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HTC One M8 vs Google Nexus 5: Smartphone Head-to-Head

HTC produced what has been called the "most awarded smartphone" of 2013 and there is no doubt that the original HTC One was a great smartphone. Indeed when I reviewed it in March last year, I called it the "new Android standard bearer."

However, fast forward six months and the title of "best smartphone in the world" was (in my opinion at least) taken by the Nexus 5 - the collaboration between Google and LG which sought to show off Android 4.4 (KitKat) to its best.

So is the all new HTC One M8 about to reclaim the title? Let's find out:


HTC One M8 vs Nexus 5: Screen


HTC has decided to increased the size of the One's screen by 0.3in, now measuring 5in diagonally. It retains the Full HD pixel resolution of 1080 x 1920, but the increase in size means pixel density has dropped slightly to 440 pixels per inch (ppi) from 468ppi last year.

The Nexus 5 has a 4.95in screen with the same resolution as the HTC One and the IPS panel on the LG-built phone is superb, though saying which one is better or worse is a tough call.


HTC One M8 vs Nexus 5: Design


HTC won many admirers for the design of the HTC One last year, with the Taiwanese company using premium materials like aluminium and glass rather than the plastic used by Samsung in its Galaxy devices.

HTC has decided not to tinker much with a winning formula, and while the overall footprint of the phone has increased, it has made the edges more curved to make it feel more comfortable when holding it.

The HTC One M8 is available in gold, silver and grey.

The Nexus 5 features a more restrained design, with a matte plastic finish rather than the more premium feeling aluminium. It is however thin (8.6mm) and light (130g) making it one of the most comfortable phones to use.

The Nexus 5 is available in black, white and Google recently added a red option.


HTC One M8 vs Xperia Z2: Hardware


The M8 is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 SoC which features a quad-core processor clocked at 2.3GHz and an Adreno 330 GPU, all paired with 2GB of RAM. Early benchmarks show this should be a powerhouse of a phone. The phone also continues to feature the front-facing BoomSound speakers, which should mean it remains as the best-sounding smartphone on the market.

The HTC One comes in 16GB or 32GB variants and features a microSD card for expansion.

The Nexus 5 features the previous generation Snapdragon 800 chip from Qualcomm which features a quad-core processor running at 2.3GHz which is paired with 2GB of RAM. It is plenty powerful enough for most uses.

The Nexus 5 comes with 16GB or 32GB of storage but sadly no microSD card.


HTC One M8 vs Xperia Z2: Software


HTC's One M8 runs the latest version of Android (4.4.2 or KitKat) but has skinned this with Sense 6.0 - it's own updated version of the software. Along with the continued inclusion of feed-aggregator BlinkFeed as the default home screen, the biggest change is the addition of gestures, including double tap to wake, swipe left to launch widgets, swipe up to unlock and using the volume button to launch the camera.

The Nexus 5 runs pure Android 4.4.2 putting Google Now at the centre of the smartphone experience. The lack of additional clutter makes everything run just as Google intends.


HTC One M8 vs Xperia Z2: Camera


Camera quality is one of the key factor's in customer's deciding which smartphone to buy and that's why HTC has sought to differentiate themselves in this area.

HTC will be hoping its Duo Camera will be one of the big selling points for the 2014 version of the HTC One.

The new camera system features two camera sensors, one of which will be used to measure depth, to allow for easier creation of so-called 'bokeh' effects. We will have to wait and see if this is just a gimmick or a real benefit for amateur photographers. HTC has also included a dual-LED flash similar to the one on the iPhone 5s to improve low-light images.

The camera on the Nexus 5 is nothing to write home about, with the 8 megapixel sensor producing decent if not sparkling images and video. LG has however increased the size of the image sensor (compared to the Nexus 4) for better low light performance as well as adding optical image stabilisation.


HTC One M8 vs Xperia Z2: Which Should I Buy?


This all comes down to what you want from a smartphone. Both of these high-end devices offer a great experience but it will be ultimately a personal decision which you choose.

The HTC One M8 offers beautiful design and premium build quality, along with the promise of great photos and those excellent BoomSound speakers if that is what you're after.

The Nexus 5 offers you unadulterated Android, without any complications along with a slim and lightweight design for a price that is unbeatable.


HTC One Review - The New Android Standard Bearer [VIDEO]
Google Nexus 5 Review – Still the Best Smartphone in the World