Review: HTC One Mini

The HTC One has been a critical success – can its Mini Me
version do as well? David Phelan finds out

If the HTC One ain’t broke, and it ain’t, why fix it? Well, if it’s too big, perhaps. The HTC One is a gorgeous, powerful and highly enjoyable phone but it’s true that it’s big – too hefty for smaller hands. Even so, the camera with its bigger sensor, appealing all-aluminium back and thumping audio from twin, front-facing speakers are hard to beat.

So HTC has lifted all of those and placed them carefully into a smaller phone, the HTC One Mini. Looks-wise, they’re almost identical: a plastic frame wraps round the edge of the Mini but doesn’t distract from the classy look of the phone. The Beats Audio logo on the back is downplayed because it’s no longer bright red (this looks better) but the rear view is pretty similar.

And now it fits any hand very comfortably. Some changes must have been made, surely? Yes, but none is a deal-breaker. The display on the HTC One is amazing – the highest pixel density of any phone yet, cramming a Full HD resolution (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) into a 4.7in screen. The display here is 4.3ins and only has 720 x 1,280 pixels. I say “only” but that’s a 342 pixels per inch resolution, so still quite a bit higher than the iPhone 5’s Retina display and outgunning most other mobiles, too. So it still looks great, just not quite as stunning as the One.

The processor is dual-core on the Mini, quad-core on the One, so not as fast. But in use it’s still nippy and shows no signs of sluggishness. Fewer pixels to manipulate helps here. And there’s no NFC here – the clever but not yet widely usable technology that lets you pair your phone to a suitable speaker or pay for a latte with a tap.But otherwise it’s intact. Still 4G, and compatible with all three UK LTE frequencies so it’s fast on EE now and will be on Vodafone, O2 and Three in due course.

It also still has the One’s ground-breaking camera that has fewer pixels (a 4MP count) but more spread out and bigger so more accurate and capable in low light. You don’t need to use the flash barely at all. The stereo front-facing speakers mean it’s great for watching video on the phone and Beats Audio software makes music sound strong and bassy when played through headphones.

And the HTC manipulation of Android’s software remains elegant and attractive. Specialities include BlinkFeed, a handsome program that streams social networking updates, tweets and news feeds as you desire.

Although there are some details, like that outstanding Full HD screen, that are missing from the One Mini, in almost every way this phone is as good as its earlier sibling and the smaller size tips the balance to make it, ultimately, a better all-round phone.

News
Courtney Love has admitted using heroin while pregnant with Frances Bean Cobain, her daughter with Kurt Cobain
people
Sport
Murray celebrates reaching the final
tennis
Arts and Entertainment
'The Archers' has an audience of about five million
radioA growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried
News
i100
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Ashdown Group: SQL DBA (SSIS, ETL) - London, £60k

    £60000 per annum: Ashdown Group: SQL DBA (SSIS, ETL) - Central London, £60,000...

    Ashdown Group: 1st Line Support Analyst

    £18000 per annum: Ashdown Group: This role is a perfect opportunity for someon...

    Guru Careers: Sales Director / Business Development Manager

    £35 - 45K + COMMISSION (NEG): Guru Careers: A Sales Director / Business Develo...

    Freshtechit: Coldfusion Developer

    £50k ( neg) plus benefits : Freshtechit: ColdFusion roles available in Surrey ...

    Day In a Page

    Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

    Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
    Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
    Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

    Comedians share stories of depression

    The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
    Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

    Has The Archers lost the plot?

    A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
    English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

    14 office buildings added to protected lists

    Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
    World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

    Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

    The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
    Why the league system no longer measures up

    League system no longer measures up

    Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
    Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

    Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

    Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
    Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

    Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

    The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
    Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

    Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

    Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
    Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

    Greece elections

    In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
    Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

    Holocaust Memorial Day

    Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
    Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

    Magnetic north

    The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness