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adh328
Apr 29, 2013, 04:11 AM
So I've been seeing a lot of posts about people saying they tried the HTC One... only to read that most if not all of these people didn't really give the phone a shot. Most of these people had either returned it the same or next day after they got it. To me, this is not a justifiable amount of time to truly test a phone. So... I have taken it upon myself to tell you guys my experience with the phone thus far. I purchased the phone 1 week ago. I have not returned it. I have not switched back to my iPhone 5. Here's how it's going so far...

Design
The design of this phone is absolutely stunning. You really have to see the design in person to see just how nice it actually looks. The pictures online do not do it justice. People have been saying that the power button placement is kind of in an odd location, and quite frankly, I somewhat agree. However, this is not a design flaw that will make me return the phone. I have gotten used to this and that's that. Not every phone is going to have the power button in the same spot. That's what you get for changing phone manufacturers. Also, I wish that the volume rocker was a little bit raised on the side. Though it looks sexy being flush to the side of the phone, I do sometimes find it difficult to find while using my phone at night. Again, this isn't a flaw that is a huge deal, and being that I have a case on my phone now, the opening on the case for the rocker has helped me locate it at night a lot easier now. Finally, the back and home buttons on the bottom of the screen are different compared to other Android devices. Though some users will find this annoying, being that I was coming from iPhone after 6 years, I knew I was going to have to learn the new hardware. Thus, this doesn't bother me at all and I have gotten used to the placement very easily. The HTC logo is not misleading at all for me and I have never accidentally pressed it thinking it was a button.

Display/Speakers
The screen on this baby is absolutely amazing. I had always been a huge fan of iPhone for having the beautiful screen and amazing color production. The screen on the HTC One is just as good, if not better given you have more pixels thanks to it being 1080x1920. Colors pop and blacks are black unlike on Samsung where they have that weird blue tint that I loathe so much. The screen is also very easy to navigate. I have somewhat small hands yet I still manage to use my phone with one hand.
The speakers on the HTC One are revolutionary. I do not know why phone manufacturers haven't put front facing speakers on their phones but HTC got it right. You really have to experience the difference in sound in person. It will blow you away compared to the iPhone 5 or the S3/4. Watching videos and playing games, the "BoomSound" speakers really immerse you in the content you are viewing. Not to mention these speakers can pump out some incredible volume. I used to have my iPhone on as loud as it can because I found it hard to hear sometimes. With the HTC One, I am below half volume because they get so loud.

Android/Sense
Being that I was so used to iOS, I was a bit nervous switching to the Android OS. After using it for a week so far, I must say that thanks to Sense 5 and Jelly Bean, the transition was rather smooth. I went in with an open mind knowing that things were not going to look the same and that there would be different ways of achieving the same thing. I'll admit that Android does take some getting used to. Notifications are handled differently for one. I miss having my screen turn on when I received a message, but I do like the notification light on the HTC One that says I have a message. This also saves the phones battery so I guess it's an okay trade off. Overall, I actually like Sense 5. Blinkfeed is actually useful to me because it is kind of my daily source of news. I did take out the FB integration on Blinkfeed just cause it got a little annoying, but I do like the fact that you can pick and choose what is shown. Overall, Sense is probably the best UI that I have used on Android.

Camera
The camera is so-so. Coming from the iPhone 5, I was a little iffy on the UltraPixel stuff. I'll say this, the camera does take some great shots at night however I have had some trouble taking pictures during the day. There is a lot of noise on certain pictures. I also wish that the pictures were more than 4MP. Being that I have a rMBP, the pictures don't fill the wallpaper on my laptop. Something small to complain about but still something I wish was changed. Zoe is cool but I don't really have much use for it. Also, the gallery needs a major overhaul. Too many button presses just to view one picture. I will say that the editing software along with the different "Instagram-esqe" filters is pretty awesome and I wish that the iPhone 5 had more options like this.

