sad… iPhone is so damn powerful that other companies have no choice but to copy

    • Imitation is the greatest form of flattery 🙂

    • @sexyhamthing

      Did this really get nine upvotes? Its not really like that at all :/

    • Mike

      Samsung Note 5 > iPhone 6s+.

    • Ethan Monteon

      iTS NOT ALL METAL ONE PEACE!! IT HAS GLASS ON THE TOP AND BOTTOM

    • Fred Brown

      Not quite man… Apple rips off everyone else, their design ripped off form HTC, the A7-A8-A9 chips were developed by a college and apple used the technology without paying any licensing fees and has been sued for it, same with facetime ! Apples camera is a Sony sensor. The iPhone 6 copies HTC’s all metal body, antenna bands, long slender shape, Rounded edges. The iPhone 6s copies HTC’s 5MP front camera, and live photos. Now the iPhone 7 is said to feature a dual sensor camera much like what HTC first featured on the m8…. So who’s copying who ?

      • das

        htc copied samsung

  • Bugs Bunnay

    Cry plz

  • Merman123

    I bet he also thinks the sky isnt blue.

    • Greg Warren

      He acknowledges the sky is blue, but claims that HTC released a blue sky first, and that Mother Nature is copying them.

  • Anonymous

    Htc makes a point, however, if you only have grounds on the antenna; nit much to stand on as not a look alike.

  • ديف فرانكو

    Lol this is actually true. Goes back to the HTC M7(2013). But this is what these companies do. Imitate and do it better than the original

    • Nice try, the iPhone 5 was released Sept. 21, 2012 and that’s where the M7 took most of its design cues.

      • ديف فرانكو

        Lol didn’t the 5 have a 2 tone back with glass on top and bottom with antenna bands on the side? What cues did HTC take?

      • The unibody back that they said was full metal but its just a lot of plastic too. Also the faux antenna break in the case. The HTC used it to mimic the look and confuse people like you…

      • @sexyhamthing

        Are you serious? They do look completely different you fish

      • Of course not, Just design cues I’m at that time they didn’t clone 100%… A fish though, thats new…

      • Fred Brown

        Dude what world do you live in ?? In my world the iPhone had a metal back with glass at the top for the antennas, while HTC was the first to feature a full metal body, using the plastic antenna bands, all which apple later copied… It was the iPhone 6 who copied HTC’s all metal body, antenna bands, long slender shape for easier one handed use, and rounded edges… It was the iPhone 6s who copied HTC’s 5MP front camera and live photos.. It’s the iPhone 7 rumoured to feature a dual sensor camera much like that which HTC first featured on the m8… So please come back to reality…

      • The glass on the top and bottom where there to make it look more classy I guess but there could have been aluminum there too it serves the same purpose. The sides of the HTC(white plastic) means it wasn’t a full metal back, they lied. The iPhone was metal all the way around and had cut outs for the glass. If you look up the parts you will see the HTC was not a full metal back like they said. High Tech Crap sucks and will always be a sub-par phone company. Please leave this in the past its useless as the iPhone will sell more no matter who we think copied who.

      • -butthurt fanboy

      • its not good to talk about yourself like that…

      • Ethan Monteon

        The iPhone is not full metal_!!! it has glass on the top and bottom of it!! ITs not ALL ONE PIECE

      • Under the glass is plastic… the plastic serves as the break for the antenna. Sort of what HTC did.

      • Fred Brown

        Lol how the hell do you figure ? Click VIEW below….

      • How don’t you figure, they can move a camera and curve a back and everyone still knows they got the idea from the iPhone.. This is old news move on…

    • Brandon

      Apple has used aluminum unibodies long before HTC

  • Rodney Coleman

    HTC please. No one ripped your design. iPhone was the first to introduce the external antenna bands. So therefore you copied them lol. The HTC one x didn’t have external bands. Hell the HTC inspire that’s metal didn’t have external antenna bands. HTC you suck period.

