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By Thomas McKinnon 6 March 2009

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A 3.8\" TFT-LCD touch-sensitive screen with a 480 x 800 WVGA native resolution is more than just a smartphone spec. It is a statement, and a bold one at that.

With this kind of real estate available to the Touch HD, HTC’s custom Windows Mobile GUI, TouchFLO 3D, finally has the necessary room to be fully enjoyed.  The bottom tab icons, your primary means of navigation, are large and finger-sized making it extremely simple to swipe from one pane to the next.

Like most Windows Mobile devices the Touch HD makes use of a non-capacitive touch display which makes it possible to use both a finger and a stylus to operate the device. This kind of resistive screen allows for great accuracy, but at the cost of being less easy to use than the iPhone’s capacitive touch display.

Our biggest complaint is that HTC’s custom GUI just doesn’t go deep enough; the incredibly frustrating and fiddly Windows Mobile 6.1 interface lurking just beyond the TouchFlo tab icons.

While the Touch HD utilizes the same chipset as the Touch Diamond and the same 288MB RAM as the Touch Pro it actually runs smother and faster than both. The device offers all the Windows Mobile functionality you need including Exchange email support, Microsoft Office documents editing and viewing, and Windows Mobile media player.

Applications that really benefit from the 3.8\" display are the GPS functionality with Google Maps and the Opera Mobile Web browser. Opera Mobile 9.5 features tab functionality, something new to mobile browsing. The trouble with Opera is that it doesn’t support Flash, severely hindering its appeal.

Some of the Touch HD’s more impressive features include HSDPA, Wi-Fi, a 3.5 mm audio jack, a 5.0megapixel camera and motion sensor technology via its G-Sensor. Along with this you get all the standard bits such as Bluetooth, FM radio and a microSD expansion slot with an 8GB card in the packaging. In all we can confidently say that this is HTC’s best device yet, but Windows Mobile 7 can’t come soon enough.

PROS
The 3.8\
CONS
GUI just doesn't go deep enough, WM6 is fiddly.
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