TmoNews Hands On With The HD2

Editors note: I apologize beforehand for the video quality, my digital camera went and broke down on me right before shooting. The quality is ok but it’s certainly not our best effort. Next time will be better, I promise!

Let me just put this right out there. The HTC HD2 is a FANTASTIC phone and I have loved every minute of using it.  I have never been a Windows Mobile Phone fan and have made little effort to hide that, much to the chagrin of my colleague Mystictrust.  That being said, whether the phone is better than this phone or that phone is a matter of absolute opinion.  Whether it is better than Android or better than Blackberry is going to be up to you, the individual user.  The decision will depend on what your requirements for phones are, what preferences you have, etc.  When you ask something of the HD2, the snapdragon processor screams to life and makes browsing the phone effortless.  Of course, there are the usual hang-ups and slowdowns but I’ve been pushing the phone hard so I thought nothing of these infrequent hiccups.

The rest of the review follows after the jump as well as a full gallery of images!

IMG_0029

Starting with a review of the hardware is a real mixed bag for me as I want to sit here and praise every single portion of it, from the screen to the battery cover to the placement of the charging port.  That being said, the size for me, and I emphasize for me, is something I am hesitant to say I love. On the one hand, the 4.3-inch screen is amazing, beautiful and really just a pleasure to use, but, on the other hand, I am having a hard time picturing myself with the HD2 as my daily driver.  It’s just big.  We have seen plenty of pictures of the device so I won’t show you anything you haven’t seen, but it’s really just a large device.  For some people, the 4.3 inches may be the biggest draw and I can absolutely understand why.  My complaint is merely that the phone is wide and my hands aren’t exactly the biggest.  However, it’s possible that I am merely so used to the size of the iPhone that anything larger becomes unattractive to me.  In retrospect, though, I used to dislike the size of the iPhone as well when I came from the original Samsung Behold.  It’s possible with time I would get used to it and become very comfortable so don’t let my hesitation be yours.  This is a phone you need to see to believe and hold to understand.

IMG_0030

The screen itself is beautiful.  It is vibrant, the colors pop out and it’s got more than enough real estate to make browsing, reading emails or watching movies possible though not all at the same time, mind you.   Multitasking proved no problem for the Snapdragon processor as I was able to go in and out of apps without any real slowdowns.  The buttons on the front while small are readily accessible and feel quite comfortable.  The capacitive touchscreen is very very good with almost no problems registering finger touches.  The only time I ran into a problem was browsing IMDB.com and the links didn’t work but I don’t know if that’s a website problem or just a quirk of the phone.  Overall, the capacitive screen registered all presses perfectly and I had little problem moving throughout the phone on this front.  I have a newfound appreciation for mild haptic feedback on a keyboard as well and never really realized what I missing on the iPhone until now.

htc3

As far as the software goes, it’s easy to praise Sense UI for any number of reasons. First, it does a terrific job of completely hiding the Windows Phone experience.  Sure, there are some instances where the Windows experience comes out, especially the general menu structure and the Start button.  More often than not, you will probably forget that Windows is hidden underneath the incredibly attractive Sense interface.  I could stare at the weather indicator all day and just watch the clouds move in and out.  It’s just cool and I’m easily entertained.

IMG_0031

Browsing through images is one of the best experiences I have ever had on a phone. It’s hard to explain and even more difficult to judge from just a picture, but the way you flip through images in a manner that resembles Cover Flow, ala the Apple experience, is truly enjoyable.  It makes browsing through an album unique and is a small, but fun benefit of the Sense UI experience. Pinch to zoom here is excellent and works exactly as it should allowing you to reach in and out of a picture and scroll around to find the perfect spot.  That’s not to say that all scrolling is smooth scrolling.  In all honesty, nothing has matched or bettered the iPhone scrolling experience. The HTC HD2 comes damn close though.  I did see a slowdown here and there but mostly only in the Opera browser so I don’t know if that was related to the browser itself or something else.  For the record, in the video, I purposely typed TmoNews.com wrong because I wanted to show that, inside Opera, clicking on links can be a hit or miss experience.  So it wasn’t just a random spelling mistake.  I had the full intention here of showing this off and the result took me more times than I had intended to finally click the link.

IMG_0034

The camera itself is a thing to behold.  It really does take some beautiful images and while I accidentally restored the phone prior to uploading the pics, you can just take my word for it. Using the 4.3-inch screen as a viewfinder is just fun and the pinch to zoom effects make for some extra joy.  The album browsing process again is just fun as well.  Did I mention there is a lot about this phone that’s just fun?

IMG_0036

I don’t even know where to continue about this phone since I could write for hours talking about how much I enjoyed the experience.  I highly recommend it even with some small little annoyances that are easily overshadowed by the rest of the phone’s capabilities.  As you can see in the embedded video, I had some trouble inside Opera selecting links and while I wanted to demonstrate it a little, it ended up taking more times to get to the TmoNews homepage than I would have preferred.  Is that a dealbreaker?  Absolutely not, not for me and it shouldn’t be for you either.  There is so much here to like, the Sense UI, the large screen, excellent camera and great sound quality.  Mind you, I spent the entire time on this phone running on EDGE and, even though I did that, browsing was almost shockingly quick and voice quality was excellent.  I imagine the software will change a little in the T-Mobile official version but the result should be the same since it’s just a great phone.

