Su­per­sized and Su­per­charged

HTC But­ter­fly S

HWM (Singapore) - - Lab Test -








144.5 x 70.5 x 10.6mm


$988 HTC kept ev­ery­thing we liked and dis­liked about the orig­i­nal But­ter­fly on its lat­est S it­er­a­tion. It’s still made of plas­tic, which is a step down from the an­odized alu­minum body of the HTC One. But while we miss the pre­mium build qual­ity of its hero coun­ter­part, we have to ad­mit the But­ter­fly S feels solid enough on its own.

When it comes to er­gonomic de­sign for mo­bile phones, no­body comes as close as HTC. The ta­pered back and smooth plas­tic pro­vide a com­fort­able feel in the hands, some­thing that only the One can match.

The But­ter­fly S is not without its short­falls. Due to its big­ger bat­tery ca­pac­ity (3200mAh), the phone is bulkier than most phones; it is the heav­i­est (160g) and thick­est (10.6mm) 5-inch phone that we’ve re­viewed so far.

HTC also omits two fea­tures that are present on the orig­i­nal But­ter­fly – the IPX-5 wa­ter resistance rat­ing and the no­ti­fi­ca­tion LED on the rear of the de­vice.

The But­ter­fly S runs on An­droid 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and HTC Sense 5.0. There are new fea­tures; such as an op­tion to make the nav­i­ga­tion menu bar re­mov­able, to show the bat­tery level in the sta­tus bar, and 12 quick set­tings. BlinkFeed, a key fea­ture of Sense 5, now al­lows you to in­te­grate feeds from In­sta­gram and WeChat onto the home screen.

Pow­ered by a Qual­comm Snap­dragon 600 quad-core 1.9GHz pro­ces­sor and 2GB RAM, the But­ter­fly S is on-par with the Sam­sung Gal­axy S4. Its clock speed is a tad faster than the ASUS PadFone In­fin­ity, HTC One and LG Op­ti­mus G Pro. At the point of pub­li­ca­tion, the But­ter­fly S and One take the top spots in the Quad­rant bench­mark, al­though the com­pe­ti­tion is close be­hind.

Hav­ing used the But­ter­fly S for a few days, we found no is­sues with its per­for­mance. It was ev­ery bit as snappy and re­spon­sive as other An­droid 4.2 de­vices.

Sport­ing a 5-inch Su­per LCD 3 dis­play with a res­o­lu­tion of 1,920 x 1,080 pix­els, the view­ing ex­pe­ri­ence on the de­vice is ex­cep­tion. You see nat­u­ral and bal­anced im­ages, with suf­fi­ciently rich and dark blacks. Its dual front­fac­ing stereo speak­ers de­liver ex­cel­lent au­dio qual­ity.

Un­like the One, the But­ter­fly S has a mi­cro-SD slot which sup­ports mem­ory cards up to 64GB. Aside from phys­i­cal stor­age, it also comes with 25GB free Drop­box on­line stor­age for two years.

The But­ter­fly S comes with an al­most sim­i­lar pack­age of imag­ing com­po­nents as the One – the 4-megapixel Ul­traPixel rear cam­era, HTC Zoe and ded­i­cated ImageChip 2. One no­table dif­fer­ence is that the But­ter­fly S does not have op­ti­cal im­age sta­bi­liza­tion.

In terms of bat­tery per­for­mance, the But­ter­fly S lasted 8 hours and 18 min­utes in our bat­tery test. The re­sult comes as no sur­prise, since it packs the big­gest bat­tery ca­pac­ity ever seen in a HTC de­vice. Un­der typ­i­cal us­age con­di­tions, the phone was able to last us slightly more than a day.

Look­ing at over­all per­for­mance, the But­ter­fly S is a bet­ter phone than the One. How­ever, per­for­mance isn’t ev­ery­thing; aes­thet­ics, build qual­ity and us­abil­ity are im­por­tant too. If the lat­ter set is more im­por­tant, the One might be a bet­ter choice. Avail­able at $988, the But­ter­fly S gets a lot of prac­ti­cal re­quire­ments right for those who are look­ing out for a good 5-inch smart­phone.

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