Benchmark tools such as AnTuTu, Quadrant, and 3DMark are designed to give you an idea of just how powerful a phone, tablet, or other device is. While the tests don’t always reflect real-world performance, they at least make it possible to compare devices and see how they fared on grueling tests of CPU and graphics performance.
At least that’s what happens when device makers don’t cheat… which they often do. But now HTC is taking the unusual step of not only boosting its scores by improving performance when you run benchmarking apps, but promising to let users boost performance the same way whenever they’d like.
CNET asked HTC representatives about recent reports suggesting that the company’s new HTC One (M8) outperforms similar devices in benchmarks only because the device kicks into high gear when running those tests.
HTC admitted that this happens… but describes it as a feature rather than a bug. In fact, HTC says that soon users will be able to enable a “High Performance Mode” so that their systems can run at top speeds whether you’re running a benchmarking tool or not. This will likely reduce your battery life, but it does mean that HTC isn’t necessarily “cheating” in benchmarks by over-promising real-world performance, because theoretically you could achieve that kind of performance by switching to High Performance Mode.
It’d be nice if you could reliably run the same benchmarks in normal mode to see how your phone would fare when not running battery-killing software though.