Home Icon
htc-one-xl-review-01

HTC’s One XL: a seriously impressive 4G phone

By Leigh D. Stark | 11:56 am 18/06/2012

HTC’s top-tier One X handset has received an upgrade of sorts, with the company keeping the design, changing a few specs, and making it possible for the handset to jump onto Telstra’s 4G network in the faster HTC One XL.

Features

The latest of HTC’s “One” handset range, the XL is the second in this mob to reach Australia’s shores, bringing with it much of the technology seen in the One X, but changing the colour, CPU, graphics, and mobile connection speed.

Aesthetically, much of what HTC threw into the One X has stayed the same, with a unibody polycarbonate case, built-in 1800mAh battery, micro SIM slot at the top, and a 4.7 inch 720p HD Super IPS screen protected by Corning’s scratch-resistant Gorilla Glass. The only discernable difference between the two handsets we could see was the colouring: the HTC One XL released in Australia is a dark grey, while the HTC One X released earlier this year comes in white.

Inside the handset, the phone takes a slight change, with the 1.5GHz quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3 from the One X being replaced with a dual-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon processor here in the One XL. A dedicated graphics chip is also found here, with a new Adreno processor to take care of the 2D and 3D graphics you might be gaming with.

Like in the One X, you’ll find a slightly protruded 8 megapixel camera with autofocus and LED flash on the rear of the camera, with a 1.3 megapixel front facing camera good for 720p video chat.

Google’s latest version of Android is present in this handset, with HTC’s own flavour of Ice Cream Sandwich. This means you’ll find the latest version of HTC Sense, complete with menu divisions, the very fast camera software we saw in the previous One model, and more of those snazzy weather and clock widgets.

Connectivity is pretty solid on the One XL, with 802.22 a/b/g/n WiFi, DLNA, support for WiFi hotspot technology, Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP, and that new fandangled wireless technology Near-Field Communication (NFC) which could end being used as a way of paying for things in the near future.

One more wireless technology makes itself known on the HTC One XL, with the fourth-generation mobile broadband technology – also known as Long-Term Evolution or LTE – being used here.

That’s basically where the “L” comes in with the “HTC One XL” name, offering an HTC One X, but with the added bonus of LTE’s high-speed connection, currently available up to a maximum of 40Mbps in metropolitan areas.

There’s also another thing the HTC One XL has going for it, and that’s Blue Tick certification, an acknowledgement that this phone can be used in rural areas. This is a fairly important point, as few smartphones released in Australia are certified for performance outside the city.

Like what we saw in the One X, there aren’t many ports or buttons to speak of in the One XL, with only two physical buttons – a power button up top and a volume rocker on the right side – as well as three soft buttons on the bottom of the screen, supporting back, home, and menu.

There are only two open ports on the One XL, with a 3.5mm headset jack on the top and a microUSB port on the left side.

If you have a regular SIM card, it's time to get a new one, as the One XL only takes the microSIM.

Pages: 1 2 3

Price (RRP)

$$744; Also available on Telstra on plan;

Pros & Cons

Product Pros

Insanely fast 4G downlink; Above average battery life; Excellent screen; Fantastic camera;

Product Cons

Keyboard responsiveness could be improved; No microSD expansion slot;

Ratings

Overall

Features

Value for money

Performance

Design

Latest reviews

  • Review: Leica Q (Typ 116)

    Not all cameras are the same, and Leica’s Q proves it, packing a full-frame 35mm sensor, 28mm f/1.7 fixed lens, and a body that says “camera” more than most…
  • Review: KEF M200 in-earphones

    If there’s one thing KEF understands, it’s audio, with the company producing some of the best speakers we’ve ever heard. Unfortunately, we can’t carry big speakers everywhere we go,…
  • Review: Jawbone Up 2

    Need a bit of help getting in shape? Jawbone hopes to have the answer in an update to its Up 24, with the new sequel, the slimmer Up 2.
  • Review: Samsung Gear VR for Galaxy S6/S6 Edge

    With the upcoming releases of the consumer-ready Oculus Rift and HTC’s Vive, virtual reality is about ready for use by regular people. Samsung is there now, though, and…
  • Oppo's 4.85mm thin R5 smartphone reviewed

    Apple may lead the smartphone wars with the iPhone, but Oppo is challenging the big A for some inventiveness, finding a way to make mobiles slimmer than ever with…
  • Review: LifeProof FRE Power for iPhone 6 (battery case)

    Smartphone batteries tend not to go for longer than a day, and Apple’s iPhone 6 is no exception, but the latest case from accessory maker LifeProof isn’t just about…
  • Review: Beats Solo 2 Wireless headphones

    Beats has one of those interesting reputations. Kids and young people love ‘em, while the older generation can’t stand them, but the latest pair tries to win over all…
  • Review: Toshiba Satellite Radius L10W

    Smaller computers are ideal for students and people on the go, and when they’re also technically tablets, they can be even better. Is Toshiba’s Radius L10W a hybrid worthy…
  • Review: LG 65 inch Prime 4K UHD TV

    It's not enough to have a big screen, and this year LG's 4K TVs are about more colours, fast operation, and sharp visuals. Does it succeed?
  • Review: HP Spectre X360

    HP's Spectre was one of the surprise laptops from last year, and a return for HP to the quality laptop space. Can the latest generation of Spectre keep the…

“How do you stop yourself from being caught out by these scam artists?”

Read More

Tell us…

Which smartwatch are you interested in buying?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

“There’s certainly no doubt that you can find a bargain, but like always, you get what you pay for.”

Read More