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Niall Magennis

By Niall Magennis



Our Score:


The 4.3inch screen really should be the crowning glory of the HTC HD7, but unfortunately it turns out to be less impressive than you’d expect. Obviously its larger size does help to make even zoomed out text on websites more readable than on smaller displays and it also makes the onscreen keyboard that bit easier to type on. The display is also wonderfully responsive to touch.

However, in other ways the screen is a let down. There’s a lot of blurring and tearing on text and images when you scroll horizontally or vertically, something that you need to do a lot of in the slick and fluid Windows Phone 7 menus. Also the colours are quite washed out compared to the displays on some of HTC’s other handsets. For example, back to back with the Mozart, the HD7’s colours looked very muted, especially on reds and greens. Also, the resolution is 480 x 800 pixels, which is the same as on smaller screen devices like the Mozart, so although you’re gaining screen space, you’re not gaining pixel density with the larger display.

Under the bonnet the HD7 uses a 1GHz Snapdragon processor and like most of HTC’s other Windows Phone handsets it has 512 MB ROM and 576 MB RAM. It’s essentially the same hardware that powered the original HD2, but it still feels pretty speedy to use when zipping through Windows Phone 7’s attractive menu and apps also rollick along at an acceptable speed. Even 3D games looks pretty impressive thanks to its integrated 3D graphics processor.

What’s less exciting, though, is the battery life. Despite the fact it’s got a much larger screen than the Mozart, HTC has actually equipped the HD7 with a smaller battery than that model. As a result you’re likely to find yourself topping up the handset’s 1230mAh battery at the end of each day, which isn’t ideal.

The phone has a fairly generous 16GB of internal storage, which is enough to store a healthy number of music tracks and videos. However, as with all of the Windows Phone handsets available in the UK at present, there’s no MicroSD card slot, so you can’t add to the built in storage, as you can on most Android phones.


It’s pretty clear that HTC sees the HD7 as an entertainment device, but we’re not totally convinced on this front. Sure, the screen is large, but video doesn’t look as good on it as many of the other Windows Phone handset we’ve seen recently, the rear mounted speaker sounds pretty tinny and the battery life is a let down.

Carrier pricing updates & information supplied by WhistleOut


June 2, 2011, 11:10 pm

Just a note to consider - the headphone jack being on the top of the phone to me seems to leave the phone open to water ingress if you use it in the rain.

And in the UK, we're going to want to use it in the rain.

I don't like this process of phones becoming more and more fragile - seeing the HTC Desire HD's back panel with the relative chasm between panels meant I wouldn't touch it. Imagine in winter when you're walking along and get lightly sprayed by a car. The grit means the water is salty and a light spraying is all you need to totally and utterly bork it.

The worst part is that the Motorola Defy which makes so much out of its robust features merely seems to have what I would class as sensible and appropriate protection from the elements and therefore is fit for purpose.

Looking at my P990i from years ago - the buttons are rubber sealed underneath, there aren't any cracks for water to get in and I got drunk and lobbed it so hard it smashed a shelf off the wall. I had no concerns about using it in any weather and it still works years later. That was a cutting edge smartphone at the time - what's changed? Why do they not need to be adequately protected these days?

These aren't just luxury playthings to be handled in the coffee shop, they're to be taken everywhere and should be usable in pretty much any weather. Simple things like placing the 3.5mm wide hole underneath the phone seems to go along with this thinking.


June 3, 2011, 3:35 am

@philehidiot: Perceptively put and something that I hadn't considered up until now. As a lefty it's always a relief to see the headphone socket located anywhere but the bottom right hand corner though.
A very elegantly designed phone, particularly the deliberate shortening of the glass face to allow the speaker grills to peak out.
And on the subject of the screen, HTC have released an updated version with a 'Super LCD' screen which remedies somewhat the display issues the reviewer noticed.


June 3, 2011, 4:21 am

@philehidiot Erm, the headphone socket is at the bottom of the phone...next to the charger/usb port...


June 3, 2011, 5:18 pm

Yes I know, in the review it was stated that they weren't a fan of this position. I was pointing out why it's a better position for it...

... they went on a whisky fueled rant.


June 3, 2011, 5:36 pm

Whisky fueled rant?

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