The HTC One S is HTC's new mid-level offering. With two or three changes to the specifications, which many users may not miss, it could have been their flagship offering. So lets start with what the HTC One S does not have.
The HTC One S has a 4.3-inch qHD display, meaning the screen resolution is 540 x 960 pixels, instead of the 720p (720 x 1280 pixel) display you see on the top of the line Androids today. Some users will notice the difference, many will not. There is also no LTE version of the One S, which is not relevant in most countries yet. Internal storage is 16 GB, which is not expandable, which may not be enough for some power users.
Now lets talk about what the One S has. First the case. Unlike its big brother, the One X which uses a polycarbonate case which we have seen in Nokia's Lumia 800 and 900 phones, the One S has an aluminum case. The One S actually comes in two versions. The grey One S retains the traditional HTC aluminum case. The black One S has a aluminum case treated with a process called microarc oxidation which involves running 10,000 volts of electricity through the case, thereby carbonizing the material and converting it into a ceramic. The result is the creation of an ultra though case.
The One S is about the same size as the HTC Sensation, except that the One S is now just 7.8 mm thick. This is 3.5 mm thinner than the Sensation.
The 4.3-inch qHD display is a Super AMOLED display, which results in vibrant colors and is more thrifty when it comes to power consumption. Pentile Matrix Display technology is used, similar to what you find on the Nokia Lumia 800 and the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. This results in color fringing on high contrast edges. It does not bother me, but it may bother some users.
Inside, you have a dual core processor, instead of a quad core processor. But the One S brings a new kind of evolution on its own. It's dual core 1.5 GHz Krait processor is built using a 28 nanometer, instead of older 40 nanometer process used in Nvidia's Tegra 3 and the 45 nanometer process in Apple's A5. This means it is a more power efficient system.
With the Krait, Qualcomm has shown how much power can squeezed out of a dual core processor, and the HTC One S actually beats the quad core Tegra 3 HTC One X in Quadrant and Vellamo benchmarks by a fair margin. The Adreno 225 graphics processor on the One S does fall behind the ULP graphics processor in the One X. Still rather the the Tegra 3 powered One X being the speed king, it shares the crown with the One S.
The Super AMOLED display, and 28 nanometer chipset, means longer battery life. While we still have to wait for GSMArena's comprehensive battery life test, it looks like the power saving technologies plus a decent sized 1650 mAh battery will provide a full 24 hours of battery life, or at least 25% more than what you get from an HTC Sensation XE which has the same battery.
Finally, the HTC One S has the same 8 MP camera as the HTC One X, which is as good as the camera on the Apple iPhone 4S, Samsung Galaxy S II and the Sony Xperia S, but not as good as the camera on the Symbian powered Nokia N8.
Oh yes, the HTC One S has beats Audio on board, but no Beats headset.
We expect the HTC One S' price to hover a bit above Php20,000 range, which should make it a excellent choice indeed. With it's smaller size and longer battery life, I am much more interested in this phone that the flagship HTC One X.