HTC 10 review: up there with Samsung’s best

Flagship smartphone finally cuts it at the top end with great camera, good screen, 1.5 -day battery life and snappy performance

HTC, once a smartphone champion, has been struggling in recent years at the top end with handsets that have just missed the mark. But celebrating its 10 anniversary of smartphones manufacturing, has Taiwanese company finally cracked it with the HTC 10?

Metal on the back, glass on the front

htc The back is curved aluminium with chamfered edges that make quite pleasing light reflections. Photo: Samuel Gibbs for the Guardian

The back of the 10 resembles HTCs recent top-end telephones, with a curving aluminium body and tapered edges that shrink from 9mm to 3mm, attaining the device feel thinner than it is. The front is all glass, with a fingerprint sensor at the bottom and a relatively large selfie camera at the top.

Gone are the front-facing speakers and the HTC logo of the One M7, 8 and 9; instead the fingerprint scanner acts as a home button and is flanked by a captive back and multitasking app switcher buttons.

The HTC 10 is 9mm thick at its deepest point and weighs 161 g, which is both thick and heavy compared to the rivalry. The Google Nexus 5X and Samsung Galaxy S7 are both 7.9 mm thick and weigh 136 g and 152 g respectively. It feels solid and well induced, but absence the luxurious feel of the metal used on the One M8.

The 5.2 in quad HD LCD screen is crisp and bright, but not quite as vibrant as the OLED display fitted to the Samsung Galaxy S7.

Specifications

Screen: 5.2 in full quad HD LCD( 564 ppi) 5.2 in full quad HD LCD( 564 ppi) Processor: Quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 Quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 RAM: 4GB of RAM 4GB of RAM Storage: 32 GB+ microSD card 32 GB+ microSD card Operating system: Android 6.0 with HTC Sense Android 6.0 with HTC Sense Camera: 12 MP UltraPixel 2 with OIS, 5MP front-facing with OIS 12 MP UltraPixel 2 with OIS, 5MP front-facing with OIS Connectivity: LTE, Wi-Fiac, NFC, Bluetooth 4.2, USB-C and GPS LTE, Wi-Fiac, NFC, Bluetooth 4.2, USB-C and GPS Dimensions: 145.9 x 71.9 x 9mm 145.9 x 71.9 x 9mm Weight: 161 g The bottom has a USB-C port for charging and syncing and the bass speaker that forms the new BoomSound system with the tweeter at the top of the phone. Photo: Samuel Gibbs for the Guardian The topic store has loads to choose from including standard or freestyle layouts. Photo: Samuel Gibbs for the Guardian The fingerprint scanner doubleds as a home button. Photo: Samuel Gibbs for the Guardian The HTC camera app is one of the best available, putting enough features within tapping distance with manual controls if you need them. Photo: Samuel Gibbs for the Guardian The selfie camera has optical image stabilisation, which helps remove camera shake, but still isnt anywhere near as good as the rear camera. Photo: Samuel Gibbs for the Guardian The telephone supports Hi-Res audio and personalised audio profiles, but merely through the headphones port , not via Bluetooth The rounded back and bevelled edges have some pleasing reflective properties
The BoomSound speakers arent as good as previous iterations. Theyre decent, but merely on a par with rivals from Google and others The edges of the phone feel instead hard in the hand. The screen has good viewing angles and is easy to view outdoors, but not if youre wearing polarising sunglasses, which blank out the screen in one orientation or the other

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