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HTC One V Review – Based on a True User Experience

Updated on November 16, 2012
Me and my prestigious prize HTC One V :)
Me and my prestigious prize HTC One V :)

If you think a capable smartphone demands plenty of your budget, well, you’d better think again. Witness the HTC One V and its capabilities, under an affordable price tag!

The Taiwanese smartphone manufacturer has once again made an amazing breakthrough. While other manufacturers are demanding quite a lot of your budget for a smartphone that is capable, they say, HTC is offering the One V with quite an affordable price tag. Yet, despite its affordability, this smartphone is not likely to let you down.

However, please don’t mistake me as any sort of a salesperson promoting this Taiwanese brand. I am not, in any way, affiliated to HTC, and this review is purely based on my real life experience as a user of the One V. I got this phone back in July 2012 as a winner prize of my participation in an online quiz. So, as you can see, I’ve been using the phone for a few months and here goes my user experience review. Oh, by the way, my HTC One V version is T320e.

Display

So, what does the device has to offer? First of all, it comes with a 3.7” Super LCD 2 capacitive multi-touch screen. With this screen, you get a resolution of 480 x 800 pixels, equivalent to a pixel density of 252 pixels per inch. Sure, images look vivid on the screen. Oh, speaking of images, the phone also comes with a 5MP rear camera which is also capable of recording videos. LED flash, autofocus, face and smile detection, geo-tagging, and an F2.0 28mm lens are all standard on this Taiwanese Android smartphone.

Camera

Still images captured with the HTC One V come with a resolution of 2592 x 1944 pixels. However, unlike those of other (such as Korean) smartphones, the images have quite a small file size. This makes them ideal for web upload. Details also look fine on the images. Recording 720p videos is not too bad, either, with the One V camera. One key feature of HTC’s camera is its ability to capture still images while recording videos. This is not likely to be found on other smartphones. One drawback here, though, is that the phone does not come with a front camera. Considering the device’s support for 3G network, HTC should have made video call available.

A sample image I captured with my One V
A sample image I captured with my One V

Audio

Listening to the music is a nice experience as well with this device. The Taiwanese manufacturer equips this gadget with Dr. Dre’s Beats Audio sound enhancement. You can see the Beats Audio logo at the back of the phone. Unfortunately, the sound enhancement feature is only available when you plug in the included earpiece via a 3.5mm stereo audio jack.

There’s also another drawback in terms of the audio. It is recommended that you always attempt to make a phone call in a pretty quiet environment. Otherwise, you won’t likely hear what the other end is saying to you, no matter how high your phone’s in-call volume is.

The Power Beneath

The One V comes with quite a powerful set of components beneath it. In order to give you a seamless experience with the device, HTC powers the phone with a Qualcomm MSM8255 Snapdragon processor running at 1 GHz, an Adreno 205 GPU, and a 512MB RAM.

While this set of components is quite powerful indeed, it doesn’t always live up to expectations. It is powerful in that it can run seemingly any applications you may find on Google’s PlayStore, even heavy ones such as The Sims Freeplay, Inotia 4, and Babel Rising 3D. However, there are times when you may find the device stuttering while running these applications. This is seemingly due to the fact that HTC uses a single-core instead of an at least dual-core processor.

OS

The operating system you get with the device is Google’s Android 4.0.3, which is more popular as the Ice Cream Sandwich. Running atop the OS is the Sense 4 user interface by HTC. Unfortunately, HTC has not made it possible to upgrade to Android 4.1, the Jelly Bean.

Lock Screen

Thanks to HTC Sense 4 UI, the lock screen seems interesting. To unlock the phone, you are required to pull a half ring icon that will transform into a full ring when dragged upwards. On this lock screen, you can also put shortcuts to menus – or applications, as everything is basically an application on Android – you use the most. So, when you want to access SMS, for instance, you can drag the SMS icon right into the half ring icon and the SMS application will be brought to you instantly, unless you have set a password or a lock pattern.

A screenshot of the lock screen, captured with the HTC One V itself
A screenshot of the lock screen, captured with the HTC One V itself
A screenshot of the home screen (with customized wallpaper), captured with the HTC One V itself as well
A screenshot of the home screen (with customized wallpaper), captured with the HTC One V itself as well

Storage

Now, the next important thing about a smartphone is its storage capacity. With this device, you get 4GB internal storage with just 1GB free to use. The rest is used by the system already. Well, it is out of the question that such a storage capacity won’t be enough if you want to get the most out of your phone. Therefore, the Taiwanese brand is also providing a microSD support as your means of storage expansion. The phone will have no problem handling a storage capacity of up to 32 GB.

Network/Connectivity

As mentioned earlier, the phone supports HSDPA/HSUPA 850/900/1200 3G network in addition to the standard GSM 850/900/1800/1900 2G network, GPRS, EDGE, Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP and aptX enabled, microUSB 2.0 with USB tethering, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct, and Wi-Fi hotspot.

In order to use the USB tethering, all you need to do is connect the phone to a PC via the included data cable. You will then be given several options, one of which is USB tethering, regarding what you would like to do with the connection. This is particularly useful if you need an internet connection for your PC when you’re on the go and kind of unprepared.

Yet, if somehow you don’t have the data cable around, you can use the phone’s Wi-Fi tethering capability instead. This will transform your phone into a hotspot by which your PC can connect to the internet. Pretty practical, isn’t it?

Battery

For a phone this powerful, a 1500mAh Li-Ion battery is, to be honest, just not enough. Maybe this is one way the Taiwanese brand tries to reduce production costs hence an affordable price tag. Too bad, though, as a result, you will have to charge your device at least once a day.

Design

The One V has quite a remarkable design, too, the ‘chin’ design, likely inspired by the legendary HTC Legend. What this chin design means is that the bottom part at the front bends forward, following the contour of a human chin. Therefore, making a phone call with the phone leaning on the side of your face becomes comfortable.

The back of the phone, with Dr. Dre's Beats Audio logo on it
The back of the phone, with Dr. Dre's Beats Audio logo on it
The 'chin' design, inspired by HTC Legend
The 'chin' design, inspired by HTC Legend
The lock screen
The lock screen

Miscellaneous

Other features you may expect to see as well available on the HTC One V is a stereo FM radio with RDS, GPS/GLONASS, accelerometer, proximity sensor, HTML and Flash support, SMS, MMS, e-mail and push e-mail, Java MIDP emulator, SNS integration, predictive text, voice recognition, WAV/eAAC+/MP3/WMA support, and MP4/XviD/DivX/WMV/H.263/H.264 support.

Other Options

For your information, the HTC launched the One V together with One S and One X, with the latter being the most capable of the three. However, the One S and One X also come with higher price tags compared to the One V. So, if you want to save budget while at the same time own quite a capable Android phone, the HTC One V makes an ideal option. However, if you want the ultimate performance regardless of the price you’ll have to pay, the HTC One X rocks. What about the HTC One S? Well, it’s really between its other two siblings.

My Rating

4 stars for HTC One V

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