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Although this isn't the latest HTC phone on the market it certainly battles for the top spot in my opinion. It has some fantastic features the main one being that it runs on windows phone 7.5. It weighs 137g which means it feels like a phone should but won't give your arms a workout. It is slim but very stylish and professional looking benefiting from a great quality build. The speaker phone is very loud and very clear, and the keyboard feature is easy to use. Everything looks clear and precise. The storage and memory are a little let down given that it's on board so no removable memory card. Also the camera is a little skimpy with it only being 5mp, so the pictures and videos aren't as clear as other HTC models available. Overall it's good to see HTC experimenting with different setting and features and maybe they just might overtake apple for top spot.
The HTC Radar was one of the first Windows Phone's HTC offered. It was release in October 2011. It costs £145 online for a SIM Free handset. Given that the handset is over 18 months old, I believe this is still reasonably good value for money.
~Look and Feel~
I have had the HTC Radar for 18 months now and overall I have been very impressed with the handset. There are a few chip marks on the corners of the handset which have developed over time, but overall the build quality of the handset has been excellent.
The handset is black in colour, but it is also available in white. The screen is 3.8 inches in size, I would prefer it to be a little larger, around 4 inches. The handset is H 120.5 x W 61.5 x D 10.9mm in size and fits nicely in the hand. I can comfortably reach all the corners of the screen with my thumb using the handset in one hand.
The handset is 137 grams in weight which I find is on the light side. To give a comparison the iPhone 5 is 112 grams, so the Radar certainly isn't the lightest smartphone on the market, but it is 18 months old.
~The Operating System~
The handset was shipping with the Windows Phone 7.5, known as Mango. However at the start of this year customers with the handset on Vodafone were able to upgrade to Windows Phone (WP) 7.8. WP 7.8 has a very similar look and feel to the latest WP 8 Operating System.
Windows big thing is the Live Tile. The big difference between WP 7.8 from 7.5 is that the Live Tiles are realizable. So instead of have a block of large tiles, you can vary the sizes. You can have a large square tile, a small square tile which is a quarter of the size and then a large rectangular tile which is the width of the 2 large square tiles. I believe this makes the User Interface more pleasing on the eye.
The Live Tiles effectively receive push notifications. For example when someone comments on a post you have made on Facebook, you will get a notification on the tile which is then easily accessible as it is on your home screen.
With the smaller tiles in WP 7.8 and above I like that I have the space to add more of the Apps that I use frequently to the home screen as I can make the tile smaller and therefore not take up as much room. Overall I find that Windows Phone 7.8 is a very intuitive Operating System to use, much more so than the Android Operation Systems I have used.
The handset is powered by a 1 GHz Scorpion CPU and has a Qualcomm MSM8255 Snapdragon chipset. I have never had an issue with processing power with this handset and I am able to play HD video, games and have Apps running in the background which I can easily switch between without any lag which is all that I am after from a smartphone.
The handset supports 3G, Wifi and Bluebooth. The handset is not compatible with the new 4G networks which are now available in the UK. You can also use a USB cable to Sync music, pictures, video and other data between your handset and your computer. You will need to download a copy of Microsoft's Zune software to do this. Zune is a free piece of software which makes transferring data and backing up your device via USB very easy.
There is a front facing and a rear camera on the handset. The front facing camera is adequate quality for making video calls. The rear facing camera is a 5 megapixel camera and although not top of the range, I have found it is a good quality for uploading images to social networking sites.
The Windows App Store is called The Marketplace. It is not on the same level as The App Store (Apple) or Google Play (Android) in terms of the amount of Apps available. It does appear to be improving all the time.
This is a good mid-range Smartphone. Powerful enough for most people's needs I would have thought. It has a low price and has been very reliable and stable during the 18 months I have used it. I would certainly recommend this handset to my friends and family. Windows Phone has a clean, simple design and it very easy to use.