I know and understand some of you have hesitations against the purchase of a Windows Phone and, for some of you, those reasons are quite justified.  I’ve made no secret that Windows Mobile was not my cup of tea or how lacking I thought it was in particular areas.  While the root of the HD2 is still Windows, the Sense UI more than makes up for that with smooth animations and a large feature set.  The important characteristics are all there, multitasking and exchange, camera and video, full web browser and YouTube and so much more.

The bottom line is this is a serious phone and a serious competitor to the US market. It’s not a phone you should ignore just because you’ve had less than positive experiences with Windows before.  While the Sense UI isn’t as game changing as Windows Phone 7 might be, there is more than enough here to please even the most stalwart Windows fan.  Trust me, I know.   So who should pick up this phone?  It isn’t for the casual user because it’s a power phone for a power user and you would be picking it up to use it to its full capabilities. This phone has some serious game and those who are looking to buy should know that.

Enjoy the gallery!

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  • AJACDC

    bring it on firsties

  • shawn1224

    This might actually swing me over to Win Mo. At times the Android bugs & quirks do become tiresome.

  • tato22

    really nice phone

  • ManoloDF

    Any news on if this phone has UMA capabilities? Would be sweet if it did.

    • Sgt. Cell

      I dont’ think so, we would have heard about it by now. Hope I’m wrong though.

      • ManoloDF

        I hope we are wrong and it does have UMA, but I wont get my hopes up like when they told us the G1 would have UMA and then the mytouch 3g. I am getting sick and tired of none of the premier phones not having UMA. The BB Bold is the only option with 3g and UMA and its just not my type of phone. I do have to admit my dream phone would be iPhone with T-Mobile 3g bands with UMA, that would be absolutely insane, but ill take HD2, ill take an android one, heck even Palm WebOS as long as it has UMA, 3g and GPS

      • captainbdsc

        Doesn’t the Bold 9700 have UMA?

    • Inuyasha

      The specs on http://www.htc.com/us/products/t-mobile-hd2?view=0-12&sort=0#tech-specs mention nothing about UMA, so I’m pretty sure it doesn’t have it.

  • Username

    yeah…UMA or not?

  • http://tmonews.com Carlos

    Why do we have to wait SO long for this phone????? I want it and I want it…..YESTERDAY!!!!

  • Nobody cares

    Thx for the great review. This bad boy is mine come March 24th….I’m dying to mess around with it. I’ve already ordered a Boxwave screen protector and a leather case for it….I’M READY TO ROCK!!!!

  • Robert B

    By Android! This beats all of T-Mobiles Android phones unless they get the Desire.

  • eYe

    I am a die-hard Android fan but this sounds very interesting. I’ve never had a phone with WinMo on it (save for 3-day long torture with MDA) so I don’t really know what to expect out of it. Sense UI is gorgeous in any form, be it Android or WinMo. I guess I’ll just have to play with it in the store to see for my self. Any word on pricing of this beast?

  • JD

    Nope, no UMA!

    Is there still a pinkish cast to the pics and vids, or has that definitely been fixed?

    • Oce

      That was fixed a while back through software update.

  • Sgt. Cell

    RELEASE THIS PHONE ALREADY.PLEASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSEEEEE!

  • Jose

    Is NICE But is tooooo BIG.. Why??

    • Ruiner

      I played with the Euro version a few weeks ago and it isn’t as big as you would think. True, it is large, but not much bigger than the iPhone in all honesty. The 4.3″ screen will blow you away. It’s also surprisingly thin; thinner than the iPhone. Just wait, this phone is incredible.

      As for all of the “bye bye Android” talk, they (XDA Developers) are currently working to get Android on the HD2. Given the fact that the Nexus 1 and Desire have Android (and a lot of the same hardware), porting it over will hopefully be easier. I wouldn’t buy the phone in that hope, of course, but it might become an added bonus.

      • Jose

        Do you just say Android to HTC HD2.. Explain better please…

      • Mockerfab4

        The HD2 running Android is the Supersonic. This will be available on Sprint. If you google it, you’ll find many articles about it.

      • PHONE FREAK

        Actually Runier means that you can put android on your HD2, just like putting any other custom rom.

    • ItsMichaelNotMike

      Huh? That’s the main feature of the HD2, its big display.

      If you want something smaller then go with the Mini or Touch Pro2. And there’s Samsung, etc.

  • Dave

    Absolutely fantastic review – has me even more excited to pick this device up!

    My only remaining questions are:

    #1 – Will we get an upgrade to WinPho7? (apparently an answer for this will be coming next month likely at Mix10).

