Better than the iPhone 4 ? March 3, 2011
Reviewer: Brad Setzer "Brad" (NC, United States) -
I don't write many reviews for products that I buy, but this product deserves some recognition. In a few words: It is amazing. I love many things about this phone that I may have to list the pros and cons...I think I will actually do just that:
The screen, measured diagonally, is about 4.3". This is very large. If you are used to a smaller screen like on the iPhone, get ready for some adaptation to this phone. The screen's size makes it easier to see things like text, pictures, etc. The only bad thing about this screen is that when you compare it to the iPhone 4, you can tell that the Inspire does not have a "Retina Display" as Apple calls it. In other words, you can more easily see pixels displayed on the Inspire than you can on the iPhone 4. Although, don't get me wrong. The Inspire's screen is very nice and sharp with good brightness settings overall, it just isn't as sharp as the iPhone 4's screen. Also, the outer screen is made of a Gorilla Glass, which is much stronger than the glass on other lesser quality phones.
Flashy and Fun OS
Android 2.2 (otherwise known as Froyo), is a very nice OS. I like all of the small graphical details that were put into this OS's design. Things like rain drops falling on your screen to rays of light surrounding a sun show for the various weather updates. Mind you, I am completely new to Androids in general, I am not always the easiest to please when it comes to technology. I also like how you have 7 screens to put widgets, apps, etc. on for fast access.
I have to say that it is quite sleek. The phone looks like what it is worth, maybe even more. From the metal uni-body backing to the large screen, it is a very attractive phone overall that will make others around you envious.
Snappy Processor(Pun intended)
The Snapdragon 1Ghz processor in this thing is pretty fast. Moving from app to app is very quick. You can listen to music and do something else on the phone simultaneously with no problems at all. I have yet to try out some graphic intensive games on this phone but I'm sure it at least matches that of the iPhone 4. Also, web pages seem to load much faster than on previous devices that I have used.
This is one of the biggest things for me coming from an iPhone 4. With this phone, I can finally browse the internet and view/interact with flash-based embedded videos or programs. For example, if you go to a news website and want to see the news in video form, you can't do it on the iPhone 4 because it doesn't have flash support built into Safari. On the Inspire, you can view all that stuff and more. Mind you, when you load a web page with several flash videos embedded, scrolling may get choppy but not too bad. It's to be expected since this is not running a 4 Ghz OC Core i7 or anything like that...
Touch-Sensitive Fast Access Buttons
The 4 "buttons" located at the bottom of the phone are very nice. After being use to the physical button on the iPhone 4, these are much nicer in my opinion. There's no need to press hard on the at all. The buttons sense your finger as if it were a touch screen and the phone vibrates in response to the action to let you know that you pressed it. As for the functionality of these keys, the one on the left is used to take you back to the home screen that displays the clock, etc. Press this button again and it will display all 7 screens of the OS for quick access to your other pages full of apps and widgets. The 2nd button brings up a menu for whatever you are viewing on the phone. If you are viewing your FaceBook news feed, press this for an option to refresh the page. This is very useful and convenient. The 3rd button takes you back to the previous page(s), whether you were browsing or listening to music, it will bring you back to the screen you were viewing before that one. The last one is the search button. Just press this and you can search the phone or the web for anything you want. Also, if you hold this button, voice search will come up which will allow you to give commands such as "navigate to..." for gps navigation or "Call..." to call somebody on your contacts list. Overall, these buttons are very nice and I use them quite often.
8 MP Camera with 720p HD Video Recording
I have only used the camera on the Inspire a few times for both pictures and video and I have to say that the quality is actually better than my dedicated digital camera, which also has 8 MP quality. When you use the came to take pictures, you can literally hear the lens focusing for a better shot. There is also a dual LED flash next to the lens which can get extremely bright. I use it often for the camera as well as the Flashlight app preinstalled on the phone. The video recording is very sharp and the sound is clear due to the phone having two mics for noise cancellation.
Clear Voice Calls
As I just said in the previous Pro, the Inspire has 2 microphones, one on the bottom of the phone and one on the back next to the camera. This makes it so that when you are talking to someone, the quality of the voice you are sending to the other person is clear and crisp whereas on other phones the other person may hear background noise if you are in a car, etc.
