So L has had the HTC HD7 for a few days now, I thought it was high time to post her initial impressions beyond the industry standard new thing = awesome.
Overall impression? Not bad, but not great.
Her issues are not necessarily legion but there are a couple of sore points, namely battery life, stability and speed.
L has a long commute into London each day meaning that any of her phones spend a long time surfing the net on 3G, playing music and either reading a book (more on that later) or playing a game. On top of this you add the oh so lovely live tiles that constantly poll various sources (FB/Gmail/Photostreams etc) for new content and display on the home screen. All of this consumes a lot of power and being that the battery is a meager 1280 MA/H doesn’t bode well. First day out in the real world and the battery lasted about eight hours, which is frankly appalling (it died 20 mins into her journey home), now there are a couple of things she can do to reduce the load on battery (turn off 3G, Live Tiles etc), she can invest in a 1500 MA/H battery or she can get a cable for work.
All of which she can do, but she shouldn’t have to, HD7 needs to be able to provide a full day of power considering the relatively light usage its being put through.
Spit and Polish:
Windows Phone 7 is lovely to look, use, apart from the crashing. L has experienced multiple app crashes and system lock ups requiring full restarts of the phone. It’s a real shame as the UI is leagues ahead of what other providers are putting out. Which leads me on to the next issue
There’s no way to sugar coat it, WP7 feels slow at times, especially opening third party apps, now I’m holding fire on fully damning it as their is an upcoming update that is supposed to increase speed across the board.
So all negative then?
Far from it, the screen is large (4.3 inches) which makes reading books a lot easier even if the DPI isn’t up to my iPhone 4, the larger screen makes reading far more comfortable. The Marketplace offers enough distractions and the hardware instills confidence.
Probably the most over looked feature is Windows Connect.
This tiny application (40mb) e makes the migration process all the more palatable as it give you the ability to access your iTunes library, meaning that any podcasts/mp3/4 etc available to on iTunes (DRM’d aside) is accessible to your WP7 mobile.
It’s small light and fast and gives you the access to iTunes you need without any of the bloat, heaven.
We’re both holding judgment until the fabled update rolls out but the Windows Phone 7 platform definitely shows promise and at this early stage that’s enough.