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HP Veer Hands On

The Veer's 2.6in LCD screen is very nice to look at thanks to strong colours, a decent black level, and wide viewing angles. Moreover, HP has managed to pack a serviceable resolution, of 320 x 400 pixels, in. This means that while the display is small, it still packs in enough detail and looks sharp enough to be more than adequate for day to day use. In contrast, the HTC Wildfire (another small, lower cost smartphone) pushes the limit of usability with its 240 x 320 pixel screen.

Inevitably, a few tasks, like watching video, playing games, and browsing the web are going to be less enjoyable than on larger screened devices but it holds up pretty well. All your everyday messaging and organisation tasks are certainly well catered for.

What really helps in setting the Veer apart from other small smartphones is its operating system. It runs a full version of WebOS which is very easy to use and finger friendly, yet powerful and fully featured.

Screenshots taken from the Palm Pre 2 that runs the same WebOS.

You get a sophisticated multi-tasking interface that presents all the programs you have running as cards running across the screen, allowing you to bundle related cards into stacks or swipe cards of screen to close them. It's a brilliant interface that makes all the more difference on this small device.

Synergy is another key feature to WebOS, bringing together social networking, email account, and instant messaging account information so that from a single contact you can access a mass of information or from a single calendar you can view all your goings on. It's even open to third parties so if the next social networking site takes off, you won't have to wait for a new update to your phones firmware to add it.

Also featured is Just Type that lets you search your phone for contacts, emails and apps simply by opening the slider and starting to type. If you can't find what you're looking for on your phone you can choose an Internet search (which is again compatible with third party sites so you can even add a search button for TrustedReviews). Alternatively you can use what you've just typed to start an email or text message.

The easy to use web browser even supports flash video.

Whether the phone will really work day to day is hard to say right now (and is so very dependent on what functionality you're willing to sacrifice) but certainly in terms of boxes ticked, this phone is doing very well indeed. Plus, it's just so darn cute!

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