Built in Dolby Sound
The Dolby sound in this device is amazing! When I listen to music using my Apple earphones, I have noticed a huge increase in bass from previous devices. It is a very nice feature to have and I might have just purchased this phone just for this sound quality if I had known previously.
-Sub Par Battery Life-
The Inspire comes with a 1230 mAh Lithium-Ion Battery. When compared to other current release phones, this is fairly low. Heavy users may have a problem with this. I have had this phone for a week now and it seems to last the entire day from the time I wake up and take it off charge to the point of me going to sleep that same day. So I'd say anywhere from 12 to 20 hours with intermediate use. Of course, if you use the phone to voice call people and chat for 3 or 4 hours, the battery will obviously drain much more quickly. I generally just browse the internet, listen to music, check email, watch a few videos, etc. If you watch full-length movies or make a lot of voice calls, the battery may last about half or 2/3 of what I'm getting currently with my personal use (12-20 hours average). I know this is a huge factor for some because many people are away from home often and need the phone for calls and such. Bottom line is the battery life isn't horrible, but it isn't great either. If you find the battery life to be just awful, might I suggest purchasing a second battery. Unlike the iPhone 4, you can actually take the battery out of this phone anytime you want. Edit: I suggest the "New Trent iTruck IMP880 8900mAh External Battery Pack and Charger" as a handy recharger for this phone as well as many other compatible devices.
-Battery Cover Difficult to Remove-
While this is more of a gripe than a con, I just wanted to point this out. The battery cover is fairly difficult to remove to place the battery inside and then difficult again to replace the cover to it's secure state. I have heard of some people breaking the covers trying to open or close them. There is a slit underneath the volume rocker on the edge of the phone that allows you to put you fingernail to be able to pop the cover off. Carefully do this and it should come off with a little force. I did have a bit of trouble getting the cover back on as I was afraid of breaking the cover. All you have to do is apply even pressure to both sides to the cover when replacing it to get it to pop back onto the phone. I suppose HTC made this like this to make sure that the cover doesn't just randomly come off, dropping the battery out of the phone. Unlike the battery cover, the SIM card/Micro SD card cover located at the bottom of the phone's backside is fairly easy to slide off. Just be careful not to apply too much pressure and everything should come off fine.
-A Little on the Heavy Side-
Many will notice that this phone weighs a bit more than other phones out there but it really isn't all that noticeable once you get used to it. In my opinion, a heavier phone means a solid phone. In other words, solid build quality.
While I'm sure there may be something that I missed, I think I've made my point overall. The HTC Inspire 4G is a very nice device. It is sleek, attractive, and dare I say, Beastly.
Is it better than the iPhone 4? I say yes in many ways more than one, but you decide for yourself.
Edit (6-4-11): It has been over 3 months since I first received this phone and my impressions are still the same. I have had much more experience with it and I still enjoy everything that it can do. Again, my only biggest complaint is the battery life but there are many products out there that, with the minimal burden of a little extra weight to carry around, can handle many charges of this phone as well as other small portable electronics. The screen on the phone is still in unscratched condition. Seriously. The screen seems to be very resistant to any kind of blemish like scratches and with the use of a nice microfiber cleaning cloth, all smudges and fingerprints from daily use are completely gone and the screen appears as new. If I could nitpick about one thing other than that though, it would be that the external speaker for things like media or ring tones and such is really not all that loud at maximum volume. I have a friend who currently uses an iPhone 4 and it seems to be able to output sound at a higher volume than this particular phone although the iPhone's sound at the highest volume does get a bit scratchy sounding.
Overall though, I still recommend this phone for anyone who is considering it. I have used it every day for the past 3 months and it is still a very nice little device that can do almost anything you can expect from a modern personal desktop or laptop computer.
Powerful phone, good price March 4, 2011
Reviewer: Alexson Lim (Long Beach, CA) -
2 weeks into use, I've got to say I'm very satisfied. This is a powerful phone for only $50-$100 at various retailers.
- Solid, high quality feel (and I actually like the fact that it has some weight).
- Beautiful U.I. with the most recent HTC Sense update.
- Maps is pre-cached, helps with navigation and in areas with bad reception (welcome to at&t!).
