HTC Announces 4 New Phones At MWC

When you want a slim, cool, phone you used to think companies like LG, Motorola, and Samsung. But recently, HTC has been continuously releasing phones which compete with the big phone companies. The Google Nexus One, myTouch and HTC-branded Hero, Touch Pro2, and Imagio are just a few of the big name phones that HTC has released over the last year; and at Mobile World Congress last week, HTC unleashed a few more phones that are sure to be ones you will want to be in your pocket when they become available later this year. Read on for all the details.

The HTC Legend is a very sleek phone, but at its core it is really a refinement of the HTC Hero mixed with some of the awesomeness of the Nexus One. It has the same screen size (3.2) and resolution as the Hero, but it gets an all new AMOLED screen with multitouch as seen on the Nexus One. Now you’re probably saying, I have heard of LCD  and LED, but what on earth is AMOLED? Basically, this allows you to have a sharper, brighter, more vibrant screen, while saving you battery power. The HTC Legend also has a number of other cool features:

  • Android 2.1— Like the Nexus One, just this is coming with an updated even sicker version of HTC’s custom Sense UI for Android (making the homescreen a lot nicer and adding a bunch of features and apps, which we’ll get to soon), and the usual Android 2.1 goodness like Google Maps with Navigation, and the Android Market.
  • WiFi, GPS and 3G (though sadly, no US 3G)
  • FM Radio
  • Aluminum unibody design– Yes, like that found on the MacBook Pros, just here on your phone. The new design also allows for an Optical Joystick instead of the usual trackball like on the Hero and Nexus One.
  • A 3.5 mm headphone jack for listening to all your tunes on the go using normal headphones.
  • A 5 megapixel camera that will include flash, auto focus, and widescreen photo capturing

Now for those of you on Sprint listen up– according to the Boy Genius Report, Sprint may be bringing the Legend to the US as the actual Hero2 (which is said to be it’s name), and like the initial Hero, will be slightly modified in look and feel from what you see above (just keep that aluminum design please!). Now before you jump for joy, remember– right now this is just a rumor and Sprint and HTC have not said anything on the possibility of the Legend coming to the US.

The HTC Desire looks even more like the Nexus One. It has a 3.7 inch AMOLED multitouch screen, a 1 GHz Snapdragon processor (to keep everything running really fast), WiFi, GPS, FM Radio, and 3G (though also not US 3G), a normal 3.5 mm headphone jack, as well as Android 2.1. However the Desire has one thing the Nexus One does not have, and that is HTC Sense (to be discussed below). The Desire also has a very nice web browser. Like the HTC Legend, the HTC Desire also has an Optical Joystick.

Now for those on AT&T listen up as this rumor, also from BGR, is directed at you. According to the same Boy Genius Report post, AT&T will be picking up the Desire in time for a May or June release. Keep in mind, this too is not official and only a rumor at this point. Of course, both of these rumors we’ll make sure to keep you posted.

Now let’s take a break in the phone coverage to talk about HTC’s updated Sense UI coming to all the phones mentioned here.

HTC’s Sense, is an HTC custom user interface that was made for Android and Windows Mobile, and is really a friendly and different take on what the homescreen and parts of the phone should look and feel like. This new version of Sense has a lot of features that allow for cooler homescreens and awesome new apps and features, like:

  • Groups– which allow you to put your contacts into groups depending on what they are, say co-workers, classmates, teammates. It is really the bold interface that makes this application so slick and great. Friend Stream which allows you to see Facebook, Twitter updates, and Flickr updates all in one place. Leap (as seen in the pic below) is very much like Expose on the Mac; when you pinch the screen all home panels (weather, messaging) become smaller and go to the center of the screen. From there you can choose which panel you want to go to.

  • HTC Sense also has features like animated weather (such as if it’s raining outside, you’ll see animated rain drops on your screen and then a virtual windshield wiper come and wipe them off), agenda– which is basically a glorified to-do list, and a mail application that allows you to see all of your mail in list form instead of just one message.
  • When you lift up your phone, the volume automatically lowers, so no one hears that your ring tone is Party in the U.S.A.
  • If you lie your phone on a flat surface it automatically mutes, as seen with the Touch Pro2.
  • And of course, the essential Twitter app, HTC Peep, which allows you to update your Twitter on the go.

The HTC HD2 has already been available in Europe and Asia since last year, but now T-Mobile is bringing this huge (both physically and in awesomeness) smartphone to the U.S. I say huge because the screen is the equivalent of a PSP screen, which is 4.3 inches! This 4.3 inch multi-touch screen is great for writing documents, looking up scores on the web, checking Facebook, watch movies– you name it! This feature packed smartphone also comes with:

  • Windows Mobile 6.5— With a Windows Mobile version of HTC Sense as seen in the pic above, with all the usual Windows Mobile goodies you’d expect like the Windows Marketplace for Mobile app store. No word though on if this will be upgradable to Windows Phone 7 Series when that launches later this year.
  • WiFi, GPS and 3G
  • Barnes & Noble eReader app, which allows you to read over one million books, newspapers, and magazines that you can download directly to your HD2 with this app
  • Compatibility with Blockbusters On-Demand video app. While you won’t be able to watch the downloaded videos on your phone, you can hook your phone up to your TV and watch it on your big screen.
  • A 1 GHz Snapdragon processor to make your phone super fast (such as with the Desire)
  • T-Mobile is shipping the HTC HD2 with a 16 GB memory card already loaded with both Transformers movies. Both movies are optimized to look their best on the screen, so you should be able to see every explosion crystal clear.
  • One of the coolest features, 6 months free in-flight WiFi. Which means you can be on Facebook while you’re 30,000 feet in the air (that is when you fly on a inside the US flight with WiFi– though a lot of airlines such as Virgin America, Delta and American Airlines among others have begun rolling this out across their fleets, making those long cross country flights much easier).

T-Mobile plans to release the HTC HD2 this spring. They have yet to release the most important detail, the price.

If carrying around a 4.3 inch long phone isn’t your idea of an ideal phone, HTC is releasing a smaller version of the HTC HD2 called the HTC Mini HD. The Mini has a 3.2 inch touch screen as opposed to the 4.3 inch the HD2 has.

Also, the Mini HD will be running a more finger-friendly updated version of Windows Mobile– Windows Mobile 6.5.3, and not only that, but also HTC Sense as well as some other solid features:

  • WiFi, GPS, and 3G (though not US 3G)
  • FM Radio with microSD card slot and 3.5 mm headphone jack for music
  • A multitouch screen, for zooming in and out of web browsers
  • And HTC Sense of course

All of these phones, except the HD2, right now, are not available in America, and it has not yet been revealed when they will come to America, but let’s hope that some of these do come, and soon.

Info and pix from T-Mobile and CNET

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Posted on February 25, 2010, in Cell Phones, Mobile World Congress and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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