HTC Touch Pro CDMA Review
The Pro features a 3.2 megapixel main camera with autofocus, which appears to be the same as the original. Like the GSM Pro, it improves on the Diamond by adding an LED flash, though an LED flash really doesn’t add much. It performed well, with good color representation and crisp lines. There was a bit of blurring at times, but it’s very possible that can be chalked up to shaky hands as other pictures turned out clear.
The autofocus is triggered by bringing your finger near the d-pad center button; the camera will focus and pressing the button snaps the shot. There are 5 resolution steps, a two and ten second self timer and the user can choose from predefined white balance settings and adjust the brightness. The camera can shoot with grayscale, sepia or negative effects and there are user preference options such as where to save the files, review duration, etc.
One cool feature is panoramic mode, which allows the user to snap sequential pictures and stitch them together giving the effect of a wide-angle lens. It is achieved by taking the first shot, then lining up cues of a ghost of that image on the screen with the new image being taken. Three shots in all are taken, leaving the picture with an overall resolution of 1408x480. Results weren’t perfect, but we were impressed by what we were able to achieve.
Videos can be record in MPEG4, 3GPP2 or H.263 formats and can be shot in Small, Medium or CIF (352x288) resolutions. The camcorder utilizes the autofocus features as well, but as expected the overall quality was not on par with the camera. For a cell phone it was above average, there was some pixilation which got worse as you pan around, but it was plenty good for YouTube and general web use. The user can again change white balance settings, adjust the brightness, change the effect and set a few preferences, but overall the settings are minimal.
Album (the picture/video player) is very good, but the music player has some shortcomings. HTC Album allows users to view pictures and video full screen. Turn the Pro on its side and the picture follows suit- gone is drawing stupid circles to get the picture to rotate!- and you can scroll through your media with the flick of your thumb.
The video player is very similar to the iPhone. Videos play in full-screen landscape mode and tapping the video brings up transparent controls. Even YouTube videos look amazing on the crisp, VGA screen.
The music player looks nice enough, but isn’t the simplest program to use. From the Music tab on the homescreen you can control your music. The interface is still a bit awkward, though HTC has made some improvements. In the past art for each track was queued behind the playing track, but if it was from the same album obviously it would be the same art. Now only different art is queued, but it’s more confusing than it should be. For example, if there are four songs from Sgt. Pepper’s followed by two tracks from Abbey Road followed by a track from Revolver the user will see one instance of art from Sgt. Pepper’s, one from Abbey Road and one from Revolver, but when playing the first Sgt. Pepper’s track the same art will be displayed for the next three songs, with no indication that there are three other songs before you get to Abbey Road. In our opinion HTC needs to just ditch this queued wannabe Cover Flow altogether and just display larger art of the current track.
The library works like TF3D, with tabs along the bottom. In the library you can sort by artist, album, song, genre and composer. You can create playlists, but otherwise you can either play all the songs at once or a single album at a time. When you play all songs they are sorted alphabetically regardless of album. We prefer Windows Media Player and its library, which allow you to play all albums in alphabetical order while staying true to the original track lists.
The MP3, AAC, AAC+, WMA, WAV, and AMR-NB audio codecs are supported. There is no 3.5mm jack so the user is restricted to miniUSB headphones, a set of which is included in the package. The quality isn’t bad, on par with included iPod headphones, but they will most likely be uncomfortable to those with medium and smaller ears. There is a miniUSB to 3.5mm adapter, but we’re not a fan of adapters and their added bulk.
One very nice feature of the Pro is the YouTube player. It is a stand-alone program nearly identical to the one found on the iPhone. There are four tabs: All Videos, Bookmarks, History and Search. All Videos is further broken down into Most Viewed, Top Rated and Featured. Videos launch in full-screen mode, and like the iPhone tapping the screen brings up transparent controls. The scroll wheel around the d-pad is active here as well, though it’s not as smooth as we’d like. The video quality was surprisingly excellent; videos looked superb on the VGA screen and audio was good and in-sync.
Teeter is maybe our favorite feature of the phone, and really shows off the accelerometer. It is a Labyrinth-style game, where you have a ball that you need to tilt through a maze and avoid the holes to get to the end. Not only is it a fun game, but it really showcases the phones abilities. For instance, when you hit a wall there is a dull thud you feel that truly seems as if you’re hitting the wall with a metal ball. We imagine it’s done though haptic feedback, but it sure feels like a solid thump and not a vibration. (Yes we are aware that there is a version of this for Jailbroken iPhones, but Teeter is better.) Eventually you begin to play not on a flat surface, but on a 3D rendering of the original Diamond’s faceted battery cover!
The CDMA Pro has 512MB ROM and bumps up to 288MB DDR SDRAM, with a microSD slot for further expansion. Windows outside of TF3D actually seems to run smoother this time around. Out of the box memory usage was around 32% of system resources which would explain the increased overall performance.
Adobe Reader, Sprint’s Instant Messaging and the Office Mobile suite, among others. There are several programs not found on the Diamond, as well. ClearVue Presentation 5 Pro is a .ppt viewer, JetCet Print 5 allows you to print documents via Bluetooth or a network printer, Titan is a Jave platform developed for Sprint Windows Mobile devices and WorldCard Mobile is a handy business card reader.
There are loads of third party programs available for Windows Mobile, though some of them will not work with the Pro due to its VGA display. It is usually a simple fix by the writer, but lots of programs (such as the aforementioned and beloved One Touch Organizer) are not supported anymore. The Pro is not the first WM VGA device however, and as VGA becomes increasingly popular you will see more and more programs pop up.
The Pro features GPS, and Sprint Navigation is bundled and included with the required data plan. It’s the best GPS program of the carrier offerings, along with AT&T as both are just rebranded Telenav. Unfortunately the graphics are from a QVGA display, so they look a bit pixilated on the VGA screen, but it’s not as bad as it sounds and hopefully Sprint will update it soon. The GPS on the Sprint version is unlocked (we’d expect the Verizon version to be locked down upon release) which means that programs like Live Search, Google Maps and other third party offerings are able to access it as well.
1. [auly (unregistered)
have had this phone since saturday--i love it so far,,,, I am just getting all my numbers transfered,,,,there are so many things it does that i have left my laptop and aircard at home. It is going to be a little while before i get to know more about all the apps etc., but after handling the storm and omnia at the verizon store this smartphone made them look and feel like toys. Very cool for a non geek...nice touch flo over win 6.1.... 269.00 with corporate discount...