- Great hardware, I have not had any issues with lag or freezing. Pulse is the only app I've had to force-quit (twice).
My advice to get the most out of this device:
- Upgrade your data plan to $25/month for 2GB. I went through 140MB on the first day (downloading apps, customizing, and setting up the device).
- If you are having difficulty opening the battery door, get your fingernail right underneath the edge of the battery cover near the bottom of the volume rocker and pull away from device like you are trying to break it off (It pops-off rather than slide-off like the SD/SIM card cover). After the second time opening the battery door, it comes off pretty easily.
- If you're having "unsuccessful installations" of apps from the app market, a workaround is to go to settings>SD & phone storage > Unmount SD card. Then go back to the market and the app(s) should install. Go back to the same settings window to mount your SD card again.
- Download "Rockplayer Lite" for video playback - It plays nearly all formats (and the stock video player has issues playing back large and .avi files).
- Download "doubletwist" on your Mac or PC to sync your iTunes, photos, and videos (I have a Mac and have no issues syncing).
- Buy an extra, generic battery from eBay (I got one for only $3.37 and is "rated at 1600mAh". After using, it lasts about as long as the stock battery).
- Buy a Skinomi screen protector for $10 on Amazon. For touch-screens, it feels less intrusive than Zagg's Invisible-shields and offers the same protection.
- If you are looking for a case, you can find many options if you search Amazon and eBay for "HTC Desire HD Case" (the original, international model of this phone).
- I usually get a full day's worth of charge on the battery with moderate use (I charge in the evenings, not overnight).
- The large screen makes typing on the on-screen keyboard great (I've owned 2 blackberry curves for 4 years prior to this device and was hesitant to try a phone without a physical keyboard).
- Using contacts/mail/talk/reader/voice from Google really helps this device shine in terms of functionality and ease of use.
- I didn't buy this phone expecting great "4G speeds" from at&t's HSPA+ network, and after using it, I haven't noticed any difference from 3G phones (go figure...).
Almost 2 months with the phone and still very happy with the device. I've had the chance to (unsuccessfully) root my phone and (successfully) sideload apps.
Here's few more things to get the most out of your device:
- Check Gizmodo for "The Best Apps" (updated every month)
- There are guides to install sideloaded apps (workaround AT&T's block, to install .apk files), apps from the Amazon App Store, and Swype - all are available on Android Central forums. Very easy to search for.
- Everything you need to root can be found just by searching for "Inspire 4G" on the xda-developers site.
Items of note:
- Save your battery: turn off auto-sync and limit the amount of widgets you use on your home screens.
- With auto-sync on hourly intervals and heavy messaging/internet browsing, I went through 480Mb without wifi over 1 week.
First android phone- Love it! February 20, 2011
Reviewer: F. Yang (Philadelphia, PA) -
I am blown away by the all the different apps and features of the android in general. I have not felt this shocked by a electronic device since I used the internet for the first time in 1995. It is not as idiot proof as apple's operating system though. I find myself spending quite a bit of time getting used to where all the settings are located for various programs- there are just so many options for everything. This is fine for me since I consider myself relatively tech savvy, but for some users, this may be overwhelming. Although I love this phone, I am recommending my 50+ year old parents to buy the iphone because I think the iOS operating system is much easier to use.
As for this phone:
It is my first android phone and I really love this phone, but it has some areas with rooms for improvement. HTC did include all the features one could want in a phone.
-Battery life is shorter than I would like in a phone- I charge it everyday. My ipad on the other hand, I charge perhaps once a week. I wouldn't have minded a heavier phone if it meant a better battery life.
-The battery compartment was also difficult to open initially(surprisingly so, I had to use a flat screwdriver to pry it open with quite a bit of force).
-no front facing camera.
-screen is beautiful. Iphone4 has a slightly more beautiful screen though.
-PRICE. I got the phone for much less here on amazon wireless compared to anywhere else I have seen. This phone puts a very high quality android phone within the reach of people(like me) who usually buys phones under 100$ with contract.
-Speed- the phone is faster than all of my friend's android phones. I am sure it won't hold onto this throne for a long time with all the dual core processor phones coming out this summer(2011).
