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  1. #1
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    Aug 2012


    Default HTC First Review - The Socialite.

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    HTC First features a spec sheet, mostly taken from last year's top shelf Android smartphones. The highlights included a dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 chipset and a sharp 4.3" 720p Super LCD display for liking your Facebook friends' online rants. Here goes the full list of talents, which the HTC First has to offer.

    Key features

    Quad-band GSM and quad-band 3G support
    Tri-band LTE network support
    4.3" 16M-color Super LCD capacitive touchscreen with HD resolution (720 x 1280 pixels); Gorilla glass
    Unmodified Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean with Facebook Home UI preinstalled
    1.4 GHz dual-core Krait CPU, Qualcomm MSM8930 Snapdragon 400 chipset
    1 GB of RAM and 16GB of built-in storage
    5 MP autofocus camera with LED flash; face detection and geotagging
    1080p and 720p video recording @ 30fps with stereo sound
    1.6MP front-facing camera
    Wi-Fi a/b/g/n
    GPS with A-GPS
    Accelerometer, proximity sensor and auto-brightness sensor
    Standard 3.5 mm audio jack
    microUSB port and stereo Bluetooth v4.0
    Smart dialing, voice dialing
    DivX/XviD video support
    Superb build quality and one-hand ergonomics
    Barely visible carrier branding
    2000mAh Li-Po battery with impressive performance

    Main disadvantages

    Only 12GB of available storage and no option to expand
    Battery is not user-replaceable
    Only available on AT&T for the time being
    5MP camera is not exactly cutting edge these days

    A quick look at the HTC First's list of talents shows that the smartphone has a lot more to offer than simply featuring Facebook Home out of the box. Hardware wise, the device is as capable as just about any 2012 Android top dog, but with the added benefit of an impressively pocket-friendly form factor.

    The unmodified Android experience, which the device offers, is also a pleasant surprise. It will certainly help the HTC First attract Android purists to its bandwagon.

    The non-expandable memory and lack of user-replaceable battery are on top of the smartphone's list of potential niggles. The former in particular, could be a deal-breaker for many, given the ever-increasing size of today's popular apps.

    Final words

    There's a lot more to the HTC First than Facebook Home. With solid build quality, minimalist looks, pocket-friendly size, and capable hardware, the handset is arguably the most appealing mid-range Android smartphone at the moment.

    We were most surprised by seeing an unmodified Android OS on the device out of the box. It is the only such option available in the US at the moment, this side of a Google Nexus device. There's no unnecessary carrier bloatware too - a welcome occurrence given the lack of much available storage on the device.

    The lack of expandable memory is probably the HTC First's biggest shortcoming. With only 12GB of available space on board, a user should be careful about its use - a tough task when a high-profile video game can easily come close to two gigs of required space.

    On the positive side, the HTC First has a gorgeous screen and the 5MP camera shoots better stills than you would expect.

    The HTC First is keenly priced at $99.99 with a two-year contract - a fair price given the smartphone's capabilities and the current state of the competition.

    The 5MP camera is arguably also a bit of a letdown, as 8MP shooters find their way even in an increasing number of affordable handsets. Our guess is that, given the social networking aura of the First, its camera was likely not a priority. After all, most, if not all, of the images produced by it are likely going to end up viewed on another mobile device, with a square aspect ratio and an effect filter applied to them.

    Source: GSMarena.
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