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HTC adds One S to lineup, coming to T-Mobile (hands on)

HTC announces another smartphone, the One S, which lacks quad-core power but runs Google's latest Ice Cream Sandwich OS.

The HTC One S is slightly smaller than the 4.7-inch One X.
Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

Thankfully HTC went big at Mobile World Congress with its quad-core HTC One X smartphone. Sadly, the next handset to fill out the company's new lineup, the One S, runs a less splashy Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core CPU. Still, if today's phones are any indication, that will remain plenty fast.

The One S is decently equipped in its own right; it runs Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and has integrated Beats audio technology. Its large 4.3-inch Super AMOLED screen shines, as does HTC's latest version of the Sense UI. The One S has an 8-megapixel rear camera with LED flash and a sharp 1.3-megapixel front-facing shooter.

HTC makes pains to point out the One S' advanced camera, which has a claimed 0.7-second shot time, 0.2-second autofocus, and f/2.0. The latter enables the phone to snap better pictures under low-light conditions. While we didn't have a ton of time with the phone, the camera did capture photos quickly in a few test shots we were able to snap.

HTC has made a real effort to set the phone apart. At 0.3 inch thick, the device uses aluminum with a soft-touch surface created by a "micro arc oxidation" technique. This process is also claimed by HTC to be used in satellite design. It does look sharp, and as usual, HTC pays attention to details in the handset's contouring. It's an understated, but smooth device for sure.

Now playing: Watch this: HTC One S

What appeals to us as U.S. denizens is the HTC One S' appearance on T-Mobile's roster, where it will connect to the carrier's HSPA+ 42Mbps data network. Pricing will be key, as always, but based on what we've seen so far, the One S is a handset we'd be happy getting to know.