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HTC has just about the fullest range of Windows Mobile smart phones on the market at the moment with a wide variety of types and prices. The HD2 is at the apex of its range, offering arguably the most bang, but also demanding a considerable amount of bucks. It lines up as HTC's most complete package to date though, with a huge …

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It's a nice phone

Far too big for my needs and I prefer a physical keyboard but it does look gorgeous. One correction though, it DOES integrate your Facebook contacts into your address book, bringing photos, email, birthdays and most recent update status in. It's not as automated as some might prefer but then, this is still an Exchange linked device. Do you really want "Fred the Bastard", your mate from the pub, turning up on the Corporate Exchange server - photos and all?

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Extra bits you're probably not allowed to say

There are plenty of enhancements over at XDA-Developers, my personal favourite being a 4x4 icon grid below the clock, and one to disable that truly irritating 1 hour 2 minute clock flip whenever you shift back to the home tab.

MoDaCo NoData will let you (selectively) disable data connections, so no roaming charges / unwanted data connections.

I don't read up much on the Leo forums (Codename for the HD2) but do check them out; Knowledgeable bunch!

Still like my Diamond 2, though :D

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FAIL

an AWFUL phone

I have had mine a week today...

There is no argument, the hardware is amazing

Sadly the software is a disaster.

The alarm function regularly stop making sounds (a problem if you are relying on it to wake you up!) - it pops up but stays silent

The audio manager crashes every 60 seconds (seriously...)

the "volume" rocker on the side control the volume in every app EXCEPT the audio player, where it mysteriously shuffles between tracks (you already have a skip control on the headphone lead!).. meaning that when listening to music there is no way to change the volume - the only way to do it is to LEAVE the app - go to a differnet tab on "sense" THEN change the volume.. THEN go back into the app!

What moron though that up?

And - by far the most serious problem:

It cant even get messaging right. three times so far (in a WEEK) its simply stopped dealing with text messages.. you can write them.. you can hit send.. it even tells you that they have successfully sent, but in fact, its just storing them (somewhere!).. it's only when you next reboot your phone that it sends them all at once after it has finished starting. Its also failed to receive a few texts. If it cant even be relied on for sending a freaking SMS then how can they call it a phone?! - and this bug isnt even new - it was in the Touch/HD too and they STILL havent properly fixed it

How on earth this PoS got past any kind of quality control with so many bugs i have no idea

im HOPING that they will release a firmware update which fixes this issues, but as it is, its damn near unusable and i can only say avoid it at all costs.

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Coffee/keyboard

So close!

Damn, I'm crying into my keyboard right now. I had my wallet out until you mentioned the camera. I so wanted to love this phone, I would have shelled out £500 in a heartbeat. Looks like it's back to the K750i for me.

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Nice screen, shame about the colour depth

Screen size/resolution is one thing, but why oh why only 65k colours - what a waste.

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Potential battery issues too

There are rumblings of battery issues too with some users reporting nearly two days from a charge and some people not even getting six hours use. With no WiFi switched on and screen brightness down to minimal!!

I too had my wallet primed and ready to strike. I'm so glad I actually bothered to read things properly first!

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@ Chris McFaul

I think your handset is faulty, you need to try hard reseting it first (instructions at www.xda-developers.com) and if that fails to resolve your issues then send it back for replacement.

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FAIL

A failed phone

The volume bug is caused by the mismatch between Microsoft's Windows Mobile operating system, and the 'Sense' user interface that HTC has bolted on top, to cover up Microsoft's ugly OS.

They all come with the SMS bug. I don't know if it'll ever be possible to fix these, as it's a difficult procedure to upgrade Windows Mobile phones, and is also dependent on whether your mobile service provide will allow you to. It's also unlikely that these phones will be upgradeable to the next OS, Windows Mobile 7, which comes out next year. There are enough differences to make it incompatible with current phones.

