HTC One Max

Credit: CNET

The One Max is HTC’s answer to phablet lovers in the big screen wars. Like its sibling the HTC One, this is a beautiful phone with metal casing and great speakers. In a wink at Apple, it includes a fingerprint scanner.

Packed with serious specs, this is a solid offering into the giant phone market. But to truly take on this market HTC will have to address weight, processor power and camera quality.

Winning specs are; a 5.9-inch (vs. 5.7 Note 3) 1080p display, metallic body,strong battery life, SD card slot, crisp giant display with true-life colors and the new HTC Sense 5.5 which allows you to turn off Blinkfeed (cheers and whistles).

Losing specs, 1.7GHz quad-core processor and 4 megapixel ‘Ultrapixel’ camera, weight(7.76 ounces).

The fingerprint scanner is located on the back under the camera and can be used to open specific apps in addition to unlocking the phone. This makes it more useful than just a way to unlock the phone. It can instantly give access to the camera, navigation or other functions to save time.

Performance

Credit: CNET

Credit: CNET

The HTC One Max handles 3D games like Asphalt 8 smoothly and with excellent color and clarity. Full on HD streaming also gets the thumbs up.

Only the 1.7GHz processor gives pause. While sufficient for current games and movies, it doesn’t leave much room for upgrades. This is reminicent of the original EVO which was an excellent phone that couldn’t be upgraded to new specs after the first year. This is an area HTC will have to address to stay in the smartphone game.

Battery life is on par with the HTC One, a day or more with normal use or a boost for super users who game and stream heavily. Super streamers and gamers should not be surprised that any phone will need recharging during the day. In fact, all superusers should just keep a charger handy.

 

Pictures

htc one max camera

Credit: CNET

Techsnoop is not a fan of the Ultrapixel technology. Side by side testing usually shows it to be OK, but in real-time use, extra megapixels capture light and movement a bit better. That said, the photos taken with the 4 megapixel, Ultrapixel HTC One Max look decent (see sample right).  HTC, go back to more megapixels, Samsung is killing with 13 megapixels and no small amount of Ultrapixels is going to convince customers.

 

 

Wrap Up

The One Max is a great phone, but unfortunately, it was released after the Samsung Note 3. With a snappier processor and lighter weight, many will opt for the Note 3. A small 1.83 ounce weight difference from the Note 3 doesn’t sound like much, but may be just enough to tip a sale.  With hand-held tech, hand and wrist fatigue are real considerations. HTC must stop responding to other phone makers and go back to innovating.

The One Max should be available at Sprint and Verizon in November. Let us know in the comments which phablet is for you, or do you lean toward smaller screens.

« »