The new HTC Sensation XL is a musical beast undeniably. This Xtra Large Android monstrosity is a number crunching giant that plays music like Mozart. Like the Titan, the Sensation XL also has the 4.7” screen and comes with iBeats. The similarities between the Titan and the Sensation XL are many; the only dissimilarity is the presence of four physical keys and the absence of a camera button. The single core Scorpion processor at 1.5GHz runs on a Snapdragon chipset with 768MB of RAM. The 8MP camera is an autofocus variant that can record video at 720p. The screen, though 4.7”, disappoints as it is a WVGA LCD and not a qHD as is Sensation XE’s. The screen, however, performs well when it comes to watching movies, surfing the web or reading books. The phone’s Adreno 205 GPU ensures seamless gaming.
The phone manages quite well with all the inbuilt hardware. The fast processor ensures that Gingerbread cooks up a storm inside. The 768MB RAM can be upgraded to 1GB for added performance. Wi-Fi speeds were awesome and so was 3G connectivity. Call clarity and signal reception was great as well. The Adreno GPU, though dated, runs games quite well. The music player has Beats Audio enhancement and coupled with the premium iBeats headset it will make audiophiles scream with delight. The camera clicks splendid pictures and the HDR mode is an unusual but great addition. The 12.5GB of user available storage is enough for audiophiles but may pose a problem if you are into movies (go for HTC Watch). The standard 1600mAh Lithium-ion battery performs averagely with Stand-by up to 360 h (2G) / Up to 460 h (3G) and Talk time up to 11 h 50 min (2G) / Up to 6 h 50 min (3G).
The phone supports Quad band GSM/GPRS/EDGE and Dual band 3G. HSPDA is supported at 14.4 Mbps and HSUPA at 5.76Mbps. The screen is huge at 4.7” displaying 16M colors. It is an S-LCD touchscreen with a WVGA resolution of 480X800 pixels. The Sensation XL runs on Android OS v2.3 Gingerbread which has been customized with HTC Sense 3.5. With an Ice Cream Sandwich upgrade right over the horizons, users and potential buyers may rest easy. As for hardware, the phone has a Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8255 chipset embedded with a 1.5GHz Scorpion single processor, Adreno 205 GPU and 768 MB of RAM. Internal storage is 16GB with 12.5GB available for the user. The phone’s USP is the Monster iBeats headset and the Beats audio enhancement. The primary camera is 8MP with autofocus, HD video recording, a slo-mo mode, a HDR mode and with dual LED flash. The secondary camera is 1.3MP. Standard proximity and ambient light sensors are also inbuilt.
HTC strove to keep the Sensation line clean and they succeeded. The Sensation XL is somewhat unibody and has an iPhone 4-ish look, though it holds its own quite stylishly. The aluminum plate that wraps the back and the sides gives the phone a premium look. Compared to 4.3” phones, the XL is big but not overtly huge. A common disappointment with HTC phones, however, is that the screen is of WVGA resolution and not qHD. The Titan has no option but to go for WVGA, but we expect higher resolutions from Android runners. A 720p resolution would have made this phone virtually unbeatable by the Galaxy SII. Also, the screen only manages about 199ppi.
Users feel pampered when they have choice between platforms and supported handsets. While there aren’t a lot of choices in the WP7 platform, Android wins the round with a lot of configurations. The Sensation XL is in no way unique but the Beats Audio enhancement, the huge 4.7” screen, the aluminum build and the HDR mode make it quite the grab. The Scorpion processor delivered admirably with boot times and app load times considerably low. The Adreno GPU could have been a better version but you won’t find yourself complaining. The 12.5GB of available storage is meager space for users who watch a lot of movies but it is a boon for people who want to carry their music around with them. The camera of both the Sensation XL and XE are great, beating Titan by miles. To conclude, you can look at the drawbacks if you can look past the screen.