I got my HTC sensation Smartphone a few days ago and decided to post my initial impressions about it compared to my IPhone 3GS. Now this might seem an odd and pointless comparison but like me, I suspect lots of people got an IPhone 3GS when it came out. I got mine on a 2 year contract because it was a more affordable monthly cost to me. This is by no means a scientific post so if you are expecting benchmarks or pixel peeping comparisons I suggest you stop reading now.
My IPhone was my first experience of owning a Smartphone and I have to say it’s the first phone I have ever had that I have really got excited about. I love having internet availability along with the ability to tweet and Facebook when bored at work or in a queue or the ability to Google a product while in Dixons looking at Blu-ray players and the likes is something I wouldn’t like to be without now.
My IPhone wasn’t perfect though, texting was always a little bit fiddly with my average man fingers and being tied into iTunes was a pain. I know I could have used a different program but a fence is a fence regardless of the materials. My contract was just running out and the logical choice was the IPhone 4, one of my colleagues has just got one and it is a pretty nice phone. In my office at work though, IPhones seem to be in abundance. I was also reluctant to pay out more money to get a phone that depending on what rumour you believe will be superseded within a few months or so.
I have several friends with Android phones that have always sung their praises and it got me curious. I then came across the release video for the HTC Sensation, and while the presentation looked like a poor wannabe “Jobs” affair with the personality of a pebble, the phone actually looked pretty good! That is how I came to order my HTC Sensation.
The HTC Video:
So my phone arrived after much anticipation and a day late delivery. My first impression was how much the box looked like an IPhone box. Maybe they all look like that now; I don’t buy phones everyday so I don’t know. My initial impression was that the HTC Sensation was actually quite a lot bigger than my IPhone, although they weigh pretty much the same. The phone came with a USB cable, a set of earphones and 2 mains to USB adapters. The HTC also came with an 8GB MicroSD card preinstalled, which is a bit small for most people. After charging the phone I fired it up and went through a pretty simple set up process. One of the steps to my delight was the ability to import my contacts over Bluetooth from my IPhone. This saved me a world of pain and I thought it was a nice touch.
Android is an odd beast when you are used to Apple’s IOS, but it is pretty logical once you look at it. I’m not a fan of the friend stream, I prefer to separate my social followings, but that may be because the different networks tend to cover different social circles. The screen on the HTC sensation is lovely and clear, compared to my IPhone 3GS it’s night and day. I’m surprised that with the extra screen real estate that there are still only 4 icons across. Compared to my IPhone the HTC is lightning fast, I am impressed by its speed, although scrolling is surprisingly jerky compared to the smooth IPhone scrolling.
Music: I copied some of my albums to the HTC Sensation and it had no issues with reading all of the genres and other information. I was very impressed when the phone asked if I wanted it to find the covers for me! I said yes and it promptly updated all of the artwork for the albums. The sound quality is pretty good with the HTC headphones; I would say the quality equals my IPhone and iPod. Music playback through the loud speakers isn’t amazing but I’m a realist. If I want to listen to quality HIFI I turn on my HIFI. I’m not some chav that wonders the streets with my phone blaring so it doesn’t worry me much.
Video: Watching videos on the HTC sensation is a dream compared to my IPhone 3GS. The extra screen size really comes into its own here. Picture quality is very good, and I am very satisfied that I can just copy across an Xvid and that it will play it without fuss. I also converted a few films from X264 MKV with handbrake to MP4 at higher resolution and they also played without issues.
The Camera: The camera on my Iphone3GS sucks, end of. The HTC camera is not bad at all considering. There is very little delay when taking the shot, which was always tedious with my IPhone and the lack of flash was also annoying. The HTC has 2 leds that act as a flash which appear to work well. On close inspection of a few of the JPG image files I am not overly impressed, but I would rather capture a memory at average quality than miss it. The camera on the HTC would do in a pickle when I couldn’t get to my DSLR in time, but I would be much happier to use the HTC than the IPhone.
Browsing the internet is much nicer on my HTC; I also notice in work that I manage to get a HSPDA signal with the HTC versus 3G with my IPhone. I tried a speed test on both phones and got an average of 500kbit on my IPhone and 1.5mbit on my HTC Sensation. Neither are stellar but the difference is noticeable. The 2 phones are with different providers though so it isn’t a fair comparison.
I have started to add more info to my contacts such as address information and this is where a huge oversight appears to have occurred. I can’t put in postcodes! It only allows zip codes with means I can’t add all of the letters. It seems I am not the only one experiencing this so I am sure it is not finger trouble. It is reported on the Vodafone forums and XDA Forums that I have seen and probably elsewhere. It appears that this will require an update from HTC which is quite embarrassing for a UK released phone.
The battery life appears to be similar to my IPhone so far but time will tell.
On the Whole I am very happy with my HTC Sensation. Now that I have used it for a few days my IPhone feels quite toy like and clumsy. I just hope the HTC lasts me as well as my IPhone did.
- Very fast
- Larger screen
- Clearer text
- Faster internet.
- Better camera with faster capture time.
- Not Apple (I’m joking but to many it’s important! 🙂 )
- Jerky scrolling
- Lack of ability to add postcodes.
- Needed to buy a larger 16 GB MicroSD card to equally my Iphone’s capacity.