For people who are thinking of buying an iphone- I bought this phone for the features. I knew about its shortcommings(battery life, lack of front facing camera). Apple products are better designed(and more expensive), generally have less features- but for what it does, it does a little more beautifully(i.e. scrolling in my ipad is more seamless and smooth). You get what you pay for in the end. Android was a better fit for me and I absolutely love it- the things I can do with this phone does blow the iphone out of the water. However, for many users(including my 50+ year old parents), the iphone will probably be a better fit.
-ATT annoyingly does not allow you to tether this phone without paying an extra 20$ a month for 4gb. But I heard there is a workaround that involves rooting your phone. This is obviously not what the majority of people will do. Sad that this major feature of android will be off limits to most people.
-2gb/month gives me some anxiety about running out of data. I've been using my phone conservatively(e-mail, web pages, occasional youtube video) and I am projected to use about 800mb, which is comfortably under the limit. Still, I would still prefer an unlimited data plan.
My previous phone was a blackberry 8300 without a data plan and I have extensively experienced an apple iPad that I currently own(which I assume is similar to the iphone in its features).
Awesome Phone February 19, 2011
Reviewer: Alessandro Viani
I got this to replace my Captivate. I really didn't think it would so easy to transition to a larger screen, (4.3") but now I cannot imagine going back to a 4". The Inspire 4G runs Android 2.2.1, which is Froyo. The software is super snappy and responsive, and runs on HTC's Sense platform, which is loads better than TouchWiz on the Samsung. I cannot say much about AT&T 4G network, as 4G is really more of a marketing gimmick, but the internet does seem a tad faster and syncing taking slightly less time to do. Yes, the Inspire does come with some AT&T bloatware, but it seems less than the Samsung; HTC also has a ton of apps preloaded, but most are actually useful. For example, HTC has a store of sorts where you can download ringtones and wallpapers; reminds me of the old AT&T Medianet. The Inspire also has a notification LED next to the speaker grill, which is a nice touch; very Blackberry-esque. The charging port is on the bottom and is unrestricted, so any microUSB cable should work. All in all, this is a great phone and one of the best Android phones on AT&T right now.
HTC Inspire, review from a first time smartphone owner. April 6, 2011
Reviewer: K. Lockwood (Atlanta Georgia) -
First of all, this is my first ever smartphone. I have never used the Android OS before, but got to know it fairly well after a few days. I knew iOS very well before hand because it is simple to use, this not so much. Although it is great now, newer versions of Android are coming out (Android 2.3, aka Gingerbread) and if AT&T wants to stay competitive with this phone, they must update it.
So, lets get started with some pros and cons.
- A behemoth of a screen. It's a whopping 4.3 inches, and when I compared to an iPod Touch, the screen was the size of the whole device!
- Android 2.2. Its sleek and downright sexy smooth, but as said early, for AT&T to stay competitive in the smartphone market, they must update it with the future updates
- Market. The market is very large and has most of the same apps as iTunes.
- HTC Sense. Beautiful widgets. Their famous weather widget is right there when you turn on the screen. Friend Stream is also great. Also, if you ever do lose your phone, you can go online to track it, call it, or message it.
- 8 MP camera makes it worth using, along with 720p video capture. Also it has a dual LED flash
- 1GHz single core cpu. This may have been something great back in 2010, but with the Atrix dominating the market now with the new dual core, and another company that is making a 1.5GHz dual core, its not special, but it gets the job done well.
- Live wallpapers. My friends on their iPhones show me their backgrounds that move, well they had to jailbreak it for them. With android, you can get live moving wallpapers in the market, and it comes equipped with ones like Nexus, HTC Sense, and Galaxy.
- Battery Life. The battery dies very easily on this, so be sure to get an app (Juice Defender is the best I've had so far) that deals with controlling your battery. I thought that it was bad until my buddy told me that his friend has the EVO 4G, and his battery dies fast too. It did break itself in after a week though, and now it lasts 8-10 hours with moderate-heavy use.
- Android 2.2 - Now how can I say this was a pro, and now its a con? Well lets put it this way, if you aren't tech savvy and don't know how to work anything but an iPhone, don't pick any android phone. It took me a few days to realize all of the features that this phone can do, and I'm pretty sure I still don't know about a lot of them.
