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HTC Touch Diamond CDMA Review

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Messaging - HTC Touch Diamond CDMA Review
Mail - HTC Touch Diamond CDMA Review

Messaging

Mail

Messaging is simple and pretty enough on the Touch Diamond.  It supports SMS and MMS, and users can set up personal and corporate email accounts.  There are separate Messaging (SMS/MMS) and Mail (email) tabs on the TF3D interface, but the user can view all of their mailboxes in one place on the Windows Mobile messaging screen. 

The Messaging screen allows users to view the full message onscreen in TF3D.  Flicking up and down moves between messages, and tapping a message brings up the threaded conversation in the WM environment, a new feature of WM 6.1.  For MMS the media shows up as an attachment, which is launched by its respective application.

On the Mail screen the user sees a different envelope for each email account they have set up.  The envelope is open, and the emails appear as letters coming out of the envelope.  The user only gets a snippet of the message here, but tapping on it will bring up the full message in the WM environment from which the user can reply.

New SMS, MMS and emails can be initiated from the TF3D interface, but are typed out in the normal WM environment.  Email setup is quick and easy; the Diamond supports POP3, IMAP, SMTP and Lotus Domino formats and can utilize Microsoft Direct Push when associated with an Exchange server, allowing for instantaneous mail delivery.  Personal account setup is fairly simple; settings are automatically obtained for many common accounts like Gmail and Yahoo and if they cannot be obtained the user will be taken through step-by-step to input the proper servers.   If not connected to an Exchange server the user can select a pull interval from every 5 minutes to once a day, or just pull manually.

MMS is of note, because even though this standard was supported on the original this is the first time a Sprint smartphone has included the service.  Unlike previous Windows Mobile, BlackBerry or Palm devices, the Diamond has a Picture Mail option in messaging which allows the user to send messages directly to a phone number instead of using an email address.  Like SMS, the interface is threaded and we’re impressed to see Sprint finally address this issue.

On-screen keyboards - HTC Touch Diamond CDMA Review
On-screen keyboards - HTC Touch Diamond CDMA Review
On-screen keyboards - HTC Touch Diamond CDMA Review
On-screen keyboards - HTC Touch Diamond CDMA Review

On-screen keyboards


The onscreen keyboard remains the biggest sticking point for critics, but HTC has revamped their offerings from the original Touch.  The 12 and 20 key keypads still remain (like a standard phone and SureType-esque, respectively) but have been reworked a bit.  The 12 key T9 keypad, or “Phone Keypad” as HTC is now calling it, has been especially improved.  There are now four columns instead of 3, meaning the dialing buttons are smaller, but the space key has been enlarged (our biggest gripe with the Touch) and the buttons are still plenty big for typing.  Another large improvement is that users can now select the Full QWERTY HTC keyboard.  On the Touch this only appeared when in a password field, but now users can choose it whenever.  Despite the small keys it is surprisingly accurate and we were typing error-free right away.  The SureType-like “Compact QWERTY” keypad remains unchanged, save for the re-skinning.  One thing we did notice that is either new, or we missed the first time around, is that pressing and holding a key will bring up the alternate option (for example, in QWERTY mode holding the Q will produce a 1,) which makes typing faster since you don’t have to switch modes.  Other keyboard options are the small Microsoft QWERTY pad, Block Recognizer, Letter Recognizer, Transcriber and of course third-party alternatives like SPB and TouchPal.  We still wish HTC offered haptic feedback for their keypads, but at least they are easier to use.


Connectivity and Data:

The Diamond features EVDO Rev. A for high speed cellular data, as well as Wi-Fi b/g.  It also has internal GPS, and HTC includes a nice QuickGPS program that downloads satellite information for quicker locks.  Lastly, Bluetooth 2.0 with EDR is supported.

HTC Touch Diamond CDMA Review
HTC Touch Diamond CDMA Review
One of the standouts of the Touch Diamond is the browser, powered by Opera.  It is a customized version of Opera Mobile 9.5, and unlike Opera Mobile 8.x it is powered by Opera Mini’s Presto engine.  Browsing is, in short, fantastic.  Complex HTML pages are rendered flawlessly, panning and zooming is fluid and simple, full-screen mode is automatic and it supports tabbed browsing.  Pages are loaded as an overview and the user can easily drag the page to pan around.  A double tap zooms in on the selected area and another double tap zooms back out.  The user can fine tune the zoom level by swiping their finger around the d-pad.  When zoomed in the browser renders text to fit the view, eliminating the need to constantly drag back and forth to read a paragraph.  Rotate the device 900 in either direction and the page moves to landscape view nearly instantaneously.
HTC Touch Diamond CDMA Review



