With the HTC One now official after months of speculation, it is time to see how much HTC has evolved over the past year, and exactly how much did HTC’s One line has evolved since its most recent member has been released.
Some may argue that a much better suited comparison would pit the HTC One against the HTC Droid DNA, but don’t worry, we’ve also got you covered if that is the case. Myself, I find that the Droid DNA / J Butterfly actually borders the fine line between a phablet and a smartphone and that HTC’s latest high-end smartphone, was the HTC One X+, the upgraded version of the first exponent of a new wave of smartphones coming from the Taiwanese manufacturer.
So, is the HTC One a significant improvement over the HTC One X+? Join us as we find out by going through the following equally important sections: Display, Design & Build quality, Internal Hardware and Android Version & Software tweaks.
The HTC One X+ uses the exact same display used by the HTC One X, namely a 4.7-inch Super LCD2 panel that runs at a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels and measures a PPI density of 312. Plenty argue that this was the best smartphone display for the most part of 2012.
In the other corner, the HTC One also features a 4.7-inch display, but this one is using the Super LCD3 technology and runs at a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels (Full HD, 1080p, they all mean the same thing). In terms of PPI ratios, the HTC One is the new king, with an impressive result of 468.
While no significant improvements were made to the color accuracy and brightness / contrast levels (remember that the One X+ already featured a great display), the panel on the HTC One is much crisper than that of the HTC One X+, even when you don’t use a microscope to check out the display’s content.
Verdict: The HTC One wins this round thanks to its fullHD native resolution.
Design and Build Quality
The HTC One X+ uses the same chassis as the HTC One X, a polycarbonate body with rounded corners that’s both a joy to watch and to handle.
The One X+ measures 134.4 x 69.9 x 8.9 mm (5.29 x 2.75 x 0.35 in) and weighs in at 135g (4.76oz). It’s quite a robust, compact and beautiful smartphone!
The HTC One offers an aluminum curved back and much more aggressive corners, with only slightly rounded corners. Official measurements are 137.4 x 68.2 x 9.3 mm and 143g, so, from the looks of it, our contenders are both equally compact.
While the HTC One X+ features three navigational buttons at the bottom, the HTC One makes due with just two capacitive buttons. The HTC One features a speaker grill on both the upper and the lower bezel, but we’ll cover the stereo speakers in the next section.
Verdict: The HTC One X+ and HTC One speak slightly different design languages, but they are both great looking devices.
CPU, GPU and RAM
The HTC One is the first smartphone announced to use the Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 SoC, basically an overclocked version of the Snapdragon S4 Pro. This means that powering the HTC One packs a 1.7GHz quad-core Krait processor and an overclocked Adreno 320 GPU.
The overclocked Tegra 3 SoC (1.7Ghz Cortex A9 CPU and Nvidia ULP GPU) that can be found inside the HTC One X+ is also a fast processor, it is no match for the Snapdragon 600. Additionally, the HTC One features 2GB of RAM, while the One X+ has only 1GB of RAM.
The HTC One X+ is available in both 32GB and 64GB versions, with the same internal storage options being available for the HTC One as well. None of these allow for expandable storage via a microSD card slot, which is a shame to say the least.
Cameras and Speakers
The HTC One is a smartphone that just speaks multimedia. The dual speakers are accompanied by a Beats headphone amplifier, while the camera system is unique and promises to be revolutionary.
HTC has invented the term UltraPixel to define a 4-megapixel camera that has bigger pixels capable of getting more light and therefore to produce better photo and video, especially in low light conditions. The 2.1MP camera on the front is not as interesting, but should suffice for the occasional video conference.
The HTC One X+ is not nearly as impressive, featuring a mono speaker, an 8MP primary camera and a 1.6MP secondary camera.
The HTC One and the HTC One X+ are similarly equipped when it comes to battery capacity: the HTC One uses a 2300 mAh battery, while the One X+ makes due with just 2100 mAh. In theory, both smartphones should provide similar battery life as the HTC One is more power-hungry.
Verdict: The HTC One beats the HTC One X+ in almost every department except for storage, meaning that the former is the winner.
Android Version and Software Tweaks
The HTC One X+ runs on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and uses HTC’s Sense 4+ UI, while the HTC One runs Android: 4.1.2 Jelly Bean, overlaid with a new revamp of the Sense UI, called the New Sense.
Several improvements have been made to the design of the UI with the New Sense, with HTC also bringing new features such as the BlinkFeed – a live home screen that displays a stream of events similar to a home screen of a Windows Phone 8 smartphone – and HTC Zoe, a proprietary camera app / network that lets you improve and share your photos and videos.
Verdict: The New Sense brings some useful features, so the HTC One takes this round as well.
There’s no doubt about it: the HTC One is a much better phone than the HTC One X+. The HTC One is faster, uses a new and sleek user interface and comes with dual speakers as well as an improved camera.
The HTC One is a true and worthy successor to the critically acclaimed HTC One line of flagship Android smartphones. Do you guys feel the same?