15
Nov
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The DROID DNA is, without a doubt, the most exciting HTC phone to come to Verizon since the original Incredible. And I can already tell you that it doesn't disappoint - this is a serious effort from HTC, whose US handset sales have dropped sharply in the last year. It could be the phone that catapults them back into relevance.

After spending a short amount of time with it, I'm going to try and give you my first-blush reaction to this spec sheet titan. (The full review should be coming some time next week.)

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The Display: Not the jaw-dropper we were expecting.

Let me put it this way - Steve Jobs was probably kinda-sorta right about that whole "retina" thing, even if it is just a subjective marketing term. At some point, pixel density reaches a level that - unless you're a high-flying bird of prey - your eyes just can't appreciate. The DNA's 440PPI has taken that spec to lunatic levels, and on a 5" display it's really hard to say with a straight face that the extra pixels actually matter.

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Is having them a bad thing, though? No, of course not. I fully expect 1080p phones to become the norm, HTC just happens to have gotten there first. The display is quite nice, and colors are great, though they simply aren't on par with the 720p S-LCD2 of the One X / X+. Brightness is also noticeably decreased compared to the panel of the X / X+, making sunlight viewing more difficult. The compromises don't add up to a justification for the resolution, but they also aren't so massive that you'll notice, unless you're using a One X already.

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The DNA also has a decided blue-shift compared to the X / X+, which has more natural very-slightly-yellow whites.

The Performance: Of course it's fast, silly.

I actually have a One X+ to compare performance side-by-side, and even pushing that 1080p display, the DNA is faster. In the UI generally, the differences are hard to spot, but when you're multi-tasking, completing write/read-heavy tasks, GPU-intensive operations, and doing other heavy lifting, the DNA shines where the X+ starts to struggle. Let me put it this way, restoring my apps on the X+ using Google's restore feature took around a half hour over Wi-Fi, and the phone slowed down every time an app installed. It took 10 minutes on the DNA, and aside from a very momentary stutter every 15-30 seconds, I was able to continue using the phone lag-free.

Qualcomm's S4 Pro is one fast chip, and having 2GB of RAM doesn't hurt, either.

The Hardware: A supercar, huh? I think I agree... mostly in all the wrong ways.

The DNA isn't a phone for the aesthetically inclined. It has long, red metal faux-speaker grilles up and down the sides of the phone. The volume rocker is a brushed aluminum rectangle with a swirl pattern. The power button is on the top of the phone at the center, where it is extraordinarily hard to reach with one hand. The microUSB port has a cover on it. It's slightly wider, significantly longer, and even thicker than a One X, making it more difficult to hold.

All of these things basically make it ever-so-slightly more impractical than any other large-screened phone that isn't a Note II. I also think it's just kind of ugly and tasteless. Both of which make it very much like a modern supercar! But that's definitely a very subjective point of view - your mileage may vary.

Seriously, though, a microUSB port cover?

Otherwise, this thing feels pretty rock solid, like most HTC phones have since the One launch. It doesn't inspire quite the quality of the One X's unibody polycarbonate frame, but it's definitely very, very premium. A far cry from the happy meal toy flashbacks the Incredible 4G gave me, that's for sure. Oh, and the back of the phone has a notification light. Behold:

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The Software: Sense is still Sense and there's not much else to say about that.

Sense 4+ isn't called Sense 4.5 because it's basically exactly the same as Sense 4 with a few minor tweaks. The biggest changes all come from Jelly Bean (Android 4.1), whereas HTC's newest tweaks (which I will detail in the review, have no worry) are pretty limited. And yes, there's a persistent notification about Wi-Fi, because Verizon thinks you're an idiot.

Verizon crapware is in tow, too, but less than usual I'd say. Most of it can be disabled via the apps menu in settings, regardless. Not that anyone who doesn't already know that option exists will ever find it.

I like Sense 4 - mostly - so I like Sense 4+, too.

