HTC Touch Window Mobile 6 smart phone
Look but don't - despite the name - touch
Review Apple's iPhone: still unavailable but nonetheless casting an enormous shadow over the smart-phone business. How, rival manufacturers ask, can we possibly respond? If HTC's new flagship phone, the Windows Mobile 6-based Touch, is anything to go by, the answer is imitation, not innovation.
HTC's Touch: slick looks
You can easily imagine HTC's engineers eagerly examining the first iPhone pics and writing out a checklist of features to include in a rival product: touch control, snazzy user interface, fancy graphics and cool design.
Well, they go the last one right: the Touch is stylish. It's kitted out in rubber-feel matt black with a chrome-like, slightly concave band separating the front from the back. The latter is home to a two-megapixel camera ringed with with milled chrome and, nearby, a mesh-covered speaker.
Turning the Touch round - something its curvy, comfortable-to-hold casing makes you want to do again and again - there's the 2.8in, 240 x 320 touch-sensitive screen overlaid with a sheet of clear plastic that makes the display seem to fill the front of the phone. It doesn't, but it's amazing how this design trick makes the display look so much bigger than it is. The pictures don't do it justice.
Above the screen is the earpiece, again covered in a mesh grille that's cunningly placed so that the Bluetooth, WLAN and cellular indicator LEDs shine through as a series of parallel points of light - very cute.
Below the screen is a curvy square five-way navigator control equidistant between the widely space minimalist backlit call make and break keys. The Touch's other controls are fitted within the encircling chrome band: power key on top; camera button and the hatch for the SIM and Micro SD card slots on the right; mini USB and microphone on the base; and the volume control on the left.
Apple does not invent everything
There are many valid criticisms in your article, e.g. the finger prints and the continuing need for the stylus. However do you have to compare everything to the Iphone, which is not even out yet, and you appear to idolize already?
The HTC president said they have been working on this phone for two years, and there is no reason to disbelieve him. You can simply NOT get a phone from concept to release in 6 months - its simply impossible. Your comments about HTC telling their staff to copy the Iphone is frankly offensive, and shows that you look down on this innovative Taiwanese company.
Your conviction that HTC copied its cube from Apple software frankly marks you out as an i-fanboy. Again, implying that HTC could not have come up with this simple interface on their own is offensive, and may even be racist.
You know how well this phone works, you do NOT know how well the Iphone works. This phone is here and now, and you can buy it. The Iphone will only get to UK by the end of the year. Please review the device on its own merits next time, and stop letting your Apple bias show.
HTC Touch - Great Little Beauty!
I received mine yesterday - and yes I agree the screen picks up your finger marks, but that's not really a problem.
I am replacing a Nokia E61 - it worked well but really wasn't as useful as my old WM5 device from IPAQ that I changed it for, but I have missed WM, so am expecting WM6 to be a bit better.
The HTC Touch is quick -syncs well, can do my email roving via GPRs and using a soft SIP client I can make calls when I'm in a WIFI zone r on my home LAN for next to free - plus it aslo holds enough music for my tatses with a 2Gb card.........
Add to the unit with either Bluetooth Headphones and Tom Tom and well what more can you say!
It looks neat too!
Damn right it's no iPhone!
Tony, I found your review extremely single minded. Your focus seemed not to be on showing what the Touch is and what it does, but instead, how it relates to the iPhone. That in itself is a very flawed stance, since HTC has not even positioned this device to compete with the iPhone. If they intended to compete with the iPhone don't you think they would at the very least, release is in the USA where the iPhone is being released? Secondly, if they did want to compete with the iPhone why on earth would they handicap the Touch by intentionally designing it without the 850mhz band that has become so important to the North American market?
You made a very amateur statement about the Touch becoming a mess of fingerprints. This can be said of ANY touch screen device, BUT, it can also be corrected with the use of a screen protector.
I'm sorry Tony but I have a hard time accepting anything in this review because I'm not entirely sure what is bias and what isn't. You probably make a lot of good observsations but they are lost when bias become so evident. I can fine dozens of reviews on this and other devices from other sources where I will come away feeling I've been given a far unshadowed view.
Take the Touch for what it is. It's hardware is meant for the average user. It's new TouchFLO interface is a great new and needed interface for Windows Mobile, which is going to be widely available throughout the mobile sector in the coming months. Not just from Apple, or HTC, but from many others as well. After all this isn't a unique idea from Apple. It's been around for quite some time.