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HTC One X and HTC One S: Reviewed and Compared to Apple iPhone 4S and Samsung Galaxy S II

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HTC One Series.jpgHTC have just launched their new flagship series of Android smartphones in the UK, the “HTC One” series. The HTC One series of smartphones which is currently available in the UK consists of the cutting-edge quad-core device, the HTC One X, and the slightly cheaper dual-core alternative, the HTC One S. Both are high-end devices which were first announced at Mobile World Congress in February and we’ve already posted a video review of the HTC One X yesterday evening.

 

In this article, we take a closer look at both of the HTC One devices and how they compare to each other. We compare them to each other and look at what’s new before comparing the HTC One X to the Apple iPhone 4S and the Samsung Galaxy S II. Finally, we look at how you can use HTC’s new devices on giffgaff.

 

HTC’s “One” Family of Smartphones: HTC One X and HTC One S

 

Both the HTC One X and the HTC One S are being positioned as high-end devices by HTC. The HTC One X focuses on providing high power top-of-the-range specifications such as a quad-core processor and a large 4.7-inch display whereas the HTC One S focuses providing a more compact and fashionable design. To this regard, the HTC One S features a 4.3-inch organic LED display (providing richer colours than the LCD display on the HTC One X) and an aluminium unibody design which is toughened using a micro arc oxidation process.

 

HTC One X Camera.jpgAside from the differences in the design philosophy of the two devices, both devices share many similar characteristics. They both run on the latest version of Google’s operating system, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich meaning you’ll have access to 400,000+ apps from the Google Play application store.

 

Although both devices run Android 4.0, they differ from the stock version of Android found in devices such as the Galaxy Nexus in that they feature the HTC Sense 4.0 user interface. Sense 4.0 offers integration with the Dropbox cloud storage service, Beats audio technology and includes HTC’s ImageSense technology. ImageSense provides several camera enhancements such as “instant capture” of photos, the ability to take multiple photos in rapid succession, HDR photography and slow motion video capture.

 

In terms of deciding between the two devices, the key differences are in the size and form factor of the devices and the on-board processing power. The HTC One S is also approximately £60 cheaper than the HTC One X.

 

 

HTC One X

 HTC One X.jpg

HTC One S

HTC One S.jpg 

Processor

1.5GHz quad-core

1.5GHz dual-core

Display

4.7-inch S-LCD2 display

4.3-inch AMOLED (organic LED)

Screen Resolution

1280x720

960x540

Operating System

Google Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Google Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Storage

32GB internal memory

16GB internal memory

Camera

8 megapixel with LED flash

8 megapixel with LED flash

Video recording

1080p, 30 frames per second

1080p, 30 frames per second

Battery

1,800mAh

1,650mAh

Text Input

On-screen software keyboard

On-screen software keyboard

Approx. price

Approx. £480 SIM-free

Approx. £420 SIM-free

SIM card size

Micro SIM

Micro SIM

 

HTC One X: Compared to Samsung Galaxy S II & Apple iPhone 4S

 

As HTC’s flagship Android device for 2012, the HTC One X will inevitably be compared to other flagship devices which are currently on the market including Samsung’s Galaxy S II and Apple’s iPhone 4S.

 

In terms of raw specifications, the HTC One X leads the pack with the fastest processor, the largest and highest resolution display, the latest software and the largest battery capacity. The HTC One X’s 1.5GHz quad-core processor should ensure that the device runs super-smooth even when multitasking and the 4.7-inch high definition display should ensure that photos and videos look super-sharp on the display. At 312 pixels per inch (312ppi), the display on the HTC One X almost matches Apple’s iPhone 4S “Retina Display” (326ppi) in terms of pixel density whilst being almost twice as large as the iPhone 4S’ 3.5-inch display. The larger display gives extra room for viewing your content but could also make the device uncomfortably large if you’re used to a smaller phone. Some consumers may also prefer the One S or the Galaxy S II for its organic LED display. Organic LED displays tend to offer richer colours and lower power consumption compared to LCD displays.

 

With the release of the HTC One X, the ball is now firmly in the court of Apple and Samsung. Both the Samsung Galaxy S III and the Apple iPhone 5 are expected to be released in the coming months with both phones needing to come up with something impressive to match HTC’s efforts.

 

 

HTC One X

HTC One X.jpg 

Samsung Galaxy S II

 Samsung Galaxy S 2.jpg

Apple iPhone 4S

 iPhone 4S Siri.jpg

Processor

1.5GHz quad-core

1.2GHz dual-core

1GHz dual-core

Display

4.7-inch S-LCD2 display

4.3-inch AMOLED (organic LED)

3.5-inch TFT display

Screen Resolution

1280x720

800x480

960x640

Operating System

Google Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Google Android 2.3 (Gingerbread), upgradable to Android 4.0

Apple iOS 5

Storage

32GB internal memory

16GB internal memory & up to 32GB micro-SD

16GB/32GB/64GB internal memory

Camera

8 megapixel with LED flash

8 megapixel with LED flash

8 megapixel with LED flash

Video recording

1080p, 30 frames per second

1080p, 30 frames per second

1080p, 30 frames per second

Battery

1,800mAh

1,650mAh (8.7 hours talk time)

1,430mAh (8 hours talk time)

Text Input

On-screen software keyboard

On-screen software keyboard

On-screen software keyboard

Approx. price

Approx. £480 SIM-free

Approx. £400 SIM-free

£499 SIM-free

SIM card size

Micro SIM

Standard SIM

Micro SIM

 

All three devices are compatible with giffgaff and some great savings can be had by buying these devices upfront and using one of our giffgaff goodybags.