The Takeaway: HTC's best chance to get back into the US market in a big way.

Verizon's DROID ad campaign will ensure that people buy this phone during the holidays, and because of that, I honestly think they'll sell more DNA's than they will Galaxy Note II's. The DNA has an appeal that most Verizon DROID phones do, with an aesthetic and branding that scream "I want my phone to match my on-the-edge go-big-or-go-home lifestyle." And this time, the hardware totally lives up to the explosions, motorcycle chases, and Matrix-esque robots with Sauron eyes that the DROID commercials promise. This is a beast of a phone.

Now, if you're reading Android Police, this may not be the sort of information you came here for. I understand that. The answers you do want will probably be in the full review. Today, I can't really talk about battery life, benchmarks, call quality, or things I find to be bothersome - I've only used the phone for around 24 hours at this point.

So, feel free to ask questions, just know that I may not be able to provide a properly-informed response quite yet. But if you have an absurdly specific and nuanced inquiry like, say, approximately how long is the volume rocker (it's almost exactly 1"), I'm happy to entertain you until I get scolded for ignoring my other work.

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David Ruddock
David's phone is an HTC One. He is an avid writer, and enjoys playing devil's advocate in editorials, imparting a legal perspective on tech news, and reviewing the latest phones and gadgets. He also doesn't usually write such boring sentences.

  • Steve Green

    Only if you are not looking for updates, ever.

    If HTC would support their phones with actual updates I might consider them. So far the Rezound my GF has is still on ICS.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      Rezound is unlikely to go past ICS, and HTC has actually been decent about updating. It's funny how history gets rewritten on this every time one particular phone doesn't get an OS update, but HTC has done a pretty decent job updating phones. Samsung is probably the best about it at the moment, but HTC is no where near as bad as, say, LG.

      The One X and One S will have 4.1 by the end of the year, and 4.1 has already rolled out to the international versions of those phones.

      • http://twitter.com/BeatUpFord Robert

        I don't know about the rezound, but Sunday is my upgrade day for the thunderbolt, and after 20 months and teases of an ics update, it's clear both vxw and htc would rather I just update to the droid dna. It's this kind of stuff that hurts HTC whether or not they are in control of the final ota push of the update, they look like Verizon's lapdog both now and when they offered a dumbed down one 2 in the incredible 4g lte.
        I realize holding HTC responsible might not be the most fair option, but it's clear they squander every opprotunity they have to gain the upper hand on the carriers. This 1080 display is just another example where they could have forced a real note 2 competitor by telling the american carriers they could have it or they couldnt, but they werent going to change the phone. How exactly do you think vzw would have felt if everyone else had the HTC x5 and a national ad campaign only to find out verizon had passed for some shitty 6 month old one s knockoff?

        • http://twitter.com/ToysSamurai Toys Samurai

          At this point, we cannot count on any top tiered Verizon Android phone to live beyond 1 OS update (or may be none at all.) I see hopes in future Motorola phones, but we will have to wait until the whole Google effect sinks in. I think by the end of next year, new top tiered phones from Motorola should begin to see better update plan. I know they are no Nexus, but Blur is getting less and less intrusive that I can live with it. And, since the chances Verizon will be getting another Nexus in the future is next to zero, my best bet is to get a Motorola.

          • Steve Green

            Why do you think Moto will do any better than they have so far. With the bootloader locked there is 0 reason to offer updates. You best bet is to leave Verizon. That is what I will be doing as soon as I can.

          • http://twitter.com/BeatUpFord Robert

            I am hoping you are right and that the first Googlerola phones next year mean better update schedules and even less motoblur, if we can even call it that anymore.

            I will be honest, and tell you, if smart actions make it into the google i/o update to android, I will probably go with moto from here on out because I will take it as an indicator that Google is taking things seriously with their hardware division. Without smart actions or something similar baked into android, I'll, whether correct or not, interpret it to mean that Google still can't get all it's ducks in a row.