    #2 – What will be the price on this bad boy?

    For our reviewer -

    #1 How is the maps function with GPS? How would you rate it against the Droid or Iphone as far as user experience, clarity of maps and how quickly things load? I do really miss my Google Maps on the Iphone now that I am working with an unlocked Storm.

  • tehandroid

    So far I’ve seen nothing in our internal emails about this having UMA. The TP2 didn’t have it so I doubt this will, guess you could always use a Skype app. I’m a diehard Android fan but this phone will be mine. A lot of the features are very attractive that I have yet to see on Android. Can’t wait to get it.

  • Pythagoras

    Congrats to T-Mobile and to Tmonews.

    Looks like a truly awesome phone.

  • http://tmonews.com Carlos

    I emailed HTC to see if the HD2 was upgradeable to windows phone 7. They gave me this B.S reply.

    Thank you for your email regarding the HTC HD2. I certainly understand wanting to make sure your phone is capable of running the most up to date software. Unfortunately, HTC Technical Support does not have the details regarding the Windows Mobile 7 software at this time. As such, we do not have any information regarding the system requirements for that operating system.
    However, the HD2 does run Windows Mobile 6.5 out of the box and, as such, it should be possible to update to Windows Mobile 7 though no guarantees can be made at this time.

    • TheDude

      You know, there is the possibility that HTC *actually* does not know. Even if there was an upgrade, it’s at the end of the year… Microsoft is still working things out

      • Mockerfab4

        I agree with theDude. HTC probably does not know yet what is involved in WM7. Aren’t they introducing it to developers in the Mix conference next month? Someone correct me if I’m wrong.

    • David

      It sounds to me like HTC does not know, afterall winmo7 is Microsofts and not even due out for 10 more months, so it is realistic that HTC does not know. Just a thought.

    • ItsMichaelNotMike

      Actually that’s not a bad response, the last sentence, considering T-Mo’s typical silence.

      Does not matter anyway. The OS will be available at XDA Developers.

      I got the T-Mobile Touch Pro2 in August last year. Within two weeks I was running WinMo 6.5.1 and the HTC Sense user interface, all this while others waited for months for word from T-Mo on when the update would be available.

      By the way, I was using the HTC Sense interface that you see on this HD2, for months. It is the sole reason I don’t mind the HD2 coming with 6.5. It’s one heck of a shell. Couple that with a huge display, well… that will be one hot phone.

      As I said before, WinMo 7 won’t have the HTC Sense shell (MS will not allow any manufacturer put a shell on their phones). When I had Sense on my TP2 I tried some other ROMS that were 6.5 without Sense. I disliked those so much that I went back to ROMS with the HTC Sense user interface.

      I might have to make the same choice with WinMo 7. I may find out I like 6.5 with HTC Sense better *(albeit by November MS should have released WinMo 6.7 since 6.6 is supposed to debut this month). But MS is going to call WinMo 6.x.x “Classic.” Yuck.

  • JR

    I’m assuming this isn’t the TMO US version that has much more RAM, correct?

    • ItsMichaelNotMike

      You assume correct. If he had the T-Mo version that would be the hottest video on the planet and if David posted it on YouTube he would be getting 500,000 hits within the week.

      And unless T-Mo gave it to him for a review, T-Mo would be having the police show up at his door with handcuffs.

      Obviously some T-Mo employees have them as beta units, wish we could get them to sing like canaries.

  • Mark

    can you do a side by side size with a TP 2?

  • Jose

    I still have some nagging questions:

    So how’s the battery life? Better or worse than the G1? What kind of app library does it have? How’s the onscreen keyboard? Does that Homescreen auto-rotate? I know the OS has Twitter integration; is there some kind of OS-level Facebook integration (like WinMo7)? Is gmail push? What about google calendar/contacts?

    Thanks for the review.

    • chaoscentral

      Lemme try those 1 by 1 based upone what I know about the HD2(been following it since it was announced last year)

      Battery Life – It has amazing standby time thanks to Windows Mobile, like I’m talking days at a time Standby, the actual battery life figures are out there, and while other phones like the Nexus or iPhone have numbers like 300 hours, those don’t come anywhere near close to the rated figures, but the HD2 does.

      App Library – The way this works on Windows Mobile now, is they do have a Windows Mobile Marketplace with apps in it, but it isn’t very large yet. The best place to find good apps is a Windows Mobile forum of some kinda, and just do a general search. Pretty simple just download the cab and install it either from your PC with Activesync, or transfer to the memory card and install using the phone’s file explorer.

      It does have OS-level Facebook intergration, it is actually very good allowing you to view friends recently updated status’ as well as their entire Facebook photo albums just as if they were on the device.

      Gmaail/Contacts/Calendar Push – Very very simple to setup, Google released official support for exchange protocol for their services, meaning push Email, Contacts, and Calendars with 2 way sync which is very easy to setup, you can find instructions here.

      http://www.google.com/support/mobile/bin/answer.py?answer=138636&topic=14299

      Anything else? Or did I get everything that you asked lol

      • Jose

        Yeah, that’s all the reservations I had on this device, and it looks like it’s all cool. Thanks so much for taking the time to respond! Definitely looking forward to March 24th!

