Hands On with the HTC Rezound for Verizon
Nov 3, 2011, 4:36 PM by Rich Brome
We spent some time with the new HTC Rezound for Verizon. How does this flagship Android phone stack up? Find out in our hands-on report.
The HTC Rezound packs in a great list of top-end features. It treads little new truly ground in hardware or software, with the notable exception of the true HD display, which is pretty darn great.
The HTC Rezound feels a lot like a Droid Incredible-series, and the looks aren't far off, either. There's some sense to a consistent design language for HTC/Verizon phones. Something a bit more unique wouldn't have been refreshing, but if you like the harsh, masculine look (but soft feel) of the Incredibles, you'll like the Rezound.
The Rezound is a tad thicker than some of the competition on other carriers, but right in line with what we expect from current LTE phones. Helping hide the girth are some very sloped back edges, and they really do help it slip into pockets and feel smaller in the hand. Helping even more is the weight; it feels surprisingly light.
The light weight is accomplished with an all-plastic body and back. This phone doesn't adopt the aluminum uni-body design that HTC has put into some of its other recent phones. Picking it up, you'll know it's plastic right away, but it does feel quite solid and well-built for a plastic phone.
The star attraction, hardware-wise, is the true HD screen. If you thought a qHD screen was nice, wait until you see a true HD screen like on the Rezound. 4.3 inches of Retina-like screen is really quite impressive. It's just razor-sharp, and to have so much screen area (at least compared to an iPhone) is really something.
Aside form the stunning sharpness and size that true HD resolution delivers, the display is relatively standard LCD, and that shows in viewing angle and contrast ratio. The display is still quite good in those respects, just not quite up to what OLED technology can deliver.
Other hardware features of note include the dual-core 1.5 GHz processor, as fast as they come at the moment. There's also 16 GB of built-in memory plus a 16 GB card in the box, for 32 GB total, which can be expanded to 48 GB. That's a lot of music, but that fits with the phone's theme.
Speaking of, the Beats audio is a headline feature, but with music blaring the nightclub the event was in, we couldn't really test audio quality.
All of that memory could also be filled with photos and 1080p HD video, which can fill memory quite quickly. Like other recent high-end HTC phones, they've really stepped up their game on camera quality and features. Camera performance seemed impressive in our quick test, but just short of best-in-class.
The side keys aren't the best; they don't stick out much and don't feel great to press. You'll find them okay with bare hands, but good luck with gloves, and I don't have high hopes for how they'll work through a rubber case. It's just as well that there's no camera key.
The software is pretty standard for an HTC Android phone; if you've used a recent HTC phone with Sense, you'll be right at home here. The lock screen shortcuts are nice, and a dedicated slide-to-camera from the lock screen helps with the lack of a physical camera key. The lock screen has special slide-to shortcuts when you have a new notification; a nice touch.
TCL has two new affordable phones for the US market: the entry-level TCL 20 XE, and the $200, 5G-enabled TCL 20 A 5G. While the price is certainly right, are they truly a good value, or just cheap?
In what has become something of an annual tradition, TCL has unveiled new, unique flexible-display concepts. The newest and most unique is the "360-Degree Ultra Flex", which has a 360º hinge that allows the device to be folded either inward or outward.
TCL is showing off a concept phone at CES that it calls the NXTPAPER Phone, a phone that implements the paper-like display technology the company has put in some of its recents tablets. Unlike almost all other phones on the market today, the display surface has a matte finish, somewhat like paper, instead of the usual glossy glass.
A new category of Bluetooth earbuds has popped up: buds that are certified by Microsoft to offer the best audio quality when used with its popular Teams video conferencing service. Most obviously, these buds come with a USB dongle that plugs into your PC.
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