HTC One X+ Review: Even Better Than Before
If you quickly glance at the One X+ and original X, the only difference you'll see is the finish -- the X+ comes with a more aggressive style for a fancier oomph. It's a beautiful phone, designed with round corners and a slim profile. It's comfortable to hold -- the edges angle in for an ergonomic touch, while the soft polycarbonate shell give you a grippy feel so you don't accidentally drop it.
The One X+ is just as super-sized as its predecessor. And the massive 4.7-inch display is stunning. The pixel density on it is just a smidge lighter than the iPhone -- 312-pixels-per-inch compared to 326 ppi -- but the 720-by-1,280 resolution is extremely detailed -- you can't pick out the pixels. That means it's an ideal canvas if you watch a lot of movies and TV shows. Want to go on a "Lost" binge on the subway? No problem. The extremely sharp and vibrant colors and wide viewing angle make sure you -- and the person sitting next you -- can watch in comfort. You'll also love the strong sound system -- more on that later.
The One X+ goes toe-to-toe with iPhone's excellent camera. Both devices offer a similar 8-megapixel lens, each with a host of filters and editing tools. But the One X+ gets a slight lead for having better add-ons. I particularly like holding down the shutter key to take multiple photos -- the lens is so fast that action shots of Usain Bolt wouldn't blur. Overall, the picture quality is well-defined and vibrant. In short, it's fantastic.
If you're ready to take a photo, but decide you'd rather record video, you can quickly switch to 1080p at a moment's notice. That comes in handy when you see a surprising event. But if you record video and then decide you'd rather have a photo, you can take a screen cap of the clip. Pretty neat. HTC beefed up the front-facing camera to 1.6-megapixels from VGA, so when you video chat, your friends can see your beautiful mug with better clarity. You can also turn on a "skin correction" filter to make yourself even more gorgeous, if that's even possible. It's these sorts of feature that eke the One X+ past the iPhone, and fun device to own.
Of course, one of the biggest advantages is the operating system -- the One X+ ships with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, Google's latest version. What's so great about it? Well, for one, "Project Butter" -- the codename for software that helps the phone run more smoothly. The geniuses at Google designed Butter to make the Android responsive, so when you gesture or press the touch screen, you won't feel a frustrating lag.
HTC, as always, added its Sense interface. The overlay, version 4+, doesn't bring much to the table aside from some ugly green accents to the menu. But the nice thing is it doesn't bog down Android either. Sense 4+ fixes a few bugs found in 4.0, and you'll get a few worthless add-ons like expanded notifications. If HTC suddenly decided to leave Sense out, you wouldn't find me complaining. Frankly, a vanilla version of Android, like the one that runs on the Nexus 4, is ideal. It runs faster, gets updated sooner and looks nicer as well. Either way, Sense is more tolerable than other interfaces, and not a big drawback.
The back of the One X+ lets you know it has Beats Audio. You can thank Dr. Dre for the bass-driven, full-bodied experience. If you like deep, heavy bass and accentuated treble, you'll love Beats. It makes your music sound more robust. But if you'd rather have a more natural sound, you can always turn it off.
The quad-core processor, meanwhile, runs at a speedy 1.7-gigahertz, but only 1-gigabyte of RAM. Along with Butter and streamline interface, the chip keeps things humming. But I did notice a slight delay while flipping through home screens. There was also a bit of choppiness while playing games. For the most part, though, everything runs without a hitch. But it's something to take note of.
You may notice there's more internal memory on the One X+ too -- 64-gigabytes to be exact. Compared to the skimpy storage on high-end devices like the Nexus 4, you'll be glad you have more than enough room for photos, music and media. That's a big perk if you like to bring a movie library with you.
I didn't have a problem lasting through the day on moderate use. The battery life is okay -- not great, but fine. If I started to listen to music or browse the Web, I'd run dangerously close to empty near bedtime. If you're worried about being stranded, unfortunately, you can't swap batteries. So the best thing you can do is buy another charger.
Overall, the One X+ is one of the best phones on the market, and it's a worthy rival to the iPhone 5 and Galaxy S3. The only issue, of course, is the lack of a microSD slot. The other flaws are minor. HTC doesn't have Samsung's marketing muscle, but if you want a great phone that flies under the radar, the One X+ is an excellent choice. ♦
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Samsung Galaxy S4: More of the Same
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Super LCD 2 (Accelerometer / Proximity Sensor / Ambient Light Sensor)
December 01, 2012
Pretty Good Aside From a Few Gripes
I got the 64-gigabyte version of the One X+, and I can say, it's a great phone and a significant improvement over the Desire HD and Galaxy S2 devices. I thought I was in love when I bought my Desire, boy was I wrong. The One X+ is so much better, and then some.
I'll start with the exterior. The design is very sleek -- an understated elegance you don't find elsewhere. Some phones have a tacky look about them, but not the X+. The materials are high-quality and the finish makes it nice to hold in the hand. It's a shame to cover it up with a case, but you'll probably want one to protect your device.
