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HTC One X Sense 5 hands-on

An HTC One X running HTC Sense 5? How is this possible? Well, officially it isn’t, HTC hasn’t seeded the confirmed update out, but that hasn’t stopped us from getting our hands on most of Sense 5 on our AT&T branded HTC One.

As you might have guessed, we didn’t manage this feat all by ourselves. Our One X is using a ROM that recently emerged amidst the forums of A collaborative effort by the XDA user MagioROM, and a number of others. This Sense 5 ROM brings much of the premium user experience which debuted on HTC’s highly successful 2013 Android flagship, the HTC One.

Not being a final release Sense 5 ROM for the Evita – the Qualcomm version of the One X, it’s not perfect. Features like Bluetooth, the FM radio and stock WiFi tethering don’t work, not to mention unique HTC One (and now One mini) features like HTC ZOE photos aren’t possible.

HTC One X Sense 5

Such shortcomings aside, you can see that the likes of BlinkFeed, the trace keyboard and the overall functionality of the UI remain intact. Interestingly, despite the lower resolution of the One X’s 720p HD display, the apps drawer accommodates apps in a 5×6 as well as a 3×4 grid layout, meaning you can actually squeeze more apps onto the One X’s display in on go, than you can on the Full HD display of the HTC One.

As well as seeing the One X running Sense 5 solo, we’ve also set it alongside its successor, so you can see in greater detail the similarities and difference offered by the Sense 5 experience in unofficial and official instances, side by side.

The Android 4.2 update expected to bring Sense 5 with it should be on its way in the coming months, though nothing has been confirmed by HTC. If you’ve got an HTC One XL, AT&T HTC One or any other HTC One with the dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 inside, you can find out more about freshening up its UI by heading to ImagioX1’s thread over at XDA developers.

Update (22/7/13): XDA Developers user and lead themer for the MagioROM team, Grinder19 just got in touch to clarify a few things regarding the team’s Sense 5 ROM. Firstly the extra grid icon spacing in the apps drawer was implemented by the team and is not natively an element of Sense 5.

What’s more since filming, new refinements have hit the ROM, including now system UI toggles and a more cohesive system-wide cyan theme, both of which you can download here and here respectively.

Grinder19 also promises better hardware support in the next major release of the ROM, including Bluetooth and FM radio compatibility.


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