I have reviewed several Android devices in the last few months and I have enjoyed them all. However, the thought of switching my phone number from my iPhone to an Android device didn’t cross my mind.. until I got the HTC OneX+ last week. I have used an iPhone since the first generation iPhone was released years ago. You could say that I am extremely picky and have certain expectations when it comes to the phone I use.
What I expect from a smartphone:
- an excellent camera and photo quality
- easy access to many downloaded apps
- the ability to organize apps quickly and easily
- quick access to dialing my most used contacts
- easy social media sharing
- a variety of apps available for the OS
- exceptional Google services integration
- the phone must ‘feel good’ in my hands
- easy music syncing
- and much more
It is difficult to compare any phone to an iPhone. The iPhone 4S just fits.. the size, the ease of use, and the simplicity of it. My husband and teenage son are used to me receiving phones to review and they are used to me going through a thorough review process and then I give the phone away to a lucky reader.
That’s not the case with the HTC OneX+ I received last week. I am just as surprised as they are that I drove myself to the AT&T store to have my phone number switched from my iPhone 4S to the HTC OneX+.
You did what?
You’re kidding, right?
How will I text you? (my 13-year-old son asked that not thinking that I could text without using iMessage)
These are just a few of the responses I got after telling friends and family that I switched my phone number over to an Android phone. I answered everyone’s questions with excitement. I feel like a kid in a candy shop. I switched because I felt very confident that the HTC OneX+ would meet and exceed my expectations.
Don’t get me wrong, I was not unhappy with my iPhone. I just didn’t know anything different. The last phone I had since owning iPhones was a Nokia flip phone. All I’ve ever heard from Android users is how easy and customizable Android phones are and I was ready to experience that.
Set up and Music
I loved getting to know the HTC OneX+ and the Jelly Bean OS and HTC Sense interface combined, make the phone a breeze to set up, customize, personalize, and use even for an iPhone convert. Within a few hours I set up all of my email and social media accounts (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc.), downloaded my must-have apps, adjusted the keyboard style to fit my needs, and synced my iTunes music library to the phone. Yes, you read that right. Through HTC Sync Manager software (free download) software that opens when you connect your phone to your PC or Mac,I transferred my iTunes music to my HTC OneX+. That is actually what sold me on the switch. I could not imagine not having my music library on my phone which is why I never switched to Android before. When I learned that I could easily put my iTunes music on my HTC OneX+, it was a go!
I wasn’t crazy about the idea of having to dish out money to buy apps that I’ve already purchased on the iPhone but most of the apps that I use are free in the Google Play app store including these apps that I use almost daily:
- Google Chrome (try the new BETA version!)
- TripleTown (my new game addiction.. thanks Grechen!)
- Google Drive
- Google Currents
- Aviary (great photo editor!)
The only app that I have paid for so far is JuiceDefender Plus which has made the HTC OneX+ battery last longer. It is understandable that the battery on any smartphone that I use would die before a full day is up. I take dozens of photos, can easily send and receive over 200 texts in a day, send photos via SMS, update social media networks, read and share news via my favorite news reader apps, I and the kids may play games on it, I check several email accounts, respond to emails, take and make calls, and occasionally create and edit blog posts on my smartphone, I would not expect any phone of mine to last a full day on one charge. In fact, I have two external chargers for my iPhone. I will probably buy one for the HTC OneX+ as well.
As you read above, I use my phone to the max. I suspect that you do too! You and I don’t have an extra minute to spare in the day. We’d rather be spending it with our spouse, kids, friends, and family. That’s why it’s important to have a fast, efficient smartphone. The 1.7GHz quad-core processor packed into this phone makes it lighting quick.
Widgets. I love Widgets! I didn’t know what I was missing. I use my phone as a clock and when I wake up in the morning in the middle of the night I look at my phone to get the time. The Weather Clock widget is the best thing since sliced bread. I push the power button and I can see the time and weather.. big! You can personalize your HTC OneX+ homescreen and other screens with a variety of widgets including social media streams, Chrome, calculators and more.
I compared the following between the two phones:
|Load time comparison||HTC OneX+||iPhone 4S|
|Load time comparison||HTC OneX+||iPhone 4S|
|Photo Gallery||Faster by 2 seconds||Slower|
|Calendar||Faster by 2 seconds||Slower|
|TripleTown (game)||Slightly faster||Slower|
|Twitter app||Faster by 4 seconds||Slower|
|YouTube video - one that hadn't been watched on either device||Slower by 1 second||Faster|
|Web page (GadgetGoddess.com)||Equal||Equal|
|Access to seldomly used app||Quicker load due to alphabetical listing of apps in All Apps compared to having to search through screens and folders or type app name in Search field/screen on iPhone.||Slower|
Each phone had above 95% battery life, both phones were on the same wifi connection, each phone has the lastest OS installed, and had no other apps open other than what I was testing, when I performed the comparisons. This is by no means a formal speed test, but for load time comparison only.
Look and Feel – Hardware
I prefer the HTC OneX+’s easy to grip soft-touch plastic backing over the glass on the back of the iPhone 4s. I have a more grip handle on the OneX+ than I do with the iPhone. The OneX+ is significantly larger than the iPhone 4s, with a 4.7 inch screen which has taken some getting used to especially given that I have petite hands. I appreciate that the viewable screen stretches closer to the edges than that on the iPhone 4S, a better use of surface real estate in my opinion. The only issue I have with the design of the OneX+ is that the volume buttons are practically flush with the phone casing, making them difficult to feel.
I am used to swiping down from the top of my iPhone 4s to see notifications such as new emails, Twitter and Facebook updates. I can do the same with the HTC OneX+. On the notifications screen I can see how many calls I have missed, how many new emails I have, what my battery percent is (app), how many voice mails I have, if I have new Twitter messages, and more.
Internet App and Flash Mode
I have been using Google Chrome for web browsing on my iPhone and while Chrome is available in the Google Play app store, I have found that the native Internet app on the HTC OneX+ satisfies my surfing needs. HTC embedded full Adobe Flash support in its browser via a toggle in the context menu, an added bonus. The “article view” button makes allows users to read and article sans ads easily with just the tap of a button. The article view button is located to the left of the browser search bar in the Internet app.
The HTC OneX+ for AT&T sells for $200 on-contract. It is an update to the earlier OneX in that it has a faster processor (1.7Ghz quad-core), a bigger battery, more storage (increased to 64GB from 32) and a newer version of Android, Jelly Bean.
Read another review of the HTC OneX+ where I discuss camera features and more.
Learn more about HTC OneX+.
1/25/13 update: Since writing this post, I have written a few more about the HTC OneX+:
- I Made The Switch.. From an iPhone 4S to the HTC OneX+! on TheMommyInsider.com
- How to Set Your HTC OneX+ Homescreen Background to be a Solid Color - on GadgetGoddess.com
- Getting Great Photos with the HTC OneX+ on TheMommyInsider.com
- HTC OneX+ Giveaway on TheMommyInsider.com
Note to my readers: I received a complimentary HTC OneX+ for purposes of this review.. As always, all opinions presented in my posts are 100% honest.
Some of the photographs featured in this post were taken on my HTC OneX+ provided by HTC.