HTC One Max (Verizon Wireless) review

The HTC One Max is a nice extra-large phablet that lends itself to on-the-go media consumption, but otherwise doesn't justify its giant size.
Photo of HTC One Max (Verizon Wireless)

Can’t get enough of HTC’s slick aluminum smartphones? The HTC One Max is the most phone you can get from the Taiwanese company, now available on Verizon Wireless for $299.99 (direct) with a two-year contract. This supersized phone features a stunning display and the best speakers in the business, but it doesn’t do enough to justify its giant dimensions. Our favorite phablet and Editors’ Choice remains the Samsung Galaxy Note 3.

We’ve already tested the HTC One Max on Sprint, so head on over to that review for a full rundown on the design and features. The Verizon version is physically identical so we’ll focus on the carrier differences for this review.

Network, Call Quality, and Bloatware
The HTC One Max runs on Verizon’s LTE and CDMA/1xEVDO Rev. A (800/1900 MHz) networks, with global support for EDGE/GPRS/GSM  (850/900/1800/1900) and HSPA/UMTS (850/900/1900/2100MHz). I tested network and call quality in New York City. Volume in the earpiece gets very loud, making it easy to hear over loud construction noise. Incoming voices sounded clear, but became a bit harsh at higher volumes. Transmissions through the mic sound good, but noise cancellation had some trouble cutting out wind noise. Speakerphone volume is excellent thanks to the dual front-facing speakers. In our tests, the One Max lasted for 23 hours, 47 minutes of continuous talk time, which is on par with other giant phones like the Samsung Galaxy Mega and Sony Xperia Z Ultra

Note: The slideshow below is of the Sprint One Max, which is physically identical to the Verizon One Max.

Our 32GB One Max came with 24.3GB available to users out of the box. There are a total of 17 pre-loaded apps courtesy of Verizon. Apps like IMDb or Amazon Kindle can be uninstalled, but apps like Verizon Tones, VZ Navigator, and Verizon Accessories are there for good.

Conclusions
The HTC One Max on Verizon has all the same strengths and flaws as its Sprint counterpart. The display and speakers are awesome, but the fingerprint reader is simply a gimmick. On top of that, the One Max still doesn’t really add anything truly useful to take advantage of the added screen real estate. The Samsung Galaxy Note 3, on the other hand, offers excellent stylus support and split screen multitasking, both of which can genuinely change how useful your smartphone is. For media consumption, the One Max is top notch, but our Editors’ Choice remains the Note 3. 

Specifications
Phone Capability / Network GPRS, GSM, CDMA, UMTS, LTE
Screen Resolution 1920 x 1080 pixels
NFC Yes
Dimensions 6.48 x 3.25 x0.41 inches
802.11x/Band(s) 802.11 a/b/g/n
Video Camera Resolution 1080p
Battery Life (As Tested) 23 hours, 47 minutes
Available Integrated Storage 24.3 GB
Processor Speed 1.7 GHz
CPU Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 Quad-Core
GPS Yes
Service Provider Verizon Wireless
Total Integrated Storage 32 GB
High-Speed Data EVDO Rev A, LTE
Weight 7.65 oz
Screen Type IPS LCD
Operating System as Tested Android 4.3
Physical Keyboard No
Camera Resolution 4 MP Rear
2.1MP Front-Facing
Screen Pixels Per Inch 373 ppi
Bands 800, 850, 900, 1800, 1900, 2100
microSD Slot Yes
Form Factor Candy Bar
Screen Size 5.9 inches
Bluetooth Version 4.0

Verdict
The HTC One Max is a nice extra-large phablet that lends itself to on-the-go media consumption, but otherwise doesn't justify its giant size.
Published under license from Ziff Davis, Inc., New York, All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2012 Ziff Davis, Inc