The Qualcomm SoC dates back to February 2016 when it was introduced along two other chipsets. The 435 is built on the even older 28 nm process with eight Cortex-A53 cores, clocked at up to 1.4 GHz. There is an Adreno 505 GPU and a modest X8 modem with a Cat.7 connectivity of up to 300 Mbps.
Going for flagships in the past two years did not prove a successful solution in the past two years, so the Taiwanese company might be switching to the affordable segment. There is also a slight possibility HTC is just certifying test products that have nothing to do with the smartphone market, so we have to wait and see.