Taking some time out of discussing Android, let’s have a look at Windows Phone 8X device by HTC. WP hasn’t really been the most polished OS and neither has it been able to garner attention as done by Android. However, in recent years and some notable partnerships by Microsoft, Windows Phone has managed to grab a few eye balls and churn few users. HTC 8X is yet another attempt at doing so. Let’s dive into the review of HTC 8X and see how it fares!
The moment you pick up HTC 8X and you’ll know there’s a style quotient attached to it, worth flaunting. A neat blend of rubberized polycarbonate at the back and gorilla glass in front portrays a premium look to the phone. The 4.3” inch, Super LCD 2 display carries triad of capacitive buttons at the bottom, no physical buttons whatsoever.
Around the edges, HTC has placed buttons right at the curved regions, thus giving the phone a leaner look and more meshed in button placement style. The volume rocker, (dedicated) camera button are placed on right side panel along-with micro SIM slot tray. At the top there’s a power/lock screen button and 3.5 mm headphone jack. At the bottom, there’s the usual MIC and USB port/Charging slot. Turn to the back and you’ll see 8 MP shooter along with an LED flash at the top and speaker grill placed at the bottom.
HTC 8X carries a 4.3” inch, 1280 x 720 resolution, Super LCD display screen protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 2 which produces vivid colors, amazing contrast, sufficient brightness (not over saturated). Sporting a HD resolution along with 341 ppi display means that videos, images appear crisp and detailed, add to it enhanced web browsing experience (high quality In-Zoom text).
Powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon SoC, 1.5 Ghz dual-core Krait processor, Adreno 225 dedicated for graphics and 1 GB RAM, HTC Windows Phone 8X offers a decent hardware specifications, more than enough for average users requirements. Although it doesn’t follow the “octa core” trend but a dual core processor and 1 GB RAM can handle pretty much every app and operation you want to play/perform.
In terms of general multimedia performance, HTC has bundled Beats Audio on the 8X capable of giving volume level a solid push. The built in winding amplifier does a good job in boosting audio.
However, unfortunately supported formats for music and video playback on Windows Phone 8 is saddening. The music player does not support FLAC or gapless playback and the video player is capable of playing only MP4 files (includes 1080p support). For the rest of formats you need to get on to the nearest computer, perform the conversion and then transfer it to your device. Nay to that.
HTC 8X is a quad-band GSM and 3G handset so it is capable of working with majority of carrier networks around the world. Apart from this, other connectivity options include WiFi (with dual-band support), Bluetooth v3.1, NFC, microUSB, etc. Just some important one’s the speak about.
Bundled with 8 MP shooter, the camera comes with some impressive tweaking options apart from regular ones. There’s the option to configure Hue, Contrast, Sharpness, etc.
In terms of image clarity, in daytime, the phone manages to capture some good images. However, the same is not true with respect to indoor shots, there is some amount of noise that reeks. At best average. The best part about camera is its video recording capabilities. It is capable of recording 1080p HD videos at 30 fps. Add to this, the front camera with 2.1 MP range can perform full HD recording as well! Sweet, right?!
HTC 8X packs in 1800mAh battery. It isn’t really a power junkie but performs fairly well. With mediocre usage involving handful of calls, sparse EDGE connectivity, WiFi usage, couple of hours of music playback and 50 minutes of 720p video, the battery lasted for nearly 8 hours.
With respect to design, build quality, HTC 8X gets all my respect. Beautifully curved at sides, neatly integrated buttons, unibody design, excellent front facing camera, high density screen. Unfortunately, the solid hardware isn’t complimented well by the OS phone carries.
No doubt Windows Phone has grown leaps and bounds in recent years, but the unavailability of applications, several miniature but important exclusions are a dent on usefulness of phone overall.