            It amazes me that the groupon app can take advantage of the jellybean notifications, but google's own offers hasn’t figured out how to update for the feature. I do wonder if google is just off in too many directions to give android the polish it is capable of achieving.

      • Steve Green

        Pretty decent?
        They are a year and a half behind on updating the thunderbolt. The One X and One S are only months old. Once they hit a year they will stop getting updates as well.
        LG might be worse, but that does not mean HTC is not total garbage when it comes to updates.

        The Rezound has better hardware than my Galaxy Nexus, there is not reason it should not get JB and beyond.

        • TechPro1993

          When did Droid Charge get ICS?

          • Steve Green

            Did it ever?
            I don't think Droid branded devices (The Verizon line) ever really get updates that well.

      • James Barr

        I have a Rezound, and if it doesn't get Jelly Bean, that will be very annoying. The Rezound came out on November 14th of 2011. Jelly Bean source was released to AOSP on July 9th. If HTC's flagship at that time, the Rezound, is already deprecated less than 9 months after release, then to hell with HTC. I've always liked their build quality, but I think I'm just going to stick with Nexus devices from here on out. I am tired of this garbage.

        • Steve Green

          You can almost be sure it will not get the Rezound.
          I wish that phone would have been the GN, the hardware is that good. The software situation means I will never buy an HTC device again.

  • Josh Rice

    Any chance this phone is ANT+ compatible? I'm guessing not...

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      I would have literally no way of knowing.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dominick-White/642535026 Dominick White

      Read somewhere(android central) that you can use it on att and tmobile, but will only be 3g

  • Tommy Thompson

    I don't think it has that big of chance of getting back into the US Market considering it's being released on a single carrier.

  • Jay Vallejo

    That battery life can't be good. They dropped the ball on that.

    • MrJigolo

      I'd like to know how you know that.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      Well, we won't know until people actually use it. Until then, you're guessing based on a number of milliamp hours, which doesn't generally make for a good metric.

      • alex

        It's going to suck. Common sense. Watched a video and within a short time the battery declined rapidly. Lucky to get 3 and a half on screen time.

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

          Common sense? Yep, because common sense dictates that the Galaxy S III - with a 2100mAh battery - should get better battery life than the One X - with a 1700mAh batter - but that's not the case, given that they have pretty comparable battery life in reality. If you've already come to a conclusion, good for you. I'm content to wait for evidence.

          • NicholasMicallef

            Actually the S III does have significantly better battery life... and this phone has a similar battery but with a larger screen and more pixels. Sure the Snapdragon may be more efficient when compared to Exynos but I doubt it's enough. Add LTE to the mix and >2500mAh would be much more desirable especially since it's non removable. I agree, we'll have to wait and see to be sure, but it doesn't sound good...

          • Sonny Causey

            I totally agree David. People make assumptions based on numbers. Not very smart. If the S4 Pro chip is the energy saver they say it is, that maybe one of the deciding factors. Plus a lot of it all boils down to optimization. My case & point....I have the original Droid Razr Maxx, which when I first purchased the phone, was running Gingerbread & had unheard of battery life but once I recieved the ICS update......that went downhill noticeably (at least on my handset it did).Somehow I don't think the techs at htc are stupid & I maybe wrong but it seems to me that putting a battery that small in such a high powered device may not be as dumb as most people would suspect (I mean why would they intentionally do something that was going potentially kill the sales of the BEST Droid ever?). We'll just have to wait & see.I will say that I disagree with you on the phone being ugly. I think it's sweet looking but as you stated above....it's a matter of personal preference.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dominick-White/642535026 Dominick White

            On looks, I wish this phone was all red, white that would of been a much better look

          • Gav456

            LoL, I love your sarcastic, 'take-no-crap' attitude you get on in the comments =D

    • http://twitter.com/blclement Brian Clement

      I've had this phone since Saturday, and the battery life is just a little bit less than my Galaxy S3. It's really pretty solid. CNET's test stacked it up against the S3 as well, and found it lasted 8 hours and 43 minutes compared with the S3's 9 hours and 24 minutes. Reallynot bad at all.