  • Good artists copy, great artists STEAL.
    -Steve Jobs

    • shansonhorvath

      Did everyone forget “antenna gate” already? Did everyone forgets HTCs response to antenna gate? They essentially called Apple morons for moving the antenna to the outside body of the phone, in contact with hands. NOW of course they copied the idea, and are even pretending to have invented the idea. Unbelievable.

      Apples competitors are so desperate and shameless. They want to be Apple so bad, it’s pathetic.

      • Vince Reedy

        Was in the middle of typing this when your reply popped up. Iphone 4 antenna gate was in 2010.

      • ديف فرانكو

        With a total different design. iPhone 4 antennas where on the metal frame of the side of the phone. Release dates says it all

      • @dongiuj

        “Release dates says it all”
        What’s to say that HTC didn’t have the design ready before apple and that Apple/a hacker connected to Apple didn’t hack HTC and take the design and then rush the production stage (could have, going by all the problems the iPhone 4 had on release)? Hacking other companies for inspiration is a reality.
        Don’t say Apple didn’t or wouldn’t do this because YOU DON’T KNOW THAT. Release dates don’t mean s*** unless it’s a massive difference in time.
        Oh, the blindness and devotion that leads to comments such as yours.

    • James Coulee

      Picasso, actually

  • tariq

    Why does everyone have their cameras sticking out like that? I liked older cameras that were in the phone, this new trend of them sticking out looks dumb

    • In an attempt to make the phones thinner, cameras have to stick out because they aren’t thin enough yet. It’s not really a trend, but more of a necessity to have a thinner phone.

      • tariq

        The Huawei and Sony phones dont have it like that. But I guess it might be hard to keep the camera in the phone in some cases

      • @dongiuj

        That might be because the camera is of less all round quality than these higher spec phones. This is just a guess though, I don’t know anything about the tech inside the Huawei or the specific Sony model you have in mind.

      • tariq

        I have a Xperia z3 compact, and with the lens being inside the phone my 21mg pixel camera looks just as good if not better than apples camera. But i do think their MIGHT be a good reason why apple and samsung do that with their lenses

      • Alejandro Delgado

        Huawei 6P does have a protruding camera, my dear sir

      • tariq

        i Meant like the lens, but I see your point. I personally have a Sony Z3c. And they better not start that lens thing like apple and samsung do lol

  • leart

    just did some “tests” in my pc, and realized that there’s no copy here, the HTC looks very different from the iphone..
    here’s some proof ..

  • justme

    only HTC is the only android phone that I respect out there. samsung it’s a joke in terms of design and materials.

    • igorsky

      I got news for you…HTC made a pretty good joke of themselves with this release. I don’t think Samsung every released anything as blatant as this. And I say this is a serious Samsung hater.

    • Alejandro Delgado

      HTC has been a joke for quite some time now. In my very personal opinion, LG and Huawei are the best Android phone makers in terms of quality as of now. No wonder Google trusted them with the new Nexus phones.

    • Mike

      Samsung has glass and metal sides how is that a joke?

  • InfinitePlusOne

    Say whaaaaat

  • Franklin Richards

    HTC should’ve kept quite and ran with it. An Android alternative to an iPhone has a nice ring even if you can’t publicly say it.

  • webbut

    M7 came out before the iphone 6 and the iphone 6 looks way closer to the M7 then it does to an iphone 5. The entire reason i switched over to iphone was because the iphone 6 looked like the M7 i already owned and loved.

    • igorsky

      Yeah but I’m pretty sure the unibody iPod Touch came out before the M7, so….

  • Guy

    The HTC One M7 design is still best compared to other Android and iPhones. Let the hate comments begin.

  • Micrones

    Honestly, It is quite obvious that HTC came up with the Uni body design and the bands and it is plain for all to see…… the pictures are there to prove it.
    But HTC present design for the newly released phone is a copy in shape of the Iphone 6 design.
    The point is that Apple’s present design is better in specificity and attention to detail when compared.

  • mynamesuxlol

    The bottom of the phone is just so badly aligned it’s funny

    • Its like the charging port and the speaker grille had a fight on who gets to be in the centre.

