Sprint HTC One: Hands-On Impressions: Is It Really The One? (Opinion)

When I first picked up the Sprint HTC One, I knew this was going to be a very different experience from all previous and current Android smartphones.

The first thing you notice is that it's a rock-solid, aluminum unibody smartphone that feels just how a high-end smartphone should feel. It not only feels great in the hand, but the smartphone is also one of the most gorgeous smartphones on the market. The HTC One was displayed next to the Samsung Galaxy S4 and when I picked up the Galaxy S4, it felt like a cheap, plastic toy that I immediately placed back down on the table.

Samsung would be smart to take some design lessons from HTC and anyone that picks up both smartphones will almost certainly have the same reaction I did. HTC should be commended for not building just another plastic Android smartphone; it built the best Android smartphone I've ever used and the fact that more people were playing with the Sprint HTC One over the Sprint Samsung Galaxy S4 is a testament to what an amazing smartphone the HTC One really is.

There is also no carrier branding on the Sprint HTC One, similar to how Apple does not let carriers plaster their logos on the iPhone, a small but very nice and elegant touch. I was equally impressed with the display of the HTC One as its build quality. The SuperLCD 3 panel is full HD with a resolution of 1920 x 1080. When I compared the display to my iPhone 5 and the Samsung Galaxy S4, it was clear that the HTC One display looks much sharper than both smartphones.

The Sprint rep I spoke to also pointed out that the Sprint HTC One is a global smartphone that can be used outside of the U.S. by inserting a SIM card into the smartphone. I also got a great demo of HTC Boom Sound and the sound quality it produces is loud and crystal clear. HTC was smart to place the speakers on the front of the HTC One, unlike most smartphone manufacturers who place speakers on the back of the smartphone or on the bottom in Apple's case. This tweak makes a world of difference that has to be heard to be believed. The Sprint HTC One ships with a few pre-installed Sprint apps, but they are kept to a bare minimum and nothing compared to the bloatware Verizon and AT&T pre-install on virtually all of its smartphones.

Here's a quick rundown of the specs of the Sprint HTC One. It features an aluminum unibody enclosure, 4.7-inch SuperLCD 3 Full HD 1080p, 468 ppi (pixels per inch) display, 1.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 quad-core processor, Android 4.1.2 with HTC Sense 5, 32GB of internal storage, 2GB of RAM, HTC UltraPixel rear camera with dedicated HTC ImageChip, 88 wide-angle lens with HDR capability front camera, 1080p video recording on front and rear cameras, dual front stereo speakers with built-in amplifiers, 4G LTE radio, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/ac/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC (near field communications), infrared remote control and 2,300mAh battery.

The whole Android experience is taken to a whole new level when a manufacturer takes the time and pays attention to every detail from design, high-end build quality and superior display. HTC did not compromise on anything and I didn't feel like there was one thing I wished were done different. Judging from my reaction and the many tech journalists who were also using the Sprint HTC One, Sprint and HTC have a hit with the HTC One. You can pre-order the Sprint HTC One now for $99 for new customers and $199 for current Sprint customers. You've got to hold one, see one, and hear one to truly appreciate the Sprint HTC One. 

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