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HTC One X..The big screen multimedia smartphone to beat
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HTC One X..The big screen multimedia smartphone to beat

The HTC One X looks stunning sitting inside HTC’s new low environmental impact fully recyclable packaging..A black slab of Gorilla glass with white edges surrounded by the white compressed paper box. Both minimalist yet still stylish.

Lift it out of the box the and it is clear this is a premium phone..the One X’s white polycarbonate body…matte on the back, glossy on the sides.  the body seems to merge with the Gorilla glass which goes right to the edge and covers a bright and sharp 4.7″  12800×720 pixel  Super ICS LCD 2 screen.  Considering it is basically a slab of Gorilla glass the front of the One X exudes style and class..the speaker is two lines of tiny pinholes  with the front camera to the right. Very classy looking.

HTC One X

The back of the phone is a slab matte white polycarbonate, unblemished save for the four rows of pinholes for the speaker and 5 small holes for a docking station.  At the top there is a small plastic cap that removes to expose the micro-sim card slot..nothing else..no removeable battery, no slot to add external memory..that is the price you pay for such a thin device. The polycarbonate   unibody is a mere  8.9 mm thick.  Look at the phone from the side and you will notice  a nice styling touch..the  One X looks curved..an illusion created by the way the back merges with the gorilla glass front.

Unlike its thin competitors the HTC One X does not feel plasticky or cheap..this is one solid device that looks good and feels terrific in the hand and the specs are top of the line too.

OperatingSystemAndroid™ 4.0 (ICS) + HTC Sense™
Processor1.5 GHz Dual Core Qualcomm MSM8260A
Memory RAM1 GB DDR2
Memory Storage16 GB onboard storage
Display4.7″ S-LCD 2 HD screen 1280x720px
Network4G LTE & HSPA+
Wi-Fi®802.11b/g/n
Battery1800 mAh, Embedded
Camera(Main): 8 MP, f/2.0, BSI, Single LED – Smart Flash, ImageChip 1080p HD Video with Stereo Sound (Front): VGA (640 x 480)
AudioUniversal Beats Audio
Dimensions134.4 x 69.9 x 8.9mm

Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich with Sense 4 flies on this phone..I am glad to see HTC remove some of the bloat that seemed to creep into every new version of its popular interface. Sense 4 covers stock ICS slightly but keeps the good features of the new OS. Scrolling was as smooth as silk and apps opened quickly and ran without hiccups. The 4.7″ S-LCD2 is bright and sharp with a great viewing angle. It blows the doors off the  competition’s screens.

The front camera is 2MP unit that does the job for video calls..but the rear facing camera is something else..The HTC One X takes as good pictures as a point and shoot digital camera. HTC has upgraded every part of the camera, including the lens, the sensor, the software, and even integrating a new custom HTC ImageChip. These enhancements combine to deliver almost instant  image capture, best image quality under adverse conditions and a simple to understand interface that allows quick access to capturing stills and videos with side-by-side photo and video capture buttons. You can even shoot a still picture while capturing video..quite amazing. The fast f2.0 lens lets you take great pictures in even challenging lighting conditions and the camera also includes HDR, a market-leading technology, for taking great photos even when there are varying levels of brightness. I am quite impressed with this camera..in fact all the images in this review were shot with this camera. HTC is also pretty sure you will be impressed as well and offers up this challenge:


 HTC Challenge

How did you do? Let me know in the comments section below..I feel quite comfortable leaving my point and shoot at home and using this as my prime camera for snapshots. My only complaint..I would love to have a dedicated camera button for such a great picture-taking machine. This is certainly the absolute best camera on an Android device and while I found still picture quality on the iPhone 4s about the same, the HTC One X blows it away on HD Video and overall versatility and features..it just more fun to use. In other words this is the camera phone to beat. This picture shows the versatility of this camera..look how I was able to control the depth of field.

This video shot under difficult backlit conditions shows how well the camera deals with challenging situations..notice how the sun in the corner of the shot did not wash everything out.

http://youtu.be/uvSrlEqHrqY

The HTC One X features Beats Audio..but does not include a Beats headset. I tried it out with my Bose headset and found the audio quality to be very good..but quite frankly I didn’t notice a heck of a lot of difference between the various audio enhancement and/or Beats selections..perhaps a different headset or different music selection would provide different results.

This is the second best smartphone I have ever used..the best is the HTC One S..with its smaller 4.3″ screen it fits better in my hand. But, if you like big phones and watch a lot of videos this is the best phone for you…The One X is  stunning with a touch of class not found on other phones..it feels nice and solid in the hand for such a big phone it is surprisingly light at 130 grams. It is so well built if feels as thought it should weigh more..I’m not complaining 🙂 I like well built phones. Phone call audio quality in both directions is excellent with plenty of volume available from the speaker for calls, ringtones and notifications. The improved audio quality was especially noticeable on Bluetooth connections.

Data performance on the Rogers LTE network is just short of amazing…I have never been impressed with Rogers’ HSPA+ performance so 33GBs+ downloads blew me away. Uploads were a bit less satisfying ranging from around 1.5GBs where I live on the western edge of Rogers LTE coverage…to just under 10GBs in Downtown Montreal but curiously downloads were considerably lower Downtown, in the order of 16GBs.

The HTC One X is available in Canada from Rogers, Best Buy and Future Shop. the price ranges from $99.99 with a three year plan up to $569 with no plan. In the US it is $199.99 with a two year plan at AT&T and Best Buy, $629.99 with no plan

 

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

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