Conclusion
I know I probably missed some things to talk about but I'm not some professional reviewer. This review is just to give a basic user's idea of my experience so far. All and all, I really do like this phone. Do I miss my iPhone? yes. Why? I think mainly because most of my friends and family have iPhones. Dumb thing to think about, but hey, that's what Apple does to get you trapped in their eco-system and it works. Though I have not decided on which phone I am going to keep (and I have 1 more week to decide before I have to return it to AT&T), I will say that the HTC One is the first Android phone to really have me consider switching. If I go back to the iPhone, I am going to miss the bigger screen, the incredible speakers, as well as the sexy new design of the HTC One. I will update you guys in about a week to let you know what I decide!

Thanks for reading my review and I hope it wasn't a waste of your guys' time!



kramjam
Apr 29, 2013, 06:03 AM
Good review, interested to see what your decision is. As for your take on the camera, I've read around that there is a software update rolling out for some that enhances the quality of pictures taken, not sure if you're on that firmware yet.

chrisrosemusic1
Apr 29, 2013, 06:35 AM
Cool review, more or less summarising my experiences with Android before. I keep coming back for iMessage and iCloud. If the iPhone didn't have this I would jump in a heart beat, but for me, these two services out weigh any android phone features..

Krimsonmyst
Apr 29, 2013, 06:42 AM
Colors pop and blacks are black unlike on Samsung where they have that weird blue tint that I loathe so much.

Good review aside from this comment. Samsung uses AMOLED panels which have higher contrast and saturation levels, and AMOLED pixels turn off when displaying black.

So by the very technology, Samsung displays will have colours that pop more, and the blacks are deeper than what you will ever see on the One.

EDIT: Props to you for actually taking the proper amount of time to evaluate your new phone.

mattopotamus
Apr 29, 2013, 06:42 AM
I am on day 2 with the one, and I do not know if I will keep it. Many people say "phones have hit a peak", and this is the first time I really am seeing that. I currently use a nexus 4 along with the one, and there is no noticeable difference in performance. Obviously the One has better speakers and a "slightly" better camera, but I do not think it is enough to justify the full retail price I paid for it. I am almost certain I will just keep the nexus 4.

onthecouchagain
Apr 29, 2013, 07:59 AM
I am on day 2 with the one, and I do not know if I will keep it. Many people say "phones have hit a peak", and this is the first time I really am seeing that. I currently use a nexus 4 along with the one, and there is no noticeable difference in performance. Obviously the One has better speakers and a "slightly" better camera, but I do not think it is enough to justify the full retail price I paid for it. I am almost certain I will just keep the nexus 4.

Lte?

KentuckyHouse
Apr 29, 2013, 08:29 AM
Lte?

IIRC, mattopotamus is in the UK, so LTE isn't as big a deal for him yet.

Kashsystems
Apr 29, 2013, 08:50 AM
I am on day 2 with the one, and I do not know if I will keep it. Many people say "phones have hit a peak", and this is the first time I really am seeing that. I currently use a nexus 4 along with the one, and there is no noticeable difference in performance. Obviously the One has better speakers and a "slightly" better camera, but I do not think it is enough to justify the full retail price I paid for it. I am almost certain I will just keep the nexus 4.

Base on the specs, The biggest upgrade is just the screen being 1080p. I was looking an Anandtech benchmarks the HTC One was anywhere from 10-25 percent faster, but that does not mean it is noticeable to you for your day to day usage.

mattopotamus
Apr 29, 2013, 08:58 AM
Lte?

IIRC, mattopotamus is in the UK, so LTE isn't as big a deal for him yet.

I'm in the US, but get 10-13 down with ATT and am on wifi more than off of it.

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Base on the specs, The biggest upgrade is just the screen being 1080p. I was looking an Anandtech benchmarks the HTC One was anywhere from 10-25 percent faster, but that does not mean it is noticeable to you for your day to day usage.

And the screen does look good, but not much better. The s4 really had the biggest difference in the screen to me, and that is b.c it is amoled.

jrswizzle
Apr 29, 2013, 09:19 AM
I'm in the US, but get 10-13 down with ATT and am on wifi more than off of it.

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And the screen does look good, but not much better. The s4 really had the biggest difference in the screen to me, and that is b.c it is amoled.