HTC will soon release a top-end Android phone, called the Dragon in some markets, and called 'Passion' in others. Best to avoid anything with Windows Mobile and get the Android version instead.

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Sounds good but....

Any ideas when we will see reviews for the Omnia2 and a release date for the Droid? I'm out of contract and will be getting one of the 3 but I want to see a decent reivew on the other 2 first.

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The HTC has lots of points in its favour only to be negated by 1

"The HTC HD2 is a gorgeous multi-media device with lots of points in its favour, not least its impressively huge screen, Sense UI, Windows mobile 6.5"

WinMo 6.5 is rubbish. rubbish I tell ya, RUBBISH!!!

I was waiting for this phone. Now I think I'm going to wait for the Nokia N900 instead.

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FAIL

WMFail

Who cares about ANY winmo devices any more? WM is all fail. It's way too far behind the competition. It's a joke of an OS compared to Android, and that's not even at V2 yet!

Leave WM alone and let it die in peace.

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Fears where real

I was thinking of this, but read to much bad things about WM6.5, and from the comments above my fears are actually true. Glad I went for the iphone, even though its not perfect (yes its not!) Its UI is remarkable...

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Unhappy

£550? really?

Do you really need all these gubbins? How many word documents have you written on your phone? Do we really need facebook to follow us round on the train or when you're on the bog? How many times have you taken it abroad? Do you really need an app for that?

About 1% of the phones owners will use its advanced features, the rest of us will be relieved for 550 of our hard earned quids to look cool for 6 months until the next 'must have' gadget comes out to supersede it. A plain old dog & bone does everything I need and I'm sick of being sold lifestlye fillers I don't need or particularly want. This won't enrich my life in any way, shape or form, bah humbug!

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IT Angle

SMS Bug?

I am testing the HD2 rom on a HD and no problems - What is the SMS bug?

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WTF?

Flash and updating

First in the article you say it has no flash support. TRY USING IE on it as that has native flash support that works very well like ALL WM 6.5 phones.

oh and "as it's a difficult procedure to upgrade Windows Mobile phones" RUBBISH!

connect to PC, run update file. Done. Ooooh that was hard. Official update are available from operators or you can get HTC ones direct. Mind you the guys at Xda developers cook some mighty fine roms.

and finally Brimful you are talking out of your arse as 6.5 is actually quite good and beats the arse of Symbian without breaking a sweat.

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great HW shame about the OS

I was waiting for this to be released, I was also following the progress through the media.

Glad I went for the iPhone instead. Loving every minute of it so far (3 weeks now). I will consider WM again once they've produced a decent OS.

Ex WM lover

Current iPhone convert

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FAIL

WM is dead surely?

I love htc phones and my last 3 have all been htc and will continue using them as they trully are great phones. My last 2 were windows mobile, this one I have now is Android and my next one will be android too, surely with Android proving so good and quickly establishing itself (soon to become the industry standard?) and google themselves about to release a handset windows mobile is finished?

Quite unsure why HTC chose to launch this exceptional handset on WM, crazy decision......

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Iris Browser

I recommend Iris Browser for WinMo. Shame it's not being developed any more but there are still plenty of places to download it.

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not sure yet

I've got the hd2, and I'm swinging from best device ever to why why why did I get it. I'm coming from the Nokia N95 8GB, a tank of a phone and practically indestructable. So far my HD2 has crashed several times locked up doing simple tasks and binned all my contacts! I got it sim free from mobilefun, and 30 day return policy is in my mind whenever it does these things! However the interface is sllick and quick. but the old grumpy beast (winmob) beneath the polished vaneer (sense) has got me in two minds!

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Surprisingly good device for windows Mobile

@Chris McFaul

Sounds ike you might have a fake one. Are you sure it is not HD with HD2 rom?

Alarm: Has been working from day one as expected. Not much different than my personal experience with Hero, TP2 and HD with various official unofficial roms.

