We’ve all had that experience when someone tries to play you a song or video on their phone, but you have to strain to hear the distant, tinny sound. HTC changed mobile sound forever when we introduced HTC BoomSound on the award-winning HTC One family of smartphones.
Most cellphones treat audio as an afterthought, tucking a small speaker on the back or bottom of the phone. But when you pick up an HTC One or HTC One Mini, right away you’ll notice the centerpiece of the BoomSound experience: the micro-drilled grills at top and bottom that house the dual front-facing speakers.
It’s one of those breakthroughs that seems obvious when you think about it: sound is directional, so of course it makes sense to place the speakers facing the listener. It’s even more noticeable when you hold the phone horizontally and get the sound coming at you from the left and right.
In fact, a recent survey of U.S. phone users found that 74 percent said they were “delighted” with the speaker quality of the HTC One, beating the nearest competitor, the iPhone 5, by 34 percentage points, according to market-research firm GFK.
It may seem simple, but the engineering posed a challenge. BoomSound combines tricky hardware design, quality components such as dedicated amplifiers and digital signal processors, and proprietary software developed by our audio engineers.
Deciding on dual speakers was just the start. Our designers and engineers calculated that bigger speaker chambers could use natural acoustics to boost the sound. But a key challenge was putting in a second speaker in the crowded real estate at the top of the phone, a place that is also home to a front-facing camera and other sensors.
The team also wanted to pump enough power to drive those big speakers. So they went the extra step and added a dedicated amplifier to create big sound with minimal distortion.
More Powerful Sound
The result of all this working together is that BoomSound on the HTC One gives you sound that is several times more powerful than what you get on competing phones. In independent testing, the HTC One hit 86.5 decibels, compared to 84.1 decibels for the iPhone 5. That may not seem like much more, but because decibels are measured on a logarithmic scale, a 3-decibel increase from 84 to 87 would be twice as powerful.
But we knew we could make the experience even better.
It’s not enough just to be louder. Clarity is just as important. So whether you’re watching a video, talking on the phone, or listening to music, your HTC One can optimize the speaker performance based on those different scenarios. We wrote custom software that adjusts the sound so you always get the clearest, best audio no matter what you’re doing.
BoomSound has really helped the HTC One and HTC One Mini stand apart from the crowd and, judging from the competition lately, it’s clear that this is something that only HTC can deliver.
BoomSound is key to our mission to change the way people enjoy mobile audio, so we are excited to be bringing this premium audio experience to our affordable Desire portfolio, starting with the upcoming HTC Desire 601.
How has BoomSound worked for you? Tell us in the comments!