      Mine's at 17% right now, and I unplugged it from the charger yesterday at 9:30 AM EST, 1 day 6 hours and 30 minutes ago roughly. Pretty solid IMO.

      • http://twitter.com/misterE33 Mr E

        i have reservations about it, but that doesn't sound bad. it's still early, but i honestly would've expected worse.

  • abhisahara

    Behold the Notif light hahaha LOL

  • http://twitter.com/KickingLettuce Kicking Lettuce

    I'd consider it, off contract. But ONLY if the community can get a fully working version of AOSP software on it.

  • hyperbolic

    Already said it once in your early article, this might actually be a phone I'd change with my S2.
    You might even say that it could be better than the S3.
    But I would still love to see the comeback of the S4 :)

  • Eddie

    I mostly want to know if this phone has the "low storage" issue that seems to plague HTC phones.

    • ddpacino

      Ahh, remember this with my Evo. All of the storage should be built-in.. possibly 16GB, all user and app accessible like the Gnex and others. That was one problem why Google wanted to get a rid of sd cards.

      Or is that not what you're referring to? The Evo was my one and only HTC before getting my mind right and going Nexus, so I may be a little lost there.

      • Cherokee4Life

        wait.... are you talking about the original HTC EVO for Sprint? I have mine in my hand and I am staring at the miscroSD that is inserted into it.

        • ddpacino

          ???

          • Cherokee4Life

            i'm confused

          • ddpacino

            About what?

          • Cherokee4Life

            a) Why does Eddie state HTC has been plagued with "low storage" when they have included a microSD card slot in both my HTC phones, EVO and EVO LTE
            b) Where you saying the EVO does not have a microSD slot? Or did you leave HTC because it did have an sd card slot?

          • ddpacino

            a) You only get about 1GB of ROM (if that) to install apps on with the Evo. After that you have to manually move apps onto the sd card to make room -- that is only if the apps support that, but that is too tedious of a task for simple users to constantly have to deal with this -- why should they? You may not have installed enough apps, but I certainly remember this happening alot. Apps moved to the SD card prompt other issues even mentioned in the app descriptions.

            b) No, I mentioned the Evo, because, like you, he may have one and I was trying to relate his comment with the experience I had with my Evo and it's out of storage warnings -- it's annoying. I left HTC because I wanted the Nexus Experience. however, the storage issues were since resolved by combining the internal and "external" storage spaces into one.

            Read this Q&A between AP and Google's Dan Morrill about sd cards and usb mass storage: http://www.androidpolice.com/2011/11/18/impromptu-qa-session-with-android-engineer-dan-morrill-brings-to-light-reasons-behind-galaxy-nexus-lack-of-usb-mass-storage/

          • Cherokee4Life

            gotchya, were on the same page I see. I read that Q&A before and makes sense. At first I thought you were saying the EVO didn't have a microSD slot. which is what initially confused me.

            As much as I agree with internal storage and that they should have more. I for one (as of right now) could never get a phone without a microSD because I flash ROM's every week if not more often. I have probably 100 Nandroid backups and I love having an easy way to transfer them to my computer. Pop out the card copy and paste. Plus i love being able to pop in a 32GB sd card to start fresh and copy my Google Music locally to play well because Sprints network sucks.

          • ddpacino

            Understood. For me, I'm on wifi almost 80-90% of my day. I set all my apps to sync over wifi-only (when possible), and that's when I sync my music. Music and podcasts are probably the only things that take up the bulk of my space, and I lived with the 16GB Nexus S without problems, so it's nothing to me.

            Seems that ppl that want SD cards are compulsive rom flashers so I do not see their issues with Nexus having lack of SD cards when they are going to root it, and they can hack just abt any other phone like an S3 with an SD card and put their fav rom on it.

