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The HTC One: Don't Drop It

Stocks in this article: FB AAPL QCOM MSFT GOOG

2. On May 15, Google (GOOG) is widely expected to introduce a new version of Android, most likely version 4.3. When will the HTC One get this new 4.3 version of Android? Nobody knows. If history is any precedent, it will take at least many months.

3. How has HTC customized Android? Most prominently, it has created a default "home page" which looks a lot like the Flipboard app. Basically, you can take various inputs such as Facebook (FB) and Twitter, and let it show there.

I had the HTC One set to use this new home page newsfeed, but I didn't like it. I prefer to go into applications such as Feedly and Twitter selectively, as I don't like to co-mingle these information feeds.

So how do you get rid of this HTC news feed? It took a while, but I finally figured it out. It was a non-intuitive menu setting.

Speaking of difficult to use, I found there are only two home pages as the default (aside from the news feed). This compares very poorly with the Nexus, which has five.

Again, I had to go to the Sprint store and ask how to increase the number of pages from two. Turns out, you can increase it to four. Again, difficult to figure out.

One more in the "terrible interface" category: The camera. I'm the simplest possible person when it comes to a camera. The only thing I do is to open the camera app, and then press a button to take a picture.

So, on the HTC One, where is the button to take a picture? I have absolutely no idea. I finally figured it out, using an exhaustive process of elimination. I basically pressed every icon (and non-icon) on the screen, and finally was able to discover what took a picture. Then, of course, I forgot it the next time I wanted to take a picture.

In contrast, on the Galaxy Nexus there is no doubt where you press to take a picture. How difficult can these most simple of the basics be? Are there no focus groups?

4. In other words, the software compares negatively to the more recent Android Nexus phones. I don't find any improvement in the way HTC has modified the software from the "clean" or "pure" Android Nexus software.

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