• HTC One X User Experience

    Well, let me start by saying that I’m really impressed with this phone. It’s probably the best designed Android phone that I’ve seen so far.

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    But there have been a few issues that came up, And while most of them were not major, One or two still stand out. I’ll begin with the form factor. One thing that seems to catch some people unawares Is that the phone uses microSIM cards. So if you’re buying the sim-free version, you’ll need to contact your mobile service provider and get them to transfer your phone number and data on to a new microSIM. Next, for a 4.7 inch screen phone, it’s pretty compact and slim. As well as being incredibly light. Trying to use it one-handed is a bit of a stretch, but not impossible even for me. Someone with bigger hands could manage it, no problem. But then the trade-off you get for the size is the amazing screen. If you are really worried about the overall size of the phone, The HTC One S might be an option to consider, since it has a 4.3 inch screen. But the One S only comes with 16GB of onboard storage. As for me, I think the One X is the best of the bunch and comfortable to hold and use. As for the display, there were some reports of screen flickering, But, having used the phone for a while, I didn’t come across anything like that. Maybe there are some initial faulty handsets out there, And it’s just a matter of taking them back and exchanging them. The display itself keeps on impressing. I love the detail and sharpness of it. And that on a 4.7 inch screen is beautiful viewing. It’s by far the best feature of the phone, obviously. One point to note, is that because of the curved effect of the glass on the side of the display, And the thin bezel, You can accidentally select on-screen options even when you are just holding the sides of the phone. The display is still very touch sensitive right up to it’s edge, Which is a good thing, But something to keep in mind. About the user interface. I like! I like HTC Sense. And as I mentioned in my first review, I think this version of Sense is far better than what’s come before. The only issue is that a lot of the clean and simplistic feel of Android ice cream sandwich has been covered up. So, if you don’t like HTC Sense you can always download another launcher from Google Play. I’ve used Apex Launcher, It’s free and specifically for ice cream sandwich. And it does a good job of keeping the ICS clean look. I tend to swop between this and Sense when I want a different feel for the phone. Right, now I come to the issue that’s been the biggest bugbear for me about this phone, It’s battery. In my first review I mentioned that with normal usage, Which included a bit of web browsing, playing a few small games, and listening to music now and then, The battery lasted about seven hours. That’s going from 100 percent to zero. So taking the phone off the charger at seven o’clock in the morning, I would need to give it a top-up charge at around two in the afternoon. And that’s not good enough for my use. I tend to charge my phone overnight. So, ideally I’d like it to last well into the night, say ten pm or eleven pm. That’s asking for up to sixteen hours on the battery before I needed to charge it again. But failing that, at least until seven pm which would be twelve hours on the battery. My initial tests for battery life got me Four hours of playing a movie continuously Ten minutes of playing a tegra 3 optimised game saw the battery drop by seven percent. Making and receiving calls seems to drain the battery pretty quickly as well. It’s mainly the screen and the processor that sucks up the battery. But it is an 1800 mAh battery, and for it to have such poor staying quality is a bit of a mystery. I’m of the opinion that there are some background processes going on in the operating system that are draining the battery. There was a report circulating that someone had discovered that moving a system apk file to another place improved the battery performance by twenty percent. It’s not the sort of thing I want to attempt on a new phone. But if it’s true, it does point to the battery drain being more of an under-optimised OS issue. These things could potentially be fixed by an update from HTC. So you never know, there may be an official firmware update in the works. I did try a couple of battery juicer applications, Which claim to increase the battery life by 1.7 times. I wasn’t that impressed by their performance. Since they essentially work by switching of connections like wi-fi and data when not in use, The phone was constantly freezing on startup as it waited for these applications to switch the connections back on again. There was also terrible web browser lag. I didn’t find it worth putting up with such sluggish performance on what’s otherwise a pretty fast phone, So those applications were uninstalled quite quickly. Another issue is that it takes almost four hours to fully charge the phone. This is alright if you’re going to charge it overnight, But since the One X will need a top-up half way through the day, It’s a long time to just leave your phone lying around, virtually unused. Now, I should take into consideration that this is a new phone. And all new handsets have to go through a certain number of full charge and discharge cycles before the battery settles down. But I have been doing that over the past few days, And I still haven’t noticed any real improvement in battery life. Now, Battery life may not be an issue for you if you’re someone who doesn’t travels around a lot, And you’re able to top up the charge on the phone whenever you need to. If that’s the case then don’t miss out on the One X. It’s a superb phone in all other ways. It’s big, bold, and beautiful, While at the same time light enough to carry around. It feels solid in the hand, not at all cheap or plasticky. And it’s got enough power under the hood to see you comfortably through a two year contract. So, anyway; I hope this review, and the one before it, has sort of helped you get an idea about the HTC One X.

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