Following months of speculation, the HTC One S (formally known as the HTC Ville) has finally received an official launch at Mobile World Congress 2012. But before the handset went public we went down to HTC’s UK offices to get a sneak preview of what the Taiwanese mobile pioneers are billing as their slimmest ever handset.
The first thing to notice about the One S is the design and build of the device. With a form factor which gives an aesthetic nod to the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, the unit exudes quality and at less than 8mm thin it really is an impressive looking phone. The hardware spec sheet looks similarly enticing, featuring a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM and 16GB of on-board storage. The 4.3-inch AMOLED screen displays at qHD resolution and provides great clarity with strong brightness and deep blacks.
The One S is running Android Ice Cream Sandwich out of the box and the latest iteration of HTC’s ever-intuitive Sense UI ensures the very best from the operating system. The full suite of Google software is present as are the usual HTC apps including HTC Hub, Friend Stream and HTC Watch. Social networking is catered for with Facebook, Twitter and Google + available from startup.
A major selling point for the device is the on-board 8MP camera, which features a 28mm wide-angle lens, f2.0 aperture for low light shooting and an incredibly innovative camera UI. The functionality of HTC’s ImageSense technology means that the unit is capable of capturing images at up to 5 frames per second with automatic burst mode and auto-adjusting flash. Similarly impressive is the cameras ability to shoot video at 1080p HD and capture still images at the same time thanks to the inclusion of dual-capture buttons.
HTC’s recent acquisition of Beats has been fully utilised in the One S, with the audio technology present across all audio outputs on the device meaning sound enhancement is applied to music, movies and even streaming video.
All the usual connectivity options are present on the device including Bluetooth, DLNA and MHL via the USB port. Particularly exciting is the inclusion of wireless HDMI, which promises seamless wireless integration between your handset and TV simply by swiping the screen. It should be noted though that the device needs to be partnered with the HTC Wireless HDMI Unit in order to access this option.
Despite only having a very short time with the One S, we were extremely enthused by the handset. The design and build quality in particular was impressive, with the device feeling svelte yet solid in the hand. Additionally, the capabilities of that 8MP camera excited us and we cannot wait to spend more time with the phone. As soon as a final production model arrives at Dialaphone we will delve deeper into the HTC One S and post our findings on the blog.