I feel the One is actually noticeably better than the N4 - both in display and performance. And LTE is a big deal for me.

joshwithachance
Apr 29, 2013, 09:55 AM
For the first few days I was getting cold feet and missing my iPhone, just like you. But once I really gave the One a chance and stopped thinking about the iPhone I was in. The One just truly outclasses any other smartphone on the market.

mattopotamus
Apr 29, 2013, 10:07 AM
I feel the One is actually noticeably better than the N4 - both in display and performance. And LTE is a big deal for me.

What performance differences are you noticing? I guess I don't game or use any intensive apps, but noticed zero difference. I liked mostly everything with the one, but couldn't justify $600 on a device that felt nearly the same. The only gripes I had were the placement of the lock button and how flush it is with the phone and the volume button location. Also, it wobbles when on a flat surface since the back is not flat. Oh, and a few apps I could not see certain things b.c the aspect ratio. Is it the only android phone with that aspect ratio?

On an side note, if the rumors of 4.3 are true, that IMO, really hurts people buying non-nexus phones. If they were going to get KLP, they now are going to have to wait through two carrier updates.

jrswizzle
Apr 29, 2013, 10:31 AM
What performance differences are you noticing? I guess I don't game or use any intensive apps, but noticed zero difference. I liked mostly everything with the one, but couldn't justify $600 on a device that felt nearly the same. The only gripes I had were the placement of the lock button and how flush it is with the phone and the volume button location. Also, it wobbles when on a flat surface since the back is not flat. Oh, and a few apps I could not see certain things b.c the aspect ratio. Is it the only android phone with that aspect ratio?

On an side note, if the rumors of 4.3 are true, that IMO, really hurts people buying non-nexus phones. If they were going to get KLP, they now are going to have to wait through two carrier updates.

Just feels smoother - I experienced a hitch every so often on my N4. The One is smooth as butter for me.

I agree with the buttons - the flush-ness makes it difficult to locate the buttons without looking, but ultimately not that big a deal.

What aspect ratio is the One supposed to be? I thought most Android's were 16:9 - the Nexus 4 is a bit different because of the on screen software buttons - that 4.7" screen really is smaller in terms of usable space. Also throws off the ratio of what is actually usable as well.

And of course it wobbles....with a curved back it's pretty obvious it would wobble :p

I'm also a fan of Sense and the features they add to the One - Zoe and Blinkfeed being the main two. Those boomsound speakers are incredible as well - all things that make me choose the One over the N4.

MacRumorUser
Apr 29, 2013, 10:34 AM
Just feels smoother - I experienced a hitch every so often on my N4. The One is smooth as butter for me.

And this is basically exactly what I'm experiencing with the S4 via the One. There is just that small hitch every so often, whereas the One was just smooth period.

jrswizzle
Apr 29, 2013, 10:43 AM
And this is basically exactly what I'm experiencing with the S4 via the One. There is just that small hitch every so often, whereas the One was just smooth period.

MRU - would you happen to know what the software build number was that had the camera improvements in it? I have an AT&T version is that matters and I'm on 1.26.xxxxxx....

My pics seem pretty good (better than I'd heard and expected) so I wondered if I already have the update or if I can expect even better quality soon :D

MacRumorUser
Apr 29, 2013, 12:10 PM
MRU - would you happen to know what the software build number was that had the camera improvements in it? I have an AT&T version is that matters and I'm on 1.26.xxxxxx....

My pics seem pretty good (better than I'd heard and expected) so I wondered if I already have the update or if I can expect even better quality soon :D

1.29.106.11 was the update for me 1.29.401.11 being for unbranded handsets.

It's the first and more importantly last part which designates the newer firmware.

1.29.***.03 would be older than 1.29.***.11


You technically have an older firmware with 1.26

jrswizzle
Apr 29, 2013, 12:11 PM
1.29.106.11 was the update for me 1.29.401.11 being for unbranded handsets.

It's the first and more importantly last part which designates the newer firmware.

1.29.***.03 would be older than 1.29.***.11


You technically have an older firmware with 1.26

Ahh ok - I'm on 1.26.502.10.

It would be wonderful if there's an update coming. As I said, the pictures I've taken have been plenty good, so an increase in quality would be even better!

MacRumorUser
Apr 29, 2013, 12:16 PM
Ahh ok - I'm on 1.26.502.10.

