If you haven’t noticed it yet, many of today’s “phablets” look eerily similar to their flagship brethren – almost to the teeth in some instances. Despite the similarities in design, these giant sized smartphones tend to get some additional love in the form of added software and/or hardware tweaks, just to give them some sort of superiority over their beloved flagship siblings. Low and behold folks, that’s exactly what we see with two of the newest ones on the scene right now – the Nokia Lumia 1520 and the HTC One max.

They’re big, they’re massive, and they’re aiming to hit it big with the masses, literally. On one side of the arena, the Nokia Lumia 1520 is fresh on the scene tearing things by being the most specs heavy Windows Phone smartphone to grace the platform since its inception. And on the other end, we have the HTC One max, a maximum sized behemoth that carries HTC’s beloved line into the phablet segment. Two entrants come into the arena, but one can only stand supreme in the end. Which one of these valiant competitors will rise to the occasion? Let’s find out people!


Now if you happen to be all about good looks, you won’t be disappointed by either device – just because they have that perfect blend of having solid constructions, premium finishes, and intriguing designs that will no doubt raise a few eye brows. It’s a hard decision to say the least, really, but in the end, we’re going to side just a little bit more with the Lumia 1520. Indeed, they’re close to one another in dimensions and weight, but there’s just something much more refreshing with the tapered design of the Lumia 1520. Who knows, maybe it’s simply how those tapered edges help to make it look sleeker than what it says on paper? Also, it helps that its design is slightly different from previous Lumia smartphones – whereas the One max’s design replicates the One to the teeth.

However, when it comes to the in-the-hand-feel, we’re going have to go with the HTC One max, mainly due to the fact that its curved rear casing makes it feel more ergonomically correct. In comparison, the Lumia 1520 is wider and has pointy corners that don’t make it agreeable as we’re trying to hold it with a single hand. Don’t get us wrong, they’re both ginormous and almost clunky at times, but we’re better able to handle the One max a little more.

As we look around the edges of both smartphones, not only do we realize that they pretty much pack the same ports and buttons, but they’re also positioned in the same locations as well. Specifically, they include the power buttons, volume controls, 3.5mm headset jacks, microphones, and microUSB ports. Adding value for some people, the inclusion of an IR blaster on the HTC One max means it doubles as a universal remote. And we also can’t forget to mention its finger print reader too, which we can map different fingerprints to launch specific apps. Finally, they both offer expandable storage via their microSD slot – though, it’s a lot more convenient to access on the One max.

Nokia Lumia 1520

Nokia Lumia 1520


6.41 x 3.36 x 0.34 inches

162.8 x 85.4 x 8.7 mm


7.37 oz (209 g)

HTC One max

HTC One max


6.48 x 3.25 x 0.41 inches

164.5 x 82.5 x 10.29 mm


7.65 oz (217 g)

Nokia Lumia 1520

Nokia Lumia 1520


6.41 x 3.36 x 0.34 inches

162.8 x 85.4 x 8.7 mm


7.37 oz (209 g)

HTC One max

HTC One max


6.48 x 3.25 x 0.41 inches

164.5 x 82.5 x 10.29 mm


7.65 oz (217 g)

To see the phones in real size or compare them with other models, visit our Visual Phone Size Comparison page


Big used to describe phablet screens, but in this day and age, phone manufacturers have been able to increase their sizes considerably to the point that they’re within the boundaries of being tablet-like. Looking at the Nokia Lumia 1520, it’s outfitted with the ever so slightly larger 6-inch 1080p IPS LCD display – giving it a pixel density count of 368 ppi. Well, it’s not larger than its rival, but close enough, seeing that it’s packing a 5.9-inch 1080p S-LCD 3 displays.

Naturally, they’re detailed and sharp to give even the most miniscule of text plenty of clarity – even as we inspect them very closely. Regardless, we do notice that the color production is more lively looking, though still slightly off, on the HTC One max, seeing that its delivers the warmer color tones. Moreover, it offers wider viewing angles, and a stronger brightness output. Taking all of the factors into consideration, we’re leaning towards the HTC One max with this one.



1. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Without a doubt the 1520. The HTC One Max is the biggest fail next to UltraPixels from HTC.

9. GeekMovement unregistered

I agree, Lumia 1520 all the way for me! What's interesting is that so far, Sprint customers are loving the HTC One Max and the reviews are pretty much 5 stars. It's only the start, so the ratings might change, but I'm curious to see just how long and how many customers will continue giving this phone an awesome rating.

29. chocolaking

Posts: 495; Member since: May 22, 2012

Dude, I have the one max.. for over 1 month now. the UI and screen quality are so nice that you I would rate it a 6 star i can. by far, I can not find any phablet out there in the market that has a better screen . can you? i do admit that the 1520 has a better camera.. but i am not sure if you gonna live with the windows UI.. if you never had a htc one or one max.. you won't know how brilliant the blinkfeed is.. it's such a great feature.. well.. you just won't konw until you own one.

2. fouadqr

Posts: 326; Member since: Nov 21, 2012

no doubt.. Lumia 1520 is the best ^_^

3. Kuroki

Posts: 183; Member since: Nov 24, 2013

the "ultrapixel" is the biggest mess htc has created so far...there's no doubt that the 1520 won here ....

4. ArtSim98

Posts: 3535; Member since: Dec 21, 2012

Lumia for me!

12. rodneyej1

Posts: 3576; Member since: Jul 06, 2013

Lumia all day, all night❕

5. Lauticol

Posts: 404; Member since: Jun 25, 2011

Looking at the picture in the Display category, I can't imagine how Nokia couldn't put better light in it's capacitive keys!

11. rodneyej1

Posts: 3576; Member since: Jul 06, 2013

Yeah, in person it looks dull, and uneven.. But, I'm still getting one..