          • Cherokee4Life

            honestly I think people who "demand" sd cards are people who are compulsive flashers (you are correct, unfortunately we do exist lol) or people who do not fully understand the benefits of internal versus external storage.

            Also, while we are on this topic. I have 1 problem with HTC or maybe Android in general in more onboard ROM and Storage. I hate how my onboard storage in my EVO LTE states its an sdcard, and when I plug my sdcard in it states its an sdcard2 as well. VERY confusing when flashing

          • ddpacino

            About the SD card thing, read this Q&A AP did with Google's Dan Morrill: http://www.androidpolice.com/2011/11/18/impromptu-qa-session-with-android-engineer-dan-morrill-brings-to-light-reasons-behind-galaxy-nexus-lack-of-usb-mass-storage/
            He explains Google's position on SD cards, and why you'll never see an SD card slot offered in a Nexus.

            Dell

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      16GB, non-expandable, 11GB usable.

  • Matt

    would be selling even more if it wasnt a verizon exclusive...

    • ddpacino

      Could on a new Evo variant that's quite similar come May/June/July. Very likely it may lose much of that red...

  • JeffColorado

    I am never buying a phone without SD. Evar. This is not the Droid I'm looking for.

    • ddpacino

      you're options are dwindling...

      • Justin W

        And they'll continue to do so..

  • ddpacino

    Once Word: SENSE. Next...

    P.S. I surely hope that 5" phones do not become the norm. I hope this, and any others, do not sell well so that we get that point across. Consumers speak with their dollars en masse.

    • http://profiles.google.com/ejsu28 E.J. Su

      You don't seem to understand that there are people who wants and will use big phones. It may not be for you, but you have your other choices, so let other people have theirs.

      • ddpacino

        Let me reiterate: "P.S. I surely hope that 5" phones do not become the *norm*." Phones like the Note and such are Niche products. Not everyone wants a phone that big. Hell, S3s could be sold to even more people if it were maybe 4.3 instead of 4.8.

        My issue is that sizes across ALL OEMs seems to increase, every single year. From 4", to 4.3, to 4.5 to 4.8, and now to 5". Why? Nobody's hands are growing. Samsung did it right by offering a completely different product, the Note, for that type of Market, but they also boosted that with the addition of the S-Pen, an innovative stylus.

        Again. Yes, some people do want those types of phones. But I don't want my options in the future for high-end devices to be only 5-6+ inches. That is my concern here. Fit a 1080p screen in a 4.65/7 inch device With on screen buttons and I'm a very happy camper.

    • Bryce Mrozinski

      I'm going to have to burst your bubble, but 4.8"+ is going to be the "norm" from here on out with Android OEM's. Samsung will be pushing a 4.9" 1080p screen next year which will go into the SIV. HTC will be pushing there 5" to all high end phones and looks like LG will also be pushing a 4.8+ in high end devices also. So pretty much you are SOL.

      I have a GS3 right now and I definitely can see myself going to a 5"+ screen, especially after playing with my buddies GNote2. This will be the standard for 2013: 5" 1080 and I am excited.

  • http://twitter.com/nastybutler77 Jameson Ahern

    A "media" smartphone with a storage capacity of 16GB and no microSD slot. Fail.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      And a small battery.

    • http://twitter.com/snookasnoo Idon’t Know

      Verizon said no because they want you to use data and HTC is not in a position to argue.

  • Rohin Galhotra

    Which would you rather pick: a Galaxy Note II or a HTC Droid DNA? IMO, Samsung phones usually have a stronger dev base and so will be supported by third parties long after HTC phones. But, what's your stance?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      If your concern is about developer support, the Note II is kind of a "duh" - but that really has nothing to do with what I'd personally pick at all.

      I'd pick the DNA simply because I think the Note II is too big for me, and I find Samsung's build materials less than reassuring. The DNA is not a "phablet," though - it's significantly smaller than the Note II. It's actually roughly as wide as a One X, just taller. Comparing the DNA and the Note II isn't quite apples to apples, I'd say.

