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HTC One Max review

The One gets supersized - but does it impress?

Our Verdict

The HTC One Max is almost identical to the One, but with a bigger screen. There's been no attempt to make use of that upgraded size, and given the new features will be appearing on the One in the near future, this means the One Max has very few unique selling points.

Product features

  • Built-in Memory : 16 GB
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 4 Megapixel
  • Battery Talk Time : 1 Day
  • Screen Resolution : 1920 x 1080
  • Processor Core : Quad-core (4 Core)

View full specification

For

  • Larger screen
  • Longer battery
  • MicroSD slot

Against

  • Older CPU
  • Expensive
  • Unwieldy
  • Pointless fingerprint scanner

Messaging on the HTC One Max mimics, largely, that which was already present on the original One and One mini, and doesn't really re-invent the process in any way - it simply offers up the chance to connect with the people that you want to in the simplest way possible.

One area that hasn't changed, but become harder to use on the HTC One Max, is the keyboard; thanks to being a much larger screen, it's not so easy to get your thumbs in the right place if you're trying to type one-handed.

HTC One Max review

The accuracy when you do get things right is high - plus the option to calibrate the keyboard by teaching it how fat-fingered you are is also a useful tool.

The new keyboard also comes with a line of directional arrows enabled by default, meaning you can navigate through the text you're editing with greater ease. However, with the larger screen size on offer, we'd rather that space be used to offer a line of numbers at the top for easier password entry.

HTC was one of the first manufacturers to embed Swype-style tracing of words on its keyboards, and that's a trick that's been repeated here, although it's nigh-on useless with one hand as you can't reach all the way across the screen – we'd suggest you don't even bother turning it on in settings.

There is another issue in that the default setting for the keyboard is to have languages as a key, meaning you can switch between French and English and German - this is ridiculously easy to hit, thus ruining predictive text input, so get rid of that as soon as you can.

The messaging system itself is well laid out, with a clean interface for the conversation view. Messages received have a nice white box around them, but those sent from your own fine fingers are greyed into the background. You might think you're writing a load of drafts to start with, but you're not. Move on.

HTC One Max review

You can easily append video or pictures to your missives by simply tapping the paperclip icon on the messaging interface, but on top of that you can do things like sending your location too. Try using this when you're explaining to a person using a smartphone where you are and you'll marvel at living in the future.

The email client is one of the better ones we've seen on a smartphone, taking on the likes of the Windows Phone brigade in making the whole operation that much simpler.

HTC One Max review

There are easy checkboxes to hit when you need to choose messages to delete, and all those emails that come in a conversation won't litter your inbox as they group themselves together.

We like this latter feature, but make sure that you don't miss key messages as the grouping will obfuscate those that arrive close together - you'll need to stay vigilant, and some will want to switch this off altogether just to be on the safe side.

There are loads of other little tricks that you can achieve with the HTC email client, such as being able to set your out of office messages directly from the menu (if you've got things so configured on your Exchange server) and having a favourites section that shows you only the messages from the people that matter.

You can also think of this folder as a place to keep the fear-inducing messages from your boss and in-laws… it adds a touch of adrenaline to the business of checking your email every few seconds.

HTC has added in the ability to Smart Sync your email, which places it between push notifications and a periodic update, and seems to manage to throw emails at you when you need them - it works out when you're using the phone more and then decides to poll the server, rather than just doing it willy nilly when the HTC One Max is clearly asleep and unwanted.

Another key email feature, and one that's come from older HTC Sense iterations, is the ability to use folders with ease to navigate your way around. Tapping the Exchange menu dropdown will show recently used message folders, and you can easily find new ones.

The reason we mention this is many of you will be super-organised and keep your emails in dedicated folders on the desktop – and when you're out and about and need that address suddenly you'll be forced to dig it out.