When not in full-screen mode there is a menu bar at the bottom with Back, Favorites, Tabs, Home and Menu.  At the top of the page is the address bar and stop button, as well as a close tab button.  Unfortunately it does not support Flash and there is no zoom pinching like in Safari, but Opera has the ability to copy and paste text as well as download files.  In the triumvirate of mobile browsing is Mobile Safari, Skyfire (which currently does not support the Diamond’s VGA resolution) and Opera Mini 9.5, not necessarily in that order. 

Pocket Internet Explorer is of course available as well, but we fail to see why it would ever be used.

The phone syncs with a PC via ActiveSync (Windows XP) or Mobile Device Center (Vista.)  Users can choose to sync any number of items, such as contacts, calendar, tasks, favorites, notes, media and more.  We tested it with ActiveSync and had no issues syncing with our existing Outlook database.  Officially there is no Mac support, but programs such as Missing Sync can remedy this.  The phone also gives you a Disk Drive mode option when you connect, enabling faster file transfers.

Some users are reporting issues with the 4GB storage disk disappearing or being corrupted, it seems the current work-around is to perform a hard reset, connect to the PC, right click on and format the drive before opening it and everything works as it should.  We would expect HTC to quickly respond to glitches like this, and not all users (including us) are experiencing this.

25 Comments
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posted on 20 Oct 2010, 01:55

1. Paul (unregistered)


Hi, great review and lots of details which is what I'm looking for. however, I would like to see how Sprint TV fares in this device compared to Instinct; as well as handwriting capabilities (as text input)... is it accurate with the stylus or finger? pls pls pls, any information is greatly appreciated.

posted on 03 Oct 2008, 14:40

2. (unregistered)


we have rev a coverage in our call center and the sprint tv quality is outstanding, way better than the instinct.

posted on 03 Oct 2008, 16:37

3. (unregistered)


wow, with this phone I almost have to say that there was no point for the instinct, besides to rival the iPhone in time, if they made a dumbphone version of this they'd be perfect

posted on 03 Oct 2008, 20:12

4. (unregistered)


Will this phone come in black as well? It seemed there were rumors that it would launch in red but have a black back later. Any info would be appreciated. As for right now, I will have to see a red one in person to see how it looks as every review states that the red looks better in person. Also, any issues with overheating? Thank you for such a great interview.

posted on 04 Oct 2008, 14:54

5. kwhan84 (unregistered)


fabulous review. i had this phone since telesales started to sell it. it is marvelous. the best phone period.

posted on 04 Oct 2008, 15:42

6. Paul (unregistered)


I've seen other reviews mentioned about the overheating/phone get hot problem... have anyone experience that?

posted on 05 Oct 2008, 10:47

8. (unregistered)


the battery does tend to get warm pretty quick making the back of the phone a lil toasty.

posted on 21 Oct 2008, 00:16

22. (unregistered)


I've also had the phones since telesales started selling it and I love this phone. In regardless to the saying of the battery over heating. I did alot of researching and tested the theory myself, it's not the battery that's over heating or getting hot. It's the radio that located below the battery area that gets heated, due to the manufactory squeezing it in a small area. To test that theory, when your phone heats up, just remove the backing of the phone and touch the battery, you'll find that the heat isn't there but below/bottom of the phone that gets hot. Thus far, no sulution to this issue.

posted on 04 Oct 2008, 17:16

7. Pihrana (unregistered)


I want to know if this phone will work on the GSM 800/1900Mhz Frequencies? According to HTC's webpage for this phone it is Dual-band (800/1900Mhz), CDMA2000 1xEVDO Rev. A/1xRTT and IS-95A/B voice or data with up to 1.8 Mbps up-link and 3.1 Mbps down-link. Trouble is I dont want to spend all the money then not be able to use it in the UK...

posted on 05 Oct 2008, 11:09

9. (unregistered)


this is the cdma version, you want the gsm unit which they also reviewed a few months back.

posted on 06 Oct 2008, 09:00

13. Pihrana (unregistered)


I only have 2 or 3 carriers that work in my local town. Alltel, Sprint/Nextel and Centennial....... I'll be going to the UK 3 or 4 times a year and want the phone to work while I'm their..... I know the UK has carriers using GSM 800/1900Mhz Frequencies, so are you saying that the Specification on HTC website where it states (800/1900Mhz) is not GSM? If not then what are they? Thanks in advance.... Want to get it cleared up soon so I can order something.....