Question for anyone who knows:
- Is it 4G or not? AT&T advertises their 4G as HSPA+, but when I do check my network settings, it only shoes HSDPA, which I've read is only 3G speeds. So maybe AT&T doesn't have 4G in Atlanta yet, but I don't see why not. I've also been to Baltimore with it, same story there.
Overall, HTC did a fine job making this device, but a few things are holding it back, including the battery life, and whether not its real 4G (But thats AT&T's problem, not HTC's). Thanks for finally releasing a well designed android phone AT&T. And if you do buy it, I would not pick the 200MB plan, because I used 400MB within the first week between streaming music from Pandora and downloading apps. But I also think the 4gb plan is a little overkill. So stick with the DataPro, 2GB
The good, the bad and the ugly July 29, 2011
Reviewer: Lazar "peter" (Illinois, USA) -
My background: have used Blackberries for as long as I can remember, use the phone mostly to keep in touch with work email, occasional web surfingl
- screen size noticeable bigger than IPhone, though not as sharp looking
- I love the Android OS and the availability of apps on the Android market. Took a little bit of getting used
- phone comes with bloatware which can't be uninstalled unless you root the phone
- the battery is severely undersized. I would recharge my blackberry every 2-3 days, with this guy an overnight recharge is a must. Note that the OS provides an app that tracks battery use statistics by app, the screen itself uses 60% of energy (no wonder given its size). By comparison, the next big user was way down at 14%. By decreasing screen luminosity I could reduce battery usage on screen to 40%, but the phone becomes unusable under sunlight - you can't see what's on the screen.
- email synch is a constant, though low-grade nuisance. if you consider this phone and plan to connect to a Microsoft Outlook server search the web for "protocol synch error" or "socket error". There is a bug somewhere that makes sync break down every few days. workarounds: delete your email setup and recreate it, OR set up the phone to just synch 1 day worth of emails (so you can't keep older emails around for a longer time). Blackberries never had such problems. None of the companies involved (Microsoft, HTC, AT&T) admits fault on their side, and nothing is changing. Shame! if not for this matter, I would give the phone 4-4.5 stars
- don't bother installing "app killers" in a misguided effort to save energy. Android does a good job of managing applications when they are not used. Coming from the world of BBs, where all apps have either a "Exit" or "close" menu item, this was very non-intuitive for me.
- take the 1GB plan, you will need it unless you put up with managing connectivity. With my old Blackberry I never exceeded 140 MB/month, though I didn't focus on keeping usage low. With this guy, I didn't change my usage but it would burn through 20mb daily if I let it. I keep the phone on wifi at home and work, and disable internet through the AT&T network . a hassle!
>>> Update Nov 2011. 4 months later, I am definitely happy with this phone. Tips & thoughts:
- Make use of any wifi you have at home and work. With this I keep usage around 140MB/month, below AT&T's lowest threshold
- Battery needs to be recharged every night, it stays green through the day
- The email problem seems to have been fixed by some updates.
Pretty good February 18, 2011
I've had the phone for 2 days now. It is quite good.
My wife has an iphone 4 so I am going to compare inspire 4g to Iphone4.
Pros: Larger screen is very nice. Although you can see the difference when I compare it to Iphone4 side by side. But otherwise the screen resolution is quite good.
HTC sense is simply beautiful. Apparently it's their newest version.
Adroid 2.2 is a refreshing change for an iphone4 user.
I had one interaction with HTC call centre and they are helpful.
the 8Mp camera is quite good and photos look great on the larger screen.
Cons: I did not have much of a problem with the battery cover, as described in the reviews, but the sim card cover broke when I tried to open it. I was very careful after seeing the youtube videos. but it is made of cheap plastic. So much for the solid unibody construction.
- Of course no front facing camera
- Iphone4 picked up the ATT signal at a weak signal area, but Inspire got no signal.
- screen hung up once in the last 2 days, but that was probably because i had too many apps open.
it is not a top of the line phone, but I think it is a great value for money at $70.
Impressive phone; small battery and flawed voice dialer March 7, 2011
Reviewer: T. Hladish "gecko13" (Evanston, IL USA) -
Summary: Phone is beautiful, Android is awesome, headset is recommended, AT&T is despised and Google needs to refine the voice dialer.