  • http://twitter.com/AthoraX athorax

    Now re brand it a nexus, put on pure 4.2, and put it on the play store for $400 please.

    • Lte_Addict

      omfg that would be an android lover's dream come true!

    • uzo ufondu

      With at least 64gb of internal storage space and/or an sd card slot , of course...oh, and move the power button to the side and ditch the micro usb cover, and it would be perfect

      • http://twitter.com/misterE33 Mr E

        also add a pair of boobs on the back, and include a bacon printer.... NOW we're closing in on perfection!

    • Elias

      For the extra screen resolution and size I guess I'd probably pay $400, even if it were a measly 16gb. But I'd rather have 1080p in a galaxy-note-sized screen.

  • Christopher Bement

    I feel like I should already know the answer, what is the bootloader status? Is HTC going stick to their guns about providing a method to unlock?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      Right now, it's unlockable via HTC Dev. Come launch day? Who knows - it's very possible that option will mysteriously disappear, even likely.

      • Christopher Bement

        Thanks. Knowing Verizon it's a huge chance...

  • http://meatcastle.com/ Youre My Boy Bloo

    WTF AP? How did you not have someone using this phone all night. The only thing we are waiting to hear about is the damn battery life! Please make this a priority. If you could post a standalone battery report, I think that is what the majority of readers want to hear right now.

    Can you be the first blog to report on this info?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      I'll do my best, but battery life is super subjective anyway, so unless it's terrible or amazing, I can't really give you much aside from "it was good enough for me." :

      • http://meatcastle.com/ Youre My Boy Bloo

        I deny that answer. Try harder.

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

          I will endeavor to test the battery TO THE LIMIT.

          • http://meatcastle.com/ Youre My Boy Bloo

            Much better...

        • Mario Lara

          That made me LOL. =D

  • UniBroW

    This just seems like a fail to me, I'm sorry. HTC, in my opinion, STILL doesn't get it.

    The HOX had arguably the best display when compared to the S3, yet which phone sold like hot cakes? Honestly, people want a phone that isn't going to die on them during the day. If the HOX had software buttons, less bloated sense, a removable battery (bigger battery) and a SD card slot I'm pretty sure their quarterly earnings would be a bit different.

    Most people aren't going to care that this has a 1080p display, or at least enough people to make up for HTC's decline in marketshare. Until HTC gives the people what they want, they will continue onward into their decent into oblivion.

  • nsnsmj

    I still say that HTC's problem is that they rely too much on carrier exclusives. The first phone to usher in 1080p displays should have been something on as many carriers as possible, particularly in the US. Sure, there may be variants on other carriers, but that's also a problem, because the name will be completely different. HTC has still yet to establish a brand for itself. Samsung has Galaxy. Even Google has been establishing a brand now with Nexus. HTC has the One line, the Incredible, the EVO, the Desire, the too many. They need a single brand name for their high end devices. They started right with the One line in the beginning, but now it's just another name for a few of the hundred HTC devices out there.

    Sorry for the rant :D

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      I couldn't agree more.

    • Cherokee4Life

      I agree to an extent. I think they already wasted the One brand. The Original HTC EVO was the best of the best at its time. It was a game changer. The EVO 3D (was crap) but was 3D something new. Then came the HTC One X / EVO LTE which is a great phone.

      The Evo Brand has a longer history of great phones. (yeah there was the EVO shift and a few other crappers but we all can forget those very easily).

      They should keep the One brand to be multi platform phones and the EVO as the Sprint High End Phones
      my 2 cents..

      • stanlm

        I'm on the one x/lte now but the 3d was not crap. I miss the fun camera and ability to toss in a 4,000mah extended batt. Rom scene was/is great on it.

