We know, we are really late to join the HTC One party, but it’s better to be late than never. After one month of usage, we get to enjoy the best of the One and all its features to the max. Check out the video review below.

Overview

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HTC has been through a pretty tough time for the past two years, last year’s One series almost killed the company due to poor hardware specifications and weak marketing effort. The One is HTC’s most important product of 2013, it uses the One branding and aims to deliver the best build quality while packing fantastic hardware and software features in one killer hardware. After 6 months of its announcement, the One is still the best looking Android smartphone in the market. The HTC One has the following hardware specifications:

Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 1.7GHz Quad Core processor

2GB of RAM

32GB of Flash Storage

4.7′ SLCD3 Display at Full HD 1920×1080 resolution

4 Ultrapixel Rear Camera

2.1 Megapixel Front Facing camera

LTE 850/2600

HSPA+ 850/900/2100

GSM 850/900/1800/1900

WiFi B/G/N/AC Dual Band

AGPS

NFC
Bluetooth 4.0 with Apt-X

IR Blaster

2300mah battery

Design

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The One has a fantastic design and build quality, HTC claims that the One has a full metal body, it weighs at 143 grams and has a thickness of 9.3mm, definitely not the thinnest but the contour design of the phone makes the phone look really thin.

image However, beauty comes with a sacrifice with such material, we accidentally dropped our One on the road during our review period and it has got a really serious dent at the side.

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Additionally, the back scratches easily even if you don’t have keys in your pocket and the Beats Audio logo will fade out in a matter of time, we recommend getting a case when you first purchase your One.

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Display

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The Full HD SLCD3 display of the One shows fantastic color reproduction and good viewing angles even under direct sunlight, it measures at 4.7’ inches, which is still very usable for one hand operation, Touch sensitivity is great and multi-touch works precisely.

Android and HTC Sense 5.0

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Our HTC One has been upgraded to the latest Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean update, the update is very reliable and we never face any issues with it. HTC is well known for making the best smartphone usage experience since the HTC Hero, HTC Sense on the One is smooth and snappy, all the lags that you find on previous iteration of Sense is gone.

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HTC Blinkfeed is HTC’s latest addition to Sense 5.0, it also serves as the main home screen and signature of the One. Blinkfeed shows news, social media updates and etc. We love how Blinkfeed presents us the contents that we want to see, however we wished that it can allow us to add RSS feeds of our own.

In this new version of Sense, HTC has left out a lot of widgets such as E-mail, Messages, Stocks, Weather as well as many clock faces, lock screen widgets are also very limited, we just miss the old Sense at times. If you come from a previous verison of HTC Sense and use a lot of widgets, you will definitely hate Sense 5.0

Camera

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The 4 Ultrapixel Camera of the One takes decent pictures, pictures can be overexposed at times and can cause a lot of noise in low light. Check out the sample pictures below.

We feel that HTC could’ve redesigned the Camera app to have more camera features shown at the viewfinder instead of diving deep into settings to get the features you really want.

Screenshot_2013-09-08-15-47-42 Switching the camera to Zoe mode takes a 3 second full HD video, which allows you to retouch the video and do things like object removal, skin smoothing, and sequence shot.

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Video recording on the One is superb, you are able to take HDR video, fast 60fps video or a slow motion video to capture special moments, do check out the samples below.

Normal Video

HDR Video

Fast 60 FPS Video

Zoe turns your gallery to life, when you sort your album into Events, it will automatically create a 30 second highlight on the pictures that you’ve taken, you also have a few effects to choose from, which is very much like iPhoto on Mac OS.

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Check out the sample Zoe video we’ve created below.

Music Player

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The music player of the One has totally revamped from the last version of sense, not only it is much cleaner, it also has beautiful visualizations and lyrics. Music playback on the One will leave you an unforgettable experience that you will never find on many smartphones today.

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The One’s Boomsound speakers deliver one of the best audio quality that we’ve heard on smartphones and trust us, you will now be able to enjoy listening to music for long durations or even while you’re using your phone. Beats Audio is also enabled throughout every applications and games.

The One has a built-in headphone amplifier, so that you will be able to enjoy your tunes with high impedance headphones and don’t need to pump the phone’s volume to the max. Watching videos on the One is an enjoyable experience with its Full HD display and Boomsound speakers.

Call Quality and Performance

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Call quality on the HTC One is fantastic, thanks to Sense voice that intelligently helps to cut background noises, we also enjoy listening to calls through the earpiece, due to the two front facing stereo speakers, phone calls over the loudspeaker is loud, and we mean really loud and clear.

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The performance of the HTC One is awesome, even with Sense on top of Android, we never face any lags in switching and launching applications, the One also has very smooth frame rates in gaming however the device feels really hot when the processor is loaded. Benchmarks on Antutu and Quadrant shows very high scores at11929 and 25537 respectively.

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And finally, battery life on the One is decent, the 2300mah battery managed to survive one full day of usage in mid to heavy usage, we recommend not to turn on so many Blinkfeed channels if possible to save up juice.

Verdict

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We love the HTC One, it is the best Android phone that we’ve experienced, it delivers superb user experience in an amazingly designed hardware, it shows the philosophy that HTC has always believed in – Quietly Brilliant. While more powerful devices such as the Xperia Z1 and Galaxy Note 3 is coming out, we believe the One still stands a chance to compete with them in terms of its design, sound quality and user experience, and HTC Malaysia seriously needs to put in more effort on marketing. The HTC Oneretails at RM2199 at the moment for the 32GB version, we rate the HTC One at a high 4.5 out of 5 stars.

What we love: Amazing build quality, smooth and snappy user experience, fantastic camera features, BoomSound is really Boombastic

What we dislike: Fragile material, Sense 5 may not be good for ex-HTC users, Camera takes overexposed pictures, HTC MARKETING!

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