After months of leaks, HTC finally announced its latest flagship smartphone this morning, and it’s pretty much exactly what we expected. It’s an all-metal, solid unibody phone with specs that look to match today’s best smartphones. What’s more, it could have the best audio and camera experience available of any phone on the market right now. But, how does it compare to Samsung and LG’s best phones? Let’s find out…
The most striking thing about comparing the HTC 10 to its nearest competitors is how similar it is. At least, when comparing the basic specifications. All three phones have the same resolution screen, processor and RAM. Even aspects where they differ — like the screen size, camera specs and battery capacity — aren’t that much different to each other. That’s not to say they don’t differ enough to offer entirely different experiences though. From a software, aesthetics and ergonomics point of view, they’re completely different.
One area anyone is bound to notice a difference is in build quality and materials. The HTC 10 is made from one solid piece of aluminum which adds an incredible sense of heft. Some might think it’s too heavy, while others will see this weight and sturdiness as a sign of quality. The Galaxy S7, on the other hand, has a metal frame providing strength to an otherwise all-glass affair, while the LG G5 has a thin metal shell coated in a generous layer of primer and micro-bead metal paint. Of the three, the HTC 10 seems the obvious choice for those who worry about dropping and breaking their phones.
On the other hand, if you absolutely love high contrast and colorful displays, the S7 is going to be the best option. Its screen may be the smallest of the three, but it’s the only one using AMOLED display technology. That means you get deeper blacks, no matter how good the LCD panel is.
Although many features are similar to its biggest competition, the HTC 10 does have a couple of unique selling points. First off, it’s the only big-name flagship phone to feature optical image stabilization on the front facing camera. That means your selfies will be far less blurry than they normally are.
Secondly, while it’s not the only phone to feature DAC quality audio output, it’s the only phone to have 24-bit Hi-Res audio recording capabilities. If you like to make voice notes, or recording song ideas, it sounds like a great device.
|HTC 10||Galaxy S7||LG G5|
|Screen size/Tech||5.2-inch Super LCD 5||5.1-inch Super AMOLED||5.3-inch IPS LCD|
|Resolution||1440 x 2560 pixels||1440 x 2560 pixels||1440 x 2560 pixels|
|Camera||12MP f/1.8 OIS/PDAF/Laser Autofocus 4K video recording||12MP f/1.7 OIS/PDAF 4K video recording||16MP f/1.8 OIS/Laser AF 4K video 8MP f/2.4 secondary|
|Front Camera||5MP f/1.8 with OIS||5MP f/1.7||8MP f/2.0|
|Snapdragon 820 or Exynos 8890||Snapdragon 820|
|Battery||3,000mAh (non-removable)||3,000mAh (non-removable)||2,800mAh (removable)|
|Other features||Quick Charge 3.0||Quick Charge 2.0, Wireless Charging (Qi/PMA)||Quick Charge 3.0|
|Base price off-contract||$699||>$670||>$630|
|Expandable storage up to||200GB||200GB||200GB|
The biggest question here is whether or not its worth $699 off contract. Both the S7 and G5 are available cheaper without a plan, with prices starting from $670 and $630 respectively. Before today’s launch, I didn’t think I’d be able to argue for it. But, it looks like a truly great all-round package. Even ignoring the hardware comparison, the fact it has very few duplicate apps or bloatware means those powerful components will be much better used, and the phone should be crazy fast.