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HTC One X+ vs. Samsung Galaxy S III

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October 4, 2012

It's the HTC One X+ vs. the Samsung Galaxy S III: who will come out ahead?

It's the HTC One X+ vs. the Samsung Galaxy S III: who will come out ahead?

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Shoppers can be fickle. Two companies will release competing products that are similar in nearly every way, and one will often outsell the other by leaps and bounds. This can often be attributed to marketing or timing, but sometimes the reasoning is a mystery.

In the smartphone realm, you could argue that the same thing is playing out between HTC and Samsung. HTC's One series – an attempt to return to form – has been praised by critics, but hasn't exactly sold like hotcakes. Samsung's Galaxy S series, meanwhile, has run away from the pack. The high-end offerings from both companies have a lot in common, so what gives?

Specs rarely directly correlate with sales, but they can hint at a device's capabilities. Let's see if there are many differences between the technical details of the Samsung Galaxy S III and the just-announced HTC One X+.

Dimensions

No huge differences here

No huge differences here

The two phones have similar proportions. The S3 is slightly longer and wider, and a bit thinner, but the margins are narrow.

Weight

The One X+ is slightly heavier

The One X+ is slightly heavier

Here's another close category. The One X+ is a smidge heavier than the Galaxy S3, but – like with the other dimensions – it isn't a big difference.

Display

Identical resolution, only spread a little wider on the S3

Identical resolution, only spread a little wider on the S3

We're seeing a lot of similarities here. Both handsets have identical resolution; the Galaxy S3 merely has those pixels spread out over an extra (diagonal) 0.1-inch. This gives the One X+ a higher pixel density, but both displays should be plenty sharp.

Processor

The US Galaxy S3 gets a dual-core chip, but everyone else will pack four cores

The US Galaxy S3 gets a dual-core chip, but everyone else will pack four cores

At least on paper, the edge here goes to the One X+. Its quad-core Tegra 3 chip is clocked at a screaming 1.7GHz. The international version of the Galaxy S3 also carries a quad-core chip, but the US edition sports a dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon.

Memory

Those US Galaxy S3 buyers get double the RAM

Those US Galaxy S3 buyers get double the RAM

International editions are evenly-matched with 1GB of RAM, but the US version of the Galaxy S3 packs a full 2GB (to help compensate for the missing quad-core processor).

Storage

HTC took storage seriously with the One X+

HTC took storage seriously with the One X+

Samsung offers more storage options with the Galaxy S3, but the One X+ packs a ton of flash memory into a single model. Its standard 64GB matches the storage in the priciest S3 model. Though the S3 adds an SD card slot, the One X+ offers 25GB of cloud storage in Dropbox.

Wireless

In the US, both phones get LTE

In the US, both phones get LTE

Both phones ride speedy LTE networks, but if you live outside the US, your edition of the One X+ may not support LTE. We'd recommend checking with your local carrier closer to the device's launch.

In the US, AT&T will be the exclusive provider of the One X+. The Galaxy S3 is available on all major US carriers.

Cameras

Both cameras should be great for most customers

Both cameras should be great for most customers

Here's another category with a lot of similarities. Both devices pack top-of-the-line cameras. The only difference on paper is the 1.9MP front shooter in the S3.

Battery

Equal voltage in both batteries

Equal voltage in both batteries

Both smartphones pack 2100mAh batteries, which – even on LTE – should provide a full day's charge for most people. Other factors can influence battery life (especially processors), so we'd recommend checking back for real-world stats closer to the launch of the One X+.

Intangibles

Dre's Beats or S-Voice? (Dr. Dre photo: Commondr3ads)

Dre's Beats or S-Voice? (Dr. Dre photo: Commondr3ads)

The One X+ – along with all of HTC's recent phones – ships with built-in Beats Audio. Beats hasn't exactly been the killer feature that HTC hoped it would be, but under the right circumstances (like buying a pair of Beats headphones) it can potentially enhance your audio.

For the Galaxy S3, we're highlighting its S-Voice feature. Obviously created as a Siri rival, it's a virtual assistant that can help with your day-to-day tasks.

The One X+ ships with Android 4.1 Jellybean, though it will have HTC Sense 4+ pasted on top. As for the S3, the Jellybean update is expected in the coming months, but with no firm release date. Samsung's software features the company's TouchWiz UI.

Summing up

So we're left with two devices that look remarkably similar on paper. Will that lead to equal sales? Nope: the S3 is already one of the top-selling smartphones of all time, and the One X+ won't likely approach that.

