What the iPhone did for the phone industry wasn't so much give them a hardware lesson as a software one and it's a class in which HTC is desperate to get good grades...
Out of the dark this week comes the 'Shadow' a smartphone slider with Blackberry-esque Qwerty keypad and heavily customised Windows Mobile 6 finger-friendly interface.
Despite these innovations however the Shadow is targeting the fashion market and its 3G-less connectivity, lack of touchscreen and 65k 2.6in colour display betray its budget friendly intentions. Despite this, WiFi has made it onboard and - as might be expected - a rash of IM clients from AOL, Microsoft (obviously), ICQ (that old chestnut) and Yahoo!
Bluetooth with audio friendly A2DP, along with a microSD memory expansion slot make their predictable appearances too though at 104 x 53 x 15mm and a hefty 150g it isn't perhaps what 'da kidz' would have anticipated shoplifting in their hoodies.
Interestingly, as the shots above show, T-Mobile has already snapped up this portly sucker and stuck on its MyFaves interface so it is certainly headed our way.
Exact UK pricing isn't available yet (keep informed by subscribing for updates here) but the Yanks will have to pay out just $149.99 (£85) for the handset on contract.
So yet another iPhone near miss? Probably, but the Shadow is a step in the right direction.