What makes the Desire, well, desirable, is its simplicity. At first glance, the unit bears a strong resemblance to the Nexus One, down to the curves and matted materials used in its construction. The same 3.7-inch AMOLED capacitive screen populates the front, and a 5-megapixel camera with LED flash is placed at the usual rear of the device. But this isn't an exact clone of the earlier Nexus One, and it has a few obvious differences.
The first of which is its front panel, which uses physical buttons in lieu of the Nexus One's touch panels. Further to that, the buttons have a slight change in placement. An optical trackpad instead of a trackball is placed in between the four buttons. What's more noticeable, both in sight and usage, is the swapping of the Home and Back buttons. For a right-hander, it tends to make more sense for the often used Back button within easier reach on the right. The Desire kept to its slim profile, but not exactly straight. The signature curved chin at the bottom, seen on its other Android devices such as the HTC Dream, Hero and Magic, is also present on the Desire, albeit in a more subdued form.
For its input ports, the Desire keeps to the usual 3.5mm audio port and a microUSB port at the top and bottom respectively. We were absolutely pleased with what we've been seeing, until we attempted to access the battery. Rather than taking on the Nexus One's approach with a sliding casing, the Desire requires you to pry the casing open to reach for the battery, and by proxy, the microSD and SIM card. But take comfort in the fact that once you've inserted both cards within, you probably won't need to reach for it in the immediate future.