The Inspire is a beautiful phone with a solid feel that I love, when so many electronics feel flimsy and cheap. With a good bluetooth headset, it becomes a 5-star phone.
This is my first smartphone, and I'm very surprised at how effective it is at replacing my laptop. It seems faster than the iPhones I've used, and the larger screen is a huge plus. More/bigger text fits on the screen, videos look better, and the on-screen keyboard is easier to use. Being able to talk on the phone (particularly with a headset) while taking pictures or browsing the net is also really useful.
The camera is mediocre, but I'm picky. The led "flash" is more useful with the flashlight app than it is as a flash because the resulting photo colors are awful. That said, if you have to take a pic in the dark with a phone, it works. Even without the flash, however, the colors are off: greens are a bit too warm, yellows, too cool, and I've noticed that the center of the picture tends to be slightly redder than the perimeter. Keep in mind, however, that I think point-and-shoots take mediocre pictures under all but the most ideal conditions, and I always have my phone but rarely my SLR.
The AT&T bloatware is pretty offensive. Having apps that you can't get rid of (without voiding the warranty) and have to pay monthly rates to use, but whose rates are not stated until you download, install, accept terms, (blah blah blah) makes me really angry. By presenting the AT&T apps mixed in with the free ones, and by making users jump through a bunch of hoops just to find out that there is a charge, AT&T manipulates users and is effectively guilty of false advertising. The fact that none of these apps is necessary because Google has provided apps that do all the same things just makes it more absurd.
The battery life is lame for a phone, but great for a laptop/camera/mp3 player/phone replacement. I need to charge it every day, but the same is true of my laptop. Should it's very lightweight battery have simply been made twice as big? Yes. But I bought a couple extra Motorola chargers off Amazon for ~$4 apiece for the car and work, and I'll never have to worry about running out of juice if I forget to plug it in at night.
My only criticism directed at Google is a gaping flaw in the voice dialer. Android fails utterly at hands-free dialing. Waking the phone takes two actions that could reasonably be done without looking at the phone. Touching the phone dialer icon is trickier, but not impossible. What is really unacceptable is that you must tap the name of the contact after it has finished recognizing what you said. This means that you have to watch the phone to see when the prompt comes up, then you have to read the prompt to see if it's the right person (or select the one you want from the proposed list), and then tap that name. Using the normal phone dialer is faster and less error-prone. I understand that voice recognition is tricky, but my 5 year old RAZR would repeat back it's interpretation of what I had said. The amount of interaction required makes voice dialing too dangerous to use when driving and is generally useless. When a bluetooth headset is connected, however, all of my voice dialer gripes go away. It is not necessary to touch the phone at all, and the contact is repeated back to you before dialing. I highly recommend the [[ASIN:B003XDU8OO Plantronics M100/R Bluetooth Headset]]. As an aside, the voice search feature works brilliantly well.
Don't hesitate to get this one! February 21, 2011
Reviewer: Average Guy "Average Guy" (Ocala, FL) -
Although I did not but this one through Amazon (special deal through my employer at AT&T store), I felt compelled to review this phone as I am an avid Amazon shopper. I bought this for myself, giving my Samsung Captivate to my wife. WOW, what an improvement!First, although I love the Samsung, I do not like their customer service. They made promises that they still won't keep. But that is for another time.
This HTC Inspire runs on the Android 2.2 operatind system. It is blazing fast in many areas, such as starting up (ready to use in 15 seconds), opening programs and switching between programs. The camera takes very good pictures and has a flash (the Samsung did not). This phone has a very large and clear display that is extremely responsive. The HTC sense makes this a pleasure to use.
This phone also seems less "crippled" by AT&T then my previous phone. All in all I really enjoy this phone.
My only negative is that it is so responsive that it is easy to accidentally hit the "buttons" on the bottom panel and activate the menu, applications list, etc.
Also, in reading a prior review, I don't think this phone deserves a 2 star rating. Don't penalize HTC and an excellent phone due to issues with AT&T. I personally don't have any issues with AT&T as they have treated me well and the service in my area is very good.
In summary, this is a great phone at a great price. Amazon has the best price anywhere for this one, so add it to your cart! You won't be sorry.
