HTC improves on the original Touch with a thinner and more feature-packed model, which runs on the latest Windows Mobile 6.5 OS.
THE new Touch2 phone from HTC runs the new Windows Mobile 6.5 but that’s not all — it is also sports a new look, solid casing and a slew of improvements over its predecessor.
A closer inspection reveals the phone is 2mm longer, 1.6mm thinner and also 14g lighter — it tips the scales at 96g — than the original Touch.
And instead of a D-pad, the Touch2 offers dedicated Home, Menu and back buttons to go with its standard call and end call keys.
Also new is the zoom bar located underneath the 2.8in display to enlarge images, webpages and text on the fly.
Plain black housing
Frankly speaking, the Touch2 is nothing to shout about in terms of looks.
The candybar-shaped model is wrapped in a plain black plastic casing with silver lining around the sides.
With plenty of large smartphones and Windows Phone models in the market, the Touch2 does feel compact in comparison as it only measures 104 x 55 x 12.9mm.
Its 2.8in TFT LCD touchscreen employs resistive technology and is hard to use under bright sunlight.
Since the device doesn’t support handwritting recognition, users will need to use either the virtual Qwerty keyboard or alphanumeric keypad to key in data.
We noticed the screen is too small to properly accommodate the virtual Qwerty keyboard layout thus those with big index fingers will probably find it difficult to use it when typing.
This means that using the stylus tends to be unavoidable.
On the plus side, HTC has gone the extra mile to provide users with easy access to its functions such as a volume rocker on the side, which you can also use to put the phone on silent or set it on vibrate alert on the fly.
Also available is a hot-swappable microSD card slot. It supports up to 32GB cards but before users can open the cover, they need to remove the battery cover first. Go figure.
In the absence of the multitouch feature, having the zoom bar around is a blessing and it works quite well too. Also having dedicated Home, Menu and back buttons means easier and faster access to the phone’s functions.
Windows Mobile inside
As mentioned earlier, the Touch2 is among the first phones to ship preinstalled with Windows Mobile 6.5.
The updated mobile OS promises to deliver a better user experience thanks to its host of improved features, including a redesigned Home screen, “honey-combed” user interface and Internet Explorer Mobile 6.
There are also plenty of preloaded essential applications like Office Mobile, RSS Reader, YouTube and Facebook to make life easier.
The preinstalled Windows Media Player supports only MPEG4 and 3gp files. For other formats like DivX and XviD you will need a third-party application such as DivX Mobile Player 0.9.
This app is still in beta and available for a limited time only. The app works really well but we could only test it out using a small XviD file due to space constraints.
Its 3-megapixel fixed-focus lens is able to capture up to 2,048 x 1,536-pixel still images and records CIF (352 x 288-pixels) video at 30 frames per second.
Also available are the usual options, including self-timer, white balance presets, light sensitivity settings (up to ISO800), colour effects, themes as well as panorama shots.
(HTC) Windows phone
Windows Mobile 6.5 Professional
2.8in QVGA display (65,000 colours)
MMS, SMS, e-mail
Bluetooth, quad-band GSM, 3G with HSDPA (7.2Mbps)
512MB ROM, 256MB RAM
1,100 mA+1 lithium-ion
500/6 hours (3G)
FM radio with RDS, Bluetooth, built-in GPS receiver with A-GPS support, touch-sensitive zoom bar Weight: 96g
Dimensions (W x D x H):
104 x 55 x 12.9mm
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