HTC Desire HD - A Worthy Upsize?

Launch SRP: S$788


 What Makes the Desire HD?

The Desire HD takes a rather large departure from the original Desire in terms of design, but we aren't complaining. Bearing a closer resemblance to the HTC HD2 and taking a leaf out of HTC Legend's unibody design, the smartphone sports a less curvy, more rectangular body, and a missing chin but sports the welcomed matte surface that was also found on the Desire. However, the most obvious physical difference, which might be a significant reason for an upgrade, is the Desire HD's humongous 4.3-inch screen - a clear physical upgrade over the Desire's 3.7-inch. Nonetheless, it adheres closely to HTC's emphasis on simplicity as the screen takes up much of the real estate on the front, alongside four touch buttons. Yes, HTC has not only done away with physical buttons this time, but has also removed the optical trackball.

The HTC Desire and HTC Desire HD share little in common in both form factor and size; instead, the latter has decidedly been fashioned in a more serious way (a la HTC HD2), with black being the predominant color.

The Desire HD is not much thicker than the Desire, but feels significantly heftier. A quick check verified our statement: the HD is about 30g heavier than its predecessor. Also, do notice that the signature chin has been totally removed from the former.

The Power On button is visibly thinner but longer on the Desire HD, a throwback to the Nexus One.

One of the obvious cosmetic differences can be found on the front panel. Like the Nexus One, the Desire HD chose to do away with physical buttons as well as the optical trackpad and instead, boasts of an array of touch-sensitive buttons. However, the layout and functions stay the same.

With regards to its input ports, the Desire HD sports the usual suspects, namely the 3.5mm audio jack and a microUSB port. However, instead of placing them separately, the ports have been lumped together at the bottom. On the other hand, turning to its back, we realized that the battery, microSD and SIM cards have been separated. Unlike the Desire, the back cannot be peeled or pried off entirely; instead, the Desire HD sports two separate compartments, one for the battery, and the other for the important cards. While the cards are easily accessible as you are only required to slide the cover down, getting to the battery is a tricky affair as you have to pry it open for access. Fitting it back is an equally annoying affair, given that the cap is a tad small and flimsy. However, the upside is that you won't require to access the battery most of the time as it's not a shared compartment.

Battery compartment is on the top right, and the other cards are at the bottom. While the battery is tough to get to, there's no real need to fret over it since it's not a shared compartment.

The Good and its suite of services
Updated HTC Sense UI
Improved audio capability
Larger storage space of 1.5GB
The Bad
S-LCD screen
Heavy at 164g
Average Imaging quality
Limited battery life