HTC One XL

The One XL is just like the One X, but with 4G network speeds. It also benchmarks faster, though it's similarly held back by its battery life.


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Because this model is identical to the One X, we'll keep this review brief. There are a few key points of difference to draw reference to, but we'll try not to repeat ourselves by covering everything else. Check out the HTC One X review here for more detail about the phone's design, multimedia features and the updated Sense user experience.

Of this year's swag of 4G variants, the One XL is a stand out. Unlike the Galaxy S2 4G, with last year's hardware, the One XL is also one of HTC's flagship smartphones for the year. A 4G phone with the best of this year's tech? Sounds like our kind of phone.

Design

The differences between the One XL and the One X are all below the surface. Physically, these phones are identical — save for the fact that the One XL comes in a charcoal grey, while the One X is white. They both have the same dimensions, including slim 8.9mm depth and matching 129-gram weights with the battery installed.

Most importantly, the one XL has the same outstanding LCD display that we saw when we reviewed the One X. Colours are vibrant, blacks are deep and images look sharp, thanks to the 1280x720 pixel screen resolution.

The One XL has a combined charging and data transfer port, but unlike most Android smartphones, the battery is not user replaceable and there is no micro-SD card slot to expand the unit's 32GB internal storage.

Performance

Let's get down to business. The big difference between the One X and the One XL is the introduction of 4G network compatibility, but to do this, HTC has had to ditch the quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3 processor to accommodate the necessary LTE radios, and has opted for a new dual-core Qualcomm S4 processor to take its place. On paper, this may seem like a trade off, slower processor for faster internet, but, in fact, you might just be getting faster processing too.

It all comes down to how much faith you put into smartphone benchmark tests. In the web-based BrowserMark test, the One X and the One XL came out neck and neck, but in the BaseMark Open GL test we ran, the One XL was well ahead — rendering twice as many frames per second. We also ran Qualcomm's Vellamo benchmark, which features a mixed bag of test suites, and the One XL scored the best results of the year so far — just ahead of the Galaxy S3 and well ahead of the One X.

BrowserMark benchmark

  • 164292
    Samsung Galaxy S3
  • 95630
    HTC One XL
  • 93416
    HTC One X

(Longer bars indicate better performance)

Vellamo benchmark

  • 2398
    HTC One XL
  • 2082
    Samsung Galaxy S3
  • 1633
    HTC One X

(Longer bars indicate better performance)

What we can say with some surety is that the One XL has slightly better battery life than the One X, but it's a long way off the Galaxy S3. In our heavy duty battery tests, the One XL delivered between 30 and 60 minutes extra power, compared with the One X. In everyday use, comparative results aren't so clear cut (thanks to a multitude of variables), but you should manage a day's use with the One XL.

Battery life (time)

  • Wi-Fi browsing
  • 720p video playback
  • 5h 45m7h 8m
  • Samsung Galaxy S3
  • 3h 43m4h 6m
  • HTC One XL
  • 3h 21m3h 47m
  • HTC One X

(Longer bars indicate better performance)

The 4G speeds are most certainly present, though, as it is with most 4G phones we've seen, you'll only really notice the speed in certain applications. Downloading large apps is one, where data can be pushed to the phone in chunks of roughly 5MB a second. You can see the improvement in Speed Tests too, but you might struggle to see it when browsing the web or updating social media. At the end of the day, these apps rely on more than data. It's still a first rate performance, it's just hard to gauge whether it's better than the latest 3G models.

Overall

Like the One X, the One XL is among our favourite phones of the year, so far. For many people, the choice between a One X and One XL will be made when they decide whether to be a Telstra customer or not. If you're looking for the better phone, you'd take the One XL, though it's a close call. Its dual-core Qualcomm processor appears to run faster than the quad-core Tegra 3 chip in the One X, but it's a barely noticeable improvement in everyday use. Faster still is Samsung's Galaxy S3, which is definitely worth considering if you wander into a Telstra shop.



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prsemple
4
Rating
 

prsemple posted a review   
Australia

Got a HTC One XL recently. Does not for data sharing with other devices. This has been frustrating as many hours have been spent trying to fix this issue. No one been able to help...not even HTC support. Unable to use my new tablet for this reason.

Left with no other option but to return the phone and get something esle.

 

wilso5555 posted a comment   
Australia

The phone was a dud, everyone has experienced some issues with bugs, or many of us received the dodgy wifi chip boards which needed replacing a few times. Talk to telstra complaints, they are extreamly good to talk with and are actually willing to listen to the problem, then pro-actively solve it. Three faults, and you get a full replace within the warranty. Which is fair. I thought none of these products would reach consumers since quality assurance and testing/reviewing beta's proccesses were invented decades ago. Their rep relies heavily on it, in turn their future sales too.

 

DiiD posted a comment   

Just got the new HTC one XL and wondering if anyone can help: Is there anyway to stop the screen shutting down all the time? Also trying to hook it into the car's bluetooth (Audi) and I keep getting a message to enter the passcode provided by the car's bluetooth into the phone but I can't find how or where I am supposed to enter it.

 

wilso5555 posted a reply   
Australia

In screen settings set screen timeout to never, and turn off battery saver, Its a cause for many issues with the phone.

wtf333
2
Rating
 

"upgrade your sh*t"

wtf333 posted a review   
Australia

The Good:Fast internet if with the right provider.

