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HTC One vs iPhone 5 comparison review


The HTC One and iPhone 5 are two of the most impressive smartphones available to buy in the UK right now. Here’s where we put the two up against each other in this HTC One vs iPhone 5 comparison review.

In this HTC One vs iPhone 5 comparison review we will be comparing the two smartphone’s overall design, screens, processors, storage options, cameras, connectivity and software/operating systems.

Under each section we’ll way up the pros and cons of what the HTC One and iPhone 5 offer and draw conclusions where possible as to which smartphone comes out on top. See also: Group test: What's the best smartphone?

Take a look at the following two articles for more details on each smartphone: iPhone 5 review and HTC One review.

These two smartphones have a similar look with the HTC One sharing the straight sides and rounded corners of the iPhone 5. It looks rather like the back of the iPhone 5 but with a screen in between the top and bottom strips.

The HTC is a larger and heavier smartphone at 68 x 137 x 9.3mm and 143g. Apple's iPhone 5 remains one of the smallest flagship devices at 59 x 124 x 7.6mm and 112g. This is mostly due to the fact it has a smaller screen.

In terms of build quality, these are two of the best smartphones around. Both are put together beautifully with a combination of aluminium and glass. If we're going to nit-pick then the iPhone wins narrowly since the HTC One does use a small plastic band and got a bit too hot during our benchmarks.


Screen size is an important thing to consider when buying a smartphone. The iPhone 5 has a small 4in display compared to top-end rivals. Although the HTC One has a 4.7in screen, the handset doesn't feel too large in the hand.

We're comparing two of the best smartphones on the market here so it's no surprise they offer great displays. However, the bragging rights go to the HTC One thanks to its Full HD (1080 x 1920) resolution outpacing the iPhone 5's Retina (640 x 1136) display.

HTC's device has the highest pixel density of a smartphone we've ever seen at 469pp. The iPhone 5 offers 326ppi.

HTC's One smartphone continues to impress with its benchmark results. Thanks to its Qualcomm Snapdragon 600, 1.7GHz quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM, it aced our GeekBench 2 test with a record clinching score of 2721 points. The iPhone 5 scored 1650 here with its 1.2GHz dual-core A6 chip with 1GB of RAM.

Both phones managed outstanding results in GLBenchmark. The HTC One got 34fps which couldn't match the iPhone 5's 38fps. Again, both did well in SunSpider with times of 1213ms and 903ms respectively.

So the benchmark score is 2-1 in favour of the iPhone 5 but we're splitting hairs here. These are two of the top performing smartphones available and you should decide between them in other areas.


Neither of these smartphones has a microSD slot for expanding the storage so you'll have to pick your model carefully.

There's more choice with the iPhone 5 which has 16GB, 32GB and 64GB models. The HTC One has just 32GB and 64GB on offer.

However, with both of the lowest capacities costing just over £500 you get twice the amount of storage with the HTC One.

Both the cameras on the HTC One and iPhone 5 are good quality but here are some points to help you decide which is the right one for you.

Looking at the plain specs, the iPhone 5 seems the superior with an 8Mp main camera. The HTC One's is just 4Mp but this Ultrapixel camera lets in more light.


In general we find the iPhone 5's camera a better all-rounder, but the HTC One's camera is more responsive meaning you can take pictures faster. It is also more capable in low-light situations. The HTC One has a slightly higher resolution front camera at 2.1Mp compared to the iPhone 5's 1.2Mp camera. They can record video at 1080p and 720p respectively, so a small win for HTC here.

As you would expect from two flagship smartphones, the iPhone 5 and HTC One both offer dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, DLNA, GPS and support for 4G LTE networks. It's worth pointing out that the HTC One uses mircoUSB and the iPhone 5 uses Apple's proprietary Lightning connector.

It's not a game changer but the HTC One offers NFC and infrared technology which the iPhone 5 does not.

As usual a comparison with the iPhone 5 means a big difference in software. It's the classic iOS vs Android here – iOS 6 and Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean with HTC's Sense 5 overlay to be precise.

Both are great operating systems in their own right so there's no easy way of saying one is better than the other. Each has a great app and content store behind it. Most new apps will be developed for iOS and Android, although apps are more likely to be free on Android, but appear first on iOS.


Each offers a slick user experience with similar features. The main difference is that iOS is simplistic – essentially an app menu - while Android is highly customisable with its homescreens and widgets. Opinions vary from person to person so we suggest you try out both in order to discover which you prefer.

On paper the HTC One has a better battery at 8.5Wh (2300mAh) compared to the iPhone 5's 5.3Wh (1440mAh). Both are non-removable.

Despite the fairly big difference in capacity, there's not much difference in batter life. We've found that most users will get a day of use from each smartphone. Some users may get a couple of days if they have lighter usage habits.

Follow Udara Madusanka and @netudara on Twitter.

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