By June 5, 2008

HTC Touch Diamond review (Part 1)

HTC Touch Diamond review (Part 1) – ‘The Overview’

Today I managed to get my hands on an HTC Touch Diamond which I have on loan for a few days and I’ll be starting our review from here. My plan is to use the Diamond as my main device and to see how I get on with it day-to-day as a replacement for my TyTN II.

HTC Touch Diamond

HTC Touch Diamond

I should state at this point that loan unit is still a pre-release version and while the hardware wont change between this and the retail unit the software and ROM may well be different as “Test only, not for resale” is very much evident at bootup. The latest update from HTC is that the retail version will be shipped to us next week so at that point we’ll be able to compare the two.

GENERAL

So let’s start out with the basics. As this is a pre-release device it arrived in a plain black box which just a charger and USB cable so I’ll leave the “What’s in the box?” until the retail unit arrives next week.

On the front of the Touch Diamond we have the 2.8″ VGA Touchscreen which is completely flush, no bezel to be seen. You would normally consider this to be a bad idea as it would mean that the screen was more likely to get scratched but HTC tell us that the screen is more scratch resistant than most as it’s made from glass rather than plastic.

Just above the screen is the front facing VGA camera (used for video calling) and the phone speaker. Below the screen there are just a few buttons. Home, back and send/end call keys plus what looks like a regular dpad style navigation control. However HTC have built in capacitive touch sensors in to the dpad so the unit will respond to the lightest touch. In addition to working as a regular up, down, left and right push button control you can also run your finger around the outer ring which acts as a zoom control.

HTC Touch Diamond controls

HTC Touch Diamond controls

Looking at the bottom of the Diamond only the mini ExtUSB connector is obvious. This is where you plug in your charger, usb sync cable and headphones. Once again, if you want to use your own headphones with a 3.5mm jack you’ll need to get an adapter.

HTC Touch Diamond bottom

HTC Touch Diamond bottom

On the left hand side of the device are two buttons for volume control. Interestingly these are two separate buttons rather than a rocker so it is possible to press them both at the same time (if you want to).

HTC Touch Diamond left

HTC Touch Diamond left side

There are no controls be found on the right side but here you’ll be able to find the stylus which is fixed rather than telescopic. The stylus stays in place because it is magnetic which is a great idea. The stylus also turns the device on when removed.

HTC Touch Diamond right side

HTC Touch Diamond right side

On the top edge of the Diamond is the power button, which is a little hard to press with big fingers, and below that is the external loudspeaker. Loudspeakers are normally placed on the back of devices but moving it to the top of the Diamond is a good idea as it means that you don’t cover it up when the phone is on a desk and it’s also easier to hear ringing when the phone is in a jacket pocket for example. I suspect, though, that the decision to put it in the top may have been to save valuable space.

HTC Touch Diamond top

HTC Touch Diamond top

Finally, on the back of the Diamond is the 3.2 Megapixel auto focus camera. Unfortunately there is no flash included. Also, as you can see from the image below, the back of the unit, which removes entirely to access the battery and SIM card, has an angular or faceted design presumable to emulate a cut diamond. The design works well!

HTC Touch Diamond back

HTC Touch Diamond back

Now it’s time for me to install my SIM card and set up my email account. I’ll have more on that for you later.

Posted by: Matt

See Part 2 of the review.

See Part 3 of the review.

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Posted in: Reviews

About the Author:

More than 20 years in the IT industry. Blogging with a passion and thirst for new technology since 2005.
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