The HTC Sensation is already a familiar model in the smartphone market. The XE, on the other hand, has yet to prove itself. The first of its kind to bear the Beats logo, it takes advantage of the latest audio technology as well as a slew of other new features. Here we look at the addition of Beats audio processing, and ask whether it’s enough to compel smartphone owners to make the transition to HTC. Can the making of a mobile phone be determined by audio alone? No, is the simple answer, although thankfully the XE has a few other tricks up its sleeve that should make HTC Sensation XE deals even more popular than those for the original model.
As well as beats galore, you see, the XE is packing juice. The handset offers a 1730mAh power pack, truly outdoing the all-consuming battery of its predecessor. The battery is now powering a 1.5GHz dual core processor, to the extent that the previous Sensation’s stuttering internet is now fluid and speedy in comparison. In terms of design, the XE is an edgy little number. It bears the same shape and striped aluminium design as the original Sensation, but a darker chassis and red trim have given it a slight facelift. We’re not complaining; it looks pretty darn smart.
Nice as the aesthetics are, we must return to the beats and specifically to the sound system tailored by Dr Dre himself. Back in August, HTC decided to take a 51% stake in Beats Electronics, paying a reputed $300 million for the pleasure. All this to enhance the sound of a smartphone? Yep, that’s correct. As it would happen, you’ll need a pair of Beats ear buds to make the most of the new audio features, but these are conveniently bundled with the XE handset. Upon plugging your ear buds in, the Beats profile is automatically loaded up, with the relevant icon appearing in your notifications at the top of the screen. From here, you can adjust the sound enhancement to alter the overall sound quality and bass level. Just that, for $300 million? Wow. HTC better hope they can shift a lot of mobile phone contracts to recoup their investment.
The extent to which you’ll appreciate Beats really depends on your taste in music. The sounds are definitely improved, but the bass is altogether debatable. The audio is very – how to put this – vibrant. Expect a multitude of complaints from fellow commuters who take a dim view of your banging dubstep. Whether you’ll be able to hear those complaints with your super-cool and stylish Beats buds in remains to be seen. If you like to feel your music as much as hear it, you’ll love the low vibrations that emanate from the XE. Otherwise, you may find the dynamics to be subdued, with high frequency notes being lost amidst the grimy bass. Dr. Dre, prior to the phone’s launch, said: ‘For Beats…this represents a critical step in our continued mission to clean up the destruction of audio caused by the digital revolution; and reengineer how sound is delivered so that the consumer feels the music the way that the artist intended.’ By the sounds of it then, he’s a fan of the XE. Then again, if you were receiving a commission on every handset sold, you’d also be vociferously repping it to the world.
HTC bought a stake in Dre’s company because of the firm’s audio manipulation technology, and they’ve certainly marketed it as the feature that defines the new Sensation XE. It remains to be said though: do your favourite artists intend for you to burst your eardrums while listening to them? At a shade under £500, perhaps you’d be better jacking the phone altogether and acquiring a ghetto blaster instead. If you’re going to p*** off everyone on the bus, might as well do it in style.
HTC’s batch of smartphones released at Mobile World Congress are not all that they have in store for 2011, with the Taiwanese company joining the dual core revolution in the form of the EVO 3D and Pyramid smartphones. While quite a bit of information has surfaced about the EVO 3D and its parallax barrier display, HTC are being more tight-lipped about the Pyramid. It is likely it will feature a similar set of specs to the EVO but without the 3D extras, and could possibly make its way to UK stores under the name of the HTC Sensation.
HTC’s first two dual core smartphones have already upped the ante by packing dual core 1.2GHz processors, already offering more speed than existing dual core handsets like the Motorola Atrix and LG Optimus 2X/T-Mobile G2x. Although still running on Android Gingerbread, the Pyramid/Sensation will have a little less memory to play around with with 768MB compared to the EVO’s 1GB.
The Pyramid Sensation is expected to feature a 4.3″ qHD screen with multitouch along with accelerometer and gyro sensor. Also on board is an 8 megapixel camera with 1080p video recording, dual LED flash and quite likely a fairly decent 1.3mp front facing camera too. The Sensation is also expected to come with HTC Sense 3.0 as its interface so we can expect some great features including good social networking support.
Although the Sensation is being touted as the name that this phone will be released under in the UK there is still no indication just yet as to whether it will be released elsewhere as the Pyramid or whether that is just a code name used during development. Either way the Sensation looks set to be one of the best Android phones in 2011 alongside the EVO 3D, and HTC are expected to release full details of the handset at an HTC event on 12th April.
The absence of Apple at the Mobile World Congress has definitely given Google’s Android the definite edge over its competitors at the show in Barcelona this year. With the MWC for this year coming to a close today, everyone who’s been at the event has only one thing to say – Android is brilliant. With Nokia disbanding its own phone OS Symbian and partnering with Microsoft for Windows based Nokia phones, they did not have anything to offer this year. Almost every phone, be it the Motorola Xoom or the Samsung Galaxy S or the Sony Xperia Play smartphones or the Samsung’s second generation tablet or LG Slate, everything has been Android. There was Blackberry Playbook that was not running on Android but spoke of including Android apps and HP’s Tablet – TouchBook that did not use Android but WebOS.
So, this MWC belonged to Android completely.
