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HTC One SV review

Repackaged and 4G enabled, is the One SV the ultimate mid-range smartphone?

Our Verdict

It's good to see another proper mid-range handset enter the 4G fray, but the Taiwanese firm has got its sums wrong on this occasion and ultimately that's going to make the HTC One SV a difficult one to shift.

Product features

  • Built-in Memory : 8 GB
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 5 Megapixel
  • Screen Resolution : 480 x 800
  • Processor Core : Dual-core (2 Core)

View full specification

For

  • 4G enabled
  • Decent battery life
  • Good media capabilities
  • MicroSD card slot

Against

  • Cheaper design
  • Lesser specs
  • Lots of compromises
  • Only Android 4.0

With a 4.3-inch screen and Beats Audio technology the HTC One SV has the makings of a media mogul.

HTC One SV review

Unfortunately the One SV lets itself down massively when you take a peek at the internal storage. 8GB. Yes you've ready that correctly, just 8GB. Now consider a chunk of it will be taken up by the operating system and you're realistically left with around 6GB.

Luckily there's a microSD slot hiding under the rear cover of the One SV capable of supporting cards up to 32GB in size so all is not lost, but we can't help feel we've got off on the wrong foot here.

HTC has a lovely little deal with cloud storage firm Dropbox and anyone who purchases on of the Taiwanese company's handsets automatically gets 25GB of free storage – handy for keeping your documents and photos backed up – which the One SV can do for you in the background.

Getting content on and off the HTC One SV is all pretty simple, connect the phone up to your computer with the supplied USB cable and you'll be dragging and dropping to your hearts content.

Music

A one stop shop for all your musical needs on the HTC One SV? Well that will be the cunningly titled Music app then.

HTC One SV review

Not only does it give you access to any songs you may have lovingly copied onto the One SV there are also links to other apps including SoundHound, TuneIn Radio and 7Digital – all of which come installed on the phone out of the box.

And if you prefer using different music apps most, if not all will appear in this hub as well once you've installed them from Google Play.

We'll kick off with the standard music player which offers up a no nonsense set of tools including play/pause, skip, shuffle and repeat – so all your favourites.

On the player screen you get a large image of the album art with the straight forward controls beneath.

The party trick up the sleeve of the HTC One SV is the Beats Audio technology hidden inside which activates itself when you plug in a pair of headphones.

HTC One SV review

Dr Dre's wizardry gets to work beefing up your tracks, enhancing the bass and giving a pleasing audio experience even with the average set of buds provided in the box.

All the main audio formats are supported here including MP3, WMA, WAV and AAC – so you shouldn't have too much trouble porting your personal collection across to the One SV.

The SoundHound app allows you to find out what tune is playing on the radio as the app listens to a snippet of the track and then searches its vast library of songs in a few seconds to tell you what you're listening to.

7Digital is an online music store allowing you to purchase and download tracks straight onto the HTC One SV.

HTC One SV review

Most songs will set you back around 99p, while albums mostly range from £5 to £9.99, which is generally the going rate on most music sites.

It sports a similar layout to Google Play which means anyone who's used the Android app store before won't find it difficult to navigate round the 7Digital app.

HTC One SV review

Finally TuneIn Radio gives you access to hundreds of internet radio stations which can be browsed by music genre, ensuring you'll always be able to find music that you want to listen to.

The 4G connectivity inside the HTC One SV means that streaming the stations is a breeze with no buffering or lost connections – however the same can't be said if you're on the move as mobile signal is never reliable.

A FM radio also sneaks its way onto the One SV which requires a set of headphones to be plugged in to act as an antenna, letting you listen to the radio in the classic way without the need for a data connection.

Video

At 4.3-inches the display on the HTC One SV is a suitable size for watching video on the go, sadly though the resolution isn't as great as you'd expect from a smartphone costing over £300.

There's no dedicated video player app installed on the One SV, so you'll either have to download one from Google Play or route around in the gallery app to find the clip you fancy.

