Friday, June 26, 2009

HTC debuts an Android phone with a 'Sense' of 'Hero'

Never mind the title up there, I was just trying to play a catchy mis-match of words for the new announcement* of HTC's latest Android-powered smartphone: the HTC Hero. ;-p

It's pretty darn amazing to watch on how HTC managed to keep producing new products every now and then, right after HTC Magic made a splash to some countries including Indonesia and U.S. T-Mobile as myTouch 3G, HTC unveiled a(nother) Android-powered smartphone called as HTC Hero.

Trail blazing the success of HTC's long known Windows Mobile powered smartphone line-ups, the Taiwanese mobile manufacturer is trying to up the competition with new handset that's jam-packed also with new features and latest technologies can be found in today's smartphones.

If Apple is adding 'oleophobic screen' technology into iPhone 3G[S]; then HTC is using a Teflon coating which is said to improve durability on its white surface that is also soft to the touch. Not wanted to be left behind, the Digital Compass technology first found in iPhone 3G[S] is also present inside the HTC Hero. But unlike any Apple's iPhone generations, the HTC Hero will come naturally with embedded Adobe's Flash 10 support for better web surfing experience.

Unfortunately, nothing is perfect. HTC is still using slower processor for Hero: the Qualcomm's MSM7200A clocked at 528MHz, considering how iPhone 3G[S] and Palm Pre™ are both trying to compete with the fastest processor clocked at 600MHz. Thomas Ricker from Engadget Mobile got to try out the HTC Hero, and he noticed that "the graphic transitions to stutter a bit and results in screen rotations that feel dangerously uncomfortable" most probably from using the not so fast processor. Here's a quick peek at HTC Hero specifications:

  • Processor: Qualcomm MSM7200A 528MHz
  • Operating System: Android
  • Memory: ROM: 512 MB
  • RAM: 288 MB
  • Display: 3.2-inch TFT-LCD touch-sensitive screen with 320x480 HVGA resolution
  • Network: HSPA/WCDMA 900/2100 MHz, Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
  • Device Control: Trackball with Enter button
  • GPS
  • Bluetooth 2.0 with A2DP
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g
  • HTC ExtUSB (11-pin mini-USB 2.0 and audio jack in one)
  • 3.5 mm audio jack
  • 5MP camera with auto focus
  • Battery: 1350 mAh LiOn
  • Expansion Slot: microSD memory card
  • G-sensor
  • Digital Compass
Htc-magic-getting-sense-interface-0 The original HTC Hero will shipped without the "with Google" logo on the back like the one you can found on T-Mobile's G1, meaning you won't get the whole "Google Experience" thing. But of course HTC gives the Hero users something else: Sense, HTC Chief Executive Officer Peter Chou is touting the new UI as: "HTC Sense is a distinct experience created to make HTC phones more simple for people to use, leaving them saying, ‘it just makes sense'."

The HTC Sense comes with a pack of three new user experience: Make It Mine, Stay Close, & Discover the Unexpected. Overall it is similar to the TouchFLO UI that users familiar with HTC's Windows Mobile powered smartphones, and HTC has said to make its Sense UI availabe to older Android handsets.

"HTC sense will be available on some other existing devices", confirmed the company's CEO, Peter Chou, to Pocket-lint after the HTC Hero launch.

The HTC Hero will be available to people across Europe in July and in Asia later in the summer. A distinct North American version will be available later in 2009.

The latest news on the HTC Hero availability just came in; apparently T-Mobile in U.K. is to join U.K. Orange in offering the HTC Hero to their subscribers. And like T-Mobile we know, the wireless carrier will be changing the name into G1Touch. While the U.K. Orange claims to have exclusivity on the graphite finish color for their HTC Hero, looks like U.K. T-Mobile is going to have some sort 'generic gray' finish color for their G1Touch (pictured below).

According to AndroidCommunity; the T-Mobile G1Touch will be available from mid-July priced free as long as you take out a minimum of a £40 ($60) per month contract, that will get you £225-worth of credit to be spent on calls, SMS and MMS messages, together with free on-device data access.

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