The nice thing about the X+ over Samsung phones is the ability to personalize the launcher shortcuts. You only get five home screens, as opposed to the seven you get on the Desire, so you'll have less real estate to work with. But now you can create folders too, which means less need for home screens I guess.
The virtual keyboard that comes included is fantastic. It's so much better than the ones on the Desire and S2. The autocorrect is intelligent and fixes most typos of the thumb. I'm a fast typer, so I'll often mispress keys, but with the X+, I don't have to worry words will come out wrong. Typing longer forms like e-mails, is no longer a chore.
Android does a pretty good job optimizing the battery life, but you can tweak the settings even further to maximize the juice, so to speak. There are third-party apps out there to do it too.
HTC added Chrome browser to the X+. It's better than the stock Android browser, in my opinion, and it's a lightweight program that loads pages quickly. The device comes with a bit of bloatware, but you can remove most of it painlessly.
I've had a few problems with the X+. The back button, for one, is inconveniently positioned on the left, which means if you're right-handed, you'll have to stretch your thumb across to reach it. If you're holding the phone with one-hand, and you reach over, you'll feel like you're about to drop the phone. I play it safe and just use both hands, but it's annoying.
Another issue is the location of the micro-USB port -- it's on the left again, rather than the bottom like most phones. When you're charging the phone, it just feels awkward in your right hand. When the port is on the bottom, it's really comfortable to curl a finger around the cord to keep it steady.
Lastly, the exterior attracts fingerprints like crazy. I'm constantly wiping it. It's a shame because it's such a beautiful phone, but it's not designed for function, only form.
Other than those few gripes, the One X+ is an awesome phone. If those minor issues don't scare you away, you'll be satisfied with this phone.Was this review helpful to you?
89 out of 91 people found this review helpful.
December 02, 2012
One of the Best
I'm a bit of a smartphone expert, if I say so myself. I've owned several iPhones, Android devices and even Windows Mobile. So I know a little about what I'm talking about.
As far as phones go, the HTC One X+ is right up there with the best of them. Google really blew me away with Jelly Bean. The software is so fast and smooth, it blows the competition away. In terms of hardware, the One X+ can stand toe-to-toe with any phone.
The design is splendid. The materials are high-quality and don't feel the least bit cheap -- like plastic-y feel of the Galaxy S3. The touch screen is large and bright and the quad-core chip and Jelly Bean make everything run as smooth as butter.
The battery life is marginal at best, though. If there was an Achilles Heel, that would be it. I can get around 20 or so hours on a single charge, so you'll have no problems lasting through the day. Still, there's a battery saver mode, if you're a heavy user like me. With Wi-Fi and 4G activated, you're looking at around 10 to 15 hours of usage. 4G really does a number on the battery. And if it's on all day, you'll lose a good four or five hours of power.
Another issue I have is the lack of any expandable memory. If you buy the 64-gigabyte version, you shouldn't have any problems, or you can connect a micro-USB backup your files to a flash drive -- sold separately.Was this review helpful to you?
66 out of 69 people found this review helpful.
November 23, 2012
Great Phone. Period.
I'll give you the lowdown on the One X+. It's a great phone. Period.
HTC did a wonderful job on the design. It's sleek and smooth and elegant. The touch display seamlessly blends into the matte casing. And the screen is large, but not too large, so watching movies and browsing the Internet is easy on the eyes. Coming from the iPhone, I was a bit hesitant about moving to a non-Retina screen, but rest assured, HTC is every bit as good as Apple. The colors are vivid and the pixel density is solid. Simply put: the screen is stunning.
As for the features, the camera captures detailed photos -- some of the best I've seen from a phone. The image sensor is really sensitive. Not only that, but videos recorded in HD are just as clear played on a PC monitor. And while you're watching the video, you can snap a photo. Brilliant.
I'm not usually a fan of the custom interfaces manufacturers add on, but Sense is actually sort of useful. I'd still prefer vanilla Android, but it's still better than most.
Jelly Bean is awesome. That's one of the reasons I got the One X+, and it doesn't disappoint. The phone runs on a quad-core chip with 1-gigabytes of RAM, so it's blazing. Don't worry about opening up a tray of apps; it can handle anything you throw at it.
One thing that bugs me is the camera lens. It sticks out from the back, so there's a curve to it. There's also some bloatware. You can blame AT&T for that. Fortunately, you can disable most of it. Overall, I'm pretty happy with the One X+. I'm sure you will be too.Was this review helpful to you?
58 out of 62 people found this review helpful.
December 06, 2012
One X+ Better Than Lumia 920
I was debating between the One X+ and the Nokia Lumia 920. Eventually I went with the One X+ because of the screen size -- which is simply amazing, I might add. I thought my friend's Note 2 had an awesome screen, but man was I mistaken. The One X+ crushes the Note's display when you look at them side-by-side. Hands down. The One X+ is also faster than the Note.
I like the matte back. It gives the One X+ an anti-slipping feel, something the Galaxy doesn't have. The Beats Audio is great too. It pumps out music, so you don't even need headphones. On the basics, the call quality is crystal clear. And the battery is pretty good.
I don't have much to complain about, except maybe a microSD slot would have been nice. But 64-gigabytes are enough for me.Was this review helpful to you?
