HTC One X Review: AT&T’s New Top Android Smartphone

by Jen Edwards Reads (100,636)
Editor's Rating
9.00

TG Ratings Breakdown

    • Service, Warranty & Support
    • 10
    • Ease of Use
    • 9
    • Design
    • 10
    • Performance
    • 10
    • Value
    • 6
    • Total Score:
    • 9.00
    • Rating 1 to 10, top score 10

Overview

  • Pros

    • Great screen
    • Excellent overall performance
    • Great sound, especially if you use Beats headphones
    • Excellent camera
  • Cons

    • AT&T Ready2Go requires a computer for initial setup
    • White backplate grabs every speck of dust and dirt
    • Voices can be somewhat muffled due to overactive background noise cancellation

Quick Take

A?great camera, a gorgeous display, fast performance, and a slim profile make the One X one excellent phone.

The HTC One X is the new flagship Android smartphone from HTC. It has a 1.5 GHz dual-core Snapdragon processor running Android OS 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and HTC’s Sense 4 user interface. It has a 4.7-inch screen, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and NFC wireless networking, dual cameras with HD video capture, and an 1800 mAh battery all crammed into a stylish white exterior.

It is now available from AT&T for $200 with a new two-year service agreement and a qualifying monthly data plan.

Build & Design

The One X looks like a lot of other Android smartphones in that it is dominated by the large touchscreen display, but here the comparisons end. It’s white, it’s slightly curved, and very sleek and modern looking. The exterior casing is made of polycarbonate and HTC says it’s as strong as metal. I’m not putting that claim to the test, but I can say that there wasn’t any flexing in the case at all, and the One X seems quite solidly built.

HTC One XThe back of the phone is very lightly textured; there isn’t any discernable pattern that you can see or feel, but it isn’t smooth or slippery and is quite comfortable to hold. Unfortunately that back casing grabs dirt like nobody’s business, and I was constantly cleaning it off. It’s worse, in my opinion, than a fingerprinted, smudged glossy casing, or maybe it was just so much more obvious because it’s white.

It’s quite portable because it’s so thin, and fits comfortably in your pocket. It’s a little narrower than some of the giant-screened smartphones I’ve reviewed over the last few months and it also fits comfortably in my hand. It should also be noted that the phone is not perfectly flat. The camera lens sticks out just a bit on the back, and the top and bottom edges are slightly curved. It won’t wobble when you put it down on a desk, but this design is different from all of those “me too” smartphones we’ve all seen so many times.

Screen

The One X has a 4.7-inch, 1280 x 720 (720p) Super LCD screen with Gorilla Glass, and it looks gorgeous. Text is crisp and clear, photos are sharp, and videos play well without any ghosting. You won’t find any pixels here, no matter how hard you stare, and even the default wallpapers look absolutely stunning. Choose the Lava Flow live wallpaper and you just might think you’re actually looking at a lava lamp — at least until you catch sight of the weather widget, that is.

My favorite feature of the screen is the outdoor readability; I find it incredibly frustrating to try and shade the phones I test with my hand, or try turning my back on the sun, etc., just to place a call or read an email. The One X performs exceptionally well outside, no fiddling with the screen brightness required.

Keyboard

The One X doesn’t have a physical keyboard, so you’ll be using the virtual onscreen keyboard, which works quite well. The keys are as large as possible, filling the entire display. Even though the phone is long and narrow and I made a few mistakes when I was “typing” very fast, the word completion fixed everything right up for me automatically, without forcing me to stop and tap the screen to pick the right word.

HTC One XI generally prefer landscape mode for text entry with virtual keyboards, but I found the narrow screen to be something of a hindrance when coupled with the very large keys on the virtual keyboard. With the keyboard open, you can see only a couple of lines of your message. Also, the space bar is so short that it’s hard to reach without really stopping and making sure you hit it instead of the comma or period on the other side. Generally, over-sized keys are a good thing, but there is such a thing as too big.

Other Buttons & Ports

The buttons on the One X are all the same color as the case and are small, sleek, and very low profile. The power button is on the top right corner, and the volume up/down button is on the right side. In my opinion, the buttons are a little too sleek. They’re hard to find when you’re fumbling for the power button, or turning down a ring that is suddenly too loud in a quiet room, etc.

The headphone jack is on the top left corner, and the charge/sync port is on the left side. Underneath the screen on the front you’ll find just three buttons instead of the standard four: back, home, and recent apps; there is no menu or search button.


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