        (So sick of my G1 right now…)

        Anyway, thanks again!

  • BBSwany

    Yay for me @ 0:04! LOL! Seriously though, appreciate the write-up David. 4.3″ of screen real estate looks amazing.. March 24th can’t come soon enough.

  • manushka

    WOW, Gents I am saving up badly for this puppy! I wonder if CH131.com or Hulu will be playable in this baby?

    Oh any word if it can still use Bluetooth KB and mice?

  • efjay

    No upgrade to WP7 – http://wmpoweruser.com/?p=13556

    • chidino

      Three things to consider about efjay’s “No upgrade to WP7″:

      – the HD2 is not currently available (with a carrier) in the US. Don’t we ALL know how Microsoft can split hairs to justify things? And don’t the WP folks (whose necks are on the line with such a massive change) have a vested interest in drumming up as much support and interest as possible?

      – Less rhetorical, the HD2 is (as far as I am aware) fully WP7 spec compliant. I realize it has two extra buttons, but other than that…

      – Finally, dueling urls: http://www.redmondpie.com/htc-hd2-to-get-windows-mobile-7-upgrade-9140128/ says the HD2 WILL be the first upgraded phone.

      I just don’t think, after the lessons they’ve learned by earlier mistakes, that both HTC and T-Mo would stick themselves with a sure-to-be-expensive phone that’s a brick in 12 months. (I’m figuring, given T-Mo’s previous pricing on handsets, that $499 WITH contract might be hopeful…)

  • http://tmonews.com Carlos

    If this phone is not upgradeable to windows mobile 7 I don’t think it will be worth getting. It will be SO OLD NEWS by the holiday season. How can you have a “flagship” phone that will be OUTDATED in a few months??

    • David

      So they should not release it at all because it has 6.5 and 7 is not being released for 10 more months? Yeah, that makes sense. Are you serious??????? 6.5 is still the current winmo version and all the smartphones from now until Dec. Will be released with 6.5 so if I understand your “statement” you think no more winmo phones should be released until the end of the year when winmo7 will be available? Wow, that is a lot of lost revenue for handset makers, carriers, and microsoft. That makes sense.

      • rawhide85

        David- Great review of the HD2! Your review was one of the best I’ve seen. I too live in the S. Florida area (Pembroke Pines) and would like to know your opinion on a few items. 1. What, if any, screen protector are you using on your iPhone? 2. Any idea what happen to the TMobile “tweet” that was due out this week? And finally, is TMo offering any incentives for a long time AT&T customer to switch to their service? Thanks in advance for your time. Rawhide85

      • Twitch110

        David, I think you need to change your name to DAVID_DOS or something. Everyone thinks you’re DAVID david. Just a thought ;)

  • Halo

    No Upgrade to WM7 per MS Mobile is a Fail! Maybe this phone will be cheaper than we expect?

    MS App store better get rocking to help market this phone, now I’m re-thinking HD2 and may just do the unlock-iphone or Android it.

    Well I have plenty of time to decide I guess…….

  • vHatch

    It’s dissapointing to hear that Opera has the same clicking issues on this that it has on my TP2. It’s better in opera 10, though, and that could be installed on this(on the TP2 the hardware zoom doesn’t work with opera 10).

  • kathi17

    Great review, it almost made me forget how much I disliked my last Winmo 6.5 phone! (The phone was nice, but when I got my G1, I was so much happier with Android).

    I agree with everyone about the UMA thing. I live in a place where there are no cellphone signals, and frequently travel to other places with only wifi connections. It would be great to be able to drop my family plan so I wouldn’t have to have a UMA dumbphone to make calls with.

    This looks like a beautiful phone, but I really love my G1 running Android 2.1. I will have to wait and see if they get Android ported to this, or if either the Desire or Dell Mini 5 come to T-Mo US. (Although, if it was upgraded to Win 7, I might consider trying it out).

    • ItsMichaelNotMike

      Your post is a good example of that saying “to each their own.” I have had the G1 since December 2008. I gave it to my GF back in August 2009. Even though I put the Hero build on the G1, to me that phone is horribly outdated and it feels cheap compared to the quality phones HTC is putting out now.

      And I did miss the fun aspect of Android when I gave the phone up, but after using 6.5 with HTC Sense, and being able to customize every aspect of my Touch Pro2, I can’t imagine ever going back to Android.

      For me Android seems like something that should be on a Sidekick handset. It was a blast downloading all those free apps, on a whim and any time of the day or night. But when it comes down to having a serious phone, WinMo made more sense.

      Now I don’t even look at Android phones, I have no interest in them whatsoever.
      So see, you love your G1 running Android, I am counting the days to the HD2 debut.