33 out of 36 people found this review helpful.
November 17, 2012
The One X+, Finally
After breaking my HTC Inspire, I decided to buy the One X. A few days in, I wasn't thrilled with the batter life, so I took it back and went with the One X+.
I have to say, the X+ is easily worth the $35 restocking fee and $100 extra I paid over the X. I can easily get two days of power from just a single charge -- no problem, even with heavy use.
The design is great. The look and feel is outstanding. The touch screen is fantastic as well. Of course, the improved battery life, and a great camera for photos and video and a speakerphone that pumps out the music with clarity.
On the negatives, I wish the battery life was a bit longer, and the location of the USB port -- on the side -- was relocated to the bottom. But these are minor gripes. Overall, the One X+ is a great, if not spectacular, device. HTC made another winner.Was this review helpful to you?
41 out of 46 people found this review helpful.
November 15, 2012
No Better AT&T Phone
I couldn't be happier with my One X+. Frankly, after seeing the iPhone 5, I was rather disappointed. So I thought I'd give Android a troy.
Wow. I've never seen a better-looking screen on a phone -- what Retina display? The touch display is ridiculous. It looks great even outdoors, in direct sunlight.
The design is simply gorgeous too. HTC did a fantastic job. Gorilla Glass 2 keeps it tough, while the unibody polycarbonate construction is solid. I haven't dropped it on the floor, but it looks like it can take a licking.
As for the size, the One X+ is bigger than my old iPhone 4, but remarkably it's just as slim as the iPhone 5. The bigger size takes a little time to get used to, but with the extra real estate, it's definitely worth it.
Overall, the X+ is fast. If you're on AT&T, there's no better phone out there right now.Was this review helpful to you?
33 out of 38 people found this review helpful.
January 11, 2013
So Far So Good
The One X+ is fast -- very fast. Paired with AT&T's 4G LTE network and I'm downloading at nearly 20 megabits-per-second, and uploading at around 13-megabits.
The touch screen is, of course, exceptional. The design is stunning and the unibody construction keeps dust out of the camera and speaker ports. Meanwhile, if you're a bit rough with your phone, like I am, a rubber coating protects it from scratches. Don't worry about the front either; Gorilla Glass makes sure it's just as solid as the back.
The camera takes great photos outdoors -- comparable to standalone digital camera -- and decent pictures indoors.
If you're used to Android ICS, the setup will be a breeze. Just skip over the Google account sign in when you first start up the phone, and you're good to go.
The only drawback I can think of is the mediocre battery life. I wish it were longer.Was this review helpful to you?
27 out of 32 people found this review helpful.
November 21, 2012
Props to HTC for designing such a great phone. I was lured by the hardware specs, but I'm really impressed by the software. Google has taken it to another level with Android. The number of personalization options is amazing. Half the fun of using this phone is fine-tuning the settings.
The touch display is gigantic. It makes the size a bit large, but playing games, watching video and browsing the Web is so much more enjoyable. The camera is really fast, and photos come out really great. Just a note: there's no dedicated camera button. It's not a big deal for me, but if you need it, it's something to be aware of.
The call quality is awesome. Everyone I call tells me it sounds like I'm talking indoors. The LTE is speedy too. So you'll get the best call and data quality around.
Overall, it's just a gorgeous device. And I'm happy to have bought one.
The battery gets the job done, I suppose. But I was hoping it'd last a bit longer. I use this phone for the multimedia, so it uses up a lot of juice.Was this review helpful to you?
33 out of 40 people found this review helpful.
January 05, 2013
Problems With Overheating
Unlike the other reviews, I wasn't too thrilled with my One X+.
I used the One X+ for a few days and it kept overheating -- usually when I'd surf the Internet or play games. Then, the battery would just drain down. When I'd plug it in, it wouldn't charge either -- saying something that the phone is using more current that the charger can deliver. I'd have to wait for it to cool down before it'd start to charge.
I don't know if it's a faulty unit, or what, but I have the international version, and a quick search reveals a lot of people overseas have this problem. If you're using this overseas, I'd double check before jumping in. I know the hardware and specs great, but for my money, I wouldn't recommend this phone. It's just not worth the hassle.Was this review helpful to you?
24 out of 37 people found this review helpful.
December 31, 2012
I Miss the IPhone
I retired my iPhone 4 for the One X+ and I've regretted it since. When AT&T dropped the price, that convinced me to make the jump to Android.
There are a few issues that bug me:
1. The larger screen, while looks nice, is a bit of a hassle to carry around. I sort of miss my smaller 3.5-inch iPhone. To me, it's more practical to use.
2. I miss having iTunes. I have a MacBook so the two work seamlessly. Music still works but it's not the same.
3. The polish. Don't get me wrong, Android is robust, packed full of features. But it lacks that polish that I've come to expect from Apple. I hear a lot of Google fans say Apple doesn't innovate anymore, but why change a good thing?
Anyway, I might be in the minority, but I'm waiting to switch back to the iPhone.Was this review helpful to you?
15 out of 36 people found this review helpful.
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