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HTC Windows Phone 8S Review

HTC Windows Phone 8S

Posted: , posted by Daniel P.

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Interface and functionality

Windows Phone 8 does a few things extremely well, like social network contacts integration in the People hub, and lock screen notifications, and the HTC 8S takes full advantage. HTC has even provided live lock screen wallpapers for its weather app, for example, so you can have some nicely animated forecasts right upon unlocking the phone.

UI of the HTC Windows Phone 8S - HTC Windows Phone 8S Review
UI of the HTC Windows Phone 8S - HTC Windows Phone 8S Review
UI of the HTC Windows Phone 8S - HTC Windows Phone 8S Review
UI of the HTC Windows Phone 8S - HTC Windows Phone 8S Review

The company has also customized the handset a bit from the uniform WP8 look, providing the HTC hub with news, stocks and weather info, which can be pinned on the homescreen as live tiles. The proprietary Connection Setup and Photo Enhancer apps we have on the HTC 8X flagship are present here, too, but not the preloaded utility apps from the 8X, like Flashlight.

The weather app - HTC Windows Phone 8S Review
The HTC hub - HTC Windows Phone 8S Review
HTC Windows Phone 8S Review

The weather app

The HTC hub

 


Processor and Memory

The dual-core 1 GHz Snadragon S4 Plus is a more humble iteration than the S4 we find in the WP8 flagships, but the Windows Phone UI is very frugal, so you don’t notice much difference. We also tried a game like Asphalt 5, which ran fine, despite the Adreno 305 GPU, so it’s a safe bet you won’t feel underpowered with the HTC 8S most of the time.

The RAM situation might make a difference, though, as the 8S comes with 512 MB, which is half of what the bigger WP8 brothers do. Multitasking will thus be more limited, with Windows Phone closing running apps more often, though we checked to see 7-8 snapshots running on average when you long-press the back key. Loading games and apps seemed a bit slower than on the 8X for example, though.

A small complaint is the paltry 4 GB amount of internal memory, which is not enough today by anyone’s standards, but since you get a microSD card slot under the removable bottom panel, plus 7 GB of SkyDrive storage, it’s no biggie.


Internet and connectivity

The IE10 browser on the HTC 8S is as good as always, snappily panning, scrolling and zooming the websites around. Redrawing seemed a bit choppy at times, but all in all, it’s a decent experience.

Web surfing with the HTC Windows Phone 8S - HTC Windows Phone 8S Review
Web surfing with the HTC Windows Phone 8S - HTC Windows Phone 8S Review
Web surfing with the HTC Windows Phone 8S - HTC Windows Phone 8S Review
Web surfing with the HTC Windows Phone 8S - HTC Windows Phone 8S Review

The HTC 8S can download data with up to 42.2 Mbps speeds if your HSPA+ network allows it. It features Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and A-GPS radios, too.

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PhoneArena rating:
7.5Good
Display4.0 inches, 480 x 800 pixels (233 ppi) S-LCD
Camera5 megapixels
Hardware
Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Plus, Dual-core, 1000 MHz, Krait processor
0.5 GB RAM
Size4.74 x 2.48 x 0.40 inches
(120.5 x 63 x 10.28 mm)
3.99 oz  (113 g)

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