NEW DELHI: HTC recently released a couple of smartphones under Rs 40,000: One E9+ and One ME. In our review of One E9+, we found it to be a fantastic phablet, offering a great deal of features and great performance for the price, which gives it a distinct place in HTC's lineup. On the other hand, One ME seems to be suffering an identity crisis: it has almost all the features of the company's India flagship One M9+ (fingerprint sensor, 2K screen, identical design, 4G support, equally powerful
Design You will notice One ME's HTC roots as soon as you set eyes on it, as it looks exactly like the company's One M9 and One M9+ smartphones. Design elements like the curved back, front-facing speakers and fingerprint scanner below the screen are common among all three smartphones, but a closer look shows a few differences between One ME and its two siblings. For starters, One ME sports plastic+metal construction, whereas One M9+ and M9 boast of all-metal body. The plastic back cover used in One ME is of very good quality, but catches fingerprints easily. On the sides is a metallic frame that, coupled with the high-quality polycarbonate back panel, gives the smartphone a solid feel. The curved back casing makes it easy to grip in the hand at all times.The Power and Volume buttons as well as the microSD card slot are on the right side of One ME, whereas the two sim card slots are on the left. HTC has covered the microSD card and sim card slots with flaps that are easy to remove. The microUSB port and earphone jack are located at the bottom of the phone. Like other HTC phones, One ME comes with dual stereo speakers that are placed above and below the screen. HTC One ME's camera setup protrudes slightly and is surrounded by a metallic ring; on the left, it is flanked by the two-tone dual-LED flash. As was the case with the company's E9+, the lens takes up only a small portion of the whole camera setup in this smartphone as well. The fingerprint scanner is easy to access even when you are using the HTC One ME with one hand. However, we had a little problem with the placement of the Volume and Power buttons; there is very little gap between the two keys and we accidentally hit the volume down key while trying to turn the screen off and vice versa. Display HTC One ME has a 5.2-inch IPS display panel with screen resolution of 1440x2560p (2K/QHD), the highest any smartphone offers at the moment. The screen packs 565 pixels per inch, which is second only to Samsung Galaxy S6's pixel density of 577ppi. This makes the One ME display among the most gorgeous we have seen recently, and a treat to watch videos on. The viewing angles are very good as well, so you won't have any trouble even if two or more people watch videos on the phone at the same time. The contrast levels are pretty balanced and colour reproduction is good such that you get punchy colours but not over-saturated. HTC One ME's display panel also delivers under direct sunlight so you have no trouble reading outside. Hardware HTC has picked the 64-bit octa-core Mediatek MT6795 chipset running at 2.2GHz to power the One ME smartphone, paired with 3GB RAM. The smartphone comes with 32GB of internal storage and supports microSD cards of up to 2TB (2,000GB) capacity, even though the maximum capacity available today is 200GB. On the camera side, you get a 20MP rear camera with two-tone LED flash and a 4MP front camera. The battery capacity of the smartphone is 2,840mAh. Apart from standard connectivity features (like 2G, 3G, 4G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC and microUSB 2.0), this smartphone also comes with Infrared. HTC has added Dolby Audio to the speakers for better sound quality. Software One ME runs on the company's proprietary Sense UI, based on Android 5.0.2 (Lollipop). The software is similar to what we saw on One E9+, offering a few Material Design elements & animations, BlinkFeed-based news updates on the homescreen, a number of preloaded apps, and several customization options. Though the software is largely same as that of One E9+, the smaller One ME comes preinstalled with the company's Fun Fit fitness tracking app. This app is pretty useful and tracks the number of steps taken, calories burnt, etc. The smartphone does not have any hardware buttons below the screen; you get on-screen keys instead. HTC One ME's software can store up to five fingerprints at a time. In terms of usage and operations, the software is smooth and easy to go through. However, unlike Samsung, whose new user interface is a lot cleaner and organized, the HTC UI seems a little too plain and cluttered.