The original HTC Evo 4G brought first-gen 4G to Sprint users, and now the HTC Evo 4G LTE brings the next gen of high-speed data to the carrier. With its "powerful parts, a lovely screen, stunning design, and an excellent camera," as Brian Bennett of CNET describes it, this flagship smartphone is one of the best Android phones available, and will soon bring users the power of 4G LTE.
Its major drawback, however, is the current small size of Sprint's 4G LTE network. While Sprint is rolling it out in a handful of select major cities, most users will find themselves limited to 3G speeds for now. "If you're committed to Sprint and have no plans on leaving, you should absolutely buy the Evo," says TheVerge.com's David Pierce. "If you're thinking about leaving Sprint, though, the Evo 4G LTE probably isn't enough to keep you around." Other excellent smartphones are available, like the One X, which already runs on AT&T's LTE network.
HTC Sense makes sense. The 1.5 GHz Snapdragon S4 processor of the Evo 4G LTE "absolutely screams," says Pierce, whether running apps or playing games. The Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) OS and HTC's Sense 4 interface combine to make the smartphone's performance smooth and intuitive. While some reviewers would prefer stock Android, they agree Sense 4 is toned down and less intrusive than previous versions. "A lot of what made Sense 3 flashy, but a little too in-your-face, is gone," says Bennett.
4G is fast, but not always there. Reviewers say the Evo 4G LTE is fast and smooth when it comes to performance. Audio quality is loud and clear, according to Bennett, and battery life is average compared to other powerhouse smartphones. The Evo will be the first smartphone in the U.S. to get HD Voice, which improves sound quality and noise cancellation, later this year or early in 2013.
The smartphone's biggest flaw is the lack of Sprint 4G LTE in many cities, which means customers often get downgraded to 3G. While 3G isn't exactly sluggish, it can't match the faster 4G speeds customers expect. Still, reviewers say, if consumers can get by with 3G the Evo 4G LTE is an excellent performer.
It's a looker. While it shares most of its specs with the HTC One X (*Est. $100), the HTC Evo 4G LTE is completely different in design. It "feels like business in the front and a party in the back," says Jordan Crook of TechCrunch.com. The front holds a gorgeous 4.7-inch screen, while the back is half anodized aluminum and half plastic. A horizontal red stripe divides the two halves and houses a durable kickstand that receives high marks from reviewers. Under the plastic half of its casing is a microSD card slot, a feature missing from the One X. The Evo's battery is non-removable.
The 4.7-inch Super LCD 2 display with IPS technology is a major selling point for the Evo 4G LTE. "It's the best display I've ever seen on a smartphone by a long shot, and one of the best screens I've ever looked at, period," says David Pierce of TheVerge.com. The screen is a harmonious marriage of resolution and size, according to Crook, and reviewers agree that it offers wide viewing angles and accurate color reproduction.
Screen and body are well protected. Covered by Corning Gorilla Glass on the front and anodized aluminum on the back, the Evo 4G LTE is a sturdy smartphone. Experts say it feels premium in the hand and the aluminum half of the phone feels both sturdy and easy to grip. The top half consists of a thin plastic that is quick to collect fingerprints and smudges, according to reviewers. Between the two halves, a metal kickstand snaps firmly into place and doesn't wobble or bend when supporting the phone.
Brilliant camera; good music and video. After the screen, the Evo's camera is its second major selling point. Featuring the same 8-megapixel camera and intuitive interface as the HTC One X (*Est. 100) and One S (Free with contract), it produces excellent photos. Outdoor test shots were "razor sharp, bright, and clear," according to Sascha Segan of PCMag.com, and indoor shots proved "sharp and good-looking." Reviewers praise the camera's software, which features adjustments such as ISO and white balance along with a variety of filters. The Evo 4G LTE can shoot in 1080p HD video.
Music and video playback on the Evo are impressive. The smartphone is equipped with Beats Audio technology to increase music performance, but reviewers agree it only boosts the bass.
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Brian Bennett rates the Evo 4G LTE at 3.5 out of 5 stars, concluding that it is a "worthy successor" to the Evo family but warning that the smartphone will only run 3G until Sprint rolls out its LTE network.
Review: HTC Evo 4G LTE Review (Sprint), Brian Bennett, May 9, 2012
2. PC World
Rating the Evo 4G LTE 4 out of 5 stars, Ginny Mies concludes that while it is a strong offering from Sprint, the lack of LTE keeps it from living up to its potential.
Review: HTC Evo 4G LTE Review, Ginny Mies, May 11, 2012
Listing its "excellent" camera, "solid" battery life and thin design as its successes and its current lack of 4G LTE along with the thin plastic of the backing as its flaws, Jordan Crook finds the Evo 4G LTE to be a good choice for Sprint customers.
Review: HTC Evo 4G LTE Review: I Can't See Why Not, Jordan Crook, June 2, 2012
David Pierce scores the Evo 4G LTE 8.4 out of 10 based on its "fantastic" build quality, "gorgeous" display and fast performance.
Review: HTC Evo 4G LTE Review, David Pierce, May 11, 2012
Sascha Segan rates the Evo 4G LTE a 4 out of 5, labeling it "Sprint's fastest, most powerful and elegant smartphone."
Review: HTC Evo 4G LTE (Sprint), Sascha Segan, May 17, 2012
Comparing the Evo 4G LTE with the HTC One X, Phil Nickinson concludes that the Evo is "every bit as good as we've expected it to be" and that once the 4G LTE network rolls out, there is "no reason you shouldn't consider this phone."
Review: Sprint HTC Evo 4G LTE Review, Phil Nickinson, May 30, 2012