The HTC One series were the phones that everyone was buzzing about at MWC 2012. And rightfully so as all three handsets (X/XL, S, and V) represent a reboot of HTC’s smartphone business by a re dedication to nailing the basics in both hardware and software. The international version of the flagship One, the One X, has been in popular tech site’s hot little hands for a while now, and they’ve definetly come through with valuable impressions.
PocketNow: “The One X marks HTC’s attempt to undo its wrongs of last year, and it gets really close to doing just that. The hardware is stunning, the display is better than anything we’ve ever seen, and we applaud what HTC has done with Sense in making it feel less like clutter and more like an enhancement. But we’re also surprised that the One X, which is the first smartphone to have the coveted Tegra 3 quad-core chip, isn’t uncompromisingly fast. It’s just not acceptable to see stutters in various places, like when opening a folder, tapping on a setting, or zooming in on a web page. The Tegra 3 is new, unproven, and as far as we can tell, not ready for prime time.”
PocketNow had no shortage of praise for the hardware, specifically the One X’s screen. While they liked Sense 4.0, they felt that it could still be lighter in terms of visual punch in some parts of the OS like the Task Switcher.
GSM Arena: “So that’s that then – our look at HTC’s latest attempt at bringing comprehensive smartphone functionality under one roof is complete and we have to tell you we are pretty impressed with it. The One X is not only surprisingly compact for its screen size and feature set, but also every bit as powerful as the quad-core chipset inside will have you believe.
Its camera may not be the best in the business and the Sense UI might need some fine tuning, but perfection doesn’t really exist in the smartphone game. What’s important is that the HTC One X delivers where it really matters, providing as solid user experience as you can hope for and a picture perfect screen, which is a joy to both look at and use.”
GSM Arena loved how compact the One X was given it’s display size. They also were impressed with the battery life, Sense 4.0, and the performance of the device in day to day scenarios. Detractions were the lackluster audio output, and the camera’s lukewarm image and video quality.
Engadget: “There’s absolutely no doubt that the One X is a masterpiece of an Android device: it obliterates pretty much all of its competitors by giving even the mighty Galaxy Nexus a run for its money. HTC’s really crafted something special here, with a brilliant combination of branding, industrial design and user experience. This handset looks and feels stunning, with top-notch materials and build quality, the most gorgeous display we’ve ever stared at on a phone, a fantastic camera that’s fast and easy to use and a laundry list of every possible spec under the sun. Sense 4 is thin and light enough to enhance — not detract from — stock Ice Cream Sandwich. Pinch us, ’cause frankly, we’re smitten.”
Engadget was excited that HTC has appeared to get their mojo again with the One X. They liked the hardware design, seeing it as a distinct change from HTC’s past, and also liked the camera’s image quality and shutter speed. Sense 4.0 impressed with it’s lightness and refound dedication to enhance, but not replace, the Android experience. However, they wished that battery life was better, that it had a physical camera button, and the camera was better protected from potential physical damage.
Android Central: “The leader of the next-generation HTC One series of smartphones has been a breeze to use. Android 4.0 has been improved upon with HTC Sense 4 while still retaining the overall look, feel and function of Ice Cream Sandwich, which in and of itself has an excellent user experience. The camera is a high point, Beats Audio makes music sound better, and you get a bunch of online storage thrown in for free. HTC easily has a winner in the One X.”
The One X’s brilliant screen won over Android Central early on in their review. Other hits include the industrial design, the overall performance and Sense 4.0. Misses included the camera lens “bulge” on the rear of the phone, the lack of MicroSD expandability, and the lack of a user replaceable battery.
The Verge: “…the One X isn’t just one of the best Android phones I’ve ever used — it’s one of the best mobile devices I’ve ever used, period. Seriously, HTC has done something pretty special with the One line, and I’m encouraged that Peter Chou and company appear to be back on the right track.
Just give me a One X running something closer to stock Android 4.0, HTC, and I believe you’ve got the best smartphone ever made”
The Verge, like most others, had nothing but praise for the One X’s industrial design, although the particular surface treatment HTC used on the polycarbonate body raised concerns about durability. They weren’t nearly as fond about Sense 4.0 on the other hand, slammed the Beats Audio integration, and wished that the device’s camera lived up to the lofty claims that HTC threw out during MWC.
MobileBurn: “The HTC One X is easily my favorite phone on the market today. Even Samsung’s Google Galaxy Nexus pales in comparison in my eyes. The sexy hardware design, the updated Sense 4 user interface, and the amazing camera team up with blazing performance to make the One X an unstoppable force of nature that I simply must have in my hand. I am quite certain that there are going to be quad-core Samsung-built Android devices with equal speed and camera performance in the near future, but I doubt that Samsung has the grapes to put out an industrial design as bold as that of the HTC One X.”
For the most part, reviewers are completely smitten by the industrial design of the HTC One X. They love the polycarbonate unibody feel in the hand, and resistance to the bumps and scratches of everyday life. Many also love the screen’s vibrancy and lack of PenTile matrix. Finally, camera shutter speed and special features were another near unanimous point of praise by pundits.
All isn’t well however, many were left disappointed by the camera’s overall quality: good, not great, and not as great as HTC let on. Furthermore, some felt that Sense was unnecessary on a device with Android 4.0. Also, many found the lack of expandable storage disappointing, even with 25 GB of Dropbox thrown in for 2 years. Finally, the non removable battery and powerful hardware packed a one two punch on some reviewers, forcing them to the charger more often than they’d like.
So what do you think of the One X? Has HTC finally made a comeback, and is it enough to fight off the Galaxy SIII?