The Bad:Mostly everything.

This phone is absolutely **** After having the Samsung galaxy S2, I've been able to compare. This HTC phone has a shittier camera, it's keyboard lags and sometimes jumps to the main screen menu ,mid typing a message, for no reason - also hit and miss with saving the draft of it.
The key board buttons aren't accurate enough and the whole layout is just frustrating to use!

The worst of all.. Is the settings and options for the phone. Instead of it being simplified for people who don't have time to sit there ALL F*ing day to figure it out, such as: for settings in the samsung phone you would have one folder filled with all your settings to change under catagorized options in the correct area relating to the correct thing you were looking for.

With HTC, it's EVERYWHERE!!!! Hidden options relating to the exact thing you were looking for such as an option to stop things running in the background.. can be under 3-4 different things if you waste an hour going through each nook and cranny with the phone.

This phone is only good for people who know how to build them and actually give a sh*t about having so many technical options and things that no one really cares about.

Ones my plan finishes I'm going back to the upgraded Samsung Galaxy.

supermario238
9
Rating
 

"Overall a good phone"

supermario238 posted a review   
Australia

The Good:Almost everything

The Bad:Battery life is poor

I really like this phone. Basically does everything really well. The screen is excellent, no other word for it. The processing/ram is fast -I never notice any lag and I push it hard. The internet is excellent on wifi or 3g/4g (connects amazingly fast). The touchscreen is better than my old HTC Desire and it doesn't heat up like the Desire. It also has quadband 3g so it works in the US.

The CNET review is a bit silly saying 'average media playback options'. Just download mxplayer from the play store (its free) and it plays any video format you want without problems.

Main drawback is poor battery life (like all HTCs). Also possibly reliability (although I might have just been unlucky). Within a month of buying this phone the screen died all on its own, without suffering any damage (it was just sitting on my desk in standby). I had it repaired under warranty and no problems since. Also when I first go it, it was difficult to get the screen to rotate, but after android updates this problem has gone away.

camma18
5
Rating
 

"Strike 3 for HTC"

camma18 posted a review   
Australia

The Good:Is reasonably fast when it works, Sense

The Bad:Continual crashes, cheap looking, hit and miss power button, battery life poor, dodgy antenna

I'd love to write a glowing review for this phone, as I have used HTC phones for a while now, but this phone sucks. I've had nothing but problems with it since I got it. If the phone isn't running like a bag of S*^t because of locked up processes, it's crashing leaving me with a phone that is not quite on, but not quite off. The phone looks great, and separating out the individual features the phone looks great on paper, however in reality when you put it all together it is a poor performing Smartphone. One of the core functions of this phone (making phone calls) is also a sketchy experience due to the dodgy antenna in these devices which causes the reception to continually drop out. I get constant complaints that people are unable to reach me because my phone is going straight to voicemail, despite being turned on, and in an area where I have full reception on my work phone. I've given the phone a 5, but that's being generous. HTC have lost me forever with this phone, and I'll be switching to Samsung next time.

 

SamG3 posted a comment   

Warning! !!!!!!!!!! Do not buy this phone.battery life is unbelievably bad.I was averaging 3 to 4 hours!! Software is clumsy and difficult to use and the screen cracks all the time after just 3 months and 2 $300 screens I changed to a Samsung galaxy 3 and it is in a different league .you have been warned

 

Nicolas1 posted a comment   

I have one of these and it's a stunning phone, there are many great things I can say about it and it's never let me down but somehow, the design and build quality is something that really stands out. It has a great tactile high quality feel about it and the designers have somehow managed to capture a real droid look and feel in the phone. It's almost a stylish, cool borg. A smart cool phone. X iPhone user..... this is way better and much higher quality than the Galaxy S3.

DamienC1 Facebook
9
Rating
 

"Great, easy to use phone."

DamienC1 posted a review   
Australia

The Good:Sound quality (beats Audio), Screen, Easy to use, Light.

The Bad:Battery is on the low side, but gets me through a day ok. (medium to heavy user)

I've had this for about 3 weeks and I am pretty happy with the phone. Spent probably a week getting use to the bigger size (had a desire before hand) but manage it ok now. Great screen, and pretty easy to set up and organise screens apps and widgets. I use it as a work phone and after a heavy day on the phone or using maps etc, by night time it is getting pretty low and I have had to throw it on a charger to get me through the night. But I always charge every night so it is no big problem for me. Very happy with the phone. I recommend it to anyone.

BeeB Facebook
9
Rating
 

"Very Quick and Impressive phone"

BeeB posted a review   
Australia

So far so good


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User Reviews / Comments  HTC One XL

  • prsemple

    prsemple

    Rating4

    "Got a HTC One XL recently. Does not for data sharing with other devices. This has been frustrating as many hours have been spent trying to fix this issue. No one been able to help...not even HTC su..."

  • wilso5555

    wilso5555

    "The phone was a dud, everyone has experienced some issues with bugs, or many of us received the dodgy wifi chip boards which needed replacing a few times. Talk to telstra complaints, they are extre..."

  • DiiD

    DiiD

    "Just got the new HTC one XL and wondering if anyone can help: Is there anyway to stop the screen shutting down all the time? Also trying to hook it into the car's bluetooth (Audi) and I keep gett..."

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