HTC One Max Features Big Screen, Fingerprint Scanner

Oct 14, 2013 (06:10 AM EDT)

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8 Phablets To Watch
8 Phablets To Watch
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HTC introduced the One Max on Monday, a larger-than-life version of its One smartphone. The Max is a phablet that completes HTC's range of small, medium and large Android smartphones. It is similar in most respects to the One and One Mini, but does have one interesting feature that sets it apart.

The screen measures 5.9 inches across the diagonal and includes 1920 x 1080 pixels. It's a hair smaller than the 6.3-inch screen on Samsung's Galaxy Mega, but it offers much better resolution. The device is powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 600 processor, which is paired with 2 GB of RAM. It's a shame HTC didn't opt for the Snapdragon 800. The 600 CPU has four cores at 1.7 GHz each. It will be offered with 16 GB or 32 GB of internal storage, and it supports microSD memory cards.

The One Max is the second major phone announced this year to include a fingerprint sensor. Unlike the iPhone 5s, which has the sensor built into the home button, the One Max positions the fingerprint sensor on the back of the phone. The sensor requires users to swipe their finger downward in order to read the print. It can be used as a security measure to lock the phone, as well as to launch certain applications.

[ Will Apple incorporate the iPhone's fingerprint sensor into its new tablets? See Apple To Debut New iPads Oct. 22. ]

The Max carries over the same design language seen on the One and One Mini. The Max is mostly aluminum, held together by a polycarbonate frame. It includes the same BoomSound stereo speakers seen on the One and One Mini. The speakers and large screen make the One Max a formidable piece of hardware. It measures 6.47 x 3.25 x 0.43 inches and weighs a hefty 7.65 ounces. By way of comparison, the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 measures 5.95 x 3.12 x 0.33 inches and weighs 5.93 ounces.

The Max runs Android 4.3 Jelly Bean with Sense 5.5. The latest version of Sense includes HTC's BlinkFeed software, as well as the company's own user interface for Android devices. The Max has the same UltraPixel camera with ImageChip found in the One and One Mini. It has larger pixels that let in more light, and uses backside illumination for optimal performance. The user-facing camera can take pictures up to 2.1 megapixels. Both can capture HD video.

There is no shortage of connectivity options onboard the One Max, which supports global HSPA+ and LTE networks, in addition to smartphone standards such as dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS/GLONASS and onboard sensors. The back cover is removable, but the 3,300-mAh battery is not. According to HTC, the One Max provides up to 28 hours of talk time.

The device is expected to reach some overseas markets later this month. None of the U.S. network operators has announced launch plans for the One Max. Pricing hasn't been revealed, but don't expect it to be cheap.