Awesome Phone! February 26, 2011
Reviewer: Tyler Atkins "Kiserai" (Spokane, WA) -
This is a great phone with an awesome screen. It's a little big and heavy, but once you get used to the size you'll have a hard time going back. My old Nexus One feels puny in my hands now.
- Big and clear screen that works surprisingly well in direct sunlight.
- 2nd Gen snapdragon is fast. Not dual core fast, but fast. And the kernel source was just released, so watch for overclocked kernels soon.
- Feels super solid in your hand. Doesn't have that cheap, plastic feel like other phones sometimes do. This feels expensive.
- Under a hundred bucks on contract, without any rebates involved. Awesome.
- Once you uncripple the radio and get HSUPA back, the internet on this is pretty fast. Not really "4G" fast, but fast enough for my needs.
- You have to uncripple the radio if you want HSUPA speeds. Instructions are on the XDA Developers forum, but they aren't for the faint of heart.
- More difficult to root than some other phones. This one requires a "gold card" microSD, which isn't too hard to make but the whole process will scare off a lot of people.
- Power button and the top speaker grille are right next to each other, making it difficult for case manufacturers. The power button will usually be right up against the plastic there, making it more difficult to press.
- No sideloading apps out of the gate. This is easily worked around if you're savvy enough, but again most people will just put up with it. Not cool, AT&T. Knock that crap off already.
Basically, this is a great phone and the only real downside is AT&T and their meddling with things that they shouldn't. Once you get rid of their bloatware, their crippled radio and their restrictions on what apps you can install then this is a heck of a device. I recommend it, but if you want to unlock its true potential prepare to spend some time on XDA and READ ALL THE INSTRUCTIONS FIRST!!!!
Great phone with a few limitations July 1, 2011
Reviewer: Joshua M. Ricard "That guy you think you know...but don't." (Frednecksburg, VA) -
Let me just say I love this phone. That being said, I am coming from an iPhone 3g. This Inspire is blazing fast, the HTC interface is great, easy to use and simple to learn. Calls sound great, the touchscreen is beautiful, the browser is perfect, all around it is a great phone. But it does have a few limitations:
It is not really 4G (but then again no phone is, at least not for a long while). AT&T's current 4G model currently consists of HSPA+, an upgraded 3G platform that improves speed IF you live in an area where the HSPA+ has been given the "enhanced backhaul" (still waiting in the North VA/DC area). But the 3G speeds I get on it are very reliable. So, why does this come up as a limitation? AT&T is currently doing a lot of BIG talking about their 4G lineup and the foundation being laid for LTE, their next big step in 4G. What they don't mention is that apparently the majority of their 4G lineup of phones are NOT LTE compatible. If you buy the Inspire, you will NOT be able to take advantage of the LTE speeds when it is fully rolled out. Seems a little misleading, but I am not griping because I didn't buy the phone for the 4G. I am almost always near a wi-fi hot spot.
Second, is the battery life. But hey, most smartphones that do everything these days will eat your battery. So here are some tips, turn of radios you aren't using. Why is your wi-fi, mobile data, and GPS radios on if you are not using them? Eating up battery life. Turn off/down the sync times for your email/Facebook/etc. Do you really need a notification every 15 minutes of emails and for social apps? Eating up battery life. I set them to only sync manually (when I access the app) or to every 4 hours (during peak usage times). Also, apps like Juice Defender are great for managing your power saving abilities. Battery life on my phone (with moderate usage everyday) can last anywhere from 1.5 to 2 days before needing a charge.
Once again, great phone, great hardware, great interface. But read and learn before you buy. Don't buy and then complain later.
HTC Inspire is a really big phone February 22, 2011
Reviewer: P. Gallagher
Got this one yesterday, and it is really big. Too big, I do not think so but I have to say it is boarder line. I would go no bigger than this. First impressions, getting the battery cover off was a bit unnerving as the "insert finger here" spot opened that side, but the door only half opened so care had to be taken to pry the other side open. The sim card cover came open easily by grabbing the sides of the cover and sliding off, not exactly what the instructions said, but seemed way easier and safer. Nothing damaged, so that is good!