HTC One SV review

The HTC One SV supports MP4, WMV, H.263 and .264 video formats as well as AVI, so make sure your clips comply with one of these before copying them onto the handset.

The video player provides the basics with play/pause, skip and scrub controls, but you also have the option to lock the controls to avoid any unwanted finger presses plus you can turn capture mode on if you want to grab a shot of your favourite scene.

HTC One SV review

Beats Audio technology is on hand to boost the sound if you're listening via headphones or speakers plugged into the 3.5mm jack.

Video playback isn't too bad considering the lower quality screen HTC has slapped inside the One SV and we were able to watch a movie comfortably on the phone.

HTC One SV review

On closer inspection you'll notice the detail isn't as good as on rival handsets boasting better screens, but for the casual watcher the One SV will suffice.

Google's Play Movies app comes pre-installed on the One SV giving you access to a library of films available for rent and purchase.

Prices do vary but most rentals are around the £3.50 mark, while purchases will set you back around £10. This falls pretty much in line with other services, but DVDs can be picked up for less online for selected titles.

Not content with letting Google have it all its own way HTC offers its own video service in the form of Watch.

Watch offers up a slightly different selection of movies and price wise it's very similar to Play Movies, give or take a few quid here and there.

The Watch app is not quite as pretty to look at, but its basic layout is easy to navigate and there's a clear distinction between buy and rental prices.

HTC One SV review

If you fancy yourself as the next big Hollywood director then you'll want to check out the Movie Editor app, allowing you to crudely cut, chop, paste and compile your clips into one lovely video complete with audio, pictures and text.

It's certainly not as full featured as a desktop software package, but it works well and can be fun for the odd quick mash up.

Photos

Photos are stored in the gallery app, where you'll also find your movies and the HTC One SV uses the familiar Android thumbnailed layout for easy browsing.

HTC One SV review

If you've transferred high-res snaps onto the One SV than its 480x800 display won't really do them justice if you fancy showing them off to people as colours can appear weak and detail not overly crisp.

You can easily share media stored in the gallery with the likes of Facebook, Twitter and Picasa, while various messaging options including text and email are also present.

HTC One SV review

There are some basic editing tools incorporated in the gallery app on the One SV, allowing you to crop and rotate your photos as well as add some simple effects.

The 13 effects you have to choose from are not particularly ground breaking with options such as vintage and over exposed to pick from, but it's better than nothing and very simple to apply.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Contract TypeSIM-free
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported32 GB
Built-in Memory8 GB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyEDGE, GPRS, HSDPA, HSUPA, UMTS
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationYes
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyOne SV
Cellular Generation4G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 1900, WCDMA 2100, LTE 800, LTE 1800, LTE 2600
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution5 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraYes
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD, microSD High Capacity (microSDHC)
Phone StyleBar
ColourWhite
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameHTC
Screen Size10.9 cm (4.3")
Screen Resolution480 x 800
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)122 g
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Processor ManufacturerQualcomm
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11a/b/g/n
Operating System VersionAndroid 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
RealtoneYes
Call FeaturesCall Log
Pixel Density217 ppi
Height128 mm
Width66.9 mm
Depth9.2 mm
Radio TunerYes
ManufacturerHigh Tech Computer Corp
Product NameOne SV Smartphone
Processor Speed1.20 GHz
Processor TypeSnapdragon
Product LineOne SV
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeAccelerometer, Proximity Sensor, Digital Compass, G-sensor, Ambient Light Sensor
Manufacturer Part Number99HSH008-00
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.europe.htc.com
Marketing Information

Superfast performer. Dual-core, 1.2GHz processor and 4G LTE* speeds give you the power to keep up with you and all your demands.

Amazing Camera. Two high-res cameras for sharp photos, even in low light. One-press continuous shooting captures your fast-moving shots while HTC VideoPic simultaneously takes full HD video and hi res photos.

Authentic Sound. Every sound is immersive and rich with customized Beats Audio™. Music has deeper bass, crisper vocals and detailed high notes, just as the artist intended.

Limited Warranty1 Year