I'm not much of a case person. I was never very clumsy with my gadgets and didn't think the added bulk was a worthy trade-off for the added protection, especially in the day and age of ultra-durable plastics and Gorilla Glass screens. But on both fronts, that's changing; it's a lot harder to guarantee the safety of my gadgets when I've got kids (we're both likely to drop things) and there are some very sleek cases on the market.
The HTC One X landed in Europe in early April and was released today on AT&T, and as such, earned the distinction of first of the next-gen hardware. But being first isn't always the best - on Thursday, Samsung revealed their new flagship, the Galaxy S III.
I've had the European version of the One X for a few weeks now and in my book, it's the best damn phone on the market right now, bar none. David spent some time with the AT&T variant (which lost some cores and storage but picked up LTE on its trip to the States) and came away equally as impressed, calling it "the best all-around Android phone you can buy in the US today."
Surprisingly, the price is entirely reasonable, too - it checks in at just $550 off contract, $200 on contract from AT&T, or $150 from Amazon Wireless.
It looks like HTC's One X is receiving another OTA update, this time weighing in at ~35MB and bringing the device's software build up to 1.29.401.7. The OTA appears to have begun rolling out today, but unfortunately no one is totally certain what the update accomplishes, as HTC has (as yet) neglected to release an official change log.
Screenshot courtesy of XDA user stathis95194
Though HTC is remaining quiet about the update, some XDA users have speculated that it fixes color temperature/RGB accuracy, and perhaps fixes some other minor issues.
In recent memory, there are only 2 phones I've been as excited to lay my hands on as the One X, and those are the Galaxy Nexus and Galaxy S II. There's a good reason for my excitement: this is the first phone to pack Nvidia's excellent Tegra 3 CPU. And that's just the tip of the iceberg, really; other touted features - such as the amazing unibody design, ultra high-quality camera, and beautiful screen - help build upon that excitement.
HTC's One X is hands-down the best smartphone released this year. While the version we're seeing here in the States (on AT&T, to be specific) isn't quite the beast the quad-core version found overseas is, the AT&T variant does pack LTE. Other specs:
- 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 dual-core CPU (Krait architecture)
- 4.7" 720p display (1280x720)
- 16GB memory
- 1GB RAM
- 8MP rear shooter, 1.3MP front
- Full 1080p HD video recording at 60fps
- Bluetooth 4.0
- Android 4.0.x
- Sense 4.0
Thankfully, those cutting-edge specs aren't going to break your budget, either: the phone is now available for pre-order on Amazon Wireless for $150 for both the gray and white models - that's $50 less than you'll pay to get it straight from AT&T.
Update 2: Turns out that HTC is ready to make good on this issue, but only by telling customers to return their chipped phone to the store from which it was purchased and get a replacement. If, however, you'd rather send it off to HTC to be repaired, that's always an option.
Last month I reviewed of the a-JAYS One+ earbuds, and came away impressed. For $50, they packed quality sound and impressive bass into a sleek, attractive form, in addition to a trick control button/mic built into the cable. Coupled with the JAYS app, the button controls your phone and music player, allowing you to play, pause, change tracks, adjust the volume, and take calls - certainly making usage more convenient than typical earbuds.
These days, earbuds are a dime a dozen - they can be had for as little as $1 at the dollar store, all the way into the hundreds of dollars for a high-end pair. And sound quality has improved quite a bit since the early days - any buds that are mid-range or better usually offer pretty good sound, so they're differentiated as much by features as by sound quality. That's where the $50 a-JAYS One+ headphones come through: features.
Taiwanese manufacturer HTC released a short video today explaining the process used to create the One S' unique, durable body. For those who need a refresher, the One S is 1/3 of HTC's new 'One' line of phones, debuted at MWC this year. The One S is just below the One X, and just above the One V spec-wise, carrying a 4.3" Super AMOLED display, 8MP camera, 1.5GHz dual-core processor, and a super slender 7.95mm profile.