        • Cherokee4Life

          fair enough, but at my work we started to order the 3D's about 2 months after they came out because Sprint was pretty much giving them away for $50 a line. Now all the 3D's are starting to break and fall apart while my og EVO is still going strong and ne LTE is going strong.

    • Mack

      HTC claims they want to release on all carriers but they don't have the clout to do so.

    • kidheated

      On top of the fact that Sense is ugly and makes all their phones look worse. There's no style to sense and it just makes everything look rudimentary. This phone would be truly awesome wit just plain old vanilla android on it... not to mention that it would free up some of that memory and would leave you with more of what you paid for. I'd like to see an HTC nexus that looks like the DNA, minus the capacitive buttons of course. They can keep the exterior notification light though, that was a guinness move, simply brilliant!

    • Sqube

      I remember a time, many a moon ago, when HTC vowed that they were going to simplify their global lineup.

      They almost stuck to it, too. They had the One X/V/S, and it was good. Then they had the X+, which I thought was a little silly. And then there's the SV, and I thought they were pushing it. Now, there's the Droid DNA which is (apparently) going to launch globally as the Deluxe. It doesn't seem like it's going to be part of the One series at all.

      What I'm saying is that HTC doesn't appear to have learned anything, and it's irritating because I always liked them the best. They were just bound and determined to chase me away from their devices. The DNA was close... until they went light on storage and battery capacity.

      You win again, HTC. Looks like I'll have to take my money elsewhere.

  • http://twitter.com/TurboNegro7791 Tyler Hills

    I've read multiple articles that mention the One X as still having the best screen. But is this display better than a Nexus 4?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      I would say yes, but it's not as bright, though. It actually has a very similar blue-shift as the Nexus 4's display. Obviously it's higher-reso, too. Practically speaking, I doubt you'd notice the differences enough to care.

      • http://twitter.com/TurboNegro7791 Tyler Hills

        Thanks! Looking forward to the full review to decide between the DNA and the N4.

  • androidkin

    Sense is ok, but i would prefer stock android. I don't like the non-removeable tiny battery. And i difinatly don't like not having an external storage

  • DrPyro

    Looks like a good phone, but i was expecting more.... I like the looks (sorry to disagree David), processor speed sounds good, but we will wait and see about battery life. I think 5" is about the perfect size for a phone, good usability for my big hands to type on the stupid touch screens. I can type 2x faster on my BB9810 than i can on the wife's iphone. I just always seem to need more "space" on the touchscreen QWERTY keyboards than on a real one. But I must have a phone where i can transfer my audio collection (10+Gb) + HDTV recordings so I can watch them on bussiness trips. Dropbox or other cellular connected storage is simply NOT an option when you are on a plane.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      I will say, typing on a bigger screen with a software keyboard is MUCH easier. I also have large hands, so I do like typing on the DNA. That said, I personally find the iPhone's software keyboard amazing when I use my girlfriend's phone on occasion.

  • http://twitter.com/z3nkun zen kun

    wow i want this , im from mexico but seems this support all bands right?and i saw its support micro sim, so im wondering this could be unlocked sometime in the future and can be used in a GSM carrier?
    i had an htc one X i love it nice screen, not sure how much decresed will be this screen and last 16gb and 11 gb only for users? its to few IMO, i dont care about non removable battery but if HTC will make the phones without micro sd they should at least at least 32gb :(

    • http://www.facebook.com/emmanuel.buttigieg Emmanuel Buttigieg

      It's SIM unlocked. Just pop any sim in there and you're good to go. It support most 3G bands too (unless you're on T-Mobile :P)

  • http://twitter.com/TurboNegro7791 Tyler Hills

    Random question. Notification toggles are by far my favorite aspect of my custom ROM. Are there ways to bring that to an HTC device without rooting? (Other than the app. tried that on my gnex. very buggy and unreliable)

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      Yes. I forget the name of the app, though. But they show up as a notification, not as a blended part of the bar itself. I think! Don't quote me. :P

      • http://twitter.com/TurboNegro7791 Tyler Hills

        Too late. "The mysterious, nameless app that may or may not blend with the notification bar is terrible! And I'm not sure why! I blame David from Android Police!"