posted on 06 Oct 2008, 20:01

14. David the Gom (unregistered)


dual band for this phone is 800/1900 Mhz CDMA, it's same "frequency" as 800/1900 Mhz GSM, but different "signal"...

posted on 07 Oct 2008, 08:24

16. Pihrana_Work (unregistered)


Thanks David........ You've finally put the nail in the coffin (which I am grateful for, because I havent spent any money)...... So... I'm still looking for a decent phone that will work in the UK and my home in the US. Any suggestions..? Please dont say Blackberry :)

posted on 07 Oct 2008, 15:58

17. (unregistered)


with sprint the blackberry 8830 is your only option if you want to keep the same number. centennial is gsm like the uk, but theyre a small regional carrier and im not sure if their phones are unlocked. i dont know much about them, but you should be able to buy any unlocked quadband gsm phones which you can use both here and there. if you dont care about keeping your number over there (which youll pay a pretty penny for) you could also buy a cheap unlocked gsm phone and a prepaid sim for when you travel to the uk, and get sprint here.

posted on 15 Oct 2008, 15:55

21. (unregistered)


The Samsung Ace is a really nice phone that would work for you and is still windows mobile. But you lose the touch screen feature which is a turn off for a lot of people. It is a quad band phone though so it will work internationally...if you can afford to use the phone internationally

posted on 11 Dec 2008, 08:58

25. tuscan_sun (Posts: 2; Member since: 11 Dec 2008)


Keeping the same number while overseas is way over-rated as roaming charges are truly outrageous. simply get a cheap unlocked phone and buy pre-paid GSM sims wherever you travel..

posted on 05 Oct 2008, 13:22

10. (unregistered)


touch pro october 19th baby

posted on 21 Oct 2008, 00:17

23. (unregistered)


The launch date of the Touch Pro has been pushed to the being of November 08.

posted on 05 Oct 2008, 21:22

11. (unregistered)


iphone who ? blackberry storm who>? go SPRINT!

posted on 05 Oct 2008, 21:44

12. (unregistered)


Yuck, Sprint. Once AT&T gets this or the Touch Pro I'm gonna be a happy person.

posted on 07 Oct 2008, 03:11

15. jinn (unregistered)


By far this is a great phone I bought it the second it went on sale on sprint's website i have to say using this phone so far is wonderful i havent had any problems for example with the gsm version HTC has put a great effort into this phone two thumbs up for them. Furthermore i would like to get a black battery cover ..... but other than that its a marvellous touch screen phone i must also commend this review it was really detailed .....

posted on 07 Oct 2008, 23:45

18. deejal01 (unregistered)


i disagree. I had this phone for a bit and ended up returning it. I hated the phone because text messaging was a pain. HOWEVER, the one thing that I did like was the transcriber text entry. You could print or write in cursive or a combination of both, using the stylus, and it got it right almost 99% of the time. With some tweaking, eventually, it was correct 99.9% of the time. I miss that feature. Sprint needs a new line of phones and their current line up looks pretty bad.

posted on 14 Oct 2008, 15:30

19. (unregistered)


Hello, I have seen comments on some sites that the app download can only go to ROM, and not the on-board 4GB RAM, is that true? Has anyone tried this out? any feedback is appreciated.

posted on 15 Oct 2008, 12:31

20. martin (unregistered)


I have downloaded tons of apps and it lets you choose where to put it. I have heard some users losing their internal 4GB Drive when playing around with hard resets, but then being able to get them back. This might be why they are commenting they couldn't put apps on the RAM.

posted on 12 Nov 2008, 10:09

24. (unregistered)


I love this phone, i have 10 lines with sprint, and they gave me one for 249.99 Can any one help me if i can load wireless printer software on this to print emails and attachments? I love the programme mp3 trinmmer where i can get mp3 ringer of my own for each contacrs.

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HTC Touch Diamond CDMA

HTC Touch Diamond CDMA

OS: Windows Mobile Professional 6.1
view full specs
Display2.8 inches, 480 x 640 pixels (286 ppi) TFT
Camera3.2 megapixels
Hardware
Single core, 528 MHz
288 MB RAM
Size4.00 x 2.10 x 0.60 inches
(102 x 53 x 15 mm)
4.06 oz  (115 g)
Battery1340 mAh, 4.16 hours talk time

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