HTC One A9 - Battery Life, Sound & Verdict Review

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HTC One A9 – Battery Life

This hasn’t been a great year for anyone who values battery life above all else. Few phones have made great strides, and many brands have taken the decision to reduce the size of their batteries, sometimes citing fast-charging as compensation.

The One A9 has a modest 2,150mAh battery, which is tiny when you consider that the similarly sized Nexus 5X has a 2,700mAh unit. Also, did I mention that the 5X is cheaper than the One A9? You’ve got the point already, right?

I have a fairly predictable life. I leave home around 8:25am. I sit on the train to work, passing time on Twitter and Facebook, then by listening to some music for half an hour or so. I’m at my desk around an hour after have set out.

In this time, the One A9 went from 100% to 78% – a huge loss of 22%. Typically, I’d expect 12% to 15% – and that’s from an iPhone 6S, which is hardly the model for great battery life.

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An hour of Netflix over lunch drained 18% in one go, which is also significant. Thanks to Android’s new Doze feature, which optimises power use when on standby, the One A9 didn’t drop much between spells of use – but it’s difficult to get to the end of the day all the same.

This is a poor show. The A9 does indeed charge very quickly thanks to Qualcomm’s Quick Charge technology, but it’s small comfort.

HTC One A9 – Sound & Call Quality

Despite settling for a mono speaker on the One A9, it’s quite a good one. The usual caveats apply: it doesn’t have much bass and it’s easy to cover when you play games. On the plus side, it’s loud, clear and doesn’t distort. Call quality is also fine on both ends.

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Should I buy the HTC One A9?

Sadly – you can do much better. Even the US version, with its more ample storage and increased RAM is a middling effort – but the handset sold in the UK is very poor value. It’s kind of astonishing you can buy a Galaxy S6 for less SIM-free in the UK.

In fact, there are numerous cheaper phones, including the Nexus 5X, that are better choices than the One A9. I’d even consider the Moto X Play ahead of it, mainly because of its great battery life.

Bottom line: the A9 is a pretty phone, but in a deeply superficial way.

Verdict

Overpriced and undercooked, the One A9 isn’t going to propel HTC back where it wants to be.

Score


Score in detail

  • Performance 7
  • Camera 7
  • Design 8
  • Battery Life 5
  • Value 5
  • Software 8
  • Calls & Sound 7
  • Screen Quality 8