      Oh, there’s people running Android on the European HD2. And XDA folks are working on having the HD2 with dual boot capability. How cool is that, you can run Android or WinMo, or just Android. ;)

  • Mockerfab4

    David, thanks much for the review! I’m also an iPhone user and was wondering how this phone compares to that experience. You definitely put my mind at ease that this phone would be a solid replacement!

    I hope you can help answer some of the questions that I have and was posed by other users in this message board regarding:

    Battery life
    Hulu
    Google Maps or Bing Maps
    Flash (I didn’t watch the vid yet so maybe you showed it on there)
    App store/library

    Again thanks for the GREAT review. Now hurry Tmo & bring this phone to the masses! ;)

  • David

    Very good job David! I am a die hard Android guy but I like the HD2, it has a nice design, processor, screen, etc. I don’t have any questions but a lot of these comments have multiple questions lol

  • David

    GRRRRR!!!!! I can’t play the video on my stupid G1. It says “sorry, this video is not available”. Wtf?

  • JBLmobileG1

    Same here David… the video doesn’t play on my G1 either. Maybe the link is broken or was taken down? Honestly though… if Microsoft screws people not letting them upgrade the o/s than what’s the point. One reason why I like Android… the upgrades keep coming and are free so long as the hardware can handle it. I remember when I had the MDA… instead of being able to update the o/s to the newer version you either had to get a hacked ROM or buy the Wing which was pretty much the same phone. Reason why I hate Microsoft and their mobile o/s. At least they could release an update that you’d have to pay for or something instead of having to buy a new phone. With phones now a days they are like PCs anyways… so have it to where you can upgrade so long as it meets the phone specs.

    • David

      Hmmm I don’t know, its a standard youtube link?! Let me look into it!

      • Mockerfab4

        Won’t play on my iPhone either. I know sometimes Youtube puts a delay on cell phones playing video files. I’ve had that issue were newly loaded videos on YouTube won’t play on my iPhone until at least 24 hours. :(

      • ItsMichaelNotMike

        If you double click the video it goes to YouTube and plays, so it is working.

        I’d try it on my BlackBerry 9700, but I sold that phone, plus it does not work o that browser. LOL.

        I’d try it on my T-Mobile Touch Pro2 , but I sold that phone too.

        I’d try it on my G1, but my GF is using that and she’s not around.

        I’d try it on my Pearl 8120, but it’s a RIM browser. LOL.

        Sorry, can’t test on a smartphone. I feel deprived.

  • Richard

    Hmmmmmm… okay, that really wasn’t informative. It was nothing more than ‘I don’t really like WinMO but this is a really nice phone.’ Don’t give up your day job.

    If you really want to give a review… how about how Google works on it, like maps… or does Bing work better. Or how about syncing to contacts and a calendar? Battery life? Flash? App store compared to Android – what’s there or what’s missing that most of us use? Yeah, pretty much what about a dozen others have asked for on here.

    I mean let’s actually talk about the phone and what it can do other than it’s big and looks nice.

    • Twitch110

      Hey Dooooouuuuucccchhhhe. Except everyone has asked it AFTER the fact that he made the video and wrote the review. Go find those answers somewhere else. There’s a million reviews on the HD2. I thought the review was great for a lot of people as well. Maybe not for all you whiners. Do some research clown.

      • David

        My “throw yourself in front of a speeding train” comment is intended for Richard (Dick) who insulted David’s review.

      • Richard

        Okay… so the guy graciously puts up a ‘review’ that says absolutely NOTHING more than it’s a big phone, works nice, it’s WinMo so take it or leave it…. doesn’t talk about anything about really what the phone does, how the apps work or anything really specific…

        which in the real world would be ripped by people as being a rather poor review….

        but here everyone bows and kisses his feet?

        Look, no offense, but if you’re going to actually do a review.. do a frickin’ review… not just a real quick overview of what the phone does and call it a review.

        My personal opinion.

    • David

      How about you throw yourself in front of a speeding train.? Yeah, why don’t you do that. Better yet why don’t you do a review and post it since you can do a better job. Jerk.

    • ItsMichaelNotMike

      Just curious Richard why you are even on here and wasting your time posting nasty, insulting comments. You work for the competition or something?

      I post a lot of YouTube videos and once in awhile an armchair critic like you chimes in with some rude moronic comments about my videos. I deal with it by blocking you and not approving your comment for posting. LOL.

      The fact is there’s a lot to these devices and many, many people don’t know anything about these complicated handsets. So they appreciate detailed reviews like this one. Just because he did not answer YOUR questions does not make it a lousy review.

      You do realize that to do a thorough review would take at least three to four hours of video. How do I know this? Well, take a look on YouTube. There’s hundreds of 10 minute videos on the HD2.

      Add up the time of only the videos that talk about different aspects of the HD2 and those total around three hours, if not more. I know because I have downloaded a lot of them on to my computer. (The folder containing the videos show about 400 MB of video, that’s a lot.)