It would be wonderful if there's an update coming. As I said, the pictures I've taken have been plenty good, so an increase in quality would be even better!

I do honestly think the lens issue was to blame for my camera issues in retrospect. When the replacement comes back, it will likely be the camera which will decide of the two which I decide to keep going forward.

mattopotamus
Apr 29, 2013, 12:19 PM
Just feels smoother - I experienced a hitch every so often on my N4. The One is smooth as butter for me.

I agree with the buttons - the flush-ness makes it difficult to locate the buttons without looking, but ultimately not that big a deal.

What aspect ratio is the One supposed to be? I thought most Android's were 16:9 - the Nexus 4 is a bit different because of the on screen software buttons - that 4.7" screen really is smaller in terms of usable space. Also throws off the ratio of what is actually usable as well.

And of course it wobbles....with a curved back it's pretty obvious it would wobble :p

I'm also a fan of Sense and the features they add to the One - Zoe and Blinkfeed being the main two. Those boomsound speakers are incredible as well - all things that make me choose the One over the N4.

I guess they are, but for some reason a few apps did not display correctly. Also, it told me Max GO was not compatible with the device and I don't know why. All in all it is a great phone, just not $600 better than the n4 since I would be buying it out right.

jrswizzle
Apr 29, 2013, 12:23 PM
I guess they are, but for some reason a few apps did not display correctly. Also, it told me Max GO was not compatible with the device and I don't know why. All in all it is a great phone, just not $600 better than the n4 since I would be buying it out right.

Ya - understandable.

I've been enamored with the One since it was released - got it for $450 with an early upgrade.

Given I'll sell my iPhone 4S and a couple cases for roughly $350, I figure it's definitely worth it.

I think the incorrect displays have to do with that nasty menu button at the bottom - something that will be fixed in the next major software update (HOPEFULLY soon).

mattopotamus
Apr 29, 2013, 12:24 PM
Ya - understandable.

I've been enamored with the One since it was released - got it for $450 with an early upgrade.

Given I'll sell my iPhone 4S and a couple cases for roughly $350, I figure it's definitely worth it.

That is another issue. A nexus device, at least where I live, really would take a long time to sell. There is not a single one my local craigslist. Whenever I do upgrade, I will probably just end up giving it away.

snowcrash
Apr 29, 2013, 12:41 PM
People have been saying that the power button placement is kind of in an odd location, and quite frankly, I somewhat agree. However, this is not a design flaw that will make me return the phone. I have gotten used to this and that's that. Not every phone is going to have the power button in the same spot.


Seriously agree with this statement. To me the whole "Omg the button is on the top left not top right! WHAT THE HECK WAS HTC THINKING?!?!?! FAIL!" is kind of silly. I've played with one and really didn't think of it as odd at all. Different then what I'm use to, but every reviewer (professional/amateur) is jumping on this like they moved the power button to 2 streets down and 3 floors up. Like the OP said, he got use to it. I think after a few weeks of use and muscle memory taking over you'll grab an iPhone and think "Ugg the power button on this iPhone is on the wrong side"

jrswizzle
Apr 29, 2013, 12:49 PM
That is another issue. A nexus device, at least where I live, really would take a long time to sell. There is not a single one my local craigslist. Whenever I do upgrade, I will probably just end up giving it away.

I'm keeping my N4 for that same reason - plus I'm going to Italy next month and as a backup, being its unlocked is a real plus.

Figure I can get a good look at new Android releases as well.

onthecouchagain
Apr 29, 2013, 02:38 PM
Seriously agree with this statement. To me the whole "Omg the button is on the top left not top right! WHAT THE HECK WAS HTC THINKING?!?!?! FAIL!" is kind of silly. I've played with one and really didn't think of it as odd at all. Different then what I'm use to, but every reviewer (professional/amateur) is jumping on this like they moved the power button to 2 streets down and 3 floors up. Like the OP said, he got use to it. I think after a few weeks of use and muscle memory taking over you'll grab an iPhone and think "Ugg the power button on this iPhone is on the wrong side"

You might feel differently if you owned it and had to reach for that button everyday to access (and sleep) your phone. Or you might not. Just pointing out owning and "playing with it" is different.