Audio manager: Had 8GB sd full with tacks and never crashed on me. Scanned the song blazingly fast. I Use it about 3 hours a day for music and performed very well. As a bonus, getting rid of MS BT stack, stereo bluetooth support improved significantly.

Also, volume buttons work as volume buttons even when the audio tab is selected. This seems to be the default set up on Vodafone.

SMS has also been working pretty much as it should be. Also of you look at the forums, reviews, much of the people who actually used this device has suprisingly popular opinion about this device.

However, I dont think any phone is work £500. Got mine as an upgrade on vodafone for £25 x 12 months + 100 for the handset making overall cost for the duration of the contact only £400 for the phone and 12 months of service including internet. Would not consider sim free option at all.

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Why O' Why...

...are HTC not releasing this with Android? Despite the camera I would surely snap this up without a moments hesitation if it had Android on it! Did someone mention a Dragon?

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Pint

@Mosh Jahan

My god, finally someone with some sence id buy you a pint if you lived near by, WM gets slated far more than it deserves, usually by people who either dont use WM devices properly or cant use them.

The 65k argument is intresting, i can bet most folk will not notice the difference, the reason is the PPI, if you load up a 65k image on a standard monitor you will be looking at an image of less than 100 PPI (pixcel per inch) the HD2 is over 200 PPI

its alot harder to notice banding with such a high PPI, lets put it this way, i can play back HD films in x264 and it looks amazing without the need to re-encode them.

The HD2 is amazing the size is actually very small considering whats inside it and is only slightly larger than an iphone or Touch HD. My only issue as with my last few HTC devices is the camera, the CMOS sensor on this thing doesnt cut it, if they insist on using CMOS which isnt bad by any means they have to give it the supporting hardware, at the moment they havent and that is a great shame because that is the only thing that is letting this device down.

as for bugs, like others have mentioned on here, its worth while poping downing to XDA developers, there is a HUGH community working hard for most HTC devices, if there is a way of doing something they will find it, HTC and MS support them in NOT shutting them down, an im convinced without XDA developers we would all be using poorer devices.

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Yes, SMS bug. This is awful software

The SMS bug is actually a long-standing networking bug. WinInet doesn't allow the applications to set a reasonable timeout on the connection. Programs can get stuck, and unable to connect to the network. Then they must be restarted, and they see the network (hence the earlier reader's SMSes flying out when he restarted the phone).

This is old, PocketPC code that hasn't been updated. It's appalling.

Windows Mobile is by far the worst mobile OS out there. Its direction lead by Steve Ballmer. I can see its market share declining even more than it has already. WinMo version 7 next year is just going to be more pain. You won't be able to upgrade your current phone to it.

If you're thinking about buying a smartphone, buy ANY platform but Windows Mobile. Palm. Android. Maemo. Anything else is better.

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Gates Horns

@ Chris McFaul @ IT specialist

Your comments only confirmed what I suspected.

If they offer this with Android, then fine. Otherwise it seems pointless.

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Lovin me some FUD

@IT specialist That's a lot of FUD you got goin on there.

WinInet, you mean the INTERNET api that has nothing to do with sending SMS? Please provide a link that details ANY correlation between WinInet and vendor introduced SMS bugs. I've had WinMo phones for years and NEVER had any issues with SMS.

It's funny how all these trolls rant about how "appalling" WinMo is because it hasn't been updated in 5-10yrs. Really shows what a rock solid, forward thinking mobile OS MS built all those years ago if all the latest hardware stills runs great. Apple on the other hand can't release a non-buggy as hell OS and they have ONE device to develop for.

If anyone has used WinMo 6.5.1+ (ie much newer builds than the HD2 default) you'll see what a kickass job MS has done lately. You'll be eating your hat when WinMo 7 rolls out. There are very strong rumors that HTC will provide a free upgrade to 7 aswell. At least your phone won't get bricked if you've installed non-MS approved software :P

Ballmer might be a terrible public speaker and publicist but he is a very shrewd businessman with near unlimited resources. You'd have to be a complete idiot to write off WinMo.

