Devices – May 2015

htc-one-m9

This month we take a look at two very different devices. While the HTC One M9 sits at the dizzying heights of ‘premium smartphone’ status the Acer model addresses a specific niche. See how they both got on below.

Acer Liquid E700

Acer-Liquid-E700Acer has aimed this rather uninspiring named E700 at the frequent travellers with enough slots for three SIM cards. We have seen several dual SIM devices on the market but three is rather unique. Three slots enable you to have a personal and a business SIM and then a spare for whichever country you happen to be travelling to. The only down side of the three SIM approach is that with this particular device if one of the SIMs is in use then the other two are put in standby mode. If you are expecting to be able to receive calls and messages from all three SIMs in tandem you will be disappointed.

There is nothing really pretty about the E700 but Acer have gone for pure functionality instead of aesthetics here. It’s packing a huge 3,500 battery which is great news for heavy users. It runs on the Android Kitkat OS and contains a quad-core processor clocked at 1.2 GHz with 2GB RAM and 4GB of storage (up to 16GB of expandable storage).

The five inch screen is not going to win any pixel prizes but is actually more than enough for any business user out there (HD 720p) . Although in the hand the phone feels quite compact it is actually very weighty, I quite liked this because it gives it a very durable feel which I don’t see in many modern phones. As a business device which will spend its life being thrown into briefcases, this is definitely a plus point.

In the limited time I used the device I could see definite positive advantages for the business user. I’m not sure the three-SIM slots are going to be enough to propel this device into the mainstream but there will certainly be some people eager to get their hands on one.

Pros – Great battery life, three-SIM slots, Durable

Cons – SIMs don’t work simultaneously, No frills

 

HTC One M9

htc-one-m9HTC has managed to raise a few eyebrows at the premium end of the market in recent years with its original flagship the HTC One widely regarded as one of the best phones of 2012. Three years and two iterations later the M9 is looking like another great masterpiece from the Taiwanese firm.

Design has always been a strong theme with the One range and the M9 is no different. HTC call the M9 “jewellery grade” as each handset is finished off by hand. It certainly looks and feels well-made and with a price tag of around the £580 mark it should.

Under the bonnet you will find an octa-core Qualcomm 810 chipset, 3GB of RAM, 2840 mAh battery on top of a Super LCD3 screen. The cores come in two sets of four with only one set ever working at a time. The result is blistering performance from the device!

The screen is still sitting at the 5 inch mark size wise and delivers 1080p and 441ppi. It’s a great screen but there was a sense of disappointment when it was revealed the device wouldn’t come with a QHD resolution screen. The upshot is that the screen HTC has gone with is kinder on battery life, an area the firm has struggled with in the past.

In all this is another great device but unfortunately HTC is suffering like many other top manufacturers and their flagship devices. New models coming onto the market are becoming less revolutionary and more evolutionary. Here, the M9 isn’t really that much of a leap from the M8 released last year.

Pros – Camera, performance, price, speakers

Cons – Battery still not great, lacking wow factor