 

Using the HTC One X or HTC One S on giffgaff

 

Both the HTC One X and the HTC One S require a micro-SIM card rather than a full sized SIM card. Whilst giffgaff does not provide Micro SIM cards directly, it’s really easy to cut your own using this simple Micro SIM cutting guide and video tutorial. If you’re not keen on the idea of cutting up your SIM card, you can also order a Micro SIM from our Microgaff community.

 

In terms of tariffs, unlimited internet is available on your HTC One device from £10/month with one of our giffgaff goodybags. For details on setting up the internet on your new device, please see our guide to configuring your Android device. Finally, if your HTC device is locked, see the unlockapedia for articles on how to unlock HTC smartphones.

 

Your thoughts…

 

In this article, we’ve looked at the HTC One X, the HTC One S and how they both compare to top smartphones such as the Galaxy S II and the iPhone 4S.

 

What are your thoughts on HTC’s new devices and their revamped Sense 4.0 user interface? Will you be buying one of the new devices or are you planning to wait for the announcement of the Galaxy S III and iPhone 5? Is processing power or design more important to you in a smartphone? Drop us a comment below: we’d love to hear from you!

 

Ken Lo writes about mobile technology and the mobile industry at Ken's Tech Tips.

23 Comments
newcomer

Loving my HTC One X ! You also get 23GB of free drop box storage for two years, so you cant really fault it for not having an SD card, especially when it has 32 GB internal storage anyway !

 

The way HTC have made all their apps work together is just plain awesome. Everything is integrated and they have also put popular apps preinstalled for free ! HTC have really upped their game here, I love the display. Whenever I use my wife's iPhone it just feel small and irritating to use. Although the phone is large, it is super slim and stylish. The camera is awesome too, you can take upto 100 shots and pick the best one.. too many great features I could go on and on. The best part has to be however the speed, the quad core processor really delivers and the phone feels responsive. To reduce batter drain, the HTC also has a 5th core, which the phone is run off when not using any processor intensive apps. 

 

ICS is also very very good! HTC have really gone for it and its about time !

apprentice
Im a 4s user myself.. I always thought the dual core processor in it was better than the s2 but obviously not, im intruiged to know what the new iphone will offer us; we'll just have to wait and see
steward

- Apple REALLY will have push a ship never mind a boat out' to equal what HTC & Samsung & LG & Huawei & Motorola have now...they've left iphone, a long time back in the tech. stakes...

I'm astounded that magazines, fone.sites - even bother including the 4s in anything...
Its simply a NO-BRAINER
thanks for the reviews look good phones
pioneer

My biggest issue with HTC is that most folk I know have had issues over the build quality Smiley Sad Excellent innovative phones that just wind up Applebots as they realise how they have been suckered into a marketing brick Smiley Wink

newcomer

Got the one x, admittedly an amazing phone, used both the 4s and sgs2 and can say honestly, the One X will wins hands down

beginner
Did anyone notice that the SGS2 is a year old? Six months older than the iPhone4s... SGS3 should be awesome! And as for the Retina display, why is Apple after buying amoled displays from Samsung?! Nice try though HTC, the X does look very nice.
newcomer

It seems hard to believe that anyone would be unhappy with any of these new generation of SmartPhones. They all look appealing to me.

 

I'm a Samsung S2 user and very happy with what it can do. I have thought about the Galaxy Note because my ageing eyesight just isn't what it used to be. But that extra screen size of the Note makes it seem a little unwieldly to use as a mobile phone though I do love the larger screeen. 

 

I took my S2 around India (with an Indian Airtel sim purchased in Delhi airport on arrival) and found it an indispensible tool. Most of India gave me G3 mobile data and even the absence of G3 still gave satisafactory data for keeping in touch with BBC News and The Times apps. I did find it necessary to reboot when moving between states though. And Google Maps for navigation was infinitely better than the India map we purchased for a Garmin SatNav (Garmin please note out bitter disappointment in the quality of the India maps). In eight weeks we spent barely £20 for roaming data and calls.

 

The quality screen on the S2 is also great for using the Kindle app which I prefer to using a real Kindle. You can comfortably hold the S2 in one hand and use your thumb to tap through pages and you don't need any external lighting either. So a good SmartPhone will save you £170 for a Kindle 3G too!

contributor

I think it should be of mention that desipite being only Dual Core. The processor in the One S is better than the one in the One X due to it's new Snapdragon S4 being based on a newer 28nm architechture rather than the older less efficent 40nm architechture in the Tegra 3.

 

Look at many reviews and their benchmarks and they confirm that the One S has the better chip. 

navigator
Yes you can use Dropbox but its fairly useless unless you have a good 3G signal/aren't roaming. Ive replaced my iPod with my phone and it seems ridiculous that I'd be taking a backward step with a new product. I tried using 32gb of storage before the 64gb cards came out but there'd always be that odd song that I fancied listening to that I didn't have with me.