      Bonus Tip: There’s one video on YouTube that is 40 minutes. Go watch that one. It answers all your questions. That brings to mind, if you want YOUR questions answered why don’t YOU do some research on the Net instead of wasting time in here posting insults. Quit wasting your time trying to get someone to do your research for you.

      OK… dick.

  • ItsMichaelNotMike

    David… don’t you have a T-Mobile Touch Pro2? How does it compare width wise to the TP2.

    The T-Mobile Touch Pro2 is the best feeling phone I have ever had and I miss that most about it. And I thought the form factor was fantastic.

    How the does HD2 stack up? For example, the TP2 was solid, heavy and simply felt like the quality device it is.

    And as far as size, can you picture the HD2 being put into a shirt pocket or is it too wide for that.

    And when talking on the phone, do you look like a moron because people will think you are talking on a netbook? No one has held the phone up to the face and posted a shot (I know I would never do that. People would flame me asking why I did that since I am so butt ugly.)

    But I am curious. It sure looks huge.

    Oh, is the front glass or hard plastic? Hope it’s glass but I suspect it’s plastic.

    • TmoNinja

      The screen is glass.

      • ItsMichaelNotMike

        Oh that is fine news. Didn’t the iPhone switch to glass when people complained that large displays should be glass not plastic?

        If it’s glass then I may not have to put a screen protector on the face. That would be cool.

        The HD2 just keeps getting better and better each day I hear more details about it.

    • David

      No I don’t have a TouchPro2, I’ve played with one extensively though. Width wise the TouchPro2 is not as wide, might be slightly taller though. In terms of responsiveness, I would give the edge to the HD2, I just felt the overall experience with the phone was very positive.

      Its definitely shirt pocketable, its not wide in the, holy shit I can’t put this in any pocket I have sense, I just have smaller hands that have a hard time wrapping all the around the phone. I don’t think anyone would look at you funny, or look at you at all. It’s not that big but its big enough that I have gotten so used to the iPhone size that I’m very comfortable with. The front certainly seemed like glass but I can’t say for sure as I’m not in possession of the phone anymore, its already on its way out.

      Bottom line, I don’t think you would be disappointed and I think there is enough in the Sense interface to make you think long and hard about hanging up the TP2.

      • ItsMichaelNotMike

        Thanks for the info. I am going to do what I did a long time ago to get an idea on the size of a phone, that is, before I actually get it into my hands.

        I will cut a piece of cardboard to the exact dimensions of the HD2. That should help in conceptualizing the feel and size.

      • ItsMichaelNotMike

        OK, that worked. I got the dimensions from HTC’s site. Don’t know why I forgot this technique. Oh well.

        The width is fine, certainly not as wide as I thought it was, based on looks.

        The height is what’s amazing. It’s a tall phone. :)

        For those interested in making a template, here’s the dimensions:

        http://www.htc.com/europe/product/hd2/specification.html

        67mm (2.64″) wide, 120.5mm (4.74″ length).

        I made a hillbilly size comparison. That’s my Pearl on top, a cardboard Touch Pro2 (that came in a phone case) and my HD2 cardboard cutout. Maybe I should submit that to a magazine for a feature article.

        http://www.bullpooper.com/HillbillySizeTest.jpg

  • ItsMichaelNotMike

    This YouTuber’s videos of the HD2 (and comparing to the N1) are good, IMHO:

  • rushmore

    Where is the keyboard! ;)

  • tmo rep

    “Hey guys I have very close friend that. Has been with t-mo for 7 Years he just called me today and informed me that the official launch of hd2 is march 17 now you can say what you want I trust him completely he would tell me exact price but he said it would be around the touch pro price on 2 year now like i said take this how you want

    • Mockerfab4

      That’s possible. I viewed the video from smartphoneenvy.com that ItsMichaelNotMike posted on here, and the reviewer had the same date as you. I hope he’s right. The earlier the better.

      I want the PRICE and this phone now!

  • Ruufus

    Gimme Gimme Gimme!!!

  • Teddy

    Oh why, oh why must you put my current POS cell phone (Samsung Behold) next to that phone god.
    I kinda feel ashamed.

  • Bdar

    I saw you mentioned “mild haptic feedback” on the keyboard. I’ve been casually tracking this phone since mid-2009 and I’ve never heard any mention of this. Not that this phone needs anything more awesome to make me want it more, but even the simplest tick of haptic feedback on the touch keyboard would go a long way towards winning over former qwerty-only users like myself.

    Please elaborate on the haptics.

    • Twitch110

      Haptic is overrated if you ask me. At least on my mytouch(which i know is far less superior than the HD2) it lags pretty heavily while texting. Once i took haptic off it was much faster. I hear most phones are the same way. I don’t know anything about mild haptic though. That could be perfect. hmmmmm…

      • Bdar

        I’ve yet to know of a phone that had ‘real’ haptic feedback. I remember the Storm’s marketing campaign revolved around the touch feedback, but when it finally got to try it I realized it was just mechanical feedback as the whole screen moved. There are advances in haptic technology out there that use mild electrical impulses to simulate tactile response in your nerve endings. Advanced iterations of it have been reported to emulate the sensation of touching water/sand/wood/metal. I’d heard that electronic devs are very interested in just getting touch screen buttons to feel like real buttons. To win me over on the idea of haptics, all a phone would need to do is somehow provide the slightest difference in sensation to a finger-press on a ‘button’ than elsewhere on the screen. Not the big ‘click’ of the Storm.

