As has been the trend, flagship devices are often given the shrink ray treatment resulting in a more accessible version. This is true for HTC’s current popular flagship, the HTC One M8, as well, and what we have in our hands is something that looks quite literally like a smaller version of its bigger sibling, dubbed as the HTC One Mini 2.
Right off the bat, you’ll notice that the One Mini 2 is definitely smaller than the current flagship devices available, but still features dimensions that are quite comparable to last year’s HTC One M7, mostly due to the added girth at the top and bottom. The front houses the 4.5-inch display, along with the BoomSound speakers at the top and bottom, which are the contributing factor to the extra length.
Related: The best HTC One Mini 2 cases.
Another defining “Mini” factor is the fact that the One Mini 2 features a polycarbonate lip that goes all around the screen, and breaks up the aluminium found on the device. This raised border returns from the original One Mini, and while it’s noticeable on the silver version on which the lip is white, in the gunmetal grey version that we have, the black border definitely blends in better. Around the back is the aluminium slab with a brushed metal finish, with the only glaring difference being the lack of the secondary camera, which was a part of the Duo Camera setup of the One M8.
While the volume rocker and microSD card slot are on the right, and the microSIM slot is on the left, the power button retains its place at the top of the phone. It is certainly easier to reach, considering the smaller overall size, but is still a slightly awkward aspect of the handling experience. The narrower profile allows you to easily reach across the device with your thumb, and as is the case with any Mini device, the handling experience is refreshingly easy.
As far as the display is concerned, you get a 4.5-inch screen with a 720p resolution, resulting in a pixel density of 326 ppi. While screen nuts may hope for more, the 720p resolution is still very enjoyable on the smaller screen size. The Super LCD 2 display allows for good brightness and great viewing angles. As a media consumption device, the display of the One Mini 2 still performs very well. Talking about performance, the One Mini 2 features a 1.2 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor, backed by the Adreno 305 GPU, and 1 GB of RAM.
While this processing package is distinctly mid-range, I will admit that I was pleasantly surprised by the snappiness of the device. While processor intensive gaming may result in bit of a slow down, every day tasks like listening to music, watching videos, taking pictures, and more, caused no issues.
In the hardware aspect, the HTC One Mini 2 brings a lot of good extras to the table. The BoomSound speakers allow for an enjoyable experience, and compared to the One M8, the quality falls in line with the smaller stature of the Mini version, with basically just a lower level in the volume overall.
The general bevy of connectivity options are available, including NFC, but the sensor suite that lets you wake the M8 through gestures is missing. You get 16 GB of internal storage, which is further expandable via microSD up to 128 GB. And finally, the 2,110 mAh battery of the One Mini 2 is pretty much par for the course. General usage should let you get as much as 9 hours of use out of the battery, with the extra power saving modes very helpful in a pinch.
The camera situation is a little peculiar, not only because of the lack of the Duo Camera, but also because HTC has replaced the 4 MP “Ultra Pixel” camera in favour of a more conventional 13 MP rear shooter. When it comes to the camera app, the Zoe camera and Pan 360 mode are missing, but everything else found on the One M8 returns here. The camera allows for some great photos with vibrant colours, even if text was rendered without great crispness. Overall, it may not be the best camera out there, but is more than a decent performer. While the HTC One M8 did fare much better with regards to low light photography, the higher megapixel count does have its advantages.
Software is probably the only place where nearly all abilities are retained from the original M8. For all intents and purposes, HTC Sense 6 in all its glory is found here, albeit on a smaller screen. You’ll get a lot of HTC specifics such as BlinkFeed, Zoe, Gallery, a vertical scrolling app drawer, the recent apps screen, and the theme engine, that allows you to change the colour of various elements in the interface. What you get in the Sense 6 package is one of the easier to use Android iterations available, made possible by HTC’s style. Everything you need is on a simple, often monochromatic backdrop, with a priority towards function, over being eye candy. And as is the benefit of such minimalistic takes on Android, you will find that as HTC keeps it simple, they keep it fast.
|Display||4.5-inch Super LCD 3, HD (1280 x 720), 326 ppi|
|Processor||quad-core Snapdragon 400 1.2GHz, Adreno 305 GPU|
|Storage||16GB, microSD card slot, up to 128GB|
|Camera||13MP rear, BSI sensor, f/2.2|
5MP front, BSI sensor, Full HD recording
|Connectivity||GPS/GLONASS, microUSB 2.0, Wi-Fi a/b/g/n 2.4/5GHz, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC|
|Networks||3G/WCDMA: 850/900/1900/2100 MHz HSPA+ up to 42 Mbps|
LTE EMEA Band 3, 7, 8, 20
LTE Asia Band 1, 3, 7, 8, 28
|Software||Android 4.4 KitKat, HTC Sense 6, BlinkFeed|
|Dimensions||137.43 x 65.04 x 10.6 mm|
|Colors||Gunmetal Gray, Glacial Silver, Amber Gold|