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Joke

I remember ....

The last time I used a windows mobile - I threw the bloody thing out of a window

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FAIL

Been using WinMo for years ... Soon no more!

I just bought a TomTom, that's my first step in moving away from WinMo (I used TomTom for WinMo with a Bluetooth GPS receiver). I got tired of the constant Bluetooth problems and not being able to use my SW when I need it most.

WinMo used to be the most advanced Mobile OS out there. Slick, with more functionalities (remember the clunky but stable Palm OS?). Well, no more. Now it's a relic of how bad Micro$oft manages the maturing of its software. There are now plenty of other OSes to choose from.

Ultimately I am going to be waiting for this HW to be available on Android.

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WinMo Apologists crawl

... out of the woodwork.

When a phone appears with ground breaking hardware and ball breaking software, its not difficult to see the missed opportunity. Pretending that WinMo is anything but the final throws of Microsoft's mobile strategy is bit like saying Bing will kill Google Search.

When Microsoft have to (allegedly) pay HTC to keep the lovely snapdragon processor away from those nasty android people, you know things are getting pretty bad. When android devices running said processor mysteriously disappear from trade shows overnight in order to better showcase WinMo you understand the beast is back.

The most glaring shame about the whole HTC HD2/WinMo circus is that if the device ran Android, it would sell like hot cakes on a frosty morning, and peace and love would fill the airwaves.

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FAIL

One more fault... a defective camera

Just one more fault to add to the long list. The HTC HD2 has a defective camera. The problem causes a pink aura over the centre of every photo.

But you don't have to believe me. Just Google the following words:

HTC HD2 camera pink

You'll find many accounts of this defect in the HD2.

I wouldn't think that Microsoft would do something so low as to pay HTC to keep the Snapdragon processor away from Android. Would The Borg do such a thing? Besides, the next HTC phone, called the HTC Passion, will be out soon. It's got the Snapdragon. And it's running Android. Hurray!!!

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Anonymous Coward

Spreading more FUD

@IT Specialist

Where's this long list of problems you speak of? Seems the pink aura problem only occurs on some devices and there is a software fix on the way. No biggy.

The fact is you can get this phone for 40 pound more than a 3GS and it has way bigger screen (4.3" vs 3.7"), better resolution, faster processor (1GHz vs 600Hz), sd expansion, replaceable battery, better camera (5mp, LED flash vs 3mp, no flash), completely open software market, etc.

Regardless of the FUD spread buy WinMo hating trolls, this is THE best phone you can buy at the moment. period.

Would love to see Android on this hardware, just have to wait until someone over at xda does a port ;)

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Happy

Dub thee "king of the geek hill"

For the proverbial 15 minutes, this device is king of the hill. Got everything and some.

Currently happy on WM (a lowly and tiny HTC Diamond I), long time Palm user, dabbled in iphone and nokia s60. But willing to ditch WM for the next one, never loyal to any platform. It's useability and capability and tweakability that's important to this geek.

WM may need some tweaking upon occasion, but works for me. It's the only platform to have decent desktop sync (PIM as well as generic files). Would try Android, intrigued by WebOS, but no decent (and configurable) out-of-the-box desktop sync, no go. Cloud can take a hike for all I care. Nice to have, but too paranoid of me, I guess.

Other than that, all modern mobile OS'es can do to web/mail/music/gps stuff in some fashion. iphone is lovely - cool games, nice hardware. But too hobbled and crippled to live with, sorry to say: no bt/wifi/usb file transfer? No multitasking? What gives?

The HD2 is the closest thing to the killer device for me: add a keyboard too, my credit card is yours. Or just add some more RAM, bolt the CPU and the capacitative screen on the Pro2. I can always get the new TF3D=Sense from xda-dev.

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