Homtom was founded in China, in 2009, and focused on the R&D, production and sales of the communication equipment. According to the company's website Homtom can be transliterated as "Heng Tong". In China, "heng" means eternal, "tong" means mastery.

Launched in Q2 2016, the Homtom HT17 is an entry-level Smartphone, with a 5.5 inch HD (720p). It is dual (micro)SIM and supports 2G, 3G and 4G (800/1800/2100/2600MHz) networks. In terms of processing power, the Homtom HT17 packs a Mediatek MTK6737 64-bit quad-core, clocked at 1,3 GHz and a Mali T-720 GPU. It scored 26933 points on AnTuTu benchmark, which is fairly good for this price range.

Because not everything can be perfect, the HT17 comes with only 1 GB of RAM and 8 GB of storage, but it’s memory is expandable up to 128GB with a microSD card.

It’s distributed with Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) and it has bluetooth 4.0, GPS and Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n. Surprisingly, it boasts a fingerprint sensor on the back, apart from the common luminosity, compass and proximity sensors. The fingerprint scanner is surprisingly fast to recognize your fingerprint and give you access to your data, beating by far the one installed in smartphones such as the Vernee Thor (that costs almost double).


The Homtom HT17 packs a 3000 mAh removable battery and, due to the low-density screen (HD; 320dpi) and modest hardware, easily lasts one day of normal use.


Homtom HT17 may not be so outstanding in its dual camera.

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The front camera is a 2.0MP (interpolated by software to 5.0MP) and the back camera is 8.0MP (interpolated to 13.0MP). Pictures appear washed out no matter what amount of light you provide. HDR mode in its hand adds too much noise. Once again, for the amount you pay for this device, you can’t honestly expect professional quality photography.

HotKnot instead of NFC

Homtom decided to include the HotKnot feature in this smartphone. HotKnot has been around for a quite a while and was actually developed in 2013 by a Chinese touchscreen designer. The technology allows smartphones to interact through their capacitive touchscreens – a feature that can be used for quick data transfer/sharing, in a similar way to NFC.

When the two screens are near each other, their physics are used to allow one of them to act as a transmitter and the other as a receiver. For this to work, both the phones need to have HotKnot technology and be in close proximity (within at least one centimeter).

Price & Alternatives

The Homtom HT17 can be bought on Amazon for $79 and on GearBest for $65. It’s main competitors are the DOOGEE X5 MAX Pro ($79, 5” inch screen, 2GB RAM + 16GB ROM), the UMi Rome X ($75, same specs, no fingerprint sensor) and the Oukitel U7 Pro ($66, same specs, no fingerprint sensor).