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HTC 10 Review: A phone that's out of this galaxy

Posted at 6:12 AM, May 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-16 11:05:48-04

Don't let the iPhone-Samsung sniping distract you from the other contender in the race to craft the best smartphone. HTC stacks up with the best, surpassing its rivals in many ways, with the HTC 10.

The aluminum body feels sturdy and well-built -- a stark difference if you're used to a plastic phone. Thin and light, it slides easily in your pocket without sacrificing any of the benefits that now en vouge with larger-screen phones.

The guts of this thing are eye-popping -- a Qualcomm Snapgdragon 820 processor that runs on a quad-core 2.2GHz processor on 4GB of RAM. 

The device juggles multiple apps with ease, latching onto 4G LTE signal and WiFi to stream video and run online games with a silky smoothness on the 5.2-inch screen. Internal storage ranges from 32GB to 64GB. That the storage is upgradeable via Micro SD card separates it from the iPhones and current Galaxies of the world.

This is a spectacular media watching device not only because of its streaming capabilities and sharp images, but its booming speakers. If you prefer headphones, you can select and save your levels based on whatever headset you're using at the time. This is the type of no-brainer engineering that should become an industry standard.

The 12MP Ultrapixel camera takes brilliant images, and you can flip it around for the 5MP Ultraselfie front camera to catch yourself looking your best.

On the downside, the battery struggles to make it through an entire workday of heavy use, and you may find yourself shielding the screen with your forearm when you're out in the sun. 

Most importantly, the phone just feels good. Its menus are easy to use and intuitive, and the suite of internal apps make the phone easier to use rather than mucking up your game.

While it's tempting to call the phone at "10," I'll stop just short of that, but only by a margin as razor-thin as the phone itself.