Interface and functionality:

The Note II sports the newest Nature UX of Samsung with its Smart Stay, Pop Up Play and AllShare Cast streaming features, which we discussed in our Galaxy S III review, but it also comes with Jelly Bean out of the box - an advantage until the One X gets updated.

HTC’s handsets have the Sense UI to counter with, and it comes with quite a lot of useful features, too, not to mention eye-candy and polish, so which one will you pick depends on personal preference. HTC Sense seems a more holistic and deeply interwoven into Android interface, with a more buttoned-down look, whereas the cartoonish TouchWiz icons and widgets are not as visually sophisticated.

The HTC One X, however, lacks one very important selling point of the Note II - an S Pen stylus with its own silo, which adds numerous other useful features and apps to the mix.

S Pen apps:

The stylus in the Note II is much improved in comparison with the original - it has a more ergonomic grip now, and the new technology inside allows you to leave faster and smoother ink trace. Moreover, the S Pen has learned new tricks now, too, with the most intriguing one being Air View, which brings up previews of emails, image galleries and button labels when you hover over them. For a full rundown of the S Note features, peak into our Note II review.

Processor and memory:

The Galaxy Note II sports a 1.6 GHz quad-core Exynos 4412 processor, compared to the 1.5 GHz quad-core Tegra 3 in the international One X, which transforms to a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 with LTE radio for the US edition. The US LTE One X is preferable, since its silicon is made with the current generation 28nm die shrink, as opposed to the 40nm of the Tegra 3, which make the international version behave lower in benchmarks, and the handset heats significantly on top of that, but hey, it was the first smartphone to hit the market with a quad-core processor after all, whatever that means.

We have 2GB of RAM memory in the Note II, double the One X amount, and the US LTE version of the One X start you off with the same 16GB amount of internal memory  - about 10GB are user-available in the Note II, whereas we have about 12GB on the One X, and no memory slot to expand. The Note II has 32GB and 64GB versions announced, however, whereas the One X has its international version with 32GB, and again no microSD slot for expansion.

When we couple the more powerful processor with Android Jelly Bean’s interface optimizations, the Note II comes superior in UI fluidity and app performance, which will hold at least until the One X gets updated, too.

Internet and Connectivity:

The Nature UX browser is very optimized, and powered by a speedier processor on the Note II, but the difference in performance is not that noticeable, as both browsers are quick. However, with the browser in Jelly Bean we are losing Adobe Flash support, and there are quite a few websites that can’t be enjoyed fully, or at all, without Adobe’s piece of software, which the ICS browser on the One X supports.

The Galaxy Note II has a 100 Mbits LTE radio and also 21 Mbits HSPA+ connectivity, whereas the One X comes with HSPA+ radio in its international version, but offers an LTE/HSPA+ combo in the US. These speeds are, of course, theoretical, and depend on your carrier network.

Both handsets are loaded with a variety of radios, like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, DLNA, and NFC, using the versatile MHL port for wired connectivity.

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