Hands-on with HTC 7 Mozart, LG Optimus 7 and Samsung Omnia 7
Also be sure to check the hands-on with AT&T's Windows Phone 7 smartphones.
According to what Microsoft was saying today at its event in London, you guys want to do more with its phones than just make calls - you want your phone to be a representation of you. Fun, exciting, maybe even a bit sexy too (yeah, right)...
Unfortunately however, it seems that it's still difficult to make your phone you, with so many static menus and un-imaginative elements at the foundation of some mobile OSs, Windows Mobile having been mentioned as one of them. So, Microsoft's answer? A totally new experience from the ground up. With an internal mantra of customer is king. They claim to have removed compromises and made a break from the past, giving you everything you love, on your phone, with "less stop and stare, more glance and go". That said, let's get down to examining what the company unveiled in Europe today.
HTC 7 Mozart:
If the HTC Mozart was a food, we reckon on the surface, it would be fine bread. Tasty, good, though admittedly, not the most amazing thing in the world. However, take a bite and you get to the good stuff, a medley of features that make it a practical masterpiece, including the 3.7" WVGA screen and 1GHz Snapdragon chipset.
Superficially safe and very HTC, it feels solid with great build quality and a few flourishes reminiscent of the HTC Desire and Nexus One mixed together, with a neat battery cover on the bottom of its back intergrated into the design. It's certainly a capable phone, and a more pocket friendly alternative to the HTC HD 7. In addition, due to its curved styling, the Mozart feels like the most curvaceous of all the handsets mentioned today. The pow factor of the HTC Mozart is its camera, being 8MP with a Xenon flash and 720p HD video capture.
LG Optimus 7:
A heavyweight fighter in the competition, the LG Optimus 7 is a sturdy piece of kit. With retro physical rubberized buttons instead of capacitive ones under the screen it definitely doesn't feel as slick as the other phones, though thanks to its more rugged build quality, it sure does feel like it can take a lot more "life situations". The 3.8" WVGA screen is a pleasure to look at, if visibly less vibrant than that on the Samsung Omnia 7, being a bit smaller and sporting a less colourful interface (it has a mainly red interface). The rest of the features are also pretty standard when compared to the other phones announced today (1GHz Snapdragon processor, 5MP camera, etc.); however, the Optimus 7 does offer some very cool standout features. Software wise, these include DLNA so you can get your media straight to your TV or music player and an augmented reality overlay to your camera module called Scan Search.
The other key difference is hardware, with 16GB of internal memory, the most available from any of the handsets announced, LG seems to hope that its Optimus 7 will be able to fill your multimedia cup right out of the box.
Samsung Omnia 7:
The Samsung Omnia 7 comes well-loaded with its 4-inch Super AMOLED screen that simply blows your mind when coupled with this exciting new platform, which is literally redesigning itself around your personal images. This isn't quite so obvious on the other handsets, but with 4 inches of vivid, luscious, bright tiles of images jumping out at you, it really is hard to miss on this beauty. The Samsung Omnia 7 has a brushed metal finish and a bit of a cubed design. The screen appears to take up less of the fascia than on the Galaxy S, so the dark edges act as a dull frame to really contrast the vibrancy of the display with its bright and saturated colors. With 1GHz powering things along and a 5MP camera that will record 720p, the rest of the specs look solid.
In short - we're excited. We're really glad that there's a new OS offering something genuinely different to what else is out there. Is it enough? Who knows, but one thing's for sure, Microsoft has secured some good hardware to help launch Windows Phone 7 on.