HTC has made the right decision: it joined Android and Windows Phone in their gadget HTC Desire HD. Externally, the model is more similar to HD2, but inside it resembles the Android. The manufacturer is considering the novelty to be a successor model of the original Desire and positioning it as a substitute to it.
Together with Desire Z, these three form Desire Smartphone Family. Compared with HTC Desire Desire HD improved the camera making it 8 megapixel, renewed the processor (but the frequency is the same – 1 GHz), has more memory, screen, too, became larger (like the HD2), etc. Sense UI version also changed, but the platform is the original Android version 2.2.
As if compared with HD2, then and there, users will also get significant improvements. The first is, of course, changed the archaic and slow Windows Phone to a more progressive and fast platform of Android. The device recalls HD2 externally, though internally, much has changed. Again, better camera, memory, etc. But the screen is almost the same quality (improved sensitivity only).
HTC Desire HD Specs
Network: GSM 850/900/1800/1900 MHz, UMTS / HSDPA 900/2100, EDGE
Operating System: Android 2.2, HTC Sense interface
Processor: Qualcomm QSD 8255 1 GHz
Memory: 768 MB RAM, 4 MB Flash (1.5 MB user available), slot for microSD (up to 32 GB)
Screen: capacitive, Super LCD, 4.3 “, 800×480 pixels
Camera: 8 megapixel with Autofocus, Flash, 720p video recording for 30 fps
Wireless communication: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1 EDR (A2DP), FM-radio with RDS, GPS, DLNA
Battery: removable with 1230 mAh
Dimensions: 123 x 68 x 11.8 mm
Weight: 164 g
There were lots of rumors about the interesting features that would be equipped on Desire HD but most of them were exaggerated. In fact, the platform is only slightly updated if compared to the first version of HTC Desire. Still we should state that it copes with tasks greatly and even records 720p video. It works on the new Qualcomm 1 GHz QSD8255 processor. This new chipset has a greater performance boost and even optimizes energy consumption.
RAM is standard: it is 768 MB. Flash 4 GB (only 1.5 GB user available), plus a memory card of microSD formats (up to 32 GB), a media kit for 8 GB, incidentally, made by Samsung. The latter is under the cap. In general, 8GB memory is too little for such an expensive smartphone. For example, the Samsung Galaxy S has a built-in memory of 16 GB.
Most of the high-end devices from HTC look similar which is not that great but the company always has something new in each of them. The main materials used for the gadget are the high quality plastic, metal and glass. In the style of recent decisions HTC highlighted some parts of the device. But in short we can say that the device has metallic housing on the back and sides, three soft-touch inserts and the glass front.
Some parts of the assembly make the device much more attractive: due to the removable piece, rather than having a one-piece cap, the company reduces backlash to a minimum, plus when squeezing the body it does not creak. Undoubtedly, the appearance of devices HTC brand has always been among the best but still there are a few unpleasant parts too. The device is too big, holding it in hands is not very convenient. In addition, it has become much heavier (164 g if compared with 135 g of Desire). I bet this is due to the metal. But the new gadget wins when being a little thinner.
The control buttons are in the standard set as here it’s difficult to invent something new. Under the screen transition there are the buttons for home, menu, return and search. Sensors have a white backlight and Dual Shock Vibration. But compared with the mechanical elements, once again, they lose. On the bottom there is the microUSB and 3.5 mm jack.
The camera is taken from the overseas analog of HTC EVO 4G – especially the fact of 8 megapixel. In the market there are only a few startphones that fully suit the main characteristics of an 8 megapixel camera. And as an addition we do have dual LED flash and 720p HD-video recording opportunity. I have to say that the sound when shooting movies get pretty average, even compared to Samsung. But the photo quality is good if we do compare them with the Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10.
The camera is rather user friendly: there is a touch-focus when you are finger pointing at the screen object on which to focus. Some other effects are also available: there is a bar with thumbnail previews, with the help of which you can immediately see the effects (distortion, vignette, antique, etc.), face recognition and geo-tagging feature.
Examples of photography HTC Desire HD at maximum quality:
As we see HD is quite good, although of course it does not get to the leaders (eg, Nokia N8, especially with regard to video).
