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May 28, 2012

HTC One V Review

HTC’s entry-level Android handset comes with a signature design that traces all the way back from the HTC Hero and the HTC Legend. Check out our full review of the Android ICS-packing HTC One V after the break.

If you have found yourself wanting the HTC One V after reading our second encounter with it last week, now is the time to read our final verdict and find out if it’s really worth having you at “hello”.

Design and Construction

The HTC One V’s design has good pedigree, drawing a lot of inspiration from its predecessors namely the HTC Hero and the HTC Legend, hence the chin. It has a unibody design which is similar to its other HTC One cousins and is finished with a metallic matte texture in grey color. If you don’t like bulky and heavy smartphones, the One V is the device that your hands will thank you for. It has a slim body and weighs just 115 grams.

Appearance wise, the One V went for the simple yet straight-forward functionality. Look at the front and you’ll find the wide earpiece and three capacitive buttons just below the display. On top are the wake/sleep button, headset jack and the notifications light. On the right side are the volume rocker and the microUSB port on the left. Turn it on its backside and you’ll see the 5-megapixel camera and flash and the speaker grill right at the bottom.

From my experience in handling the device, I believe that the One V was designed for right-hand use. Hold the smartphone with your left hand and your palm will directly cover the speaker grill. It’s also frustrating to hold if a USB cable or charger is attached to it. So let’s say you’re charging the device and decided to make a call, you’re more likely to go for the right hand-to-right ear method.

Display

The One V has a 3.7 inch LCD dispaly, one inch smaller than the One X’s, and is covered with glass that slightly protrudes from its mounting. The screen is vibrant with deep blacks, has crisp details and good viewing angles. Sunlight legibility is good as well.

The One V has a pixel density of 252ppi. It is 60ppi and 74ppi shorter than the One X and iPhone 4S respectively, but pixels are hardly noticeable in the One V.

On the downside, the glass display is a finger print magnet. If you’re one with sweaty hands you’ll constantly find the need to wipe the screen with a cloth to clear it up.

HTC Sense UI

The HTC One V’s boot-up time from dead cold to network availability took 14 seconds. Pull the ring to unlock and you’ll get Android Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0.3 with HTC Sense v4 UI all the way. Of course, HTC’s huge digital clock and cool weather widget are on the main home screen. You’ll get five home screens of which HTC has already managed to fill up with widgets for you.

Tap the app drawer and you’ll get a 4×4 grid of icons which you can navigate through left and right scrolling. The UI animations are pretty smooth and scrolling is very fluid. Although you’ll experience some slight lags but is rare and forgivable.

Camera

The One V has a 5-megapixel auto-focus camera that is capable of shooting HD videos at 720p. It can take clear and very decent shots even in low-light conditions. There’s no dedicated camera button but you can have the ability to tap the screen to set a focus point. There’s a lot of detail in the photos but the colors often times appear overdone especially on greens and reds.

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A lot of thought has been given to the One V in terms of camera features. They took inspiration from the likes of Instagram and decided to add filters and effects. It also has the capability of taking HDR and panoramic photos, even slow motion video capture.

Multimedia and Apps

Like any other Android smartphones, adding your own multimedia files such as music and videos is just a matter of drag and drop. Although I have to create my own Music and Videos folder to avoid clutter, the One V just simply reads the whole memory storage and makes your multimedia files accessible and ready for your enjoyment.
Since we mentioned storage space, the One V has 4GB of internal memory but only 1GB is user accessible so make sure you have a microSD card in hand.

HTC went one step further in packing the One V with music-centered apps and features. It has 7digital and TuneIn Radio pre-installed and SoundHound integration within the music app. The music app is beautiful to look at especially if your song has an album art. If album art covers are your problem, you can simply update it within the music app itself with the help of Gracenote. As for Beats Technology, the enhancement is only available if you plug in a headset.

Video playback is wonderful and with added features like the ability to capture a scene just by tapping the shutter icon. Beats audio is also present but you can also choose to use HTC’s own mode of enhancement.

As for other apps, Google apps such as Gmail and Google+ are already scattered within the app drawer. The One V also has the HTC Car app that turns the UI into something that would look great on your dashboard, helping you utilize the basic phone and navigation features while driving.

As for other app needs, the Google Play Store and HTC Hub are ready to serve you 24/7 as long as you have an internet connection.

Performance and Benchmarks

The HTC One V has a 1GHz Qualcomm MSM8255 Snapdragon processor with 512MB RAM and an Adreno 205 GPU. See the benchmarks below to find out how it performs.

The Quadrant score of 1,776 which is just within the range of the single-core processor of this category. The Antutu Benchmark took the score of 2876 while the GPU got a passable mark of 27.1fps.

The the configuration and ICS to boot, the One v performs really well for an entry to mid-range handset. You’d bump into some occasional lags but for the most part, things look smooth and snappy. Of course, the set up is more than enough to decently play most of your games and apps, like Temple Run.

