The latest of the WP8 devices from HTC The HTC Windows Phone 8x is noticeably lighter and thinner, and made of a rubberized anti-slip material, similar to the HTC One X+.
The HTC Windows Phone 8x is one of HTC’s newest Windows Phone 8 based phones which has been available on the Rogers and Bell networks in Canada since late 2012. Running the same operating system as the previously reviewed Nokia Lumia 920, it is ultimately quite similar under the hood. However, physically it is quite different in some fundamental ways. How does it compare to the Lumia 920? Read on to find out more.
As alluded to above, the biggest differences between the HTC Windows Phone 8x and the Lumia 920 are physical in nature. While the Lumia 920 is a sexy polycarbonate beauty, the HTC Windows Phone 8x is noticeably lighter and thinner, and made of a rubberized anti-slip material, similar to the HTC One X+. Despite the different material used, the HTC 8x is a stunning phone, and is comfortable to hold in hand when compared to the Lumia 920. Many WP8 fans that may shy away from the Lumia 920 due to its thickness and weight will likely be wooed to the 8x, thanks to its great sloped edge design which is one of the reasons it is so easy to hold, and why it appears so slim.
The screen on the HTC Windows Phone 8x uses a 4.3 inch “Super LCD2” display which has some of the best colour reproduction I have seen on phones to date; even when compared to the Lumia 920. However, the IPS display on the Lumia 920 still has a slight edge due to its superior contrast and usability in direct sunlight.
If there is one hardware related gripe I have with this phone, it has to be the placement and usability of the power button which is found on the top of the phone. During my time with the phone, this button proved to be hard to press and a little finicky on more than one occasion. While a minor issue, and possibly an issue specific to my test unit, I would suggest that potential purchasers should check out the phone in store and come to their own conclusion.
One of the advantages of Windows Phone 8 is that regardless of which WP8 device you use, the software experience is exactly the same, reducing the learning curve with different devices. As a result, and also thanks to their inclusion of the same processor, the 8x and the Lumia 920 are identical in terms of software experience. Those interested in the 8x should check out Lumia 920 review if they haven’t already to see my opinions on Windows Phone 8.
Like the Lumia 920, the 8x is equipped with LTE connectivity – which provides the fastest mobile downloading speeds available in Canada at the moment. Based on my usage in Waterloo, Ontario (see screenshot below), the average download speed I was able to maintain was around 12 Mbps, which is definitely slower than the speeds of 30-40 Mbps experienced on the other LTE devices we have tested. However, other devices were tested in Toronto as opposed to Waterloo, and this may partly explain the difference. Regardless, for most users these speeds will be more than sufficient for daily usage and infrequent tethering.
The HTC 8x uses an 8-megapixel camera which produces better than average photos, especially in well-lit settings. Though most photos were slightly inferior compared to the best in class Lumia 920 and iPhone 5, the HTC 8x performs admirably under most circumstances. See below for some sample shots.
Finally, as with the Lumia 920, the battery life for the HTC 8x is sufficient for typical usage. It lasted throughout the day during our testing period with no issues.
When compared to the Nokia Lumia 920, the HTC 8x is much the same in terms of actual usage thanks to the uniformity of Windows Phone 8. However, physically speaking this phone is a totally different beast thanks to its slim and thin design, and the rubberized material that makes up its shell. After considering the advantages and disadvantages of the WP8 operating system as discussed in previous reviews, the HTC 8x is a gorgeous, well-designed phone, save for a few relatively minor issues including slow LTE speeds and the finicky power button. Ultimately, users looking to try a Windows Phone 8 device but finding themselves deterred by the size of the Lumia 920, may find their ideal device in the HTC 8x.
Nokia Lumia 920 Review – by Dave Doshi
HTC One X+ Review – by Dave Doshi
Nokia Lumia 800 Review – by Dave Doshi