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HTC One. Unquestionably the number one smartphone.
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HTC One. Unquestionably the number one smartphone.

htc_m7I don’t usually give away the punch line but I can’t contain my excitement about the HTC One. It is hands down the best Android smartphone you can buy. Perhaps even the best ever.

P1050245For its 2013 flagship phone HTC has developed new very Apple looking packaging..minimalist rectangle with rounded corners looking like it should hold a piece of fine jewellery. And that is what this elegant phone looks like out of the box.  It has been machined from a solid block of aluminum, each piece taking 200 minutes to carve out. It’s pretty light  143 g(5.04 ounces) and thin 9.3 mm (0.37 inches) but it feels rock solid. The curved back sinks into your palm, while the slightly angled edges help you grip it.

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Turn the phone over and the front is a spectacular 4.7″ full 1080p (1080 x 1920 pixels) with an incredibly sharp 469 ppi pixel density Super LCD3 touchscreen.  It is flanked by what HTC calls BoomSound speakers which put out the best sound quality on any  smartphone in the market today. At full volume, you can clearly hear a phone conversation as far as six feet away with no distortion. The screen is covered in Gorilla Glass 2 and the bezel is razor thin making the phone feel slim despite the huge screen. Just above the bottom speaker the HTC logo is flanked by only two soft touch buttons Back and Home a long press of the Home button takes you to Google Now.

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Light up the HTC One and prepare to be impressed first by how fast it starts up…a mere 8 seconds, only 2 seconds to shut down, by far faster than any phone I know of. I guess it is impatient to show off the bright and sharp screen with great viewing angles.

One angles

device-2013-05-01-145104The first look at HTC’s new Sense 5 overlay shows its simple flat look..slide the lock up to the home screen and you get a first look at HTC’s BlinkFeed. This consists of a rolling grid of tiles, containing information aggregated from various news websites and your social media feeds. It is the default Home Screen but you can change that.

You can add all the major social media services, such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Flickr, but the choice of news websites is not deep; you get  about 16 in a variety of categories AFP, AP, Huffington Post, Euronews and Reuters for news, and CNET and TechCrunch and the Verge for Technology. If this phone sells as well as it should there will likely be more choices down the road because linkFeed needs to be specifically supported by the corresponding news outlet or website so publishers will be unlikely to invest until the numbers are there.

All of this is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 chipset with a 1.7GHz Krait 300 CPU with a Adreno 320 GPU  and 2Gb of RAM.All this running Android Jelly Bean 4.1.2. As those numbers would indicate, this phone is a powerhouse. Scrolling is as smooth as silk, multi-tasking is seamless and apps open in a blink. The HTC One comes with 32GB of Internal storage which should be more than adequate for most users.

Phone performance is excellent in both directions and LTE data performance is excellent. The superb built in speakers enhanced with Beats Audio combined wight he fantastic screen  make the HTC One a perfect phone for enjoying videos or playing games.

 

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Normally I am not a fan of software that manufacturers add to phones but in the case but Sense TV is a cool addition. All it takes is a few simple steps and you’ll be able to select TV channels, access program guides, adjust audio and more with your HTC One. Find your favorite shows, and it will notify you when they’re on. Take control of your TV experience with your phone.

Now to the biggest change to the HTC One the introduction of the Ultrapixel concept to a 4 megapixel main camera. It could be a difficult sell against a competitive phone with a 13 megapixel camera. HTC explains that a 4 megapixel sensor means bigger pixels.

Take a look at this selection of pictures and you will see the results of the Ultrapixel concept. Notice especially the indoor shots and think about how often you have had disappointing results from other phone cameras indoors.

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The video performance is equally impressive, nice dynamic range and steady as a rock with optical image stabilization.

Wait, there’s more. HTC Zoe brings your photo gallery to life. Press the shutter and the HTC One automatically captures up to 20 photos and a 3-second video—a picture that’s alive. So your entire photo album becomes a living, breathing gallery.

is just one example of features HTC has incorporated into this camera to make it easier to capture and share your life stories. It is also simple to create 30 second highlight reels or slide shows complete with music ready to share immediately.

At the risk of repeating myself, the HTC One is the best smartphone you can buy today. It is sexy, well built and loaded with features including a revolutionary new camera system that can easily replace your point and shoot under just about any conditions. But. don’t take my word for it, drop into your favorite phone store..mine is TELUS..and take a look. I guarantee you will fall in love.

In Canada the HTC One is available from TELUS, Rogers, Bell and Virgin Mobile as well as Future Shop and Best Buy. In the us it is available at the HTC Online Store, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile Cincinatti Bell and Best Buy.

