HTC BUTTERFLY: Its all about display

Written by Sudhir Chowdhary | Updated: Feb 7 2013, 14:26pm hrs
Smartphone makers continue to turn out ever bigger high-end handsets and buyers show no sign of resisting them. The Butterfly is yet another stylish high-end Android phone from the Taiwanese device maker HTC. From Sensation to One X, the companys mobile phones are known for their extraordinary touchscreen, superior technology and stunning design. But the Butterfly seems to have marked the arrival of the era of the smartphone with full high definition screen; it is equipped with a 5-inch super LCD 3 display with full HD resolution (1920 x 1080 pixels). As a comparison, Apples iPhone 5 has a pixel density of 326ppi while the Samsung Galaxy Note II offers 267ppi.

Market analysts say that the Butterfly is part of HTCs efforts to regain its footing in a market increasingly dominated by Apple and South Korean technology titan Samsung Electronics. Inside theres a quad-core 1.5 GHz Snapdragon S4 Pro APQ8064 processor, 2 GB of RAM, and an 8-megapixel camera with an f/2.0 lens. Recently, a test unit of the HTC Butterfly was sent to us for a product review. Let us take a closer look at this R49,900 big screen wonder from the HTC stable.

The design of the phone makes a great first impression. The Butterfly has a 5-inch display size but once you hold it with one hand, you wont really think its that big. It is constructed largely from plastic, a major deviation from many of HTCs previous aluminium unibody designs. This 140 grams device (model X920d) looks very fine with its slim body.

There are a number of small touches that add to the Butterflys premium feel including a metallic-like, gloss white finish on the back, thin edges that taper in from the centre of the device and what HTC calls a micro-grill pattern along both sides. The micro-SIM card slot and micro-SD are both found on the top end of the phone, beside the power button and 3.5 mm audio port, and is hidden by a small flip cover. The bottom end is where the micro-USB port is also hidden under a similar plastic flip cover.

The real attraction, though, is the 5-inch full HD super LCD 3 screenits truly a sight to behold. The super LCD 2 seen in HTCs previous flagship One X was arguably the best panel on the market, but we think its successor is the new champion. Colour reproduction is excellent, the 440ppi resolution is astonishing, viewing angles are superb and brightness is almost unrivaled.

Quite frankly, the HTC Butterflys display simply has to be seen in the flesh to be fully appreciated. The screens slightly curved edges make the image look like its melting off the side of the phone. Despite its big screen, the device seems satisfactory in terms of the shape and grip feel, though somewhat difficult to use one-handed. Most important, it can easily slip into your pocket.

The HTC Butterfly runs the 4.1 Jelly Bean version of Googles Android operating system. Like most of HTCs smartphones, this device is skinned with the companys Sense user interface, an overlay over the top of the standard Android interface. The phone offers reasonably impressive performance thanks to its 2 GB of RAM and 1.5 GHz quad-core processor, but there are times when the interface appears to be lagging in some apps. But I would definitely not like to describe the phone as slow.

Probing further, the HTC Butterfly has an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera and a front-facing 2.1-megapixel camera for video calls. I loved the fact that there is no need to switch from video to photo mode, or vice versa. Simply press the video button to immediately begin recording. The quality of images captured by me were impressive. Other features include the ability to hold your finger on the on-screen shutter button to enable burst mode (up to 99 photos), being able to capturing still shots while recording uninterrupted video and the ability to add a range of real time effects including distortion, vignette, depth of field and sepia. Impressive technology advances, isnt it

Music and movie playback gets a bit of help from Beats Audio processing technology. In my case, the battery held up fairly well, all told, delivering a little over a day of fairly heavy use.

All in all, the Butterfly is a phone that is good to use.

SPECS

Dimensions: 14.3 x 7.05 x 0.9 cm

Display: 12.7 cm super LCD 3 touchscreen with full HD 1080p resolution

SIM card type: Micro SIM

Platform: Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean)

CPU speed: Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro 1.5 GHz, Quad Core

Memory: 2 GB RAM

Total storage: 16 GB

Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi, Micro-USB port

Estimated street price:Rs 49,900