Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Food + Technology: Testing the HTC One for Verizon Wireless

I've partnered with Verizon Wireless of the Philadelphia Tri-State Region to see how certain devices that operate on Verizon's 4G LTE network stand up to the technological needs of a food blogger.

HTC One for Verizon Wireless | Taste As You Go
HTC One for Verizon Wireless

Earlier this year, I announced a fun new partnership I had established with Verizon Wireless of the Philadelphia Tri-State Region for which I'd test devices that operate on their 4G LTE network, known as the "fastest and most reliable in the U.S.", to determine how the right device could improve my blogging endeavors. I wound up really liking the first device I tested (LG G2), so I had high hopes for the second device on my list -- the HTC One.

In today's blog post, I'm going to share my thoughts about the HTC One, as well as some of the photos I took with the device.

HTC One for Verizon Wireless | Taste As You Go
HTC One for Verizon Wireless

Out of the box, I really liked the look of the full metal body of the HTC One. Though, after using the phone for a few days, I discovered how slippery the metal body made the phone.

Holding the phone loosely in my hand resulted in the phone dropping to the floor more often than not. Obviously, if it weren't a test phone, I would have fixed the problem by simply buying a case for it, but I wasn't going to invest in a case for a phone that I'd be returning after a few weeks.

HTC One for Verizon Wireless | Taste As You Go
HTC One for Verizon Wireless

I also liked how slim and lightweight the HTC One was - just 0.37 inches thick and 5.04 ounces in weight. That meant the phone didn't sit when any significant bulk whenever I carried it around in my handbag.

Bonus.

Verizon Wireless wants you to "define your mobile life" by using the HTC BlinkFeed™ feature. This feature allows you to "decide which content should be streamed on your home screen" and to "get live updates from your favorite places including news, entertainment, sports, fashion, social networks, weather, and more".

HTC One for Verizon Wireless | Taste As You Go
HTC One for Verizon Wireless

To test the HTC BlinkFeed™ feature, I add a handful of my social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) and subscribed to the home/design feed to see related blog posts from partner sites. At first, I thought I'd enjoy having everything of interest all in one place and not having to open specific social media apps one at a time. It didn't take long, however, for me to hate the cluttered look of the screen...

Turns out I didn't like being bombarded by everything all at once. (Go figure.) I eventually changed the settings on the phone to point to a different home screen.

Michelle Rittler | Taste As You Go
Pre-Run Selfie

As for the camera on the HTC One, I was really impressed! With HTC Zoe™, the camera captures up to 20 photos with one press of the shutter and helps you identify the "best shot" of the set. This feature was especially handy when I was trying to capture subjects on the move.

Montclair Utley Rittler | Taste As You Go
Montclair Utley Rittler

Like this little guy.

Thanks to the HTC Zoe™ feature, I was able to shoot 20 photos of Monty in quick succession and then find this gem among them. Of course, once I discovered how awesome the feature was, I used it for every single photo I took thereafter.

Including my food photos.

What can I say? When I find something I like, I stick with it!

Here are some of my favorite photos taken with the HTC One. They aren't all of food, but that's okay, right?

Montclair Utley Rittler | Taste As You Go
Montclair Utley Rittler

Montclair Utley Rittler | Taste As You Go
Montclair Utley Rittler

Montclair Utley Rittler | Taste As You Go
Montclair Utley Rittler

So... maybe I took a lot of photos of the dog...

Mason Jar Beer - The Bayou - Bethlehem, PA | Taste As You Go
Mason Jar Beer - The Bayou - Bethlehem, PA

Police Building - New York, NY | Taste As You Go
Police Building - New York, NY

Ziti with Pink Vodka Sauce - Jack's Brick Oven Pizza - Nazareth, PA | Taste As You Go
Ziti with Pink Vodka Sauce - Jack's Brick Oven Pizza - Nazareth, PA

This photo turned out a lot better than I thought it would. I was having lunch with a friend and we were sitting at a table right next to the window. The natural light was a little overpowering, but the camera picked up on it and automatically made the necessary adjustments.

Choose Happiness | Taste As You Go
Choose Happiness

Speaking of happiness...

Wine Tasting - Molinari's - Bethlehem, PA | Taste As You Go
Wine Tasting - Molinari's - Bethlehem, PA

Day in the Life of a Food Blogger and Photographer | Taste As You Go
Day in the Life of a Food Blogger and Photographer

Demolition | Taste As You Go
Demolition

Strawberry Basil Lemonade - Blue Grillhouse - Bethlehem, PA | Taste As You Go
Strawberry Basil Lemonade - Blue Grillhouse - Bethlehem, PA

Fenway Park - Boston, MA | Taste As You Go
Fenway Park - Boston, MA

The Freedom Trail - Boston, MA | Taste As You Go
The Freedom Trail - Boston, MA

Despite all of the fun I had with the HTC One, I was experiencing some major issues with the 4G LTE network by the time my testing period was over. Service would just drop without warning and the phone would just shut off. I tried to determine whether the network problems were related to a specific location, but I couldn't find any common threads.

If I had to choose between the LG G2 and the HTC One, then I'd choose the former. The HTC Zoe™ technology of the HTC One was extremely beneficial, but I felt much more comfortable with the LG G2. Plus, I didn't have to deal with any frustrating (or ill-timed) network issues while using it.

Taste As You Go Disclaimer: Verizon Wireless provided me with an HTC One to test at no cost to me. I did not accept monetary compensation for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

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