HTC One vs Apple iPhone 5

The just launched HTC One is among the best looking Android devices out there. Apple’s iPhone on the other hand has set the gold standard in phone design in recent years. Two gorgeous devices, the HTC One and iPhone 5 differ drastically - big screen versus a small screen, Android versus iOS, so which one should you pick? Read on to find out.


The One is a crucial launch for HTC. The ailing company has put its best effort in designing its 2013 flagship. The HTC One is made out of two aluminum plates, with a slight curve on the back, fitting comfortably, almost organically in the hand. Its bigger that the iPhone but does not feels awkward to hold because of its size.

While the HTC One is 9.3mm thin, the iPhone 5 has a merely 7.6mm thin body, and while the One weighs 143 grams, the iPhone 5 tips the scales at the featherweight 112 grams.

You can tell HTC cared about every detail - the chamfered edges, the metallic volume rocker, the large centered camera eye, all of that feels well composed, solid.

The iPhone 5 also has a preference for aluminum. It is solid, well built with meticulous attention to detail. But it also looks tiny in comparison. Great for those who value single-handed use, and not so great for those who want a bigger display. It’s all about priorities.


Speaking of screens, the HTC One comes with a noticeably larger, 4.7-inch display, compared to the 4-inch screen on the iPhone 5. Both displays are of the LCD variety, and both are among the very best out there.

First, the HTC One. It packs a 4.7-inch 1080x1920 Super LCD3 screen with amazing viewing angles and great colors. It’s stunningly sharp, coming with a pixel density of 468ppi. It is however a little dimmer than the iPhone 5 (and than what we’ve seen from HTC before), and pretty reflective, and combined this might make it a bit hard to use outdoors.

The iPhone 5 has a smaller, 4-inch Retina display, a term that now seems a bit strange to use as most other rivals like the HTC One have sharper screens. Still, the iPhone 5 screen looks very sharp and viewing angles are great. Colors are nearly perfectly calibrated, whites are white, blacks are deep, both devices are comparable in their near-perfect color quality. With its 500 nits of brightness everything looks bright and vivid, very legible even under direct sunlight.

HTC One 360-Degrees View:

Apple iPhone 5 360-Degrees View



1. amiroo

Posts: 269; Member since: Sep 03, 2012

hohooo one is monster and go up with every compt.. its faaaar better than iphone 5.. but we need comp btw ONE & S4 Plzzzzzzzzzzzz... tnx 4 this article.

21. LonghornTech

Posts: 50; Member since: Mar 14, 2013

Why does this conclusion say it's down to personal preference on which device is better while the comparisons to the GSIII and Lumia 920 say that the One is the clear victor? The iPhone 5 can not be that much better than the other two devices?

27. EspHack

Posts: 70; Member since: Sep 04, 2012

exactly what i was going to say, thank you, lets wait for the xperia z they would say the same i guess

2. wendygarett unregistered

Please don't thumb me down for choosing the iPhone 5 >_

5. amiroo

Posts: 269; Member since: Sep 03, 2012

i thump u up cus its your point.. election btw perfect android and ios..

7. wendygarett unregistered

I actually choose it for my sympathy, coz nobody will choose iPhone 5 anyway :)

31. AnTuTu

Posts: 1624; Member since: Oct 14, 2012

Well done Wendy at the end :p

3. Birds

Posts: 1172; Member since: Nov 21, 2011

Interesting. I like both devices but I'd prefer the HTC One over the iPhone simply because I have always been an HTC diehard. I'm actually impressed with HTC this go around just for trying something different. As for Apple, I hope they can wow me with the iPhone 5s. Not saying the iPhone 5 is bad, it just seemed to only be an iPhone 4s with a 4 inch screen and beefier GPU. Tbh, the only way a screen bigger than 4 inches could work on an iPhone is if the next iOS gets more live features and a better multitasking ability. When it comes to just looking at hardware.... For me it'd be a hard choice alone. But if you dive into software, I believe the HTC One is superior in the majority of aspects. I am interested in trying out blink feed to see if it does make social media any more convenient. All and all, it depends on the personal taste of the people but I like HTC and their efforts and I really hope Apple tries to bring something different in the iPhone 5s/6 just to show they are off this entire "we are apple and because our name is apple, we will remain relevant even if we produce phones we like and don't listen to our consumers on what they would want to see in an iPhone."

4. emadshiny

Posts: 1144; Member since: Dec 05, 2012

One crushes IPhone, of course if it pleases you PA. one thing which is interesting to me is every 2013 must be compared with S3 and IP5 while there are new 2013 flagships like XZ and Optimus G pro. then people call me butthurt Sony fanboy!!

9. cezarepc

Posts: 718; Member since: Nov 23, 2012

What I really want to see is a full on battle royale: HTC One Sony Xperia Z LG Optimus G Pro Samsung Galaxy S4 Undercards: iPhone5 Nokia Lumia 920 Ex-flagship-android iPhone5 and Lumias only excel in the camera dept and build quality. I'm not saying they are bad, but definitely not worth comparing to current top-shelf androids.

6. GeekMovement unregistered

I didn't even realize iPhone5 had such a horrible battery. 1440mAH? No wonder the battery life is short lived. I always see my friends borrowing each other's iPhones because theirs ran out of juice. It's sad. HTC One has a gorgeous design. So sleek and modern.

11. bucky

Posts: 3797; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

Funny, I have opposite experience.