  • Rigel

    David, what is your opinion of the call quality of the HD2? Can you hear and be heard clearly? How is the volume through the phone’s speaker? Loud or soft, or tinny?

    Some reviews of the European HD2 have noted that calls sound “muffled” and that call quality is one of the few negatives of the handset. Has this been corrected for the U.S. version?

  • gargoyle999

    Just watched the video series comparing the N1 to the HD2. No voice dialing on this phone then? That’s a negative.

    • Twitch110

      People actually use that? Bah, that’s no reason to even question the awesomeness of the phone.

  • rawhide85

    David- Great review of the HD2! Your review was one of the best I’ve seen. I too live in the S. Florida area (Pembroke Pines) and would like to know your opinion on a few items. 1. What, if any, screen protector are you using on your iPhone? 2. Any idea what happen to the TMobile “tweet” that was due out this week? And finally, is TMo offering any incentives for a long time AT&T customer to switch to their service? Thanks in advance for your time. Rawhide85

    • Mockerfab4

      I can help answer #2. The Tmo Tweet was about the features that will be available on the HD2 when it releases, which are: MobiTv, Blockbuster, Gogo Inflight, Barnes & Noble ebook reader and the Transformer 1 & 2 movies being available in the SD card. Here is the post about:
      http://www.tmonews.com/2010/02/htc-hd2-dropping-with-goodies-webconnect-rockets-in/

    • Davidohio

      Rawhide85…..t-mobile offers the same price for all new customers on equiptment. I am not aware of any “incentive” to come from at&t, those days are long gone.

  • rawhide85

    Mockerfab4- I saw that but missed that is was the “tweet”, thanks for the quick response.

  • wmisbest

    cant wait!, seroiusly though we need pricing info on this asap! This devise is going to cost some major quid that’s for sure. ,,,, counting down the days until i will be able to give my beloved TP2 running the latest build of the Energy ROM to my Wife and unbox this gorgeous beast!

  • Youngmula303

    And why can’t this hardware be paired with a full android experience? The fact is that half of the ui shouldn’t have to ‘make-up’ for the other. So, this phone with sense running on top of android would be a game changer. Why can’t we make it happen? Ah, how we wish consumers really affected the way companies produce phones.

    • Sgt. Cell

      Wait and buy the rumored Sprint version.

  • shawn1224

    Yes, a price would be nice so I can know wether to return the mytouch3G 1.2 .. I’ve only had it for 7 days but if this bad boy is getting released mid march. I might as well take it back now and start the waiting game.

    • gargoyle999

      Take it back!

    • Todd

      Take it back, why are you even contemplating. A month isn’t long to wait dude, some of us have been waiting 4 months for this beast.

      • Twitch110

        For sure take it back. I have the mytouch. Not the newest one but still, not worth it.

    • Mockerfab4

      hee hee. I agree with the others…Return it and wait a month especially if you’re eligible for the upgrade. The price on this phone will be steep, but the upgrade pricing will be competitive.

    • ItsMichaelNotMike

      Take it back. That’s a no brainer if you are not in love with Android.

      I sold my six month old Touch Pro2 in anticipation of getting the HD2.

      And look at it this way, even if you don’t like the HD2, months from now you can sell it on eBay and get your money back. I lucked out and sold my TP2 on eBay for $50 more than I paid for it. So I got to use the phone for 6 months FREE.

      If you try this technique make sure to save all the phone packing, plastics, everything. And keep the phone in tip top shape. That way you can get top price for the phone on eBay.

      Sidenote: My TP2 sold in one day. The popular phones (which the HD2 will be) sell super fast.

      Besides, if you like the MyTouch you will love the HD2. For sure Android is a fun, no, strike that, it’s a super fun OS, but WM 6.5.+ is more fun. The HTC Sense interface is a blast. I don’t think a lot of people realize just how fantastic the Sense user interface is.

      For example, while the Nexus One has the animated wallpaper, HTC Sense has animated weather on the home screen. That alone is worth the price of the phone, IMHO. It’s a hoot when it’s raining outside and your home screen has raindrops falling on the screen and a windshield wiper cleaning the display of water.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iUCP_ixDCNo

  • ralph

    I have seen some reviews on the net besides this one and they all make me want to get this phone the second it comes out. I have also seen some of the reviewers say the release date for this phone will be March 14. That would this SHIZNIT!! Can tmonews get one of their “ninjas” to check that out for us? Where are the ninjas when you need them!!! Lol.

