iPhone 7 vs HTC 10: speaker comparison


It's time for some sonic wars! HTC's flagships have long been known for their BoomSound speakers. On the One series, BoomSound meant stereo speakers nested on the phone's front, on the top and bottom bezels. With the HTC 10, the company reworked the concept, calling it BoomSound Hi-Fi edition. What's different?

Well, the phone still has dual speakers, but they are not just used for a typical left-right stereo signal. The lower speaker was moved to the bottom frame of the device and is used as both the right channel and a sort of a “mini woofer”, mainly playing mid and low frequencies. On the top, the earpiece of the phone doubles as the second speaker. It takes care of the left channel and the high frequencies. Theoretically, when you have speakers dedicated to a specific frequency spectrum, you should end up having a better sound than what a single phone speaker would produce.

When Apple announced the iPhone 7 it too surprised us with a dual speaker setup. In part, it functions very similarly to the HTC 10's Hi-Fi BoomSound, with the bottom speaker having less bite and the top speaker compensating for that. But Apple's solution is also stereo, meaning we get true left and right audio from each respective speaker.

Seeing as these two are kind of similar in the way they function, and how HTC's BoomSound has been a staple for mobile speakers for a while now, we decided we'd pit them against each other for a quick test. First the audio, then our thoughts on the matter:

The sounds






As you probably heard from these clips, the iPhone 7 is much, much louder than the HTC 10. And while, yes, the iPhone is quite loud, this is also because the HTC 10 is very, very quiet. We've spent a lot of time with the latter, trying to listen to its speakers in our daily lives. While they sound really good for mobile phone speakers, we just couldn't squeeze enough volume out of them unless we were in a relatively quiet environment. The iPhone 7, on the other hand, can get quite loud.

Then, there is the matter of sound quality. From the clips, you can hear that the iPhone 7 sounds very full, maybe overbearing at moments. Playing the HTC 10 right after may leave you with a sense that it may be missing something. However, give your ears some time to adapt to the way the HTC 10 plays songs, you may find that it actually sounds very pleasant.

Conclusion


In terms of sound quality, we can't pick a real winner, as both the iPhone 7 and the HTC 10 have a good sound coming out of them, especially considering that they are just small smartphones. However, the HTC 10's quiet speakers are a huge minus and kind of a let-down, considering their BoomSound branding. So, we have to say, if phone loudspeakers matter to you, the iPhone 7 wins this one just because it's much louder and easy to listen to.

Related phones

iPhone 7
  • Display 4.7 inches
    1334 x 750 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP (Single camera)
    7 MP front
  • Hardware Apple A10 Fusion
    2GB RAM
  • Storage 256GB, not expandable
  • Battery 1960 mAh
  • OS iOS 13.x
10
  • Display 5.2 inches
    2560 x 1440 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP (Single camera)
    5 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 820
    4GB RAM
  • Storage 32GB, microSDXC
  • Battery 3000 mAh
  • OS Android 8.0 Oreo
    HTC Sense UI

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