The screen of the gadget, while being viewed by the standards of the top-end smartphones, is average in quality. It uses bars from Sharp and AU Optronics. This Super LCD has 4.3 ” diagonal, brightness, contrast, viewing angles are good. But if we compare it with Desire Z, then it uses a better matrix.
Now the best screen is announced to be Super LCD from Samsung, then comes Sharp, and then only after all Sony. So Desire HD has not the worst option but I would say something in the middle. Capacitive touch screen technology is good in all of the parameters. But the sunny image looks a little bit bad. In general, the quality of Desire HD if compared with HD2 is a little better, but still it loses all of the powerful contestants.
Battery and other features
The rest of the features are all familiar: Bluetooth 2.1, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n, FM-radio, GPS, etc. The device supports 3G connectivity. Model operates on a battery of 1230 mAh, which is too weak for such a gadget. The problem is being solved due to the power consumption optimization : the hardware (new chipset) and software (Android 2.2 initially), plus the screen are not very bright. But even with all of this, the battery life still leaves much to be desired. The talk time available is up to 320 minutes (WCDMA) and 550 minutes (GSM), while stadby time is up to 490 hours (WCDMA), and 420 hours (GSM).
HTC Desire HD runs on Android 2.2 OS and updated version of HTC Sense (just like in case of Desire Z).Number of small changes is simply significant. It becomes obvious from the substantial work with the themes: display is changed, preview is added, you can download new themes directly from the network settings with sounds and stuff. Another feature that needs to be highlighted is the possibility of quick start when the machine is activated within a few seconds – HTC Fast Boot. And it also has a list of interesting pre-installed apps.
A cool feature in the form of an enlarged photo editor has been added, then you do have the ability to quickly move contacts from the previous phone (Samsung, iPhone, etc.) via Bluetooth, and more. Online data storage is also one of the main directions of development which greatly expands the opportunities of the device.
With the new service of HTCSense.com you easily manage your smartphone from your computer. This is the next step after the update over the air. Updated interface of HTC Sense got a lot of improvements, mainly related to multimedia content.Unlike Samsung and Sony Ericsson, it can be updated via Wi-Fi directly from the computer- such as in case of Nokia or Apple.
For example, a subscriber can remotely turn on a loud call or identify device location on the map. Stolen smartphone can be locked while forwarding messages and calls to another number, track on the location or delete all its data from the device. HTCSense.com also allows you to customize your smartphone, personalize design (desktop backgrounds, screensavers, ringtones), view installed applications, recent calls, SMS and contacts directly from the browser on your computer.
Due to the fact that you have the opportunity of personalizing your device you can have interesting wallpapers, get an image that will look like the screen of your phone after installation of various backgrounds. You can download ringtones and entire sound themes (sets of audio signals) from the site. There is a list of new widgets, in particular, to add animated clock to your HTC device.
The widget People not only shows the pics of people, but also displays their current status – this may be their message in Twitter or Facebook, their calls or emails. It’s an handy widget, which clearly and quickly gathers information on the activity of your friends.
Of course the UI also offers the Friend Stream, aggregating posts in twitter and facebook in one information stream. Mail has also been changed, it became possible to collect information from several email accounts together in one thread. It supports the group operations on several selected messages. Also supports the choice of email account. Messages from different accounts are highlighted in different colors.
HTC Locations allow you to use geo-location services without the need of downloading maps. It points out the fact that you can save time and mobile traffic. New HTC Sense also includes an integrated tool for buying and reading electronic books from Kobo. Optimized for mobile use Reader allows you to make annotations, quick search and translation.
HTC Desire HD is the new flagship of the company. Its main advantages are an 8 megapixel camera, large screen, excellent performance and high quality materials, the best interface for Android. A good top-end smartphone with a high, but in this case justified the price and surely new HTC Sense with all of the pleasant features.
Among the disadvantages we can mention- dimensions and weight are too big, camera button is missing, and sensors are used instead of mechanical buttons In addition, the design itself will not fit to everyone’s taste. And surely the modest time of performance.
But still I would consider this gadget to be a great option among the devices of its class. I would definitely love to get such an awesome novelty with a reasonable price.
You can find more reviews of HTC Desire HD @ TestFreaks.