    • TmoNinja

      The ninjas wanna know the release date as bad as you do, internally, we have squat so far. Just training dates.

    • gargoyle999

      Hopefully after the first training date on March 2nd we get some new info!

  • LalLLLLA

    What is uma?

    • Sgt. Cell
      • abe

        i know this is just wishful thinking but i would like this phone to have uma. i mean for real. i have an 8900 and im dying to get a touchscreen phone and with this awesome review dave,i also add, im hooked…please uma

  • ralph

    Thanks and sorry if you got affended with my comments. Didn’t mean to sound like an @$$.

  • ItsMichaelNotMike

    This is why WinMo is better than Android or other operating systems: You can install custom ROMS and there’s all kinds of hacks, fixes and whatnot that can be done to the phone.

    For example, on the Touch Pro2 that debuted in August 09 for some reason T-Mobile would did not have the FM radio software installed on the phone. The hardware was on the TP2, but there was no program to make it work. Well, XDA folks made a CAB file that installed the FM radio on the TP2 in minutes. And eventually, the custom ROMS all included the FM radio for the TP2.

    Relevant to the HD2 and again an example why WinMo is so great, it’s just come out that the European HD2 HAS 576MB OF RAM. It’s just not “unlocked.”

    Again, the creative geniuses at XDA have made available a custom ROM that makes available the extra RAM on Hd2 first adopters.

    Isn’t that a riot, the HD2 European model has had the 576 RAM that T-Mo is advertising the U.S. release will have.

    • Youngmula303

      The point is that you shouldn’t have to modify your phone to make it perfect-it should be so straight out of the box. To date, Android + Sense seems to be the best os out there (based on your preferences perceived in your post). Firstly, there are tons more mods and hacks that can be done on android devices then any other os-if you feel so inclined to mod your phone. And most importantly, Android is the most open operating system available-that’s why it has so much support. Get your facts straight. Android=openness

      • ItsMichaelNotMike

        You say “The point is that you shouldn’t have to modify your phone to make it perfect-it should be so straight out of the box.” Aside from that being an irrelevant and unfounded point, what does “perfect” mean?

        Android is far from perfect; it has flaws precisely because it is so open. The Android openness you trumpet has caused many users misery.

        This is partially evidenced by the almost 63,000 people who have viewed my YouTube video on performing a hard reset on the G1 because they “fried” their supposed perfect OS (as you imply). Many of those people also e-mail me to ask for help. They say that they installed a famously-free Android Market app and fried his or her G1.

        63,000 people is a lot of G1 users to have had problems with their Android “openness” G1 phone. And that’s just G1 owners who bother to look on YouTube for help. How many more damaged G1 Android users are out there? It’s probably millions.

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9u5zuRSPO2M

        Bottom line: Who cares. You love your Android, I like WinMo and actually Android too.

        The point of my post was to express MY opinion that one can do a lot more with WinMo than Android, simply on the basis that WinCE (1997), WinMo (2003), and Pocket PC (2000) have been around a lot longer than Android. Android has been around since when, Sept. 2008.

        Fact is that there’s a lot bigger WinMo community than there is Android. And the WinMo community has produced a lot more mods and hacks than Androids “tons.”

        Some questions to you:

        Just how many mods and hacks are you talking about when you say Android has “tons MORE mods and hacks” than WinMo?

        In response to my trumpeting WinMo’s level of customization you say “the point is that you shouldn’t have to modify your phone to make it perfect-it should be so straight out of the box.” Are you saying WinMo’s hacks and mods exist because WinMo phones are NOT perfect out of the box?

        In contrast to WinMo, are you saying Android devices are “perfect out of the box,” therefore the tons of Android mods and hacks, unlike WinMo, are not to address imperfections.

        Just trying to get my facts straight. LOL.

      • Mockerfab4

        Funny, when I was having issues with my Android phone and shared openly my issues on Twitter, several people asked me to install a ROM. Because apparently the issues I had were common and the ROMS that were out there fixed those issues. Instead of taking their advice, I opted to put in a box and shipped it back to TMO.

  • cu2cool

    What it all comes down to for me is full, speedy functionality of software that the hardware is capable of processing. I love what all the smartphones can do, but I absolutely hate it when I have to wait for the phones to load. My first smart phone was an unlocked Nokia N-95. Loved the features, but sometimes it just took too long to open programs. Then the MyTouch 3g was my first touchscreen smartphone. Still had the problem of load times, inaccurate touchscreen keyboard, and force closes. I’ve recently taken the dive into custom ROMs, and still have to say it’s not that much greater. All ROMs have benefits, but also lack full functionality (e.g. BT, WiFi, Video, etc.) and doesn’t really help with the speed of the hardware.

    Basically what it all comes down to I guess is the hardware, and software that doesn’t overload the hardware. Operating systems may be nice to maneuver and manipulate, and look pretty, but who cares. As long as the phone is fast at what it does, and doesn’t screw up what I ask it to do than I am a happy camper. My two cents. =)