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Five things we hate about the HTC One X
- — 16 May, 2012 11:29
The HTC One X: an excellent phone, but not perfect.
HTC's new flagship One X is a beautifully designed smartphone with a fantastic display and slick, intuitive software. It's definitely one of the best Android smartphones money can buy right now, but does that mean it's perfect? Certainly not.
Even though we believe HTC has produced its best Android smartphone ever, the One X is not immune from criticism. It has a brilliant screen, a fast processor and an an excellent camera, but there are a few niggling aspects that we don't like.
After playing with the HTC One X for over a month, here are five things we hate about HTC's latest flagship Android phone.
1. No removable battery
We absolutely love the HTC One X's polycarbonate design. It's without doubt one of the best looking phones we've ever reviewed. However, in opting for such a design HTC has sacrificed some flexibility that current Android users will be left disappointed with. The first is a non-removable battery.
In truth, the non-removable battery won't be an issue for most users. We don't know of many people who carry a spare battery around and this same issue certainly hasn't hindered the popularity of Apple's iPhone. However, Android users are used to flexibility and the fact the battery can't be removed will surely annoy many potential buyers.
2. No microSD card slot
Another sacrifice of HTC's polycarbonate design is expandable memory. While HTC will point to the rise of cloud storage as one reason the 32GB of internal memory is more than enough, we suspect many users will disagree. Dropbox integration with 25GB of free storage is a nice touch, but doesn't truly make up for the fact the One X's lack of expandable memory.
3. HTC's inconsistent Sense UI
The HTC One X ships with the latest version of Google's Android operating system, Ice Cream Sandwich, but it also comes with HTC's Sense UI overlay. While Sense does offer some nice extra features, we feel it often makes changes to the standard Android interface for changes sake.
The recent apps menu is slower to open, only shows one app at a time and adds no real benefit over the original version. The phone app interface feels cluttered and aside from the roboto font it doesn't achieve any consistency with the regular Android UI. The default Ice Cream Sandwich keyboard has been replaced by HTC's keyboard which is neither better looking or better implemented.
Whether you like or dislike HTC's Sense UI is ultimately a personal preference, but we feel it is inconsistent and could definitely be improved.
4. Poor battery life
It's tough to get an accurate figure on the battery life of a smartphone as there are so many variables to consider. Your usage patterns, third-party apps, network performance and more means that no two users will achieve identical battery life.
Despite considering all the variables, we couldn't manage to achieve a full day of use of the HTC One X before needing a recharge. This was the case even when we turned off automatic synchronising, arguably one of the more power hungry features of an Android phone.
To be fair, the HTC One X doesn't appear to use much power at all when the screen is off, but the 1800mAh battery certainly drains quickly whenever the screen is in use. It often accounted for over 60 per cent of battery life during our test period.
5. No physical camera key
The HTC One X is a very capable camera. It snaps a photo in 0.7 seconds with a 0.2 second autofocus, you can hold your finger on the on-screen shutter button to enable burst mode (up to 99 photos), and you can take still shots while recording uninterrupted video. However, we think it's a shame that HTC has not included a physical camera button, which would make it easier to take photos and capture video.
The One X's on-screen shutter button works well enough, but the sheer size of the phone makes it hard to keep still when you're holding it with two hands. As a result, we often found that the first one or two seconds of recorded videos are shaky, while autofocus is erratic with even slight movement.