The HTC Sensation XE has finally landed in some local stores although it would still be officially launched this coming week. We were lucky enough to be able to play with one before it gets launched.
The big question is, how much of a performance upgrade can you expect from this phone over the original HTC Sensation? Or is it just the Beats by Dr. Dre that would sell this phone? I’m currently using an HTC Sensation and here’s what I noticed using the Sensation XE.
First of all, let’s look at the aesthetic changes from the Sensation to the Sensation XE.
There’s the red accent on the speaker grill and the touch buttons in front. Looks different and some people might not find it appealing. At the back, the center now has a black brushed finished as opposed to the matte gray of the first Sensation. You will also see the Beats logo for some
The slight bump of processor speed (1.5GHz from 1.2GHz) doesn’t offer much in practical usage. In HTC Sensation, navigation is snappy and smooth but there will be times that a slight lag will occur when opening apps or unlocking the phone due to animations. Sensation XE didn’t solve this problem but I’m going to attribute it to the heavy but beautiful HTC Sense.
Then there’s the slightly better battery life, from 1520 mAh to 1730 mAh. Still, not a significant upgrade in real world usage due to its 4.3″ screen and faster processor.
Finally, the main difference between the two is the Beats Audio by Dr. Dre. What’s included in the package is a pair of iBeats (not the popular Beats Tour with the flat cable) in-ear earphones with in-line controls that also makes it a hands-free set.
HTC also included a nice carrying pouch for it and a bunch of silicon tips of different sizes. The earphone offers decent noise cancellation and fits really snugly in my ear without experiencing fatigue in the long run.
Here’s the thing, sound quality on the iBeats is very good but it gets better when you enable the Beats profile on the sound enhancer menu. When I plugged it in my Sensation, sound quality was just ok, but using it on the Sensation XE turns it into a high-quality pair of cans with emphasis on the lows but still offers clarity on the mids.
I’m guessing it has something to do with the audio chip and Beats EQ profile that HTC included more than the earphones. I tried replicating it using Equalizer for Android on my own HTC Sensation but I can’t seem to achieve the same sound quality as that of the Beats Audio on the Sensation XE.
So here’s the lowdown, the Beats Audio really boosted the audio quality of the Sensation XE despite how a lot of people say that Beats is too gimmicky. I’ve used a lot of HTC phones already and sound quality is not their strong suit (design and durability is), the Sensation XE is a step in the right direction if HTC is gunning for better audio on their phones.
If you use your phone as a music player a lot, getting the HTC Sensation XE makes sense. You get a premium quality pair of earphones along with a phone that has an above average audio chip. If all you need is a premium quality dual-core smartphone, the HTC Sensation is now within reach thanks to the introduction of the HTC Sensation XE.
According to HTC Philippines, the suggested retail price of the Sensation XE is Php31,500.