Phone Comparisons: HTC One M9 vs Motorola Moto X Pure Edition (Style)

HTC One M9 vs Moto X Pure Edition cam AH


Do we have a good one for you today – the HTC One M9 goes up against the new Moto X Pure Edition in a specification comparison to see which one takes top honors.  Can the new Moto X hold its own against the all-metal One M9 with its BoomSound and new camera configuration?  Did Motorola upgrade the Moto X enough to be a true flagship against this year’s crop of smartphones?  Let us look below and see just how the Moto X stacks up against the One M9.

The HTC One M9 and the Moto X Pure Edition are both well-built and solid with a full metal frame – the One M9 comes one way and that is with an all-metal body.  The Moto X has a curved back and a myriad of customizable backings, including real wood.  They both use the IPS LCD display technology, but different resolutions and sizes.  They both sport a different 64-bit Qualcomm processor, 3GB of RAM and 32GB as an option for internal storage and both offer a means to expand that memory via a microSD card slot.  They both have similar main and front-facing camera (FFC) abilities and they both offer dual front-facing stereo speakers and both include special audio enhancements.  The One M9 and Moto X both have a non-removable battery – 2840mAh (One M9) vs 3000mAh (Moto X).

They both offer the usual suspects – Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.1, GPS, NFC, a microUSB port for charging and data transfer and a fast charge option.

Please take a deliberate look at the detailed Specifications Comparison chart below and here you will see just how these two great devices stack up against one another – click on the “View Full Comparison” link at the end of the chart to expand the details.  After that, we will look at each individual device in greater detail and point out some of its pros and cons.  From all of this information we will try to determine the winner based on specs and execution of design and functions.


HTC One M9

HTC One M9 TD AH 10HTC set a trend of an all-metal design with the original One M7 and it continues with the One M9.  This year HTC did not make many changes in the design of the case, but did include a subtle redesign around the sides of the body and a small lip was added for better gripping.  It retains a nicely curved backing making it a joy to hold.  This year, if anything, HTC is being criticized for not doing enough changes…but why change one of the nicest looking smartphones on the market?

The HTC One M9 sports a 5-inch Full HD Super LCD3 display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels and 441 pixels-per-inch (PPI) – this compares to the QHD display on the Moto X with 520 PPI.  HTC selected the 64-bit octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor with four cores clocked at 1.5GHZ and four cores clocked at 2.0GHz to power their flagship.  The Moto X passed on the Snapdragon 810 and picked the 64-bit Snapdragon 808 hexa-core clocked at 1.8GHz.  The One M9 and the Moto X both pack 3GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage and both have a microSD card for additional storage up to 128GB.

HTC has been playing with the camera on the One series since the M7 model.  This year they made another big change, and while they succeeded in making it better, it still does not include OIS.  HTC took the old 4MP UltraPixel camera and moved it around to the front, which should provide great selfies and video chatting while allowing you to take good low-light pictures.  HTC replaced the main camera with a 20MP sensor with autofocus and dual-tone LED flash.  This compares to the 21MP main camera on the Moto X, along with a large 5MP FFC.  The One M9 uses a non-removable 2840mAh battery, which is smaller than the 3000mAh non-removable battery in the Moto X.  The One M9 does support Quick Charge 2.0 thanks to its Qualcomm processor, while the Moto X supports fast battery charging with a Turbo Charger.

The HTC One M9 retains the dual front-facing stereo speakers with BoomSound, a built-in IR Blaster and comes in Gunmetal Gray, Amber Gold, Silver/Rose Gold and Gold/Pink.  It is running Android 5.1 Lollipop and pricing is around $199 on a two-year contract and $600 off contract.

Motorola Moto X Pure Edition (Style)

Moto X Style Hands On AH 27Motorola just keeps amazing us with each new smartphone announcement – the new Moto X just keeps getting better…and bigger.  This year they have brought out the new Moto X Pure Edition for the US and are calling it the Moto X Style around the rest of the world.  The display size has jumped up to 5.7-inches with improvements in all specifications, as well as including the Moto Maker for customization.

On the Moto X Pure Edition, Motorola abandoned the AMOLED display and went with the IPS LCD technology. Motorola jumped the display to 5.7-inches with a QHD resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels and 520 PPI, while the One M9 still uses an FHD 5-inch display and a respectable 441 PPI.  Motorola went back to Qualcomm, but passed on the uneasy 810 and put in the 64-bit Snapdragon 808 hex-core processor with one quad-core clocked at 1.44GHz and the other dual-core clocked at 1.8GHz.  This goes up against the Qualcomm 64-bit Snapdragon 810 octa-core in the One M9.  The Pure Edition and the One M9 both come with 3GB of RAM and the Moto X with either 16GB/32GB/64GB of internal memory and the One M9 with 32GB of memory and both with a microSD card slot to expand.

Motorola finally included a flagship camera in the new Moto X by using a 21MP sensor with phase detection autofocus, dual-tone LED flash and an f/2.0 aperture along with a 5MP FFC with an f/2.0 aperture and a wide-angle lens for great selfies and video chatting.  This goes up against a 20MP main camera and a 4MP (UltraPixel) FFC on the One M9.  The Pure Edition comes with a large 3000mAh non-removable battery, compared to the non-removable 2840mAh battery in the One M9 – both devices offer fast charge for their batteries.

Motorola included front-facing stereo speakers with Smartboost for a great new sound – are they mimicking the One M9 and BoomSound?  The new Moto X is a device that is unlocked and can be used on all major networks – they call this “carrier freedom.”  It is IP52 certified for water repellency and is using the pure Android experience – currently 5.1.1 Lollipop, so you are assured of getting the fastest updates – other than the Nexus line, of course.  Motorola has given it a starting price of only $399.99 and it will be available this fall.

…And The Winner Is…

Moto X Style Hands On AH 26


The HTC One M9 is a beauty of a phone, but I find more substance in the Moto X Pure Edition and naming it as the winner of this comparison.  If you must have an all-metal case, BoomSound speakers, a 1080p display and a built-in IR Blaster then the One M9 would be your only choice…enjoy.

However, the Moto X Pure Edition delivers more looks, choices and specifications.  It has the latest QHD display, a processor that can run at full steam and not overheat, a first-class camera area, almost pure vanilla Lollipop 5.1.1, the fastest updates of any devices other than Nexus, waterproofing and one of the fastest charging capabilities out there with the Motorola Turbo Charger.

It just seems that Motorola is trying harder than HTC to make a real flagship for the everyday user and they offer this package to us at a price starting at $400 and this is why I pick the Moto X as the winner of this comparison.

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