Our HTC One SV review takes a look at what this new HTC mid range smartphone has to offer you and what you get for your money.
The HTC One SV is a middle of the road smartphone from the Taiwanese manufacturers with a which has been introduced to take advantage of the burgeoning 4G networks, the best feature of which is the fact that they allow you to surf the internet and download music and video at lightning speeds compared to what we have been used to.
It is difficult to find anything particularly special to say about smartphone casings these days as they almost all have a “me too” look about them, and the HTC One SV is no different in that respect. It does have a quality look and feel about it though, with top-to bottom toughened Gorilla Glass 2 screen covering the front and a white matt plastic rear cover between a 9mm slim curved casing which is very easy to grip. There is a chrome trim around the sides completing the look which leans towards classy rather than cheap. It feels solid in the hand too, helped by the “just right” 122 gram weight and it’s a phone you will be happy to show to your friends and use in public without hiding behind a tree. In fact we would go so far as to say it looks and feels better than anything Samsung have put out in recent years.
The screen is a quality offering which you will appreciate. It’s not world beating with a 4.3 inch 480×800 resolution but it is sharp and clear. Watching videos and viewing websites is a pleasuryrable experience with no blurring effects noticable when reading text, often an issue on screens around this size and resolution. The android operating system is android 4.0 ‘Ice Cream sandwich’ version and HTC have included there usual Sense UI enhancements. We’re usually loathe to call most manufacturer’s tweaks “enhancements” but HTC have put a lot of thought and effort into their skins and it is a genuine improvement over stock android.
This is all powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 1.2 GHz dual core processor and complimented with 1GB of RAM. This is about what we would expect from a mid-range android smartphone and the HTC One SV copes admirably with whatever task you throw at it. It is noticeably quicker than most other smartphones in this price range. 8GB flash storage is included and you can add to this using MicroSD memory cards with capacities right up to 32GB. This is particularly welcome as we seem to have arrived at a time when many manufacturers have begun dropping memory card slots – Apple’s iPhone range have of course never had one.
Quick moan about phones without memory cards: Our feeling on this issue is now that memory cards are relatively cheap these days, especially in lower capacities, it seems pointless NOT to have a memory card slot on your handset especially since data transfer is expensive via most networks and we’re not always going to be in a Wi-Fi area with our mobile devices. It’s probably a ploy to save weight, space and of course money though those savings seem to benefit the shareholders rather than you and me as such things are rarely designed to increase profit margins rather than keep more or your money in your pocket.
HTC have included a 5 megapixel camera with the HTC One SV and quite honestly we think it’s fantastic. You get full 1080p HD and the f/2.0 aperture, as good as anything else on the market today, means super sharp and clear detailed photos and videos. An LED flash is included as well as a BSI sensor which improves the quality of your shots in low light and it really works.
We expected the 1800mAh battery to be a little underpowered to run all this comfortably but again we were pleasantly surprised by the HTC One SV. It lasted a full day’s testing with no problems, in fact we still had 29% of power left. It is removable too so no problems for you power users if you want to carry a spare.
Good connectivity suite
Connectivity is comprehensive too, with Wi-Fi, NFC (Near Field Communication) and USB. Stereo Bluetooth 4.0 and a 3.5mm audio socket for your headphones is included, with Beats Audio music enhancer on board to improve your listening pleasure.
Our overall view is that the HTC One SV is a handset designed to sit in the middle of the pack for those who do not want the size, or perhaps the expense, of one of the monoliths currently available such as the HTC One, Sony Xperia Z or Samsung Galaxy S4 but we think this handset is well above the average, and given that there are few 4G handsets available at this price level anyway it gives us great pleasure to report that the HTC One SV stands proudly above middle ground.