        Sorry I couldn't resist lol

    • carlisimo

      Try Power Toggles.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1262814853 Michael Schiele

    Looks like a decent phone. Enough to save HTC? Unlikely with such a limited release and wide product line. Additionally, I agree with those who comment on expandable storage. In the days of data caps and the ability to play 1080p videos on our handsets a 16gb limit is unacceptable. Streaming and cloud storage is NOT the answer with US cell companies charging for everything they can get away with.

    • designer

      its in allmost every country, that the cell companies bleeding dry their customers

      so i so much agree with u, a high storage is a must have for every phone that cost so much

      but htc is dieing for that reason (in the past they build phones with changeable battery and sd-card slot, but now they stopped and their sales broke down)
      and to be honest, if they keep doing that crap, i wouldnt mind if they disappear

  • Andy_in_Indy

    Is the a video output for the Droid DNA?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      MHL.

  • Tatsuya

    Questions for the review: are pixels you can't see better than a micro-sd port, a bigger (removable) battery or an AOSP phone?
    If you can't see the difference with 720p why making your phone slower by displaying 1080p?
    Can you compare japanese/chinese complex fonts on this screen and a 720p screen? (only test that could make the screen shine imho)

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      It's not any slower than a 720p phone.

  • donrhummy

    Can you post a side-by-side zoomed in pic of some text at the same magnification on iPhone 5, Nexus 4, Galaxy S3 and the DNA? (To show the pixels)

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      No.

      • donrhummy

        No explanation? Just a rude, "No"? You said, feel free to ask you questions.

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

          He asked, I answered.

    • SimplicityPrevails

      Gizmodo already did this. The difference is actually somewhat stark.

      http://img.gawkerassets.com/img/1857r0v0lfr7ijpg/original.jpg

      • impulse101

        Its obvious the DNA's screen is much better than than the OneX. Every other review says the same except this one

      • donrhummy

        Thanks!

      • turfgrass64

        wow impressive!

  • Howard Z

    I'd prefer a dumb phone, a verizon wifi device, and a tablet. No microSD means no sale.

  • satoru mastershima

    Htc will never learn their lesson with battery life... NEVER. this thing ONLY has 2000 or so mah of battery life... doesnt require just a facepalm for the engineers over at HTC it requires a fist to the face.

  • PWRuser

    Good thing HTC didn't put a home button because they would have slapped a Verizon logo on it too.

    The key to making a successful Android device is to do what HTC almost did here. What they should have done is launch a uniform looking/uniform specced device across all carriers and launch stock Android, even if they don't have the leverage to prevent carriers from adding their software crap. Say no to hardware and appearance changes and let the software crap slide.

  • Athishay

    So... how many holes on the speaker grille?

    • http://www.facebook.com/emmanuel.buttigieg Emmanuel Buttigieg

      100 I believe. It's the new "Clarity" standard in speaker grilles. /s

      It has 100 holes on the back, seriously.

  • Droid Didn’t

    Just do not Understand, They make such and awesome phone but as many times as it's been said, I hope someone from HTC reads here.

    No SD card and only 16GB which only 11 are usable??? Seriously??
    Battery could have easily been at least 2500 or 2600 mAh, why oh why???

    Last, the killer for me is the power button on top. as David said "The power button is on the top of the phone at the center, where it is extraordinarily hard to reach with one hand' this can can get annoying after a while. I think people who have had phones with power buttons on top, then switch to phones with ones on the side can agree with this.

    I wanted to get this phone so bad, but the negatives just kill it....

    I hope HTC can get their crap together, and get back to their 'Quietly Brilliant' days. More competition = better phones for all.

  • Karri

    Isn't that flap for splash resistance? Or is that only on the Butterfly?