HTC First

Going contract-free can be expensive up-front, and the $450 HTC First proves it

By now you've heard that you can snag the HTC First at AT&T in the US for $99, and soon you can do the same in the UK on EE (pricing to be determined), but what if you just want to buy one outright? If that's what you're looking to do, be prepared to shell out $450 for it.

There are a lot of reasons why people want contract-free phones. Inexpensive prepaid service, the freedom to switch carriers at will, and not having an upgrade option from your carrier are just a few. They're all good, valid reasons and we're 100-percent behind folks who want to take a bit more control and save a few dollars if they can. And $450 is far from the most expensive contract-free price we've ever seen. But it is also a far cry from $99, so decisions will have to be made.

While it's likely that HTC made a few extra changes to Android for the First, chances are a cheaper, higher spec'd Nexus 4 is a better buy. Eventually Facebook Home will make it's way to other phones, and the Nexus 4 is bound to be on the short list. We won't presume to tell you how to spend your pennies, but it's something to consider. 

Source: AT&T


Reader comments

HTC First to cost $450 without a contract


it DOES look like the HTC First is stockish Android device though (aside from the launcher, which you could replace). So LTE + stock Android....

Actually if I wanted an HTC First Android Smartphone, I would pay $450 for the contract-free one. That's not a bad price compared to $650-$800 for a high-end Smartphone like a Samsung Galaxy S4 or the ugly HTC One. I have never signed a wireless contract in my life and I don't want to start now.

I guess they have to have an off contract price but I can't imagine the demographic this would appeal to having that upfront.

personally for me I think its ugly in pictures. Maybe in person its nicer but from the pictures I have seen, something about it I don't like.

Seems like AC feels like most of us regarding this "experience." I'll pass. I think this phone would be great for my teenage nephew and nieces, but not for me. I'm a prepaid kind of guy now, so this is def not worth paying $450+tax when the 16gb Nexii is $349.

I guess they do it on purpose so people get stuck with a 2yr contract with ads. Anyone would choose a nexus 4 over this crap