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[Various]HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S 4 Google Play edition Review - Nearly Nexus

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Anandtech

TheVerge

Gizmodo w/video

AndroidCentral w/video




Quote:
Originally Posted by Anandtech 
It only takes glancing at the About page to verify that my suspicions were correct – the GPe phones run kernels supplied by the respective OEMs, Google supplies the build of Android that runs atop it.

The result is probably the best combination of OEM and Google software, since OEMs ostensibly know their hardware best and can bundle everything required to make the phone work, and Google knows its Android platform best. The result is that ultimately the OEMs are in fact responsible for updating these Google Play experience phones through successive Android releases, but through Google's infrastructure. That might sound confusing or disappointing, but I wager that this means GPe devices will lag behind their canonical Nexus counterparts at most on the order of days or weeks rather than months thanks to the emphasis being placed on them and the end-run around somewhat pointless at this point US operator update testing (remember that both GPe phones are US operator tested and approved hardware, they're just running different software).

What strikes me most about using the SGS4 and HTC One GPe devices is how much speedier the UI feels on them. This is especially apparent for me compared to the SGS4 with TouchWiz, which as I've stated before has a number of gratuitous animations which seem to slow things down in a way benchmarks don't and can't convey. The HTC One feels a bit faster, but the difference isn't as dramatic, and I'm not sure how much of that is 4.1.2 vs 4.2.2 or Sense 5 vs stock.

The reality is that both devices aren't completely stock, they are a combination of Nexus, Samsung, and HTC features. I'm surprised by how well Google struck a balance between the features unique to each phone that needed to be exposed and their commitment to Nexus-feel. Anyhow let's talk about what's different between the two phones running this Google Play experience and their original software load.

Not sure if this should go in Hardware or Software news.
Edited by sherlock - 6/26/13 at 10:47am
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post #2 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by sherlock View Post

Not sure if this should go in Hardware or Software news.


Can Go as a Tech news, since this falls into both reviewing the hardware and software of the device
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post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:

Thanks for the link, added to the OP along with the review I found on Verge & android central.
Edited by sherlock - 6/26/13 at 10:47am
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post #5 of 13
Nexus also means stock OS with hardware optimization...which isn't the case here
and once you go soft buttons you never go back smile.gif

terrible name too...but if I were to get a new phone right now...i'd probably grab the HTC One GPe over a Nexus 4
     
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post #6 of 13
No point in those, really. Next Nexus will be better and only $400.
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post #7 of 13
yeah...and like 5 months later
which is like 1.5 years in computer aging timeframe
     
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post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by twitchyzero View Post

Nexus also means stock OS with hardware optimization...which isn't the case here
and once you go soft buttons you never go back smile.gif

terrible name too...but if I were to get a new phone right now...i'd probably grab the HTC One GPe over a Nexus 4

Which is why Anandtech titled their review "Nearly Nexus" .

I am in a holding pattern right now, I can sell my mint GS4 for about $570-$610 based on the recent sales results on swappa.com, so a Gpe GS4 is a $100ish upgrade for me(shipping+tax+ price difference), I haven't seen enough improvement to make me do that. I will either root & flash my GS4 or sell it later this year for a Nexus 5(if I can get 64GB storage on it) or Optimus G2(if it have 32GB+SD slot).
Edited by sherlock - 6/26/13 at 10:58am
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post #9 of 13
I'm a bit confused about the CPU. On Wikipedia, it states that both AT&T and T-Mobile's version uses "Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 APQ8064T" both on Google Play's page, it clearly says "Qualcomm Snapdragon™ S4 Pro". I don't think it's a different name for the same thing, can anyone clarify?
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post #10 of 13
Which one of these would be best if somebody's never owned an Android phone before?
The Play or Non-Play edition?
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