Freefall Photography: The HTC One

First up, watch this –

The video description:

The Experiment: We chucked a photography student out of a plane to see if he could take the perfect fashion photo. We gave him a model, lighting guys, a makeup artist and smoke machines. The only thing we didn’t give him was a camera. We gave him a phone.

This is the commercial that’s currently running in the UK globally to mark the worldwide release of the HTC One. While it’s not the most original idea in the world, it does have great piece of backing music (Tick of the Clock, Chromatics – most recently heard on the DRIVE official soundtrack), some great imagery and… well, that’s about it.

It sounds harsh but, I’m not entirely sure what the advert is for.

Yes, it’s for the HTC One, I get that much, but why are they jumping out of the plane? Why is the HTC One being used in this instance? From what I’ve read, it’s to help show off  ‘the One’s low-light capabilities’ – if that’s the case, why can’t I see the image and/or video quality that ‘Nick’ shot with the phone in the advert?

The very last second of the ad ends with ‘Watch Nick’s story online’, let’s get online and find that content then shall we?

A Google image search for ‘HTC One free fall fashion shoot‘ only turns up images shot by other cameras that were present on the day; DSLRs etc… keep clicking and eventually, on page 3 of the search, this image shows up via All Things D

I’m not sure, but I’m thinking that this might be the actual image that our man Nick shot with his HTC One. Not bad, right? Right. But I want the full image; the original, uncrunched image, with EXIF data.

But I can’t find it.

Even the official photo album from the shoot, the one from HTC UK’s very own Facebook page, doesn’t have the full file [instead uploading a frustratingly bad and super-compressed FB-friendly version]. Additionally – and still, according to the ad – Nick was recording video and trying to get the perfect photo at the same time. Guess what? No sign of that footage either.

I’m labouring the point, I know. But if you’re going to make a big deal about a fashion student being given the opportunity to take part in a one-of-a-kind free-fall fashion shoot, then surely you’d make a big deal around the actual content that said fashion student produced. No?

Just me then.

Read the press release, make your own mind up.


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Author: James Whatley

Experienced advertising and communications strategist working in brand, games, and entertainment. I got ❤️ for writing, gaming, and figuring stuff out. I'm @whatleydude pretty much everywhere that matters. Nice to meet you x

9 thoughts on “Freefall Photography: The HTC One”

  1. I have a full pack of the high resolution photos though I do not know if it contains the EXIF details you are looking for.

    Also check this HTC Link

    Again, I am not sure but I am thinking that they have included Nick’s filming within the making of these video that is part of the commercial. It would probably be best for you to get on to the HTC Press team for more information, if you require it. I do recall them saying the first shoot was cancelled and that in the second shoot he only had 0.8 seconds to shoot an image.

    whatleydude Reply:

    I’d be interested in seeing that pack, if you don’t mind sending it over?
    james at whatleydude dot com – happy to update the post after.

    [the video is the same]

  2. I thought the ad was just silly, regardless of the output (or lack thereof). Right from the premise, through to fact that the product has been endorsed by a student, as opposed to a seasoned photographer… #mytwocents

    James Reply:

    I didn’t even spot that student vs seasoned thing. Good shout.

    *adds to the list*


  3. I hate this advert! If a camera phone can take a STEADY picture falling at those speeds, I want to see them too. The amount of turbulence would be incredible so the phone would shake all over. (I’m surprised he could even hold on to it). They have endorsed this phone based on the word of a photography STUDENT. What Student gets the funds to arrange a photo shoot jumping out of a plane? What’s the point of the mobile lights? They would give off nothing outside even at low light. So the phone could upload these pictures before he lands? He was in the desert and at high altitude… So this phone must be awesome since it has bandwidth in places antennas cannot get to. Since a photography student only uses the camera (somehow), we must endorse it as an awesome phone… Rubbish! /rant off.

  4. Here the full size high quality pic. It takes me like 4ever to load =.=

    Dave Reply:

    As expected, the photo looks great as a thumbnail, but the full size image reveals the shocking noise-reducing smear and loss of detail we don’t see when viewing the results on anything bigger than a phone screen. And ‘low light’? That is not what I call low light.

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