Windows Phone 7 HTC Surround Cell Phone Review
The review of the HTC Surround T8788 is a review of one of the first Windows Phone 7 cell phones to be launched in Canada. I was immediately drawn to the HTC Surround because I’ve always associated Windows mobile devices with HTC from the early days of the HTC Touch and later the Touch Pro and Diamond. In addition, HTC has become a leader in the cell phone arena with notable devices like the Nexus One, and the HTC Desire, so it seems obvious to review the new HTC Surround as one of my first looks at a Windows Phone 7 device. This cell phone is available in Canada on November 8th through TELUS. Pricing is expected to be around $99 on 3 year contract. What ever the price, get the best HTC 7 Surround cell phone and plans here!.
My Wow factors
Well clearly the biggest draw of this device is that it runs the new Windows Phone 7 operating system, which we reviewed earlier so this blog will focus more on the key features of this device. These are the key features:
- The main feature has to be the Surround speaker bar that slides out and is expected to produce virtual surround with Dolby Mobile and SRS WOW HD. It also comes with a toggle button which allows you boost your sound experience. The speakers do get loud and it comes with a nice stand which allows you to place the phone and play music. Great music integration with the Zune player
- The 5 MP camera isn’t bad either taking fairly good quality phones on the phone. This phone is made for multimedia with 720p video recording
- It has a nice industrial metal design with a nice soft touch coating at the back and it certainly feels like a quality phone
- Its 3.8 inch LCD with 480 x 800 resolution looks pretty impressive even though it doesn’t quite equate to the Super AMOLED devices from Samsung or the iPhone 4’s retina display but to the naked eye it look fairly decent and it does work reasonably well in sunlight
- 1 GHz processor with 448 MB RAM and 16GB of built-in memory
Overall the HTC Surround runs Windows Phone 7 pretty well, you won’t be disappointed with the screen transitions or the overall use of the multimedia features.
The Not so great features
The Surround is the first Windows Phone 7 for HTC so it you would expect a few operating system integration quirks. Well not a whole lot besides the ones we know about no copy and paste and no multi-tasking but that will be fixed in the next release. These are the issues I have with this device:
- While the “Surround” slider was powerful it sounded muffled to me and a bit distorted certainly not true surround sound. And the toggle button didn’t seem to do much except make it worse. When you closed the slider the sound was almost completely muffled so you need the slider open if you really want to listen to anything really
- The stand is a cool hardware add-on to the device so you can listen to your music at your desk. The problem however is that the phone stays in portrait mode during navigation while the phone is on its side – a bit annoying if you ask me. However while playing Zune it does transfer to landscape mode
- The phone is a bit heavy at 5.82 oz or 165g largely due to the slider which doesn’t offer a keyboard or anything else except the surround sound – it would have been better in my opinion to integrate the speakers
The Surround is fairly good introduction to Windows Phone 7, nice design, solid feel and nice integration with its operating system. The “surround” slider aspect of the phone needs some work as the speakers aren’t the best and unless the slider is open everything sounds muffled. Other than that the phone is a solid multimedia cell phone.