Giveaway

Now that I have your attention, I have a HTC One to give away courtesy my favourite carrier TELUS. See how to enter below and tell all your friends.

 

Bob Benedetti

Former RCAF Fighter Pilot Bob worked for CTV Montreal as a Reporter, Producer and Executive producer for 35 years retiring in 2004. Bob started reporting on personal technology in 1995 at CTV and continues today at Home Technology Montreal

9 Comments
  • John Shipley

    Hi Bob,
    I have had the HTC One X for over a year now and it is by far the best phone I have ever had! I am looking forward to upgrading to the One sometime in the next 6 months or so and am happy that you have given this phone such a great review. Thanks!

    John

    May 8, 2013 at 10:40 pm Reply
    • John Shipley

      Hi Bob,
      Do you have any follow up on battery performance for the HTC One? I am finding that my One X is now plowing through my battery really quickly. If I am using my phone moderately, I have to recharge after 6 hours. That is the only reason I was thinking of Galaxy S4 because I could buy a 2nd battery and take it with me on days when I know I won’t be able to charge for the day.
      I don’t believe in turning everything off just to save battery life as then what is the use of all the great features of a smartphone if you have to turn them all off all the time?

      Thanks,

      John

      July 4, 2013 at 1:08 pm Reply
      • Bob Benedetti

        I had no trouble getting a full day of moderate use when I was testing it and nothing I have seen since indicates others are getting less. If you need extra oomph for those long or busy days take a look at my review of TYLT products at http://wp.me/p1CzTI-2wV Likely a better option than a S4 with an extra battery.

        July 4, 2013 at 1:35 pm Reply
      • John Shipley

        Hi Bob,
        Thanks again for your quick reply! That is good to hear about the battery. I did see your review of the TYLT and it sounds interesting. I have this on order and will let you know what I think and if it works! http://dx.com/p/universal-portable-2600mah-mobile-power-bank-for-iphone-samsung-htc-black-150318

        John

        July 4, 2013 at 1:53 pm Reply
  • Bob Benedetti

    Thanks for the comment John,
    If you put your hands on the HTC One, you will not be able to hold off for 6 months.

    May 8, 2013 at 11:33 pm Reply
    • Steve

      I recently upgraded my old IPhone 3 to an HTC One. I agree that it is a beautiful looking device amd the screen is outstanding as is the camera. I have struggled, however, with the switch from IOS-6 to Android, especially with no user manual – HTC/Rogers having gone paperless. The on-line version is a 189- page monster, and who wants to print 189 pages? I’ve had to download and print sections of it just to get functional, so your claim of such ease of use applies only to an experienced Android user. Out of the box, the HTC instructions say…” just put in the sim card and you’re ready to go”. In reality, I had to call Rogers for them to activate my sim. After two weeks of self-instruction I’m slowly getting there, but am nowhere near as functional with my new toy as I was with my Apple. I have said, while cursing under my breath, on several occasions over the past two weeks, that if I had it to do over again, I would opt for the IPhone 5. I think HTC and their providers need to get on the ball and do a better job of welcoming the converts.

      June 3, 2013 at 11:52 am Reply
      • Bob Benedetti

        Thank you for sharing your experience with your new HTC One. Most people tell me they have no trouble doing the same things they did on their iPhone because the interface is similar enough, In other words making phone calls, opening apps, playing music and the like..all you have to do is tap the correct icon as you did on the iPhone.
        I admit getting the feel for the advanced features of the Android operating system can be a bit of a learning experience. I find most features quite intuitive but like anything new it takes a bit of practice before you are comfortable. Once you get used to it you will find it is a pretty simple and powerful system but still not quite as simple as your old iPhone.
        I am surprised about your difficulty activating the phone, my understanding of Roger’s policy is that they will not let you walk out of the store until your phone is activated and working

        June 3, 2013 at 2:25 pm Reply
  • Steve

    My HTC was an upgrade and came by UPS direct from Rogers in Toronto. I did end up going to a Rogers store in frustration, and it was they who advised me that I needed to call for activation. I’ve been with Rogers for three years before getting the HTC. Transferred all my content from my Iphone, once activated, but haven’t been able to find the music on the HTC yet. Took a while before the photos all appeared in Gallery too. I’ll get the hang of it eventually. I did conciously choose not to send it back in exchange for the Iphone 5. It is really the Android OS more than the phone that has frustrated me. It really is not as intuitive as IOS, at least not to an IOS conditioned brain.

    June 3, 2013 at 6:06 pm Reply
    • Bob Benedetti

      The music should be in the Music folder on your HTC One. If it is not there find it and move it there.

      June 4, 2013 at 12:33 am Reply

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