HTC One V hands-on

Rounding out the trio of smartphones HTC unveiled at its Mobile World Congress 2012 press conference on Sunday is the HTC One V, an entry-level smartphone that picks up where the HTC Legend left off. This will be the most affordable One-branded smartphone HTC launches in the first half of the year, and while the specs don’t hold a candle to the One X or One V, this is absolutely a phone that will go far among budget-conscious consumers in Europe and other regions where the phone will be released. Check out our hands-on photo gallery below, and hit the break for the rest of our early impressions.

The first thing you will notice about the One V is definitely the return of the famous Android chin, which was found on a number of early HTC Android phones and most recently, the Legend. It’s definitely a unique design element and we think it works well on the One V. The case of this smartphone is unibody aluminum and it has a fantastic feel, especially considering it’s an entry-level phone.

Beyond the exterior hardware, you’re basically looking at a toned down version of the HTC One X and One S. It features a slightly stripped down version of the Sense UI — Sense 3.6 — and a single-core Snapdragon processor to keep costs down. The difference can be felt, of course, but for a phone that is likely to be free on contract from a number of carriers around the world, performance seems more than adequate.

We couldn’t really get a read on the One V’s 5-megapixel camera compared to the 8-megapixel sensor on the One X and One S, but we can definitely confirm that it snaps images just as quickly as its two higher-end counterparts. HTC’s investment in mobile imaging R&D really seems to have paid off, and the vendor’s rivals have some serious work to do to catch up.

HTC did not announce any launch details for the U.S. market, so we should likely expect the One V to stick to Europe and other markets in the first half of this year.

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