HTC Snap CDMA Review

Introduction and Design

The Motorola Q arguably brought smartphones into the forefront, but since then Windows Mobile Standard devices have taken a backseat to Professional ones.  Samsung has been the only manufacturer to consistently pursue the form factor, but now HTC- the undisputed king of Windows Mobile- is back in the game.  The HTC Snap CDMA is a basic WinMo 6.1 device with a new twist, HTC’s Inner Circle.  This lets you see email messages from selected contacts in one place; we’ll get into that later.  Beyond that it’s a fairly pedestrian spec sheet: 2-megapixel camera, 2.4” QVGA display, EVDO Rev. A and a 1500mAh battery.  Included in the box you’ll find:

•    AC Charger
•    Stereo headset
•    USB data cable


The HTC Snap is a basic bar phone, with the traditional display, navigation cluster, QWERTY layout from top to bottom.  The 2.4” QVGA display is good but not great.  HTC has spoiled us with VGA or better screens of late, so QVGA just doesn’t stack up.  The cluster has two soft keys, Send, End, Home, Back and the 5-way directional pad.  They are glossy black plastic, just like the housing, and while the feedback is reassuring they feel a bit cheap.

You can compare the HTC Snap CDMA with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.

The QWERTY keyboard has a soft touch coating on the keys which gives them a better feel, but we still don’t like it.  For starters they are too close together, and too small.  The keys on the end of the second and third row (Caps, FN, etc) mess with the layout, and we often found ourselves one key off.  Overall there is a cramped, chintzy feel to it.  We could type well enough, but this is near the bottom of the list as far as QWERTYs go.  We do appreciate the shortcuts on the bottom row for the camera, mail, web and Inner Circle.

The chinziness is felt throughout the whole phone unfortunately.  HTC usually uses premium materials, but it is obvious that they skimped here.  The front and back casing come to a point where they meet around the sides, which leads to a sharp feel.  It’s nothing that we’re going to cut ourselves on, but it’s not a desirable feel.  The back is a mix of glossy and matte plastic, the latter of which is slippery.  While the device feels solid, it just doesn’t feel high quality.  It’s hard to explain, and we don’t foresee reliability issues, but we wish HTC had put a little more time into the design here.

The only button you’ll find around the phone is the volume rocker on the top left.  The bottom houses the miniUSB port that also serves as a headset jack, unfortunately something that’s becoming common with HTC devices.  The back simply houses the 2-megapixel camera and the lone speaker.  The microSD slot can be accessed by taking the battery out.

To put it kindly the HTC Snap’s design is underwhelming.  A poorly constructed keyboard and cheap materials leave a lot to be desired.  HTC is usually on the top of its game when it comes to design, but the Snap misses the mark.

HTC Snap CDMA 360 Degrees View:

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