On some phones this is a real nightmare, but on the HTC One Max it's a snap to get to your emails, no matter where there are, and if you need to download older ones from the server it's as quick as a flash as well.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Contract TypeSIM-free
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported64 GB
Built-in Memory16 GB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA, HSUPA, UMTS
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationYes
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyOne max
Cellular Generation4G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 1900, WCDMA 2100, LTE 800, LTE 900, LTE 1800, LTE 2600
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution4 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraYes
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
ColourSilver
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameHTC
Battery Talk Time1 Day
Screen Size15 cm (5.9")
Screen Resolution1920 x 1080
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)217 g
Processor CoreQuad-core (4 Core)
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Processor ManufacturerQualcomm
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11a/b/g/n/ac
Operating System VersionAndroid 4.3 Jelly Bean
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
RealtoneYes
Radio Tuner TypeFM
Call FeaturesCall Log
Pixel Density373 ppi
SIM Size SupportedMicro
Height164.5 mm
Width82.5 mm
Depth10.3 mm
Radio TunerYes
ManufacturerHigh Tech Computer Corp
Product NameOne max Smartphone
Processor Speed1.70 GHz
Processor TypeSnapdragon 600
Product LineOne max
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeAccelerometer, Gyro Sensor, Digital Compass, Proximity Sensor, Fingerprint Sensor, Ambient Light Sensor
Manufacturer Part Number99HWN005-00
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.europe.htc.com
Marketing InformationThis bundle comes with a free car cradle and charger.

Maximise everything. Massive screen and amped speakers for movies that sizzle. Feature-rich camera gives you artistic photo flair and homescreen posts connect you to real-time news. All powered by HTC's biggest battery to fuel the most demanding user. Introducing the HTC One max; more screen size, more camera, more everything.

Key features:

Maximized imaging tools: dual capture mode frames personal reactions with picture-in-picture results and HTC Scribble feature frees your inner artist.

Maximized bass: dual front-facing stereo speakers and built-in amps create louder bass for booming audio.

Maximized convenience: fingerprint Scan unlocks your phone and launches favorite apps with a simple swipe.

Supersized Camera Tools
Don't look at your photos. Relive them. Dual capture mode displays the photographer's reactions with a mirror view picture-in-picture. HTC Scribble function allows you to draw on your pics, and Photo Editor feature lets you create GIFs. Maximize your wow moments and make every day unforgettable.

HTC Zoe™ Photos: Memories that Move
Group up to 20 photos and automatically create a 3-second HD video for a full-motion photo gallery. HTC Zoe photo also features advanced editing tools you can swipe your way to the perfect shot. Plus, Video Highlights feature combines your photo and video footage for mini movies complete with the themes and music you select.

HTC BoomSound™: Unleashed Sound
Unchain your audio with volume blasting toward you, not away. Serve up your movies, videos, and music with the decibels you deserve from dual frontal stereo speakers boosted with built-in amps. Stop stooping toward your phone and put your content onstage with HTC BoomSound™.

Unlocked Convenience
Users unlock their phones over 20 times a day on average. The HTC One max removes this hassle with a rear-side fingerprint scanner that unlocks the phone as well as launches your favorite apps with a single finger swipe. Up to three fingers can be registered. Forget complicated passwords, with the HTC One max, you're just a swipe away.

HTC BlinkFeed™: Social Intelligence
Enhanced HTC BlinkFeed™ gives you news recommendations when you sign into your social networks based on your likes, for breaking news that matters most*. The HTC One max allows you to customize an HTC BlinkFeed from a wide range of global sources, for more personalized updates.

World-Class Engine
The powerful Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ processor in the HTC One max accelerates performance for lightning-fast apps, downloads, and web surfing. Revved-up graphics processing speed is designed to make gameplay smooth and quick. It enables up to 40% faster battery charging too. With its efficient Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, the HTC One max responds faster, games better, and lasts longer

*Supports select social network sites. See your provider for details.
Package Contents
  • One max Smartphone
  • Car Cradle and Charger
Limited Warranty1 Year
Standard Memory2 GB