So I've had my phone for about a month now. I've always been an android guy, starting with the OG Evo 4G, then to the Photon 4G and now to the One. I kept my OG EVO4G until the gingerbread update which I was one of the people who got a half baked update that ruined the user experience. Phone regularly rebooted, froze and lagged a lot as well. I had my Photon for quite some time. The phone was astounding when released but Motorola released one bad update after another. I rooted it to avoid problems and had a MotoBlur based rom and accidentally did the final gingerbread update which locked the bootloader. As much as I loved my P4G it always had some slightly quirky issues. I could almost regularly get the phone to enter voice commands, dial the last person I called, or reboot with a plug in the headphone jack. A lot of people complained about the screen but after a few days I quickly adapted to the change. Outside the headphone jack issue, it was a superb phone.
Now, enough about where I've been and onto where I am now. All I can say is wow. I was getting ready to update the phone and was really considering the SGS4 as I have a few friends who have had nothing but rave reviews for the Galaxy series and the bad taste left in my mouth by the EVO 4G gingerbread update. I then got to play with a SGS4 and was unimpressed. I felt like the UI tried to do to much and was convoluted.
II then had a chance to play with my friend One and instantly fell back in love. The UI was smooth, had just the right touches in the right places and was close enough to stock Android that I really enjoyed it.
My 2 concerns were the non expandable memory and the non changeable battery. The concern over memory was set aside due to how much cloud storage I have. Dropbox, drive, sugarsync, mediafire, minus, box, and play music have me covered from every direction. I was able to update and sync from my old phones without sacking up much memory on the new phone.
As for the battery, it lasts through much more abuse than my other phones did, but I'm not getting the world changing batter performance some mention. I get about 8 hours when I'm really abusing the phones charge. As I posted in the battery thread, I have 3 emails accounts set to push, several other apps like Facebook, soundcloud, and other social media set to push, I regularly stream audio over soundcloud(usually at 100% volume) while browsing on chrome simultaneously. My phone will be set to auto brightness. I do have the power saver mode engaged and snapdragon battery guru running.
II have noticed a huge impact based on signal strength. I changed carriers and Sprint had great coverage during my normal usage hours, but T Mobile struggles. Signal strength can add or remove over an hour depending on strength. Full 4GLTE and Faux G are usually faster than Sprints WiMax but occasionally I'll drop to lower levels.
The UI is amazing, as stated earlier it has a minimalistic approach to android with just the right touches in just the right places. The only gripe I have is no notification bar toggles but an app fixed that. All lag I ever experienced has been traced back to an app that's not optimized for jellybean.
The screen is hands down far and away the best screen I've had on a smartphone. For awhile while I was still using the P4G I much preferred my GFs iPhone 5's screen but that's no longer the case. I do find this screen to be the max screen size I'm comfortable with. I do occasionally accidentally hit the close of side of the screen when I try to one hand it. Anything larger and I consistently do it, like when I used the SGS4. I do occasionally find the bar with 3 white dots annoying when using some apps, the larger screen real estate would be much appreciated. I've heard some roms do away with it by making the HTC logo take that place, but I don't feel the need to root and flash yet.
The camera works so well I'm amazed it's attached to a smartphone. I hope that doesn't sound cheesy but it easily blows all my other smartphones out of the water(the P4G was regularly praised for its camera). It even is better than my point and shoot from 2009. Even in low light situations it has much less visual blur. This works great for me as I'm young and wild and party a lot in night clubs. I'll try to upload some samples when I get a chance, the imgur app has failed me more than once.
The speakers, I have to admit I'm both amazed and disappointed with them at the same time. Everyone hyped them so hard I seriously expected more than I should have(the P4G was almost as loud at full volume) the area that really caught me off guard was the clarity. The P4G was almost as loud but nowhere even close to the clarity at 75%+ volume levels. With that said it is by far and away the loudest and clearest speaker system of any smartphone I've come across.
The build quality has been superb in my opinion. I know some people have had issues and returned their phones but I have had 0 issues. No gaps, no raised glass, no missed cuts for microphones or the USB port.
Overall I give the phone a 95/100. The OG EVO 4G would be about a 65-70/100 and the P4G would be a 80-82/100 in my book. There's some tiny gripes I have but nothing remotely close to a deal breaker. For my battery assault situations I'm going with an iBlason case to double the battery life. If I kill it then, I just seriously fail. For comparison sake, I'd give the iPhone 5 a 87/100.
Never forget before buying a phone Motorola breaks their promise of updates.