This time around we’ve decided to shine our spotlight onto two of the most impressive devices on the market, the HTC Incredible S and Motorola’s dual-core beast, the Atrix.
Both devices have myriad virtues but which one will come out on top when the two are placed head-to-head? Let’s find out!
Display – The follow up to HTC’s hugely successful Desire HD, the Incredible S takes the screen size down a notch with a 4-inch Super LCD which is vivid, responsive and pleasant to use, but otherwise unremarkable in a world of Retina Displays and Super AMOLEDs.
At first glance we thought much the same about Motorola’s Atrix, but a closer inspection revealed a nice surprise built-in to the 4-inch TFT – a biometric fingerprint reader!
Now, we’re not sure just how this is going to stand-up to the rigours of daily life, but the implications are pretty impressive, and security is something that we’re always happy to see beefed up so it’s a big thumbs-up for the reader and we were similarly impressed to see Motorola carry on its love affair with Gorilla Glass™ in the Atrix, which is a hugely underrated feature in our eyes.
Winner – Motorola Atrix
Camera – In terms of optics the Motorola Atrix does just enough to succeed and very little more. It features a fairly run of the mill 5-megapixel camera with LED flash and image stabilisation, which captures video at 720P, though 1080P capture is expected to be included with the first major software update to the device.
Secondary camera duties are adequately discharged by the front-facing VGA snapper, which will allow users to make video calls and perhaps do their hair without a mirror.
HTC’s Incredible S is a different beast when it comes to optics. The primary camera is a nice 8-megapixel effort with dual-LED flash and image stabilization which also captures video at 720P and the front-facing camera is a reasonable 1.3-megapixels, so you’ll not only be able to capture top quality still images, you’ll look nice when your video conferencing!
Winner – HTC Incredible S
If you’re looking for a solid device then you could do far worse than either of these smartphones. Both Motorola and HTC have well earned reputations for providing pretty bomb-proof hardware and the Incredible S and Atrix are fine specimens of their high standards.
Neither device creaks, squeaks or groans under pressure and they both feel excellent in the hand but the smaller form factor of the Atrix (117.8×63.5×10.1 mm) was the more pleasing to handle. The Incredible S is by no means a heifer though and measures a fairly standard 120x64x11.7mm, though at 135.5g it is 0.5 of a gram heavier than the Motorola.
Winner – Draw
The Motorola Atrix is one of the new breed of smartphones to include a dual-core CPU for lightening fast performance and the Tegra 2 chipset performs amazingly well and is ably assisted by the 1GB RAM that is installed in the device.
Performance will only get better with future operating system updates though, which will allow Android to better utilise the dual-core architecture on offer. In fact, that Atrix is so powerful that it comes with a second OS installed, which will give users access to a near-full computing experience when the device is placed into the special laptop-cum-dock!
Power wise the HTC Incredible S pales in comparison to the Atrix. It offers a single-core 1GHz CPU and a decent 768MB RAM which is used efficiently enough, but in today’s market it just isn’t cutting-edge enough to raise eyebrows and drop-jaws.
Winner – Motorola Atrix
Android is the order of the day in our competitors and they both ship with version 2.2 (Froyo) of Google’s Android OS, though HTC’s Incredible S is scheduled to receive an update to 2.3 in the not-too-distant future.
The Sense UI overlay that comes with the Incredible S is top notch, and we’re starting to run out of superlatives to describe it. Social networking is covered via the included ‘Friend Stream’ and the selection of custom widgets and apps is equally as decent.
Motorola’s Atrix comes with the company’s MotoBlur overlay which aggregates all of your communications, social networking updates and other information together via a series of live widgets which sit on your home-screen and the overall effect is good, though it isn’t up to the same standard as HTC’s offering.
We aren’t sure whether the Atrix will be getting bumped up to Android 2.3, but our fingers are crossed because it could be a make or break decision for this device.
Winner – HTC Incredible S
So it’s a draw! While the Motorola Atrix is without doubt the more powerful and cutting-edge of the two devices it fails to stand-up to HTC’s superior optics and lush custom software, but neither of these smartphone’s disappoints, quite the opposite in fact.
If you’re looking for a big leap forward with your next phone you’d perhaps be best served choosing the Motorola Atrix but if you’re after more of the same top-tier performance from HTC, the Incredible S is a worthy upgrade to anything they’ve previously released.