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Gadgets & Gizmos

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Watch out Apple; HTC a major challenger with One X

 htc_one_x.jpg

 

Apple iPhone has been the king of the smartphone hill for some time, but it had better watch its back. Here comes HTC 's new flagship phone for 2012: One X which runs on Android 4.0 operating system, also known as the Ice Cream Sandwich. And how sweet it is. The OS combines the best of two worlds of data management: tablets and smart phones. The 1.5 Ghz dual-core processor, combined with AT&T 4G LTE network, means a wicked fast downloads and web browsing.

 

The One X comes with a large 4.7-inch Super LCD display (1280x720 pixels), which is sharp and vivid. Text is crisp and easy to read. The phone is one piece and it's a beauty with elegant and simple lines. Its matte polycarbonate back is scratch-resistent and comes in white or black. (My tester was white. I frequently got newspaper ink smudges on it, but the surface cleaned off easily.) It's bigger than an iPhone -- 5.28 by 2.75 inches -- so those with small hands might find it a bit awkward, especially with one-hand typing. The phone feels thin (it's 0.35 inches thick) with HTC's smooth contoured design, and at about 4.5 ounces, it's slightly lighter than an iPhone 4S (4.9 ounces). One little nit: The lens juts out a bit, so the phone doesn't lie completely flat facing up.

The show stopper here is its 8 megapixel camera. 

How many times have you missed a photo opportunity because of your smartphone camera's shutter lag? You won't have that problem here. The camera (with auto-focus) shutter fires instantly and quickly. Even better, it  has a continuous mode so you can shoot a series of shots to make sure you capture the moment. Zoom in to get a closer shot of the subject. You can also select still images while you're shooting video. Want to be creative? Try the built-in filters to add effects to your photos. Or shoot a video in slow-motion (But video quality was grainy in this mode.) One nit: There's no dedicated shutter button, just a touchkey on screen. Holding the phone with both hands, and pressing the button wasn't easy without shaking the phone. And taking a photo of yourself with the primary camera? Good luck. 

Another wow factor is the audio. The calls are clear, coming in and going out. There were no dropped calls on the tester in Tampa and St. Petersburg areas. The mic seems to be a bit sensitive to the wind, however. The music player is top notch and intuitive. It's boosted by Beats Audio, and the sound range is rich and clear. You can play music loud enough to jam to during your commute in the car. Hard to believe the sound came from smartphone speakers. But check the volume for your ringer to avoid getting deafened.

Other cool features:

  • Facial recognition to unlock the phone
  • Ready2Go, a preloaded setup wizard makes get your phone ready and personalized from a PC web browser.
  • HTC Watch lets you choose movies and project them on you big screen using a wireless MediaLink HD (sold separately)
  • HTC Sync Manager lets you import music and playlists that's on your computer from existing iTunes or Windows Media Player library
  • Car mode with large icons for phone, navigation map, music player and radio, and clock. 

Details:

Size: 134.36 x 69.9 x 8.9 mm (5.28 x 2.75 x 0.35 inches)

Weight: 130 grams (4.5 ounces) with built-in battery

Display: HD 720p touch

Screen: 4.7-inch (1280 x 720 resolution)

CPU Speed: 1.5 GHz, dual-core LTE version

Platform: Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwish) with HTC Sense 4

Memory: 32 GB total storage, 1 GB RAM

Network: GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz

Carrier: AT&T ($199 with two-year contract)

Sensors

  •    Gyro sensor
  •    G-Sensor
  •    Digital compass
  •    Proximity sensor
  •    Ambient light sensor

Connectivity

  •    3.5mm stereo audio jack
  •    NFC3
  •    Bluetooth with aptX enabled (Bluetooth® 4.0)
  •    Wi-Fi: IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n
  •    DLNA for wirelessly streaming media from the phone to a compatible TV or computer
  •    micro-USB 2.0 (5-pin) port with mobile high-definition video link (MHL) for USB or HDMI connection (Special cable required for HDMI connection.)

Camera

  •    8 megapixel camera with auto focus, smart LED flash, and BSI sensor (for better low-light captures)
  •    F2.0 aperture and 28mm lens
  •    1080p HD video recording
  •    1.3 megapixel front camera (720p for video chat)
  •    Dedicated imaging chip
  •    Capture a photo in the midst of recording HD video
  •    Continuous shooting mode captures multiple snapshots
  •    Auto flash smartly determined by distance from your subject
  •    Video stabilization feature removes annoying, shaky motion
  •    High quality slow motion video capture and playback

Sound enhancement: Beats Audio

Multimedia

Audio supported formats:

Playback: .aac, .amr, .ogg, .m4a, .mid, .mp3, .wav, .wma (Windows Media Audio 9)

Recording: .amr

Video supported formats:

   Playback: .3gp, .3g2, .mp4, .wmv (Windows Media Video 9), .avi (MP4 ASP and MP3)

   Recording: .mp4

 

 

[Last modified: Friday, May 11, 2012 2:23pm]

    

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