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printed September 2, 2014
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Review: HTC Arrive

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Is It Your Type? Body The Three S's  

The HTC Arrive is a chubby little phone. It is weighty and thick, thanks in part to the sideways-sliding form factor and metal materials used in its manufacture. The materials feel good, though, and the nicely rounded edges make it comfortable to hold despite its bulk. It is a definite burden in all but the strongest pockets.

The display is of an average size for this class of device, and there are three capacitive buttons below it. I would have preferred to see physical buttons, but that's just me. The capacitive keys do offer haptic feedback. The dedicated camera key is on the right side of the Arrive. It is a two-stage key and has excellent definition between the stages.

The slider mechanism is interesting. It slides sideways, and then when it reaches the end of its track, pops the screen up to a comfortable viewing angle. The spring and hinge that hold the angled screen in place feel solid. When you press down on the display, it will pop back up. You have to push and hold it down before you can slide the device closed.

Is the keyboard worth all this extra weight and bulk? Meh. It's a bit too flat for my tastes. The keys have little shape and the travel and feedback weren't satisfying. However, it is a roomy keyboard, and offers five rows of keys, including a dedicated row for numbers. For those who absolutely have to have a physical keyboard, there are worse ones out there.

The 3.5mm headset jack is located on the top of the Arrive, with the power/lock key placed next to it. This power/lock key is among the worst I've used. It's truly too small, too hard to find, and it offers too little travel and feedback.

Conversely, the volume toggle on the Arrive's left side isn't as annoying as that of other HTC handsets. It's large, has a soft-touch paint job, and two little mounds that make it easy to tell the two ends of the button apart. Travel and feedback is good. The microUSB port is positioned on the left side, too, but close to the bottom.

The battery cover is truly annoying. In order to remove it, you have to flip the Arrive over so it is face down, slide open the keyboard, and then dig your nail into a little slot that is only revealed when the screen is fully deployed. What an odd set-up.

 

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