Do we have a good one for you today – the entry-level OnePlus X takes on a real flagship in the HTC 10. OnePlus can pack a lot of specs into their smartphones – indeed, some things are left out at the price they charge, but you can get a lot of 'bang-for-the-buck.' Even at their low pricing levels, OnePlus always delivers a premium build and feel to their devices and their entry-level OnePlus X's baked ceramic shell looks great. The new HTC 10 sports an all-metal construction and certainly looks the part of a flagship device, but at $400 more, is it worth the extra money, or is the OnePlus X a better bargain?
These two devices have nothing in common practically – they are close in physical size, although the OnePlus X weighs in at only 138 grams versus the 161 grams of the HTC 10. This closeness in size could be because their displays are close – 5.0-inches on the OnePlus X and 5.2-inches on the HTC 10 – but they use different technology and different resolutions. They both pack a Snapdragon processor, which are two generations apart. Both devices do allow for internal memory expansion via a microSD card – 128GB in the OnePlus X and 2TB in the HTC 10. While the primary camera areas are close in megapixels (13MP in the OnePlus X and 12MP in the HTC 10), they are engineered and spec'd very differently from one another.
The both have some of the usual suspects – WiFi (although the OnePlus X only has 802.11 b/g/n), Bluetooth (v4.0 on the 'X' and v4.2 on the HTC 10), GPS, and a microUSB port v2.0 (v3.1 Type-C on the HTC 10) for charging and data transfer. The OnePlus X is missing the NFC chip, which means no transfers or mobile payments. They both have non-removable batteries, but the HTC 10 has the Quick Charge 3.0 feature for a 50-percent charge in only 30 minutes.
Please take a careful 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 device in greater depth 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.
OnePlus always seems to have trouble introducing a new model, so when they announced the new OnePlus X right after their new flagship, the OnePlus 2, many were wondering if they could pull it off. Many thought that the OnePlus X was going to be a mid-range device, but it turned out to be strictly an entry-level device. OnePlus wanted a device to compete in the sub-$250 category to compete with those emerging nations. For the price, it does offer great value – but only in the sense that it is an entry-level smartphone. It sports only an FHD display, however, it is AMOLED, includes a decent camera, and 3GB of the slower DDR3 RAM. It is nice to see that OnePlus has included its excellent build quality and premium look we have come to expect from them – and it all comes to you for a mere $250.
The OnePlus X sports a 5.0-inch AMOLED FHD display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels with a respectable 441 pixels-per-inch (PPI.) OnePlus went 'old school' on us and grabbed up the dependable, 32-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 quad-core processor clocked at 2.3GHz – this processor is from not one, but two generations ago. The OnePlus X packs 3GB of DDR3 RAM and 16GB of internal storage with a microSD card slot for expansion up to 128GB.
In another effort to cut costs, OnePlus X retained the 13MP sensor from its previous model. OnePlus did add phase detection autofocus (PDAF), an aperture of f/2.2, and an LED flash. The OnePlus X includes a large 8MP front-facing camera (FFC) with a f/2.4 for selfies or video chatting. The OnePlus X has a relatively small 2525mAh non-removable battery and does not even include any options for rapid charge.
The OnePlus X runs OnePlus' own OS called OxygenOS 2.2.1, and is currently over Android Lollipop 5.1.1, although it is scheduled to get Android 6.0 Marshmallow shortly. LTE bands work on several at AT&T and T-Mobile, so do not expect to use one on Verizon's network. The OnePlus X will cost you $249 for the 16GB model and comes in Onyx, Ceramic, and Champagne.
HTC is working hard to recapture its magic and its reputation as a leader in Android devices – a spot that Samsung and LG currently hold. HTC's management just does not seem to have a real grasp of what consumers are looking for in a smartphone. They hit it big with the HTC One M7 and its all-metal case, but they always took liberties somewhere. For example, rather than redesigning the outside – it became tedious. They could never decide how to handle the camera area. Then it was their refusal to move on to a QHD display. Fortunately, for us, the HTC 10 is the flagship device they should have been building all along. Their all-metal body has a bold, new look, it sports a QHD display, includes the best processor currently on the market, finally, a great camera area, BoomSound Hi-Fi, and 4GB of DDR4 RAM with expandable memory.
The HTC 10 sports a 5.2-inch Super LCD5 QHD display with a resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels and an incredible 565 PPI. HTC grab the best processor they could – the Qualcomm 64-bit Snapdragon 820 quad-core with dual cores clocked at 1.6 GHz and dual cores clocked at 2.15 GHz. The excellent Adreno 530 GPU is matched with it to handle the most demanding graphics a video or gamer can throw its way. The HTC 10 packs 4GB of the faster DDR4 RAM and 32GB of internal memory that is expandable to 2TB via a microSD card.
HTC has played around with its camera area for the past four designs – UltraPixels, duo cameras, a large MP camera – and finally, they got things right with the HTC 10. It is true that they went back to the UltraPixels but instead of using only a 4MP sensor, HTC is now using a 12MP sensor for their primary camera. This is also the path that Samsung took – kind of makes HTC look smarter. This larger size sensor allows it to capture more light and image for better low light pictures. HTC then added laser autofocus, a dual-tone LED flash, a large aperture of f/1.8 and finally OIS. They even took time with their FFC – with a 5MP FFC, but then added the large f/1.8 aperture, wide-angle lens, OIS, and even included a screen flash to ensure great selfies and video chatting. A 3000mAh, non-removable battery powers the device and it comes with Qualcomm's Quick Charge 3.0 – which will give you up to a 50-percent charge in only 30 minutes.
BoomSound has changed since it was introduced on the One M7 – the two speakers used to be on the front of the device, but HTC added their fingerprint sensor on the bottom front rather than on the back. This move took up the space where one of the speakers resided, so they moved the 'woofer' to the bottom of the device, and the high-end sounds originate from the earpiece. HTC renamed the popular BoomSound to BoomSound Hi-Fi to differentiate from the two. HTC also included Hi-Fi circuitry for great sounding music for your earphones. The HTC 10 measures 145.9 x 71.9 x 9mm and weighs in at 161 grams. It comes in Carbon Grey, Topaz Gold, and Glacier Silver and it will cost you about $650 with 32GB of memory.
…And The Winner Is…
Whenever a device comes through for only $250, you kind of root for it like you do an underdog – but alas, I just cannot. If you just want to make phone calls, text, email, take some decent pictures for social media, and save $400, then the OnePlus X could be your device of choice…not this writer. The HTC 10 is the winner of this comparison.
The HTC 10 is simply too much for the OnePlus X to handle – and it should for a $650 price tag. The HTC 10 has the QHD display, two generations better processor and GPU that can handle anything you throw at it, 4GB of faster DDR4 RAM, more base memory that is more expandable, a much better camera, larger battery with Quick Charge 3.0, a fingerprint sensor, and an NFC chip for file transfers and mobile payments. The HTC 10 just has all of the specs and niceties, like BoomSound Hi-Fi and a beautiful body – in other words, the HTC has both brains and beauty.