HTC along with its tablet, Flyer, has also unveiled three new smartphones at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona today. Along the lines of Flyer, these three smartphones Desire S, Incredible S and the Wildfire S will be running on Google’s Android 2.4 OS. As you can see these three smartphones are the upgraded versions of their respective predecessors, viz. Desire, Incredible and Wildfire. The videos of the phones have also been posted on the HTC website.
As far as the specs of the phones are concerned,
the HTC Desire S comes with a 3.7″ touchscreen display, 5.0 megapixel camera with flash, 1GHz processor, High-Def video recording at 720p and a 1450mAh battery,
the HTC Incredible S comes with a 4″ touchscreen display, 8.0 megapixel camera, 1GHz processor, High-Def video recording at 720p and a 1450mAh battery,
the HTC Wildfire S comes with a 3.2″ touchscreen display, 5.0mega pixel camera, 600mHz processor with flash and autofocus and a 1230mAh battery.
The Mobile World Congress at Barcelona this year is seeing full fledged launches from almost all the mobile giants. After Samsung and Sony Ericsson unveiled their respective smartphones and tablets, it was the Taiwanese giant HTC‘s turn today as it launched its tablet – “Flyer”. Following on the lines of their own smartphones, the HTC Flyer comes with aluminium unibody design and a 7″ touchscreen display. Interestingly, this tablet does not run on Android 3.0 or Honeycomb, but runs on the Android 2.4 more popular as the Ice Cream Sandwich.
Other specs of the HTC tablet include a 1.5 GHz Qaulcomm Snapdragon processor, 1GB RAM, 32 GB hard disk space, 5.0 mega pixel camera, a 1.3 mega pixel camera in the front, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and HSPA support. Overall the tablet weighs less than a pound. The UI of the tablet will run on HTC Sense with many more added widgets when compared to the smartphones that use the same UI.
Tha tablet also comes with a stylus.
We are all aware by now that the much awaited HTC Desire 2 smartphone would be launched at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next week. The pictures of the HTC Desire 2 appeared on the Android forum only to show that the smartphone is running on Android 2.3 and not the much speculated Android 2.4. As per the images posted on the forum, the phone shows the usual dark grey notification which we are familiar with on the Android 2.3 or Gingerbread running phones. According to the forum, the phone’s specs are the Gingerbread OS, HTC 2.0 user interface, front an drear cameras, dual core processor, iGB built-in memory and the AMOLED 3.8″ touchscreen.
While Viewsonic has already announced the launch of their tablet Viewpad on at the MWC that would be running 2.4, rumor had it that the HTC Desire 2 would also be on the same lines. But, the latest images suggest otherwise.
The latest rumor to have surfaced is the launch of the HTC dual core smartphone – Pyramid. We know that the Mobile World Congress (MWC) is going to be held at Barcelona from the 14th of February to the 17th. We have heard rumors about the launch of several smartphones and tablets at that event. Well, the latest and the hottest rumor is about Pyramid though.
Several technology blogs have already reported that the Taiwan based company would be launching Pyramid at the MWC and this phone also runs on Google’s Android 2.3 Gingerbread OS. As of now, the technical specifications of Pyramid remain a mystery. Again only rumors, the phone is ging to possess a 4.3″ touchscreen display and a 1.2GHz Qualcomm processor.
Pyramid is expected to be launched in May this year and T-Mobile is supposedly going to market this smartphone.
According to an internal document from this year’s International CES (Consumers Electronic Show), AT&T will be launching 12 more Androids along with 20 new 4G devices. If the details of this internal document prove to be right, the first quarter of 2011 is going to witness the launch of 2 new 4G smart phones, which by the end of the year will be pushed to 20. As far as the Android phones are concerned, in 2011, AT&T is looking forward to add 12 more of these to the already existing list of 7.
Also, rumored are the availability of Motorola Atrix 4G and the HTC Inspire 4G in the markets from February 14, for which purpose, the employee training is to begin from February 2. The internal documents also indicate that Verizon is also fully prepared to offer simultaneous voice and data, but it has to be seen, to what extent will they be successful.
AT&T customers are sure in for an Android treat this year.
With dozens of new Android handsets being launched in the markets over the past few months, folks at XDA – the premier community for Android and other mobile platform hackers – must be having their hands full. Despite this, the community has announced that a permanent rooting solution for the newly launched HTC EVO Shift 4G has finally been released. The procedure itself is not entirely complicated and according to users who have already tried, the solution works like a charm.
Nevertheless, we must point out that rooting your Android handset can be extremely risky and could potentially brick your device besides voiding the manufacturer warranty. So, you are requested to go ahead with the rooting procedure only if you are a seasoned hacker and are aware of the potential risks. The complete rooting instructions are available on the XDA community here. Please don’t forget to tell us how it goes in the comments below.
We earlier heard that HTC could be launching a new tablet computer named HTC Scribe soon. This speculation came by way of a trademark application for ‘Scribe’ filed by the company where the product was explicitly described as a “tablet computer“. Now, if the latest rumors are anything to go by, HTC could be launching another tablet before Scribe reaches the market.
According to sources, HTC Flyer – an Android 2.3-based tablet should be launching in March of this year. The sources describe this tablet as simply a larger version of HTC Desire. Also, this device is expected to upgrade to Android 3.0 by June of this year. What’s interesting is that HTC is also expected to launch two other tablets during the same period. These tablets – possibly one of them could be Scribe – will launch directly over Android 3.0.
This could mean HTC is prepping at least three tablet computers that can launch by the summer of 2011. This is definitely an interesting rumor and something we will keep a tab on.