HTC One X review: eXtra special
So that's that then - our look at HTC's latest attempt at bringing comprehensive smartphone functionality under one roof is complete and we have to tell you we are pretty impressed with it. The One X is not only surprisingly compact for its screen size and feature set, but also every bit as powerful as the quad-core chipset inside will have you believe.
Its camera may not be the best in the business and the Sense UI might need some fine tuning, but perfection doesn't really exist in the smartphone game. What's important is that the HTC One X delivers where it really matters, providing as solid user experience as you can hope for and a picture perfect screen, which is a joy to both look at and use.
It's really easy to recommend the One X to those currently in a search of a cutting-edge smartphone - the specs and design combo it offers can't be matched by any other device currently on the market. We certainly loved the One S for its versatility, but the One X is the proper choice for geeks - Tegra gives you access to exclusive games, the HD display certainly is something and, more importantly, there's more screen estate than on the One S.
By the way, you can have both the screen and the Snapdragon S4 chipset in the form of the HTC One XL, though that's yet to come out. AT&T users should be aware that the One X their carrier will offer is actually a version of the XL (confusing, we know).
And now that we've figured who's who in the One family, it's time to look to other brands for some real HTC One X competition.
The droid whose name comes up most often when talking One X alternatives is the Samsung Galaxy Note. Packing a larger Super AMOLED screen and extra features which include an S Pen and the Wacom digitizer, the Note has quite a lot going for it. However, it's also notably larger than the One X and thus much harder to slip into your pocket, and also falls a couple of CPU cores short.
Google's own Galaxy Nexus comes as a potential One X rival too, featuring a similarly sized screen of the same resolution (though with a Pentile matrix). Because it's branded from Google, it's also guaranteed a spot in the first wave of any future Android updates. On the other hand, there's no Tegra 3 inside and while trading LCD for AMOLED is normally a no-brainer the display on the Galaxy Nexus is pretty dim, which makes the choice less clear-cut.
If camera performance is more important to you than the latest and greatest chipset, you might also consider the Sony Xperia S. Not only is the Sony flagship cheaper than the One X, but it also offers 12 megapixel stills of much higher quality. However, the previous-generation Snapdragon, the 4.3" screen and the 10.6mm waistline are hardly going to be the envy of your geek friends.
It seems HTC is heading in the right direction after the Taiwanese company altered its strategy. Focusing on fewer high-end products not only allowed for more refined, better polished models, but it probably also helped bring them to market faster. Thanks to that the One X, much like the One S, finds itself in a natural competition-free environment. If HTC plays its marketing and availability cards right, they might manage to turn last year's losses around quite quickly.