Mxbzz
Apr 29, 2013, 02:52 PM
I'm in the US, but get 10-13 down with ATT and am on wifi more than off of it.

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And the screen does look good, but not much better. The s4 really had the biggest difference in the screen to me, and that is b.c it is amoled.

I came from the N4 and could immediately notice the difference in screen quality. For one, using the N4 in sunlight was a complete nightmare! The One is MUCH more usable when I'm outdoors. Also the resolution was quite a bit more noticeable. I was able to discern the pixels easily on the N4 (especially in text) whereas the One is virtually impossible.

supahsain
Apr 29, 2013, 02:55 PM
You might feel differently if you owned it and had to reach for that button everyday to access (and sleep) your phone. Or you might not. Just pointing out owning and "playing with it" is different.
Have to agree, this is the reason I sold my HTC one S after a week. This phone is even taller :eek:

ucfgrad93
Apr 29, 2013, 02:55 PM
Thanks for sharing your thoughts OP. I have an upgrade coming due in the middle of May, and the One is very tempting.

jrswizzle
Apr 29, 2013, 03:07 PM
Have to agree, this is the reason I sold my HTC one S after a week. This phone is even taller :eek:

I think you guys blow it out of proportion, but hey I'm not making your decisions for you. If it really bothers you that much, then fine don't buy the phone. I personally think the decision to make the sleep/wake button the IR blaster was a nice touch and don't mind (dare I say prefer) the button on top.

I know I'm in the minority (at least here). I'm shuffling my hand regardless using any phone taller than the iPhone 4S (even the 5) so I don't see how its that much more inconvenient.

Anyways - I accidentally pressed the lock button more than once on my N4 so to HTC I say bravo!

sentinelsx
Apr 29, 2013, 03:53 PM
The power button placement is a major issue for left handed people like me. On the side would work much better IMO.

The iPhone has it on top as well but I use my index finger for it which is quite easy. With it on the side on then nexus 4, even easier.

But on the one, I will have to use a thumb AND shuffle it around.

Dontazemebro
Apr 29, 2013, 04:27 PM
You might feel differently if you owned it and had to reach for that button everyday to access (and sleep) your phone. Or you might not. Just pointing out owning and "playing with it" is different.

Owned the One X and now the One X +

.... button is not a problem couch :)

tbayrgs
Apr 29, 2013, 04:39 PM
I think you guys blow it out of proportion, but hey I'm not making your decisions for you. If it really bothers you that much, then fine don't buy the phone. I personally think the decision to make the sleep/wake button the IR blaster was a nice touch and don't mind (dare I say prefer) the button on top.

I know I'm in the minority (at least here). I'm shuffling my hand regardless using any phone taller than the iPhone 4S (even the 5) so I don't see how its that much more inconvenient.

Anyways - I accidentally pressed the lock button more than once on my N4 so to HTC I say bravo!

Agreed, lets just chalk this up to personal preference, like so many other features on smartphones. Some like it on the side, others prefer it on top (myself included), doesn't make either the right choice, just means each individual has to take it into account when determining whether a device is going to fit one's own needs/desires.

Can we just put this one to bed already?

MacRumorUser
Apr 29, 2013, 04:55 PM
The power button placement is a major issue for left handed people like me. On the side would work much better IMO.

The iPhone has it on top as well but I use my index finger for it which is quite easy. With it on the side on then nexus 4, even easier.

But on the one, I will have to use a thumb AND shuffle it around.

I'd actually argue contrary to that though. I too am terminally left handed and I find the power button placement on the S4 top right far harder to reach and use than the power button being on top left of the HTC One.

In fact I keep initially going to press the top left and hitting the headphone port at the moment.

mattopotamus
Apr 30, 2013, 06:08 AM
I came from the N4 and could immediately notice the difference in screen quality. For one, using the N4 in sunlight was a complete nightmare! The One is MUCH more usable when I'm outdoors. Also the resolution was quite a bit more noticeable. I was able to discern the pixels easily on the N4 (especially in text) whereas the One is virtually impossible.

I 100% agree about the phone in sunlight. I don't know about you, but I can really see the digitizer in sunlight on the n4 and it drives me insane haha