HTC Touch Dual smartphone
Good to see HTC back on track
Review The folks at HTC must still wonder how they got the original HTC Touch so wrong. Luckily since then they've staged a comeback. The TyTn II was nothing short of superb and now we have the Touch Dual.
In the hand the Dual is similar but not identical to the original Touch. At 107 x 55 x 16 it is just a shade taller, narrower and thicker, while at 120g including battery it is also some 8g heavier.
HTC's Touch Dual: similar to the original in look and feel
The main body of the phone is again covered in a smart-looking black rubberised plastic that provides plenty of grip in the hand and is stylishly offset by a highly polished chrome strip that runs around the handset. Centre stage sits a 2.6in, 65,536-colour, 240 x 320 TFT touchscreen, some 0.2 of an inch smaller than the screen on the original Touch.
On the whole it is a very fine looking device, and feels well bolted together in the traditional HTC manner. The 3mm reduction in width makes a greater improvement on how the phone feels in the hand than you might expect.
The major difference between the Touch and the Dual becomes clear when you push the top half of the phone 'up' with your thumb and a 16 (or on some versions 20) button keypad is revealed. Not only does this allow you to input numbers and text without recourse to the touchscreen and virtual keyboard but it also serves to extend the phone, putting the earpiece and microphone closer to the places they should be when you are talking into a phone; your mouth and your ear.
The slide mechanism is perfectly weighted, and opening and closing the handset with the thumb of either hand is supremely easy thanks to that rubber-style coating.
I'm trying really, REALLY hard...
to want to be an HTC user. On pixels, they have fantastic stuff until you look at the fine print (what's 'acceleration'? or this 'Wi-Fi' thingie that we've *already got hardware support for*'? No standard headphone jack? What are you supposed to use, a Bluetooth stereo headset? There goes the battery life downwards, never to come within hailing distance of 'adequate' again...)
When I'd started looking at them after deciding to ditch my (original) Nokia N70, they looked good...but having been burnt by too-new, unreliable crap-mislabeled-as-software, I decided to wait. Now, one of the (apparently few) happy Motorola customers thinking about a more bling-y set, I'm left scratching my head. Prices here in Singapore - compared to the Moto V9 or even the Nokia latest - are high enough that you really wonder what you're getting for the money. A better 3G experience? Doubtful. More capable/stable software? It's Windows Mobile (né WinCE; correctly pronounced 'wince' after the most common user action). 'Nuff said about that...
Mine's the one with the 'I just want to get stuff *DONE*' button on the lapel...
WiFi much more important
McDonalds do free WiFi, pubs do free WiFi. If I want to surf the net, I'd much rather pop into McDonalds, spend a couple of quid on a burger and search for maps/websites, than spend £4 on a 3G connection which may be only 128kb/s (blinking O2).
I wish more mobiles had WiFi :(
And goddamit - why can't you turn these blinking devices off! I've been stranded in London and unable to ring home, all because I can't turn my XDA IIs off and save charge.
The real killer is the lack of a 3.5mm earphone socket.
I mean why, oh why, oh why, oh why, oh why, oh why would you make a phone that was good at playing music and video, and then cripple the sound by forcing the owner use the God-awful supplied earbuds?
Why do you do that, HTC? Is it stupidity or sadism?
Go away you retards
Oh dear an HTC review brings all the Windows mobile turds out of the woodwork doesn't it :) The original touch was a hideously unusable device that people presumably only bought by mistake, thinking it was an iphone and certainly without having tried one first. It completely seemed to miss the point of the Apple device, namely that the usability through the GUI was revolutionary, instead opting to try and abstract the fiddly Windows Mobile operating system into something usable and instead ending up with a buggy, unresponsive, fiddly mish mash which nobody understood wrapped in what looked like a 1st year undergraduate's design for the phone itself. You don't see many people still using them now as I guess they've binned them and bought the device they should have got in the beginning. I don't fully appreciate the iphone until I think back on the horror of my previous windows mobiles. FOR SHAME!
Original TOUCH rocked...for the day
Wow, El Reg manages to say that a Version 2.0 phone that was introduced nearly a year ago is BETTER than the original, and therefore the original sucked?
Wasn't the Touch the phone that LAUNCHED HTC as an independant vendor of phones, rather than an OEM-only provider? A phone so cutting edge at the time that it frankly had no competitors in the small, like, sexy, touch-oriented camp but the iPhone?
I've had my Touch since the first week it came out, and I can only say that I will be happy to upgrade it for newer features and HSDA (probably to a HTC Polaris or a 3G iPhone), but am in no rush to do so...
And for the person saying no GPS is a loser, the HTC Polaris is essentially a Touch+ with a GPS, but no sliding keyboard...