The HTC HD2 is being billed as a potential iPhone killer. While this slick and modern phone might not be able to tear down Apple’s ultra-popular mobile, it does pack some seriously cool features and technical achievements.
Boasting an incredibly large and vivid 4.3-inch display, the HTC HD2 is currently the biggest pixel-for-pixel phone screen on the market, beating out competition from Apple and Nokia. The giant screen gives the phone the look of a consumer PC tablet, and the slick brushed metal navigational buttons ensure that users don’t mistake the phone for one giant touchscreen.
The large display boasts an equally impressive screen resolution, showcasing a variety of features and applications in full detail. While lacking the refinements of Apple’s closed platform phone operating system, Windows Mobile 6.5 provides simple navigation and a polished user interface.
Browsing through applications and functions is very simple, and the HD2’s simple on-screen input allows users to craft SMS messages and emails effortlessly. The bundled camera is highly impressive, and at 5 megapixels it’s significantly more powerful than its other touchscreen competitors.
However, users might be annoyed at the lack of camera controls, particularly those surrounding image size and quality. While it’s possible to pick from profile pictures (which are very small) and full resolution images, the HD2’s camera includes no other image sizing options. For small MMS images and one-off shots, a complete 5MP photo often just results in wasted storage space.
Internet browsing is simple and effective. The HD2’s huge display and high resolution makes viewing detailed websites simple, and offers significantly more concurrent on-screen activity than the Apple iPhone. Online navigation is simple, with users able to use the Internet Explorer or Opera Mobile browsing interface.
That’s right – the HD2 ships with both Opera and Internet Explorer included. With Mozilla’s Mobile Firefox project gaining headway, HD2 users will soon be able to choose from a third mobile browsing application. Both Internet Explorer and Opera are easy to use, with the large display boosting on-screen information and making menu access a non-issue.
The HTC HD2 does have one major disadvantage: its poor battery life. A 1230mAh battery serves as the phone’s power centre, and due to its small size and replaceable design, the HD2 loses some long-term power over its competitors. For most users, the battery will last for around a day and a half, although power users may find themselves plugging the HD2 in to charge every night.
While the HTC HD2 triumphs above the iPhone in terms of sheer screen size and processing power, it’s unlikely to be a major risk to the ultra-popular Apple smartphone. The HD2’s large form factor makes it difficult to store in a pocket, and despite the slick interface changes and smooth operation, the drawbacks of Windows Mobile OS are still quite clear.
For power users and technology fans, the HTC HD2 is quite possibly the ultimate touchscreen phone. However, for casual users and businesspeople, it’s still no match for Apple’s industry-leading iPhone 3GS.