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Gizmodo has a look at this. Personally, it sounds like a gimmick to me. But your mileage may vary.
HTC One UltraPixel Camera Versus the Competition
"When HTC first showed the world the One last month, it touted the merits of the camera's larger "UltraPixels". Theory says that larger pixels could produce better images than the competition. In practice? We're pretty damned impressed.
We compared the HTC One's camera to the cameras on the Nokia Lumia 920 and Apple iPhone 5, which were the top cameras in our recent smartphone camera battlemodo. We tested the camera in low-light both with and without flash, as well as in daylight. The photos in this test are taken from identical spots in every case, so any differences in the framing of the images is because of slight differences each camera's field-of-view. In almost every situation the HTC One's camera performed above our expectations—and above its competitors."