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A geeks paradise and a business users dream, introducing the HTC Touch Dual!
Having owned many different types of HTC handset, the build quality and thought that has gone into this product has continued throughout the range. Fully packed with all sorts of features this device is ideal for a range of business users who require PUSH Email or Broadband on the move.
Being a Microsoft based device, it is very simple to use if you are a daily computer user. The menu is laid out similar to Windows with Programs, Accessories and Games as well as Contacts, Calendar, Email, Tasks and Notes as well as Windows Media Player and a whole bunch of other applications.
The device can be synchronised with Microsoft Outlook to have all of you Emails, Calendar etc or directly synchronised to a Microsoft Exchange server for PUSH functionality.
If you take out a data package with your provider you can also use the device as a broadband modem. It's as simply as ensuring Active Sync is running on your computer/laptop plugging in the USB cable to the device and then enabling Internet Sharing on the device (which can be done with a few clicks). Depending on the area you are in you could now potentially have broadband speeds and access the Internet. For those techies out there, it also works great with the SonicWALL VPN client and I'm sure would also work with other VPN Clients which is handy if you are a service engineer.
To sum up, great for business users or techies but not so great for those that want "just a phone".
The HTC touch dual comes with a expensive price tag so i recommend buying it on a contract.
I cannot complain about the phones performance. Not once did i expereince lag in any applications, whether inbuilt or installed myself. The Phone is quite bulky and i have dropped it a few times and the only damage is a scratch to the case. I have also spilled coke and water on this phone and it still works perfectly, so it is quite a durable phone. The internet browsing was something i used frequently and the 3G speeds made it an absolute pleasure to browse the world wide web. The presentation on the phone makes it look very professional and touch flo is a feature that really shows what the phone is cable off.
I only really have 2 grumbles. The first is that the cover on the back is quite cheap and the grips broke on mine after about 6 months meaning i had to cellotape the back on :)
Another bad point is that the cameras on this phone and very low spec and come without a flash light too.
My phone touch screen completely broke about 7 months into it's contract and HTC repaired it in less than 7 days for me, paying for postage both ways. Very good service!
The HTC Touch Dual is a sophisticated piece of kit. Essentially a touch screen phone and a very nice looking one at that. My phone came from Orange and the package comes with the phone, headphones, set up CD, spare stylus, carry case and a 1Gb memory card.
The phone itself is not huge - 11cm x 5.5cm which is good and only 1.5cm thick. It weighs less than the iPhone so having tried both in my hands, this is nice if you want something not too weighty.
The 240x320 pixel display is pretty standard for this sort of PDA/phone, but seems clear and bright.
You can do everything you'd expect with a high-end phone: set ring tones, surf the internet, play music, access emails and so forth. It has a powerful processor so seems quite fast. It has two built-in music players - one from HTC itself as well as Windows Media Player. It comes with Pocket Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, PDF viewer) already loaded - though viewing a powerpoint presentation on the tiny screen is a challenge and there seems to be no way of zooming into the page.
The phone has a slide out conventional keypad which is handy when you want to do a quick text or actually use it as a phone. The keys are responsive. The case is slightly rubberised and has a nice feel - it won't slip out of your hand. It comes in black and if you set the screen to be the HTC screen rather than the Orange one it looks very cool.
Another selling point is the 'Touch Flo' technology. This is a way of navigating round commonly used features using your finger, reducing the need to get the stylus out or use the navigation buttons. An upwards sweep from the main screen gets you to what feels like a three dimensional interface with sideways sweeps moving from one screen to another. The Touch Flo technology also helps when scrolling through emails or web pages. A sideways sweep in Outlook will take you to the text message folder. A sideways sweep from an email will take you to the next email, and so on. Again, that looks cool too! The management of pictures using Touch Flo is awesome.
The phone comes with two cameras: one for video calls and one to use as a camera - quality of photos seems OK, but it is a little underpowered compared to other phones.
It runs on 2G and 3G networks, including HSDPA for fast data downloads.
On the negative side, there is no wi-fi access, no built-in GPS, no infrared port (there is, of course Bluetooth). Getting the memory card in and out can be fiddly (having said that, once in it isn't going to pop out easily).
Sometimes when using the phone my ear touches the touch screen and will trigger some action or other. The screen fades to black very quickly which needs either the keypad sliding out or the power button to be pressed to reactivate the phone. This is a bit irritating. However, if the screen were left on longer I suspect it would impact battery life a lot.
Most worryingly, battery performance seems poor if you have push email turned on (i.e. your phone looks for email every so often). This takes stand-by times down enormously. Reasonable usage of email, a few calls a day and a couple of hours of music play and the battery struggles to last two days. Having said that, it is probably a problem with most phones that do so much.