6. itsdeepak4u2000

Posts: 3718; Member since: Nov 03, 2012

Killer...... 1520 FTW and badass WP from Nokia.

13. rodneyej1

Posts: 3576; Member since: Jul 06, 2013

All Lumias are bad ass❕❕❕

7. rizevnarastek

Posts: 349; Member since: Sep 06, 2012

It's a win for HTC One Max all the way... Sure it could have had a tad better camera but it's the better device allaround...

15. dratomic

Posts: 483; Member since: Oct 09, 2013

specswise lumia>>htc only thing it lacks is android. so your comment is irrevalent

19. Berzerk000

Posts: 4275; Member since: Jun 26, 2011

The S600 can still run everything without breaking a sweat, so specs are irrelevant at this point. What really matters is the OS, and WP is inferior to Android in every single way. I would take any high end Android model, HTC One (Max), Galaxy S4, Galaxy Note 2 or 3, Xperia Z1, Oppo Find 5, Oppo N1, Moto X (or any 2013 Motorola device), or Padfone Infinity over the leading WP model any day. Hell, I would rather have an iPhone 5 or 5S over a WP device, or even a mid-range Android like the HTC One mini. The fact that WP is still so young compared to the competition and thus less developed automatically makes it lose in every single comparison, unless it's strictly low end; in mid-range to high end, WP loses every single time.

21. papss unregistered

You forgot to add "in your opinion". IMO WP8 feels way better to use than android... again we all know about opinions,

8. jellmoo

Posts: 2675; Member since: Oct 31, 2011

To be honest, neither one does much to interest me. Without the added functionality that the Note line brings, these are just devices that are big for the sake of being big. Having a big screen is nice, sure, but sacrificing being able to use it with one hand or keeping it comfortably in your pocket is a weak trade-off. Until phablets add great productivity options a la Note 3, they are more of a novelty than anything else.

14. rodneyej1

Posts: 3576; Member since: Jul 06, 2013

You obviously haven't used Office on WP8.. It's awesome on my 4.5in 920.. I can't wait to use it on a larger screen phone.. Are you sure you know what you're talking about❔

16. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

What productivity options? Spen? The 1520 can be used with a stylus, taken hand notes and all via apps (the spen is an app built in, but isnt androids tagline...there is an app for that?). In end you conception and novelty are way off. The onlything it has is spen, and multitaksing windows on the note 3, which i have used and hog the device down, and now you have a 3in window/phone.

10. isprobi

Posts: 797; Member since: May 30, 2011

I really want to like the 1520 but it is missing some major media related things like Adobe Flash in the web browser, a real live video streaming app (PlayOn or Mobile TV) and speakers usable for listening to media.

17. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

Like Global TV?

18. newbey123

Posts: 704; Member since: Mar 19, 2012

If I had was buying one, would be the One Max for sure. However, I'm going to wait until the new HTC One comes out this spring and then decide which to get.

20. orielwindow

Posts: 109; Member since: Sep 23, 2010

Been using the Max for about a week and it's AWESOME! Very happy with this phone. The front facing speakers are incredibly loud and it's great to watch videos on. Considering the 1520 won't even be released on Verizon, this was an easy choice!

22. taikucing unregistered

Nokia wins, but WP disappoints me.

23. rodneyej1

Posts: 3576; Member since: Jul 06, 2013

That's only because you haven't spent time using it, and you're not aware of what it had to offer.. Windows Phone is great, and does everything it needs to.. Any new features will be the icing on the cake..

24. snowgator

Posts: 3624; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

Both are monsters. I am a WP fan, so of course I lean to the 1520.

25. Thehamster

Posts: 19; Member since: Dec 04, 2013

Hm, even after reading this I still don't know which of these two phones to replace my Note 3 with. Coming from Sense on the One I cannot get over how ugly touchwiz is... Stick with what I know is great or try an amazing Nokia?

26. orielwindow

Posts: 109; Member since: Sep 23, 2010

I replaced my Note 3 with the Max. Partly because I think I removed my stylus from the Note maybe one time and also the loudspeaker on the Note 3 kinda sucked. I hated having to cup my hand around it to amplify it at work so we could look at videos. But the main reason I replaced it with the Max is because I live in a rural area and the Note 3 had practically zero reception (unlike my Note 2) and kept dropping our wifi signal. The max has 3g most of the time and 4g sometimes in the same area where the Note 3 would consistently be at zero reception. I'm very happy with the Max!

28. Thehamster

Posts: 19; Member since: Dec 04, 2013

Cool, thanks for the info. I have always loved HTC and sense but I thought I would try something new with better specs, but it's still not as sooth as my one x (correction, I wrote wrong in my last post). Every third time I press the home button on my Note it asks me which touchwiz to complete the task with, and other annoying stuff. Probably going back to HTC :-)

27. gkakas

Posts: 1; Member since: Dec 04, 2013

I am thinking into going to lumia 1520, from Nokia 820 + Nexus 7 set that I currently use. I am WP "fan", (yet quite annoyed because of the bad implementation of several aspects of WP and devices , e.g. no bluetooth keyboards, no hdmi out put, bad use of SD cards, slow app start, bad - the worse - phone dialing app etc), but I am very comfortable with android and the quite incosinstent performance behaviour of Nexus 7. But w.r.t. s/w there is two things that the article misses: 1. MS Office is not comparable to most other things out there (the whole package considered, with skydrive). 2. Nokia map s/w is a reason to buy the phones on its own, and there is no free equivalent in Android. Glad to see the rough comparison about video and the screen.

30. keygenpro1980

Posts: 2; Member since: Jul 27, 2014

im happy for using my windows phone 8.1

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.
FCC OKs Cingular's purchase of AT&T Wireless