Yesterday I came upon an interesting article that claims to have the first review of the M9 after receiving the final software update from HTC. If you clicked the link you noticed it is written in Chinese, and the Google translation is mediocre at best. While we cannot confirm that this is the “final” software update the phone will receive before launch in the US or Europe, the article gives some benchmark results that further some of my concerns about the M9.
Benchmarks alone are surely not a full measure of any phone, but judging from the LG GFlex 2 reviews, we can say there is sometimes a correlation between overheating issues, the Snapdragon 810, and throttling performance. The article shows the benchmarks taken before (shown at the top of my article) and after the supposed final software update (shown below). We can see that while the heating problem appears to be fixed there was a clear decrease in the benchmark score. What does this all mean? Most likely nothing, after the embargo lifted this afternoon many sites with review units are reporting the real-world use is unaffected. It appears that while the M9 will get hot (metal does conduct heat pretty well after all), it won’t get hot enough playing games or streaming media to burn anyone. Unless you plan to run continuous benchmark apps on your everyday driver, this should be a nonissue for most.
What about the throttling issue though? Most reviews indicate that they did not notice a degradation in performance after the software update, so these preliminary results are good. My main concern is that over time the everyday operation of the phone (animations, transitions, etc.) might lag similar to the Gflex 2, which was a very poorly received phone by almost anyone who reviewed it. Overall I hope these early reviews are a good indication that throttling will not be a problem for the average buyer of the M9.The article also gives some indication of the camera quality with the final software update applied:
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