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The HTC Desire – It’s all about the speed baby!

May 19, 2010

HTC DesireI’ve had my HTC Desire for about 3 weeks now and it is the first mobile device I’ve ever had, that has exceeded my expectations. I purchased it on a 2 year plan here in Australia.

The first thing you notice about the HTC Desire is how well it has been manufactured. The HTC Desire fits well in the hand and is very tactile in design. The buttons are well proportioned and give proper feedback when used. The HTC Desire is standardised nicely, by that I mean that the connections are all standard mobile interfaces such as the 3.5mm audio jack at the top and the micro USB connection for PC connection at the base of the unit.

3.5mm Audio Jack

The Active-matrix organic light-emitting diode (AMOLED) screen is very bright and rich in colour. The 3.7” display is a delight to use, both inside and outside buildings and as it is a capacitive touch screen it is highly responsive.

 AMOLED Screen

Great to see that HTC has joined the industry par for camera megapixels and the HTC Desire has an impressive 5 megapixel camera with single led flash that is very bright for a single diode flash. I’ve included some photos taken with the device to show both night & day photos.

View HTC Desire photos (Day & night shots)

When I first used the HTC Desire I was overwhelmed by how incredibly fast it is. This is damn impressive considering some of the other mobile devices that are selling for substantially more than the HTC Desire, that are far inferior in how they perform the same actions. The HTC Desire is powered by the Qualcomm SnapDragon processor and it is well named due to how “snappy” the device is to use. Screens whiz past smoothly and applications are very fast to load. The HTC Desire is far superior to previous Android devices in how the processor handles multiple applications running at the same time. Can you say “multitasking anyone?

The next surprise was how the user interface named “HTC Sense” has come along way since it’s early days. Previously this interface has been quickly replaced by hackers due to how difficult it was to use. I was impressed at how HTC have obviously done their homework and actioned on the feedback from users. The updated HTC Sense is brilliant and makes interacting with the Desire a pleasure.

One highly un reported feature is the use of “scenes” for the 6 home screens. I have found this to be a quick way to setup the multiple screens for various scenarios such as entertainment, business & driving in the car. The feature extends the usage of the home screens to whole new levels.

image

Applications

The Android marketplace is booming. Since the first Android device I used a couple of years back with only a few apps within the Marketplace, it is now packed with many different types of applications and the new Marketplace interface and search is great for finding apps quickly.

I’ve created a short list of some must have apps for the HTC Desire:

  • Handcent SMS – A great SMS messaging app that graphically shows SMS conversations in conversation bubbles.
  • Google Goggles – This is what Android does best. Use the camera as a search tool! Great demonstration of visual search.
  • Twitter (Newly released) – Never thought I’d see a replacement for Twitdroid!
  • Google Sky Map – This is a great pp for confirming what planet, star, galaxy or constellation you are looking at. Again a brilliant demo of using the GPS & accelerometer.
  • ASTRO File Manager – A nice simple, but powerful file manager for accessing files on your SD card.
  • TasKiller Free – A brilliant little app that comes with 3 different sized widgets so you can easily remove apps from memory.
  • Sportstracker – Great to see this Symbian app now on Android. I can continue my outdoor adventures using this app to track & record my progress.
  • GPS Test – Simple and easy way to see what & how your GPS is tracking.
  • WiFi Analyzer – A comprehensive tool for checking all apsects of WiFi networks including what channe;s you have available and how congested they may or may not be.
  • Engadget – Nice interface for browsing some of the latest from Engadget properly formatted for your device.

Accessories

There are a plethora of accessories to choose from, but it can still be buyer beware especially with getting some from overseas on Ebay and other such auction sites.

I’ve purchased 3 items that have all been delivered ok and are as described for my HTC Desire.

  1. The Zagg invisible shield. – They have great product that protects your device (screen, sides and back) and they even let you customise it with your very own favourite picture!
  2. Easecase D2 for HTC Desire – this is from this Ebay seller http://myworld.ebay.com.au/easecase. Being able to customise all aspects of your device case/holder is awesome. Highly recommended!
  3. Hard Skin Case – Again on EBay this seller gives a bundle of 3 of these cases and they fit nicely on the device. I received good service from http://myworld.ebay.com.au/gyb_hk/

Summary

I can’t get enough of this delicious device! I find myself constantly picking up the HTC Desire and getting immersed in the mobile world it opens up. If this is the quality of what HTC is turning out now, I’m excited as to what other Android devices will be coming out in the next 18 months or so. Android has matured extremely well and is a development platform that has plenty of longevity in it so we should see it become a leader in mobile in the not so distant future.

I recommend waiting for the HTC Desire in Australia until it comes out on other carriers or if you can’t wait then purchasing an unlocked one on eBay is the go, as the main carrier who currently has it exclusively does not have adequate data plans available for the device.

Posted By Shane Williamson

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