HTC Ocean release date, specs rumors: HTC to come out with 'buttonless' flagship?

HTC US website
The HTC 10, the current HTC flagship. Rumor has it that the tech maker is launching a "buttonless" flagship, supposedly dubbed the HTC Ocean.

HTC may have inadvertently announced its next flagship as concept designs for an iteration dubbed as HTC Ocean surface online.

The concept phone has been detailed in a design video published online. HTC may have realized its mistake as the video has been taken down since. However, perennial tipster Evan Blass managed to grab the footage.

Although it is not directly highlighted on the video, it is already expected that the HTC Ocean is a flagship device, given that HTC seems to be selling a novel idea — a "buttonless" iteration. In the video, HTC has showcased what it called the Sense Touch feature for the new device. The HTC Ocean seems to have sensors placed on the edges of the flagship, instead of button controls for options like volume, power, and the dedicated camera shutter key. In addition, Sense Touch also seems to indicate voice activation controls in launching apps.

However, it remains to be seen if the Ocean concept is already in the pipeline. According to 9to5Google, HTC designer Danelle Vermeulen, who is credited with the video, says that the flagship remains just that — a conceptual footage. The longtime HTC designer told the industry follower, "Yes, this is just a conceptual piece and does not represent any real product from HTC."

Should HTC decide to push through with the idea, it may be some time before fans will see the Ocean concept turned into a flagship lineup. It is more likely that HTC will still continue with their flagship series, the most current of which is the HTC 10 lineup. In addition, HTC already has a planned flagship series scheduled for release later this year. The tech maker has already partnered with another tech giant, Google, as co-maker for its Pixel and Pixel XL flagships. The two new smartphones are said to launch early next month.

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