13. oying24

Posts: 48; Member since: Sep 26, 2012

me too

19. zeropants

Posts: 42; Member since: May 31, 2012

I have had great battery life on the iPhone 5. Specs don't typically translate well between devices in reviews. Processors, battery size, ram, etc are all dependent on multiple factors. It's why you can still pick up a 1GHz Windows Phone 7 device and it's smooth, but on Android it can lag. It's why a 1440mAH battery on an iPhone 5 can get me through a fairly busy day with 40% battery left but I'd need 2000mAH on an Android device. And why having a larger processor on Android does wonders for it's multitasking and background application efficiency, but doesn't seem to matter as much on Windows Phone 8. You can directly measure displays, cameras, and download/upload speeds. After that, it's largely based on preference unless you're sticking with the same OS type.

8. Note2waitingonNote3

Posts: 87; Member since: Mar 19, 2013

Galaxy Note 2 beats em both rather easily.

18. JDogg5281

Posts: 74; Member since: Aug 09, 2012

Idk about all of that...I have the Note 2 and I dont think it easily beats the htc one if at all. Iphone 5 yes...but thats not saying much cause you can name 10 phones that do that

26. phonemirer

Posts: 111; Member since: Dec 07, 2012

man, there are like 15 or more, but i5 is 2012, anyway i5s is gonna be the same, apple is obsolete since 2011

10. tiara6918

Posts: 2263; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

Htc one easily beats the iPhone5 in all categories maybe just except the camera since both of them have their strenghts and weaknesses

12. bucky

Posts: 3797; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

Nice htc phone for sure but to say it beats it (and easily at that) shows me you're a fanboy. Software updates? Ecosystem? Support? Accessories? Apps? Software (preference)? Size (preference)?

14. oying24

Posts: 48; Member since: Sep 26, 2012

i agree with apps and eco.. ios version of apps are so good compare to android versions..thats a fact btw.

16. boosook

Posts: 1442; Member since: Nov 19, 2012

Well, Google's ecosystems is now huge: everything is integrated and synchronized: contacts, calendar, mail, music, books, apps, searches, maps, files (google drive), social (g+), photos (g+ and picasa), automatic backups, cloud printing... there's everything you need. It reaches a level of integration IMHO that nobody can match now. The apps talk to each other and interact. Once you start using all the features, it's hard to come back. Software updates: since the One is not a Nexus, these are up to HTC, but I think that they won't repeat the mistakes they did in the past and it will be upgraded at least to android 5. These OS are really capable and I think you'll have what you need for years to come, considering that in google's ecosystem many new feature are released as applications and not necessarily as system updates. Apps: there still may be some apps that exist only for iphone, but I think this happens now only in a few particular cases. The play store is huge, you can find everything you need. Accessories: there are plenty of accessories for Android phones, I can't see any problem. Software (preference): of course, as you say, this is just a preference. I think that Android has become much more capable than iOS, but that's just my opinion. Support: that's up to HTC, and to be sincere I don't know if it's good or not. And you can't ignore the fact that for the same or even lower price you get a more capable hardware, and I'm not talking only about a copule of MHz more: we have a bigger and sharper full HD screen (a plus to watch photos or read ebooks), double front speakers, camera with optical stabilizer, double-membrane microphones with HDR audio recording... these are hardware features that will positively affect everyday use for many users. So when we compare something to the iphone we always assume that the iphone is better and we say "let's see if this will come close" and we start comparing the strong points of the iphone ignoring its weaknesses. We should also do the opposite: take the strong points of other phones and point out that they are missing in the iphone. And then everybody can choose.

17. zazori08

Posts: 113; Member since: Dec 21, 2011

"and this is how you know if the user is asian." just joking, i like android better since it gives the user freedom to customize. that's it.

15. rizevnarastek

Posts: 349; Member since: Sep 06, 2012

iPhonearena, heh

20. riku242244

Posts: 4; Member since: Apr 13, 2012

Phonearena you never let iPhone down

22. bucky

Posts: 3797; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

It's the best selling PHONE! Why would they not compare it?

23. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

If you want a phone for just talking and texting with good camera, then sure the iPhone 5 wins. But, if you do a whole lot more then the One is the clear winner.

24. gixxerrider311

Posts: 25; Member since: Mar 14, 2012

Both of these smarthphones have an awesome design. Too bad Verizon won't be getting the HTC One since is what I wanted to get, I definitely won't be getting the S4, when I hold the S3 in my hand it doesn't feel like a premium device, design and feel is a must for me. I guess I'll wait and see what Apple does on the iPhone 5S (Hopefully an os revamp). Either Android or iOS meets my needs so I'm not biased towards one over the other.

25. zippolite28

Posts: 107; Member since: Sep 28, 2012

I just want to see htc one screen ... I really hate my sony xperia z screen ... its too bad soo brigt black looks like gray

28. zizicomments

Posts: 5; Member since: Mar 15, 2013

reading a few lines of the review and u just know the reviewer is biased towards the iphone,its just logic,i wont go to a phone shop and pick up a 2012 phone over a 2013 released phone oh hell no!! plus the htc already killed the iphone5 so reviewer plsss,boomsound ,full hd screen,zoe,binkfeed extra sleek model like body i like to try these out,everyone forgets the htc one simply has a 4mp cam and if its able to closely perform and out perform the 8mp cam then htc must be cooking some software in there,i love night parties i believe every dude out there can relate to this ,so why not the htc one ,stop the icrap bull.$.it

30. Android4u

Posts: 456; Member since: Aug 16, 2012

Wow pa...just admit the ONE is better!! Stop with all that personal perference crap... Back in the day's you guys had no problem letting everyone know iPhone was the winner when u did your comparisons....but now when we have smartphones that actually s*** on apple, you guys say personal perference....give it a break you guys.. don't be surprised when the galaxy s4 is compared with ip5 they say personal perference lol

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