Battery Life

With a single core processor and 3.7 inch LCD display, the One V benefits a lot from its 1500mAh battery. Meaning it isn’t as power hungry compared to other monster smartphones that we have in the market. Therefore it channels the juice to other important stuff such as calling, texting, gaming, and internet browsing.

I’m not much of a caller and texter, managing only an average of 30 minutes of calls and less than 100 text messages a day, but I’m a heavy internet browser and multimedia user. With that kind of use and connected to WiFi almost 24 hours a day, I managed to squeeze two days of fun. I bet you’ll get lesser than that if you’re heavy on texts and calls. But so far, I’m quite satisfied.

Conclusion

With all that hype for quad-core smartphones with massive displays, I sometimes wonder if the need for feature-packed smartphones with lesser processing power and smaller displays are slowly diminishing. With my experience with the One V, I can say that there’s still hope.

This is the kind of device that can provide a decent muscle power, lots of features combined with good looks. In other words, the HTC One V is a wonderfully designed smartphone that gets the job done.

HTC One V specs:
3.7” WVGA LCD Display @ 480×800 pixels, 252ppi
1GHz Qualcomm MSM8255 Snapdragon processor
512MB RAM
4GB internal storage (1GB usable)
up to 32GB via microSD card
HSDPA up to 14.4Mbps
Bluetooth 4.0
5MP autofocus rear camera
720p video recording
GPS w/ aGPS support
1500mAh Li-Polymer battery
Android 4.0 ICS
120.3 x 59.7 x 9.2 mm

The HTC One V has a suggested retail price of Php15,990.

What we liked about it:
• Sleek, classic design with trademark chin
• Sharp, vibrant screen
• Good, feature-rich camera
• Runs ICS out of the box

What we did not like:
• Internal storage is small
• Display is a fingerprint magnet
• Battery life could be better

HTC One X, One V set to arrive on 1st week of April
HTC One V Hands-On: A Second Encounter

18 Responses to “HTC One V Review”

  1. Yahya says:

    16k for this ? Way too overpriced. I’d rather get the Xperia U at 13k.

  2. Dennis
    Twitter: iamdenman
    says:

    So what is the remaining 3G of internal storage for if it’s not user accessible?

  3. spbx says:

    13k lang to sa cmk with htc warranty din. wala bang gap sa screen between the touchscreen?

  4. templar_kaozzzz
    Twitter: templar_kaozzzz
    says:

    to compare this with the MP Magnum 2x the MP 2x will surely will in terms of specs and low price 10K only. but the 2x needs the ICS update to use its fullest potential and if that happens i’ll wager it’ll win over the One V

    • rye says:

      and how long will MP last naman? I have my HTC Desire and it was still working for almost 3 years now. Ewan ko lang ang MP. Lahat ng kakilala ko na nagpadala sa price ng MP nagtagal lang ng 1 year or less.

  5. Soul Annihilator
    Twitter: soulannihilator
    says:

    “Battery life could be better.”

    I can’t think of other handsets that can last 2 full days under heavy browsing, connected to wi-fi all day.

    I like the camera features of this phone. Very interesting.

  6. ARL
    Twitter: gudboyARL
    says:

    Where is the front camera? No mention of this…

  7. samaq says:

    Another generic Android device..

  8. showbiz says:

    No front facing camera? It should be priced lower than 15K.

  9. Gerd says:

    I have this for 5 days now and im satisfied. It’s a good buy if you ask me. ;)

  10. bell says:

    wala bang problem sa screen at sa bigla nlng daw hindi gumagana? like sa mga mababasa natin sa gsmarena>?

  11. josemargo says:

    I’m a HTC One V user, my screen works perfectly. Actually, it’s a good phone. Plus the free 25GB Dropbox is really a big plus.

  12. RONNIE says:

    really nice post, HTC instead of the upper part of the screen which is harder to break apart….

  13. KLim says:

    I just got myself this phone and I’m very satisfied with it. Agree with the free 25GB dropbox storage, sweet! ^_^ Love that I can still read my text messages even in strong sunlight.

    If you’re not thinking of playing graphics-heavy games or apps & you’re more of a social media instagram addict, then i reco this one.

  14. awtssz says:

    “a-no-good phone” i got this phone too just last month. but after the battery was fully drained.. it was fully dead…you can not charge it afterwards…this phone gave me hard time and frustrations…actually i was so excited to purchase it and enjoyed it for just about a week…then it happened…the worse scenario one can ever encounter… i brought the phone to the service center where i bought it last june 13 2012, a day after it went dead. yet until now there’s no good reason for me to appreciate htc…it’s very frustrating..

  15. chigs says:

    mas okay ba to kesa arc s? halos parehas n cla ng presyo s isang online store. battery wise mas ok b to?

  16. Davidson
    Twitter: EARLLEE_morning
    says:

    Nice nice nice, but if only they put a front facing camera and a better processor. Room for improvement HTC!

    Besides that I like the aluminum, it’s a good thing to do, since that is what HTC is renowned for, its build quality. I like how it is done with the chin and everything. Unibody is the future of strong phones!

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This article was written by Louie Diangson, Senior Editor of YugaTech. You can follow him at @John_Louie.

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