Samsung Galaxy S4 mini vs HTC One mini
Android 4.2.2 – that's the OS of choice coming pre-installed on both the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini and the HTC One mini. But neither handset uses the platform in its stock form. Instead, the Galaxy S4 mini sports a layer of TouchWiz UI, while the One mini relies on the latest variant of Sense UI.
Picking a favorite among the two interfaces is not an easy task since they both have their advantages and peculiarities. The Samsung Galaxy S4 mini, for example, is designed to appeal to a broader audience. It has a traditional home screen arrangement, with plenty of room for icons and widgets, while the apps are listed in the app drawer. At the same time, the multitude of major and minor tweaks and features introduced with the Galaxy S4 have been ported onto the S4 mini – Group Play, S Translator, S Health, Smart Pause, to name a few. Overall, it is nice knowing that the smartphone is loaded with goodies, but whether a typical user would ever need or notice them is a whole different story.
The modifications introduced with the HTC One mini, are slightly more radical. Therefore, they might not appeal to experienced Android users who are used to the system's default look and feel, although the company's UI implementation can actually be pretty practical. BlinkFeed is the default home screen, displaying a curated list of news and articles from a variety of internet sources, along with activity from social networks the user is logged into. The goal of this is to bring all information that matters to the user within a tap's distance – perfect for active social networking users and people who like to be constantly in the know. Traditional home screens, with icons and widgets, are available as well and are accessed with a swipe. Overall, the entire UI is simple, streamlined, polished, and easy to get the hang of. For more in-depth details, our HTC One review is where you need to go to.
The two smartphones come with on-screen keyboards that are of nearly identical width and height. That's why your input rate would depend solely on how used your thumbs are to the layouts of their virtual keys, regardless of whether you're a fan of two-thumb or single-finger typing. Personally, it didn't take us long to get comfortable with either of them. The keyboards are definitely responsive enough to keep up with our fast fingers.
Processor & Memory
Even though both smartphones have the same dual-core Snapdragon 400 SoC handling all computations, the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini can provide slightly more raw processing power. That's because its CPU can sprint at up to 1.7GHz, while the HTC One mini has its processor cores capped lower, at 1.4GHz. Moreover, Samsung's handset packs 1.5GB of RAM while there's only 1 gig for the One mini. Having all that in mind, one might assume that the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini feels faster and more responsive while being used. But in reality, we can't see much of a performance difference between the two. In fact, the S4 mini might start dropping frames if its homescreens are loaded with more widgets and shortcuts than needed, while the One mini retains its smoothness at all times.
In heavy 3D gaming scenarios, however, the Galaxy S4 mini has the upper hand not only because of the higher clock speed, but due to the lower resolution of its screen. As a result, there are less pixels that need to be driven, which produces higher frame rates. Nevertheless, rest assured that even the latest, most intense 3D titles would run just fine on both handsets.
|Quadrant Standard||AnTuTu||GLBenchmark 2.5 (Egypt HD)||Vellamo
(HTML5 / Metal)
|Samsung Galaxy S4 mini||6783||13341||3762 / 33fps||2088 / 685|
|HTC One mini||5885||11363||2714 / 24 fps||2268 / 611|
Unfortunately, the HTC One mini does not offer the option for expandable storage via microSD cards. Therefore, you'll be stuck with its 16GB of internal storage space, out of which about 11GB are available for use. That's not a measly amount by any means, but it will surely run out fast for those who like to carry around photos, music, and other media on their device. The Samsung Galaxy S4 mini does have just 8GB of built-in storage, less than half of which is user-accessible, but its microSD card slot can accommodate cards of up to 64GB in size. As a side note, both smartphones come bundled with free premium Dropbox subscriptions for 2 years, which is pretty cool.
Internet & Connectivity
The Samsung Galaxy S4 mini comes with a very fast web browser. So does the HTC One mini. That is why responsiveness isn't an issue no matter which of the two you choose to roam the interwebs with. But the One mini has the advantage of having a higher-res screen. As a result, small text in pages is sharper and easier to read. A potentially handy feature found on HTC's mini and not on the S4 mini is Adobe Flash support. However, the plug-in doesn't work perfectly on all web pages, at least in the HTC One mini's case, which explains why it is turned off by default.
When it comes to connectivity, the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini is one step ahead of the HTC One mini. While both handsets are available in LTE or HSPA+ variants, depending on the market, the S4 mini is offered in dual-SIM configuration as well, allowing one to use the services of two carriers simultaneously. In addition, the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini has NFC and a built-in IR beamer, allowing the user to take over their TV or home entertainment system. The HTC One mini has neither NFC support, nor any IR communication capabilities. Naturally, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS are present on both smartphones, along with an FM radio.
Samsung Galaxy S4 mini vs HTC One mini - Interface and Functionality