HTC Ozone XV6175 Review

4
Introduction and Design
Introduction:

Who says that smartphones have to be bulky devices that cost a few hundred dollars?  Definitely not HTC with the introduction of their new Ozone XV6175 for Verizon Wireless, which is a cousin to the HTC Snap (available with Sprint) and Dash 3G (with T-Mobile).  The HTC Ozone XV6175 could be considered an entry-level smartphone, due to the low price, but it comes with some additional features, such as Wi-Fi and can roam internationally on CDMA and GSM networks with the included Verizon/Vodafone SIM card.

Included in the retail package is the HTC Ozone XV6175 smartphone, 1500mAh battery, miniUSB wall charger with international adapters, multifunction audio cable, preinstalled SIM card, CDs and user manual.

Design:

The HTC Ozone XV6175 is a candy-bar style device and looks similar to the Motorola Q9m.  The front and sides have shiny black plastic, but battery cover is gray in color.  The device has a pleasing size and weight to it, but the parts aren’t as high quality as we’ve seen on other HTC devices, such as the Touch Diamond.  For example, the battery cover is pretty flimsily once it’s removed and feels like it would break if you squeeze too hard.  Located on the left side is the volume rocker and on the bottom is the miniUSB port.  Removing the battery cover will allow you access to the microSDHC slot, which accepts up to 16GB memory cards, and the preinstalled SIM card.



You can compare the HTC Ozone XV6175 with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.

The main display is 2.4” diagonal, but is limited to 320x240 QVGA resolution.  HTC has spoiled us with their high-end VGA displays, but we can understand that one wasn’t used here to help keep costs down.  Despite this, the display on the Ozone shows text and images well and can be quite bright when the setting is manually turned all the way up.

Directly below the display is the 5-way d-pad, left and right soft keys, and buttons for send, end, home and back.  They share the same shiny black plastic and have pretty good feedback when pressed.  However, we don’t care for the design of the d-pad’s center button, as it is rectangular in shape and makes using the d-pad a little more difficult than a traditional round or square button.

The QWERTY keyboard is in four rows and has a better layout that what we saw with the HTC Snap.  The Shift key is at the bottom instead of being next to the “A” key, and they are in a straight line instead of being curved.  However, this does not take away from the fact that the keys are very small and cramped next to each other.  In fact, there is practically no space between them.  Because of this, typing long messages can become a chore since your thumbs will start to feel cramped after a while. 





HTC Ozone XV6175 360 Degrees View:




Software and Features:

The HTC Ozone XV6175 runs on Windows Mobile 6.1 Standard but doesn’t come with any personalization like the TouchFLO 3D user interface that HTC is known for.  It has the same basic WinMo features that are found on the HTC Snap, such as ability to store almost an unlimited amount of people in your phonebook, create appointments in the calendar and tasks list, voice notes, 60-second voice recorder, calculator, email and text messaging.  Unfortunately, the unique Inner Circle inbox feature that is found on the HTC Snap for Sprint and Europe isn’t included on the HTC Ozone for Verizon.  We are sorry about it, as this was a nice way of organizing messages from your favorite contacts.




Also included is Adobe Reader LE and Office Mobile, which has Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint and Word.  You can also install any additional WinMo programs you may need.



The only included browser is Internet Explorer 6, but as expected it is a pain to use.  You constantly have to zoom in and out on pages and use the d-pad for panning and selecting links.  We’re sure having a touchscreen would help out, but since that’s not an option on the HTC Ozone XV6175, we’d recommend installing Skyfire or Opera.



We performed the 1MB speed test from www.dslreports.com/mspeed and achieved up to 800kbps when using Verizon’s EVDO Rev A network and 2000kbps when using Wi-Fi with our home cable modem.  Even though EVDO Rev A is nice to have while on the go, we’re glad to see Verizon includes Wi-Fi on the Ozone, which for some reason was left out of Sprint’s HTC Snap.

The 2MP camera is also pretty straightforward and takes images up to 1600x1200 resolution.  It offers basic settings, such as white balance, self-timer, time stamp, and shutter sound.  Image quality and color reproduction are good, but there really isn’t anything to write home about.  The camera lacks autofocus and a flash, which also limits its ability.  Video can be recorded up to CIF 352x288 resolution and in MPEG4, H.263 and 3GPP2 formats.





You can access images, videos and music in Windows Media Player or by using the HTC Album program.  Supported files include MPEG4, H.263, H.264, AVI, WAV, MP3, MP4, MIDI, WMV, 3GP, 3G2 and WMA.  You can also install the DivX player to playback DivX videos, which worked without problem.



Two programs unique to the HTC OzoneXV6175 that aren’t found on the HTC Snap are VZ Navigator and Visual Voice Mail.  With VZ Navigator you can use it in your car for driving directions, but can also look up the local weather, restaurants, gas stations and movie theaters based on your current GPS location.  Visual Voice Mail makes checking and playing your voice messages easier, since you can use on-screen controls and view the caller’s information, instead of just following audio prompts.




Another feature that the Ozone has that isn’t available on the Snap is that it is a quad-band GSM phone and can be used for roaming internationally, with the included SIM card.  It’s definitely useful for people who travel a lot.



Performance:

One area where the HTC Ozone XV6175 and Snap are identical is that both utilize the same 528Mhz Qualcomm MSM7625 processor and come with 256MB of ROM and 192MB of RAM.  Programs opened fast, there was very little lag, and none of them froze.

Unfortunately, the HTC Ozone XV6175 doesn’t have the best call quality out of the available smartphones for Verizon.  Voices on our end through the earpiece speaker had some distortion and vibration if the volume was turned up past low.  People that we called, who were using a landline, said our voice sounded distant and a bit artificial.  *Update* We requested a replacement unit. It didn't have as much buzzing distortion in the earpiece speaker as the first unit, but people that we called still said we sounded distant. However, the reception was good, as we never dropped a call during our tests, but we did notice the signal bars would fluctuate between 2, 3 and 4, but it didn’t have any negative effect on our calls and never dropped below 2 bars.

The battery life was impressive.  HTC rates the talk time at 4.8 hours, but we were able to achieve almost 6 hours of continuous talk time on a full charge.  This is quite remarkable for a smartphone, and we wish other devices came with a standard 1500mAh battery as well.

Conclusion:

For the price, the HTC Ozone XV6175 is an impressive device, despite the less-than-stellar call quality and cramped QWERTY keyboard.  We feel the Ozone is best for people who are coming from the Motorola Q9m or are new to the world of smartphones and don’t want to make a large investment, like on the Touch Diamond, but still want basic smartphone features.  We also like the added Wi-Fi connectivity and the ability to use the device internationally, which is missing on the HTC Snap.

HTC Ozone XV6175 Video Review:





Pros

  • Slim and attractive form factor
  • Windows Mobile 6.1
  • EVDO Rev A and Wi-Fi connectivity
  • Dual-band CDMA and quad-band GSM for international roaming
  • Excellent battery life
  • Costs less than the HTC Snap on Sprint

Cons

  • Call Quality isn’t as good as the HTC Touch Diamond
  • QWERTY keyboard is small and cramped
  • Doesn’t have a high quality feel

PhoneArena Rating:

7.5

User Rating:

6.9
9 Reviews

Recommended Stories

Loading Comments...
FCC OKs Cingular\'s purchase of AT&T Wireless