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For me I just want both, as in I am a heavy user and I wan't my phone battery to last one day. But who says you have to have thickness for battery life, look at the HTC desire, for my it's battery lasted less than half a day if I would use it the amount I wanted to use a smart phone. So you could call me a heavy user, yet the HTC desire was a really thick phone next to some of it's better battery life rivals. I belive Samsung get the ratio right for me, the international s2, unlike my old desire, would always get me through the day, which lead me to overclock it to 1.4ghz and still it lasted long enough, yet it was super thin. Furthermore, my International s3 lasts even longer than my s2, and it is slightly thicker, but it feels so much nicer in the hand thanks to that extra thickness. It just feels less awarked.
So to sum it up, I want great battery life in a phone about 8.5mm which is completely achievable.
I personally think HTC said that as an excuse, as the tegra 3 HTC One X is thicker than the international s3, yet has horrendous battery less due to it having a much smaller battery than the s3, yet they use the uni-body Constitution which in theory allows a bigger battery. So if Samsung can make a phone which is thinner and has a removable battery, which has much bigger capacity, then HTC is just spilling out excuses. You can have thinness and a good battery life. Furthermore, HTC could have choose a better CPU, the tegra 3 isn't very power efficient, it is using 40nm constitution which just old and screams potential overheating problems say next to the s3's exynos 4412's which uses 32nm construction. Plus that 4+1 thing is just a gimmick, research online and you find that there are much better solutions.
Just my opinions anyway :)
2 years ago on Poll: Thinness Vs. Battery Life, Which Do You Choose?