Let’s get to the next voting round of this year’s Mobile Madness, up now we have the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 versus the HTC One A9.

The Note has been a favorite for phablet users, though it is getting harder to separate “normal” versus large-screen phones as every new iteration of a phone brings on larger displays. The Note 5 has a lot to love, big, bright beautiful display, speedy processor, great camera, and if you’re into the stylus, we’ve got that in the Note 5. But there was the whole disaster with the pen being inserted incorrectly, rending one of the more compelling reasons for the S Pen useless. But is is an incredible device, with a whole lot to love.

But what about the HTC One A9? Where does that lie in our hearts, but more importantly in our pockets.  The HTC One A9 is kind of a different beast, it doesn’t aim to be a flagship in the traditional sense, but it still will wear the crown for HTC. The One A9 was priced $399.99-$499.99, in an era where flagship phones can easily cost double that. As far as looks are concerned, you’d probably take a double-take and notice, that’s not an iPhone. That’s not a knock or complement, it just is. It runs Marshmallow out of the box, has a serviceable camera, and a battery that will get you through at least an entire day. Some may argue the Snapdragon 617 is just now powerful enough to be future proof. It may just be good enough for now, but not good enough a year or two later.

Which phone would you select if you had the option of these two phones. Check out our reviews below and vote.  Remember, you can vote as many times as you wish.  Have fun!

Galaxy Note 5

Samsung’s Galaxy Note 5 has been on my radar for a few months now. It was leaked several times, sure, but I’m always curious with what Samsung has planned for its Galaxy Note smartphones.

The Note series usually pushes the boundaries in a lot of ways, whether it’s new screen technology, incredible camera sensors, fingerprint readers, virtual reality (last year, with the Note 4, for example), or new S Pen technology. It is, typically, an example of Samsung’s best foot forward in the mobile space.

This year we were introduced to the Galaxy Note 5. Jon Rettinger and I have been using it for the past couple of weeks, and there’s a lot to love. In fact, I think this is the Samsung flagship you should buy right now, even though it does have a few shortcomings.

Read More

HTC One A9

When the One A9 was announced, it looked like a compelling addition to the top end of that market. It promised Android 6.0 Marshmallow, an aluminum body, a 13MP camera, expandable storage, 3GB of RAM and a Snapdragon 617 processor, all for $399.99.

During our review period, however, we learned that the One A9’s initial “limited time” offer was indeed very limited, and soon after this review runs it will jump to $499.99, $100 more than devices like the Moto X Pure and in a whole new category of premium smartphones. On a two-year contract with AT&T, it will cost just $30 less than the Galaxy S6.

So where does the HTC One A9 fit, exactly, and how well does it perform in that market segment? It’s a tough question to answer, and one I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about.

Let’s dive in.

Samsung - Galaxy Note 5 HTC - One A9
Display Size 5.7-inch, 1440 x 2560 pixel display (515 ppi) 5-inch, 1080 x 1920 pixel display (441 ppi)
Resolution X 1440 1080
Resolution Y 2560 1920
Display Type Super AMOLED Full HD
Operating System Android 5.1 (at launch) Android 6.0 (at launch)
Processor Exynos 7420 Octa-core 1.5GHz Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 617
RAM 4GB 2GB (16GB Model) or 3GB (32GB Model)
  • 32GB
  • 64GB
  • 16GB
  • 32GB
External Storage No Yes
Main Camera (Back) 16MP 13MP
Secondary Camera (Front) 5MP HTC 4MP UltraPixel
Bluetooth Bluetooth 4.2 LE Bluetooth 4.1
Battery 3000mAh 2150mAh
NFC Yes Yes (for payments only)
  • 3.5mm Headphone jack
  • MicroUSB
  • 3.5mm Headphone jack
  • Micro USB
  • Accelerometer
  • Ambient light
  • Barometer
  • Fingerprint
  • Geo-magnetic
  • Gyro
  • Hall
  • HRM
  • Proximity
  • Accelerometer
  • Ambient light
  • Fingerprint
  • Gyro
  • Magnetic
  • Motion G
  • Proximity
  • Beidou
  • GPS
  • Digital compass
  • GPS
Height 153.2 mm (6.03 inches) 145.75 mm (5.74 inches)
Width 76.1 mm (3.00 inches) 70.8 mm (2.79 inches)
Depth 7.6 mm (0.30 inches) 7.26 mm (0.29 inches)
Weight 171 g (6.03 oz) 143 g (5.04 oz)
Colors Black, White Gold, Gray, Red, Silver
Supported Audio Formats MP3, M4A, 3GA, AAC, OGG, OGA, WAV, WMA, AMR, AWB, FLAC, MID, MIDI, XMF, MXMF, IMY, RTTTL, RTX, OTA .aac, .amr, .ogg, .m4a, .mid, .mp3, .wav, .flac, ac3, ec3, eac3
Supported Video Formats MP4, M4V, 3GP, 3G2, WMV, ASF, AVI, FLV, MKV, WEBM .3gp, .3g2, .mp4, .avi, .mkv
In The Box N/A N/A

This poll closes within 24 hours (2:00 PM PT, the following day).


March 17 BlackBerry Classic vs OnePlus X
March 18 Nexus 6P vs Sony Xperia Z5
March 19 Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge vs OnePlus 2
March 20 Samsung Galaxy Note 5 vs HTC One A9
March 21 Nexus 5X vs Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
March 22 iPhone 6S vs Microsoft Lumia 950
March 23 LG G5 vs Samsung Galaxy S7
March 24 iPhone 6S Plus vs Nextbit Robin
March 25 HTC One M9 vs Microsoft Lumia 950 XL

Round 1

March 26 Motorola Droid Turbo 2 vs Winner of March 17
March 27 Winner of March 18 vs Winner of March 19
March 28 Xiamoi Mi 5 vs Winner of March 20
March 29 Winner of March 21 vs BlackBerry Priv
March 30 Huawei Mate 8 vs Winner of March 22
March 31 Winner of March 23 vs LG V10
April 1 Moto X Pure Edition vs Winner of March 24
April 2 Winner of March 25 vs Motorola Droid Maxx 2

Round 2 – Quarterfinals

April 3 Winner of March 26 vs Winner of March 27
April 4 Winner of March 28 vs Winner of March 29
April 5 Winner of March 30 vs Winner of March 31
April 6 Winner of April 1 vs Winner of April 2

Semi-final Round

April 7 Winner of April 3 vs Winner of April 4
April 8 Winner of April 5 vs Winner of April 6
Final Round
April 9 Winner of April 7 vs Winner of April 8

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