HTC One mini review: Meet Junior
Unboxing the One mini
The HTC One mini came with the exact same accessories as the HTC One - a compact charger with a detachable microUSB cable, a SIM ejector tool and a one-piece headset with spare tips. The headset is an in-ear design and has cool red accents and flat, tangle-resistant cables.
HTC One mini 360-degree spin
The HTC One mini measures 132 x 63.2 x 9.3 mm compared to 137.4 x 68.2 x 9.3 mm for the big HTC One. It doesn't sound like much of a difference, but you can really feel it when you hold the One mini in your hand, especially the width. It has also shed some weight and now weighs 122g (the One is 143g).
Design and build quality
The HTC One mini is little else, but a downscaled One on the outside - premium aluminum, with the solid feel of a unibody phone all whipped into an attractive design. While the 5" Butterfly S went with polycarbonate (perhaps due to weight considerations), the HTC One mini should earn as much praise for its design as the regular One did.
The mini also differs from the One in the polycarbonate strip that runs along the sides of the phone. The regular One has it too, but the one on the mini is thicker, covering the entire sides. We think this is an advantage - plastic can take a knock, while aluminum is more brittle (it dents and its paint peels off more easily when hit). We wish HTC had used the same matte plastic as on the One, this one is glossy and doesn't look quite as good.
Cutting down "only" 5mm from the height and width of the HTC One to make the mini might not sound like much, but that's because it's difficult to picture. In reality, the One mini feels noticeably more compact than its bigger siblings. It's roughly the size of last year's HTC One S, which is impressive as you are getting a pair of stereo speakers at the front.
The screen is gorgeous - with 720p resolution it's not quite as sharp as the 1080p screen on the One, but at this size, spotting the difference takes some effort. It has great viewing angles and great colors too. Speaking of colors, the screen on our One mini has a warmer white balance than the screen on our HTC One.
Here are the two screens under a microscope:
HTC One mini • HTC One
The HTC One mini screen is very similar to that of the regular HTC One. The brightness is very high, higher than even the big One, let alone AMOLED screens. The contrast is amazing, making for one of the better viewing experiences on a smartphone.
|Display test||50% brightness||100% brightness|
|Black, cd/m2||White, cd/m2||Black, cd/m2||White, cd/m2|
|Samsung I9195 Galaxy S4 mini||0||166||∞||0||396||∞|
|HTC One mini||0.15||177||1197||0.5||685||1361|
|Samsung I9505 Galaxy S4||0||201||∞||0||404||∞|
|Samsung I9300 Galaxy S III||0||174||∞||0||330||∞|
|Sony Xperia Z||-||-||-||0.70||492||705|
|Oppo Find 5||0.17||176||1123||0.51||565||1107|
|Samsung N7100 Galaxy Note II||0||215||∞||0||402||∞|
|LG Optimus G Pro||-||-||-||0.41||611||1489|
|Nokia Lumia 920||-||-||-||0.48||513||1065|
|LG Optimus G||0.14||197||1445||0.33||417||1438|
|Apple iPhone 5||0.13||200||1490||0.48||640||1320|
The screen is fairly reflective though, which hurts its sunlight legibility. It's this reflectivity that brings down the sunlight lebibility noticably below the level set by the HTC One. It's not by much, but it's enough.
The Galaxy S4 mini screen brightness is not that high, but the lower reflectivity makes its display much easier to read out in the sun.
Sunlight contrast ratio
Nokia 808 PureView
Apple iPhone 5
Samsung I9300 Galaxy S III
Nokia Lumia 925
Samsung I9505 Galaxy S4
Samsung Omnia W
Samsung Galaxy S
Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
Samsung Galaxy S4 zoom
Samsung Galaxy Note
HTC One S
Samsung Galaxy S II
Samsung Galaxy S II Plus
Huawei Ascend P1
Sony Xperia ZR
Nokia Lumia 900
Nokia Lumia 720
Sony Xperia Z
Samsung Galaxy S III mini
Motorola RAZR i
Samsung Galaxy Note II
Apple iPhone 4S
HTC One X
Oppo Find 5
Apple iPhone 4
HTC One mini
Sony Ericsson Xperia ray
Samsung Galaxy Camera
Sony Xperia V
Sony Xperia U
LG Optimus 4X HD
HTC One V
LG Optimus Vu
HTC Desire V
LG Optimus G Pro
LG Optimus 3D
Nokia Asha 302
Nokia Lumia 610
Gigabyte GSmart G1355
HTC Desire C
LG Optimus L7
LG Optimus L9
Sony Xperia E dual
Samsung Galaxy Pocket
Sony Xperia tipo
Samsung Galaxy mini 2
We find the One mini screen to be worthy of the One name, unlike the uninspiring qHD unit of the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini.
Hi guys. I was just wondering a few things about your methodology when benchmarking. Do you run the test several times and write down the best result? Just asking as I just ran some of those benchmarks on my Mini, using Android 4.3 (stock HTC) and fo...
- 27 Feb 2014
HTC one mini is superb it's look like iphone 5 but minus points is it's inbuilt storage no expandable memory and most important battery back up ...
- 22 Jan 2014
This review was done on August 2nd and you STILL can't purchase an HTC One Mini in black. The specs were ho hum back when this review was done. By the time HTC actually manages to manufacture them to meet demand this phone will be next to useless. Fa...
- 09 Oct 2013