HTC DROID ERIS Review
The camera interface is similar to what we’ve seen from HTC in the past, and is identical to both the GSM and CDMA Hero, but has a few differences from Windows Mobile devices. It supports resolutions up to 5 megapixels with auto-focus and comes with a neat feature where you can tap anywhere on the screen to set the focal point. Image controls are fairly standard: contrast, saturation, sharpness, ISO adjustment (100-800 and Auto), metering and flicker, but nothing out of the ordinary. There is no LED flash, but the DROID ERIS supports geotagging of photos and integrates them with the Footprints feature.
We were surprised to see that on average, pictures taken by the HTC DROID ERIS fared better than ones taken by the Sprint Hero and the GSM Hero. Images taken outside had slightly over-saturated colors, but we’d prefer this to the dull and lifeless colors produced by the Hero. Fine details were only marginally better however. Pictures taken inside and under low-light conditions were still problematic, as a lot of grain would be shown, plus the lack of a flash didn’t help matters. As of now, we believe the Motorola DROID to take better images, despite the current autofocus bug (to be fixed in December), since color saturation is more neutral looking (not artificially inflated), and there is more fine detail to images. The dual-LED flash also helps out a lot in low-light.
Videos can be recorded by the DROID ERIS in three resolutions: large (352x288), medium (320x240), and small (176x144). However, their quality is lacking and pales in comparison to the 720x480 resolution videos that are possible by the Motorola DROID.
The music player supports most popular formats (MP3, WMA, ACC, ACC+, eACC) and the video player supports MP4 H.263/264 and WMV files. It handled all the MP3 files we threw at it like a champ and all the album art and ID3 tag information was properly displayed. We enjoyed the music interface, as it is laid out well and easy to navigate, and there are two HTC widgets that place music controls on the home screen.
The video player is very straightforward, and is accessible by loading videos through the Album app. Tapping the screen brings up playback controls and you can fast-forward, play, pause, and rewind. Image quality not only depends on the resolution of the video, but also on the resolution of the display. Watching a 10-15 minute video on the HTC DROID ERIS is OK, but for anything longer we’d prefer using the higher resolution screen on the Motorola DROID.
There are several preinstalled apps on the HTC DROID ERIS, but Android Market has close to 10,000 apps to expand your catalog. Since this is a Verizon device, the only Verizon app that comes with it is Visual Voice Mail, leaving all other VCast programs behind. Of course, several Google apps are installed, including GMail and Google Talk. You can use Google Maps to find your current GPS location and see it as a street view and satellite view map, as well as view driving directions, but it does not come with the turn-by-turn Google Navigation program, which is found only on the Motorola DROID. We hope that once the Navigation app is out of Beta, other Android devices will be able to use it as well.
Other notable programs include HTC Footprints, Peep (HTC’s Twitter client), Stocks, Weather, YouTube, PDF Viewer and Quickoffice. Most importantly, the game Teeter is included!
The HTC DROID ERIS comes with a Qualcomm MSM7600 processor operating at 528MHz and with 512MB ROM / 288MB RAM. The device is by no means slow, but when using it next to the Motorola DROID with ARM A8 550MHz processor, it is clear that the Motorola is faster in nearly every aspect.
1. xcalibur (Posts: 49; Member since: 18 May 2009)
The passion or dragon whateva can't come soon enough, hopefully there is an android htc device with physical keyboard somewhere not far down the road.
2. secondcor517 (Posts: 94; Member since: 06 Oct 2008)
How can you make a negative that it doesn't compare to a different phone?? I'm calling shenanigans on this review. I'm sorry PhoneArena, but you shouldn't review one phone and compare it to a phone that it isn't meant to compare to.
4. martycota (Posts: 28; Member since: 15 Jun 2009)
How is it not meant to compare to the Eris. I know with me and my Hero I compared it plenty to the Moment (the other android device on Sprint)... Many people pick an OS they want then have to weight the pros and cons between the devices offering that OS or experience. Pretty soon the Eris is also supposed to have 2.0 according to HTC so then little differences like battery life do make a huge difference. Also, what other phone should they be comparing the talk time to. At least they picked another Verizon phone. They could have went and said "not as much talk time as a blackberry curve", which would be way out there since Blackberry is a completely different OS and not even a touch screen. I am surprised it only got an 8 when the Sprint Hero got a 9, but I do suppose dropping the battery size really does hurt the phone, and also that the Droid is available on Verizon as well.
3. jacksp (Posts: 2; Member since: 17 Nov 2009)
The Eris is an amazing phone. I have it my wife has the Droid and I dont plan on changing. The Droid does have a bigger screen, but the phone is like carrying around a TV remote or something. The Eris slips right into my pocket. The Sense UI to me is better then whats on the Droid. It runs smooth. I use the Advance Task Killer, and use it throughout the day and it helps my battery.
5. idiotwind13 (Posts: 80; Member since: 29 Dec 2008)
Motorola Droid with Open Home. Best. thing. ever.