If you're due for an upgrade, Samsung's über-popular handset could well be the best choice for you … but – after the One X+ is released – it couldn't hurt to go to a store and check it out. You might discover a hidden treasure.

About the Author
Will Shanklin Will Shanklin is Gizmag's Mobile Tech Editor, and has been part of the team since 2012. Will has a Master's degree from U.C. Irvine and a Bachelor's from West Virginia University. He currently lives in New Mexico with his wife, Jessica.
  All articles by Will Shanklin
9 Comments

I've had a series of HTC phones and have generally been very pleased with them but in June this year I bought a Samsung Galaxy S3 over the HTC One-X.

Why the move? simple because HTC started playing silly buggers and omitting the memory card slot. This Apple-esque move may allow them to introduce over-priced models with more memory but cloud storage is useless for many people because of the poor data connectivity much of the UK (outside the cities) experiences.

As they appear to be continuing this policy with the One-X+ I'll be sticking to Samsung.

Booleanboy
5th October, 2012 @ 05:02 am PDT

The only phone worth considering now i think is the Galaxy Note 2. It is the only one with 2GB RAM, SD slot and big enough screen.

DaveBG
5th October, 2012 @ 06:51 am PDT

I have used the iPhone for years so I can't say anything about the HTC, but since I wasn't willing to wait in line for the iPhone5, I recently converted from the iPhone 4s to the Galaxy S3 and can say something about that. Hopefully something I mention will be helpful to anyone looking at the HTC or S3...

IMO, S-Voice works better than Siri, the screen-display is fabulous in spite of the slightly lower PPI, and the ability to customize the phone for my personal efficiency surpasses even the super-easy-to-use iPhone. I also love geeky features like 'facial recognition unlock' (the phone learns your face and will instantly unlock when you are the user, but will not unlock if someone else picks it up), live wallpapers/backgrounds, and certain widgets. In a nutshell, once you learn how to use the android system, you can tweak this phone to do just about anything in only one or two swipes of your thumb. ...having immediate access to LTE networks doesn't hurt either.

The only negatives I can mention for the S3 are these:

1) the screen is SO large, you can not reach icons at the far side with your thumb when using the phone with one hand. This can be rather annoying in certain circumstances, but can be remedied with careful placement of icons/widgets and through the use of S-voice.

2) the battery life is less than impressive. I could run my iPhone all day long running system heavy apps or playing battery-sucking games and I would still have 50-60% left at the end of the day. The S3 drains itself even in 'stand by' after I put it in battery-saver mode and have turned off GPS & Bluetooth. I can leave a 100% full battery on the nightstand when I go to bed and by morning the phone will be down to 80%. ...heaven help me if I ever go all day without access to a charger.

Tony Morrill
5th October, 2012 @ 10:18 am PDT

Thanks very much to the author for writing his article with at least some data that's useful to everyone, not just for Americans.

Too many American writers seem to disregard the fact that there are a lot of people in the world who are not Americans. It's hard for some Americans to believe, but it's true.

robo
5th October, 2012 @ 11:20 am PDT

Use XDA-Developers to root and customize your Android phones - this will not only fix the battery issues (which are quickly changable - i have 4 for my Note) but also let you upgrade now to JB and put beats on your Samsung.

Barry S. Weingart
5th October, 2012 @ 11:54 am PDT

I have a Galaxy Siii, my first Smartphone. I'll add that the voice recognition is simply superb! Other than having some trouble recognizing children's speech, it doesn't seem to care about male/female input nor accents and gets it right almost every time (as long as you have an Internet connection, oddly).

warren52nz
7th October, 2012 @ 01:22 pm PDT

Although their court case might have been painful and expensive, by being compared so closely to an iPhone, which in many people's eyes is the best example of a touchscreen phone, has really helped Samsung rise above the Android pack. Its almost validation by Apple that the Samsung phones really are very similar to their offerings. High praise indeed.

Jono
9th October, 2012 @ 01:57 am PDT

The LCD screen on the HTC is superior in every way to the Super AMOLED Plus on the GS3. And the HTC's quad-core processor is much more powerful, but the 2GB or RAM on the GS3 is much nicer. Tough choice.

pete2bec2
8th December, 2012 @ 07:40 am PST

The expandable microSD card slot on the S3 is limited by Samsung. You cannot move and install applications on it. There are no third party apps that will circumvent this restriction, do your research as this is a restriction that is not advertised frequently, but it is a major issue with the S3 and expandable storage.

411monk
26th January, 2013 @ 09:21 am PST
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