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Old April 7th, 2013, 10:29 AM   #80 (permalink)
kiroquai
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Right, okay - a follow-up post re: my GPS issues

By yesterday (Saturday) morning the issue hadn't solved itself, so I popped into Phones4U and they replaced the handset for me straight away. They mentioned they were aware of a small number of similar issues so I guess it is a matter of initial handset niggles.

New handset taken home, set up... and bingo! GPS stuff all working fine. Excellent . Having now had the chance to road test the phone over a busy weekend, here are my more concise thoughts:

Build, screen and sound Quality

High marks in all categories here. The phone's body itself is gorgeous, and shape/size wise it fits perfectly in my hand. Only slight complaint is that it is a little on the slippy side if you're not careful, but overall it's a really nice handset. The screen is fantastic - having compared it side-to-side with an Xperia Z, I am confident it's the best currently on the market in terms of colour balance and general crispness - really brings out the colours without having the over-saturated brightness that some phones need.

Sound is something else, and the BeatsAudio really is neat. Turning it off mid-song highlights just how much of an improvement it is, neatly increasing the bass a little whilst avoiding any kind of tinny distortion. Superb all-round.

Battery Life

Pretty much on a par with my old Galaxy Nexus - needs to be charged at the end of a decent day of browsing/camera use/general mucking around with. Not a bad thing at all really, wouldn't say it's struck me as a big weakness with the device. Nothing amazing of course and certainly not an improvement over what we've had before, but given what this phone is pushing along the fact it's about the same as my previous phone is pretty impressive.

Camera

So, yeah - the camera certainly is a tidy bit of equipment. I tested it in a pretty ideal location; a reasonably dark pool hall in Northampton (dark room + bright fluorescent table light + multi coloured pool balls = nifty test I reckon!) - it passed with flying colours (no pun intended). The Zoe features are okay and being able to take your video and then snip the best snaps out of it is alright, but to be honest I found the Continuous Shot thing much better for this - the camera basically snaps 20 shots in quick succession and allows you to choose the best of them. Doing this I was able to take quite a few neat little sequences of pots and shots, and even though I wouldn't say the quality of any of the resulting shots was startling, it did a nice job of capturing it all without masses of motion blur and detail loss. Suspect Zoe features probably won't get much use in the long run.

If you're just taking a standalone snap it's very nice, and certainly a perfect example of why this megapixel race most manufacturers are involved in is very misleading in terms of what dictates the quality of a good camera. Can only hope that HTC manage to market it properly and convince the general public that 4MP doesn't mean a severely outdated camera.

Software features

I'm used to stock 4.2 Android given my Nexus, so in some respects I am taking a backward step going to 4.1.1 again. You know what? I've not minded at all. In fact, I've not minded so much that I can't actually pinpoint anything 4.2 gave me that I am missing on the One.

I'm not 100% sold on Blinkfeed, mind. It's a nice idea, but given the lack of anything I really want highlighted (Facebook + Formula One) I get quite a few HTC Tips, most of which I already knew. I have set myself up a more traditional Android homescreen that I have set to my default when the phone is unlocked, so I suppose it's not all-bad - Blinkfeed is now an optional news/social aggregation page that I can scroll to if needs be.

Minor thing, but I love the TV app! Being able to turn on my telly and Sky box and control it all through the phone is cool. Especially when someone is watching something rubbish and you can hop over to another channel as a 'hint' that there are better things to watch (note: don't do this if your other half is prone to losing their temper ).

Overall

A good phone, and I am pleased with my choice (especially now I have a handset with working GPS!). Very solid, very powerful and with a decent set of features. Confident it's going to be every bit as good a sidekick to me over the next 18 months as the Nexus has been for the previous!
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