Steven Blum has written more than 2,000 blog posts as a founding member of AndroidPIT's English editorial team. A graduate of the University of Washington, Steven Blum also studied Journalism at George Washington University in Washington D.C. for two years. Since then, his writing has appeared in The Stranger, The Seattle P-I, Blackbook Magazine and Venture Villlage. He loves the HTC One and hopes the company behind it still exists in a few years.
No Android manufacturer, including Google, has ever created an LTE-capable device that wasn't tied down to a single carrier. No manufacturer, that is, until HTC.
The HTC One being sold through HTC's website is the first completely unlocked Android phone capable of running on the vastly superior LTE networks used by T-Mobile and AT&T.
Up until now, the only phones capable of using this network have been branded, meaning they're often filled with bloatware, firmware updates take forever and they're slapped with an ugly logo to boot. You can only buy them on contract, and if you're not eligible for an upgrade, you had to pay in full for a phone that wouldn't work with any other carrier than the one you're currently entangled with.
What HTC has done is quietly sidestepped AT&T and released a phone that's capable of the same blazing fast speeds as the rest, but not locked to a single carrier. Previously, the only unlocked phones capable of running on multiple networks were HSPA or HSPA+ models.
The HTC One that ships from the company's site is both carrier and bootloader-unlocked. According to the Verge, the phone will receive updates directly from HTC, not AT&T so you know you'll get the newest version of Android much faster.
If you're an AT&T subscriber, it makes far more sense to buy this phone from HTC directly than through your carrier. That's probably why HTC has been so quiet about their latest move. Quietly brilliant, that is.