  • Benedict

    Does the “A” of HTC One A9 stand for “Apple” ???

  • Anonomous.TECH.man

    One thing that bugs me is well the symmetry, the iphone looks balanced and great but the HTC is so ugly looking but the thing that I hate the most is that Micro USB port and how it’s not flush with the metal. I see what HTC is doing thier making a affordable phone with a iPhone/HTC designe for people who are on a budget.

  • Alberto Espinal

    Ooh crap an iPhone with the cam in the middle!!

  • Phil Randle

    HTC’s A9 is a dead ringer copy, the iPhone 6 looks nothing like the HTC M8/M9 other then the antenna bands, the HTC A9 looks like HTC just took the iPhone 6 casing and the Galaxy S6 front and slapped them together.

    But the biggest problem is what we’re there industrial designers thinking when they made those cut outs for the micro USB and speaker grille. Disgusting.

  • George Yfantopoulos

    Thats so stupid. HTC had curved back ot flat. Apple ripped only the antenas they ripped everything. Flat back 2.5D Glass they even removed the front speakers to make it look like an iPhone.

  • Desmond Yeo

    To be honest, HTC phone market isn’t big.. So they try to steal copyright from Apple’s aluminium design so to create attention to make people to believe Apple is stealing designs from other company. And as of this generation, companies copy here and there. And end of the story, Apple already owned HTC long ago.. To apple haters out there, no offence but come on.. Whenever Apple launch a new product, there will always be a que and most people uses them. Period!

  • Chuck Finley

    Unsurprisingly, Ziberg the blind fanboy has done utterly no research. Did you even read the article you’re quoting from or did you only skim for the bits that support your blind idiocy? Because the article actually praises it as a copy but a great phone.

    Christ, where did you even learn journalism?

  • AeronMcaerhon

    oh comeon apple Fans, what does HTC saying is true, sometimes our butt hurts for sure.

  • anonmuz

    iPhone 5 was the first to have the antenna on its outside and two tone and that was back in 2012.

  • ruurd

    Yep. Apple ripped of HTC. And the world is flat.

  • Beat Modz

    Who gives a fukkkkkkk !!!! Buy whatever you want geeezzzz!!! Tired of the same BS from all the fuking companies that make millions of us. I have both devices because their different from each other’s OS. Stop comparing grapes with Cherrys. Their both round and you can eat them and sweet !!!!! What’s next a wallet copying another wallet?

  • Chindavon

    That’s priceless. lol

  • Fabio Rodrigues

    if it was not for the way that HTC customize their android rom I would like their phone better

  • Fred Brown

    HTC featured this deign more then a year before the iPhone… It was the iPhone 6 which copied HTC’s all metal body, antenna bands,rounded edges, and long slender shape. It was the iPhone 6s who copied HTC’s 5MP front camera and live photos. Now it’s the iPhone 7 rumoured to feature a dual sensor camera much like the HTC m8 first did years ago !! Both the iPhone and the HTC A9 feature Sony sensors so that could be why they both protrude, but plenty of phones have protruding cameras HTC has had many look at the HTC butterfly and HTC incredible… ! As far as finger print scanners go most phones today have them and this was first featured on Motorola… Bottom speakers are also found on many phones such as the one plus, and S7, and may others.. The similarities come from the backside of the phones, where that which the iPhone copies from HTC is very noticeable… I think you need a history lesson my man… Look up the HTC m7 high came out long before the iPhone 6… Please I would love to hear 3 things that HTC copied DIRECTLY from the iPhone 6 or 6s, because I have named numerous that the iPhone has copied DIRECTLY from HTC…

  • Fred Brown

    Click view below ! 4-5 yrs worth of HTC design all following the same general design… Where did HTC copy apple ?

  • Fred Brown

    CLICK VIEW BELOW ! HTC M7 and the iPhone 5 compared, now tell me where the iPhone got it’s design ? It’s funny the iPhone comes out with a VERY similar design a little over a year later …..