Capitalizing on the success of the HTC Touch Diamond, HTC has released its long-awaited successor, the Touch Diamond2.
Distancing itself away from the cheap plastic finish that the original Diamond sported, the new Diamond2 comes with an aluminum finish that makes it much more professional looking. Measuring at 107.85 x 53.1 x 13.77mm and weighing a reasonable 117.5 grams, the Diamond2 is relatively easy on the pockets.
Below the 3.2-inch touchscreen with WVGA (480 x 800 pixels) resolution is a touch sensitive zoom bar. This zoom bar comes in handy when you want to zoom in or out when viewing web sites, images or navigating maps.
The Diamond2 runs on Windows Mobile 6.1 but those familiar with older HTC products will know that you'll get the latest TouchFLO user interface running on the surface which is a much prettier and easy to use interface compared to some other Windows Mobile implementations.
The new version is focused around HTC's new "people-centric" approach which lets you view your entire interaction history with any single contact, whether it's a phone call, message, or email - all from the contact page. It's an intuitive and convenient approach. Do note that when Windows Mobile 6.5 is launched, the Diamond2 can be upgraded to that operating system for free so there's no downside to getting the phone now instead of waiting for the release of 6.5.
When it comes to internal memory, the Diamond2 comes ready with a 512MB ROM and 288MB of RAM, similar to the HTC Touch Pro. On a side note, the Touch Pro2 will be available later this year for those who want a QWERTY keyboard as opposed to a software-based one. To store your images, music and movies, there is a microSD expansion slot.
One of the major downsides with the original Touch Diamond was the poor battery life. While the old Diamond shipped with a 900mAh battery, the Diamond2 comes with an 1100mAh battery capacity. Not plentiful by any means but still a bump up nevertheless.
In the camera department, the Diamond2 is well-equipped with a five-megapixel camera with auto focus. As seen in recent Touch models, the Diamond2 doesn't have a dedicated camera shutter key, which makes it rather troublesome to snap images on the fly.
The Diamond2 has the usual bag of connectivity tricks like Bluetooth 2.0 with A2DP, Wi-Fi, GPS and more. Too bad for audio enthusiasts, though, as there is no 3.5mm jack. Instead, there are HTC proprietary earphones for your music enjoyment needs.
The HTC Touch Diamond2 is a huge improvement over the original. HTC has managed to keep the slim form-factor and high-resolution display, while cranking up the panel size so that it's now even more usable without a stylus. The Touch Diamond2 is slated to reach our shores sometime in the middle of May and more pricing details will be revealed then. Till then, watch out for our full review coming soon on www.hardwarezone.com.