HTC Desire Z With Fold-Out QWERTY Keyboard & Android 2.2 (Froyo) AnnouncedWritten by Rob Nichols on September 15, 2010 · Filed under Tech
One phone that was predicted right across the web, that we failed to mention in the preview post of HTC’s event is the HTC Desire Z, possibly the best looking slider phone ever to be put into production.
Now, I have never really been a huge fan of the slider phone, but over the years HTC has done a sterling job here with the likes of the Windows Mobile-based HTC Tytn II (which looks rather ‘chunky’ by today’s standard, especially now they’ve created another great looking device in the HTC Desire Z.
But unfortunately I, as well as many others I’m sure, have been left feeling rather uninspired by the specifications of the HTC Desire Z compared even to the original HTC Desire.
Let’s start with what’s under the hood. It features a snapdragon chip, which is clocked to a paltry 800MHz, rather than the 1GHz we would have expected. 1.5GB of internal memory also leaves a lot to be desired (no pun intended, obviously), though there is a micro SD card slot so storage can be expanded an extra 32GB.
In addition to that, the 3.7-inch capacitive touch screen features a traditional resolution of 480×800, but unfortunately the camera, again, is a little underwhelming, with just 5 megapixels compared to the 8MP found in the new HTC Desire HD and a single LED flash, rather than the dual unit opted for in the HD.
The interesting thing about this phone, though, is the so called ‘Z-hinge’, first seen on the G2 over in America, which is of course an almost identical device, but for one fatal flaw, which we will touch on later.
Anyway, the Z-hinge raises the landscape screen away from the QWERTY keyboard, for easier access to the top row of keys and to keep the device as slim and attractive as possible. For the same reason, HTC have opted to keep to just 4 rows of keys, and giving the top row of letters numbers as an alternative use, accessible via the ‘alt’ key on the physical keyboard, or alternatively you can simply use the virtual, on-screen keyboard.
Anyway, connectivity is as you would expect: GPS, Wi-FI, HSDPA etc. and it should also be shipping with Android 2.2 (Froyo) installed from launch.
Overall, this looks like an interesting mobile phone handset, we speculated about whether we’d ever see an iPhone with a QWERTY keyboard, clearly that’s not going to happen now, but perhaps the HTC Desire Z gives those who still want a physical keyboard/keypad a great option of getting onto the Android platform?
Would this move you away from your latest Blackberry mobile phone?
If you would like one then, as per the Desire HD, the HTC Desire Z is exclusive to Vodafone in Europe (or buy it sim-free) and will become available in October 2010.