Product Type: HTC Smartphone
Newest Review: ... not a suitable OS for them. I would certainly never go back to WinPho and since the HD2 have preferred Android on Samsung hardware. This w... more
Great, the phone that never dies
Member Name: spirit19
Date: 12/08/12, updated on 13/08/12 (12 review reads)
Advantages: operating system is constantly opdated, large screen, decent processor, cheap
The build quality of this phone is impressive with a brushed aluminum finish and metallic feel through the middle of the back of the phone and rubbery feel towards the top and bottom. The body is solid and there are no creaks although there is also a possibility of the auto focus lens in the camera displacing itself, and while this will not affect how well the camera works, there is a rattle when you shake the phone.
Although the phone runs windows mobile 6.5, you are able to root this phone and flash a custom ROM running any operating system (to unlock all capabilities and change operating systems to android, windows phone 7, meego or ubuntu, read more here: http://forum.xda-developers.com/forumdisplay.php?f =531). The original experience with windows mobile 6.5 is not terrible but at the same time is not a very pleasant experience. There is a confusing and unclear menu screen portrayed by the classic windows start icon, with many of the features, such as file explorer, attempting to replicate a windows PC experience unsuccessfully. This problems are mainly due to the size of the screen as many applications have been 'optimized' for mobile phone by simply scaling them down from windows so they are not user friendly. Marketplace offers little refuge if you are in search of new apps, especially since it has now been discontinued to the effect that very few if any new apps will be developed for this operating system.
The phone has a 4.3" LCD glass screen with a screen resolution of 480x800 giving you 217 pixels per inch. Considering the age of the phone this is great as it is on par with phones such as the Samsung Galaxy S II. The screen supports 720p HD videos making the movie watching experience pleasurable, even on a (in terms of watching movies) smaller screen.
However although the phones Qualcomm Snapdragon 1GHz processor sounds impressive, it often struggles with heavier tasks such as the playback of HD videos which makes the screen resolution useless as you cannot fully utilize it. It deals with daily tasks like web browsing reasonably well and of the on board 576MB of RAM only 448MB is usable again creating lag when multiple applications are open. The built in storage is less than exciting coming in at a very low 512MB which in current terms is almost useless meaning you will almost certainly need an SD card, which fortunately is supported by this phone although there is a limit of 32GB on the expandable memory (SD cards).
The camera is 5MP with an autofocus sensor making it reasonable for taking the occasional picture but the professional, or even the amateur to be honest, will not be very impressed with the results. The textures and tones aren't terrible but with the technology available today, this camera just doesn't keep up.
Now onto what a phone is actually meant to be used for, calls and texts. The call quality is decent, but could be improved. The phone has a tendency to drop out of calls when running the native windows mobile 6.5, a problem that seems to have been rectified on android and other operating systems. The phone speaker grille which you hold to your ear is also uncomfortable when used for a long time due to the sharp edges overall making the calling experience not the best, but just acceptable. There are no special features of note when running windows mobile 6.5, but plenty of functions and options become available if you use this phone to run other operating systems, particularly android.
I bought this phone on a £15/month contract 3 years ago, but the price has now dropped dramatically and can be bought for under £100, even under £50 at some places. This makes it a great buy as it has many features to match current phones and costs a fraction of the price. Overall it is a great phone and in its native operating system is lagging far behind the times now. However for a knowledgeable technology user, this could even be considered the most up to date phone due to the constant custom ROMs from xda (heres the link again: http://forum.xda-developers.com/forumdisplay.php?f =531).
Summary: Does the job if you're not fussed about the latest technology.