Overall a pretty impressive package and certainly a cool phone but with some weaknesses around battery life.
The HTC Touch Dual is a high end pda/phone with features to match and a slick new TouchFlo menu interface which allows the user to quickly navigate favourite contacts, tasks and media by dragging your finger across the screen, as well as scrolling through large pages in a similar manner to that seen on the iPhone. This model is relatively new and is only available in the UK on T-mobile where unless you take out the most expensive combination of minutes and texts you will still be paying a small sum for the phone itself. Alternatively the phone can be purchased sim free, but this is an expensive option pushing £400. At this price you would be expecting a pretty flawless piece of technology but unfortunately the phone does suffer from a few major downfalls. When used all day - a few calls and texts, internet browsing and listening to music the battery life can be as low as 12 hours. In addition to this, the phone can sometimes seem slow and unresponsive - this is especially a problem when multiple applications are open.
On the plus side however, the phone offers a very good media player with a great audio booster to fine tune output through the headphones as well as good voice clarity in a call and a reasonably slick internet experience. I recommend downloading Opera or Opera Mini instead of the pre packaged Internet Explorer to take full advantage of the TouchFlo interface.
The phone comes with all the standard features you would expect from a phone and a PDA including a calendar, MS Word, Excel and Powerpoint, Games, MMS, and supports HSDPA and 3G web browsing where available, but does not support Wi-Fi or GPS which are both features seen in many similar phones.
Overall, this isn't a bad phone - it could just do with the odd tweak to turn it into a great one.
~~~~ Introduction ~~~~
HTC have been manufacturing PDA style mobile phones for many years. They are popular at being rebranded by most of the major network providers namely orange with their SPV range of products (see my orange spv review).
They produce very reliable products which have an impressive range of features and you may have even been using one of their rebranded products and not even know it.
This type of product is aimed at the type of user that wants features more than the smallest phone as they tend to be on the larger side. They do however offer stylish professional looking products with exceptional performance and features.
~~~~ Product Specifications ~~~~
Operating System - Windows Mobile 6 Pro
Memory -128MB SDRAM
Display- 2.6-inch TFT-LCD, touch-sensitive screen with backlight
Display interface- HTC TouchFLO
Extra input methods-20 key QWERTY keyboard which slides out from the unit
Connectivity - Bluetooth 2.0 Hi speed USB 2.0
Camera- 2 megapixel colour camera and second camera for video calling feature.
Supported Audio and ringtone formats- MP3, AAC, AAC+, WMA, WAV,
Battery- 1120 mAh rechargeable Li-polymer battery
Standby up to 250 hours
Talk time up to 5 hours
Dimensions-107 mm (L) X 55 mm (W) X 15.8 mm (T)
Memory card- microSD memory card
~~~~ Product Overview ~~~~
The HTC touch dual features the new windows mobile 6 professional platform. This version of windows for the mobile market is a pleasure to use and is very stable iv not had a crash or freeze yet (touch wood).
The standard HTC touch has no slide out keyboard so you have to rely purely on the touch screen for inputting. However the touch dual comes with a keyboard that is accessed by sliding the top half of the unit upwards (similar in design to the orange spv m3100).
I have used the keyboard when writing big messages and browsing the internet and the design is excellent allowing for easy use. It is comfortable to use and the buttons feel firm when pressed giving a positive feeling of build quality. I do however use the touch screen for about 80% of the time.
The touch screen is powered by HTC's Touchflo technology (very similar to the technology used on the apple iphone).You simply drag your finger around the screen which will allow you to flip and rotate the items on the screen. The feature is very responsive and you will learn to master it very quickly.
As with all windows products you get an impressive range of products bundled with the software on the phone. Such as software for contacts, emailing, browsing the internet and extra software like weather reports (updateable via the internet connection) and various games.
The phone performance is excellent with good sound clarity in both standard and hands free operation. The screen is sharp and vibrant and well illuminated for use even in the brightest of sunshine.
Email is a pleasure to use and very functional when using the slide out keypad making it simple to send long messages.
The product comes with 128 mb of internal memory which you can expand via a micro SD card (not supplied so shop around for good deals).
With a rubberised coating to give better grip and an ultra slim thickness of only 14mm this product is easy and comfortable to hold and use.
~~~~ Product Summary ~~~~
An excellent PDA/Phone hybrid with a fantastic range of features and software. The touch screen technology performs well and is easy to use and makes the product a pleasure to use day to day. The product does lack Wi-Fi which I found quite disappointing so bear this in mind when comparing against similar products(I can live without this feature).Not quite as stylish as the iphone but has similar high performance giving this a recommended buy from me.
Online resource- www.htc.com
This unit should cost about £300 so shop around for deals or consider a mobile contract you might get the unit free.
This revie is listed on ciao under the user name phensh