As for the phone itself, I have shown it around the office, and general consensus is that it may be a bit big for one hand operation. Do not get me wrong, it can be operated with one hand, but getting the thumb to swipe from side to side fully is a stretch. I was using 2 hands and was completely happy. The screen is wonderful, and begin the recent owner of a Droid 2, I was very worried about not having a keyboard, as other phones I tried, well typing was frustrating as it never choose the right letter. But the Inspire is better than I imagined. I have set up a bunch of stuff now, and so far mistyped only one letter if I recall correctly. Absolutely wonderful!
Android works great, customizable and all. Not sure how to rate that type of thing, as it is so customizable it will be each to his/her own. Makes sense, things seemed to be findable without too much trouble given that I had the Droid 2 as my first smartphone for all of 2 months before it died in a watery grave.
I have also played with the camera, again in comparison to the Droid 2 the Inspire blows it away! Wow! The color is very real, and the flash... the flash is not some wimpy light it enough to barely recognize a face in a dimly lit bar type of flash. It lights up the room like a real camera would, almost to the point where it seemed too much. More testing on my part is needed, but hands down Inspire blows away the Droid 2.
Will post more as I get further along, but so far it is great, 4.5 stars and the half star off is only because it may have been better to not be as big, but I guess I will have to see what the new 4 inch screens do in the coming months.
2/24 - Update: I am getting used to the size now, not as big of a deal now that the initial shock is over. I have to say I was initially really concerned. But fits in the pocket just the same, and using it more and more every day. Phone calls are clear and audible. I do not have to ram the phone to my ear to hear people. I know, sort of a secondary feature, but none-the-less it is supposed to be a "phone".
Amazon & HTC did beautifully...I love it April 11, 2011
Reviewer: T. Nelson
I am beyond overjoyed on owning this phone. I have always had 'dumb' phones with no data plan. I made phone calls and that was it, on a small screen. I decided it was time to take the plunge. I am so happy I did. It has the biggest screen of any Android I know and I really enjoy it being easy on my eyes. It's attractive, well thought out, and an eye-catcher. I had to get used to all the features and free apps it has and I am constantly asking myself "What CAN'T this phone do?"
The phone is svelte and not too thick, it's really great engineering. I LOVE that it isn't plastic, it's high quality aluminum. I don't mind the weight, I want my phone to feel like something, not a lightweight plastic shell of a phone. I am done with those cheap phones. I tried the iPhone in the store and was so happy with my decision to get this one!
The 8 MP camera is shockingly good. I have found I rarely use my "real" camera anymore (Panasonic DMC-ZS7); it'll probably be just for trips and rare outings. (There you saved $200-300+)! The zoom, focus, and MP are great. Video capture is great. Within seconds I can upload to Facebook or email. Shockingly easy! It recognizes bar code scans beautifully!
What I love is you can change ANYTHING about how the screens look. Don't believe those that say they "hate this and that" about the screen. There's 7 screens and they're all customizable! Hate the clock? Hold it down and drag it to the "remove" recycle bin. Choose another clock under "Personalize..Widget..clock" and scroll through the options!
The Google voice recognition app is shocking. I have it as an app on my screen, I hit the button, say what I want to look up and it's usually right.
The Market has so many free apps, I haven't paid for one app yet!
The touchscreen keyboard took about a week to get the hang of.
Plug in your headphones (not included) and you have an instant MP3 player and FM radio - you just saved $100-300!
I could not be happier!
The only negatives I can possibly think of is that the battery installation is really, really hard. I had to get my nail in the corner of the plastic and virtually break my nail to open it up. It could definitely be an easier process, but you really only do it once (hopefully). 2nd - I had all my apps setup on the screens and I went to change the theme and everything disappeared! I was so upset, I am just leaving the theme as-is now. Maybe I did something wrong?
The only other problem was after a week the wireless stopped working. I loved getting free internet in our home with our wireless setup. I almost returned the phone I was so upset. Google 'cyberphreak htc inspire' for our fix. No problems since then.
My husband loved my phone so much he got the same exact one, but instead of going through AT&T's website like I did, he bought it via Amazon and saved even more money. It was effortless, it arrived, we activated it, done. I thought it'd be way more complicated than ordering from AT&T and it wasn't! And he saved money!
Don't think of owning this phone without a case! I own the black body glove case and my husband owns a silicone case.
exactly what you should expect from a premium smartphone June 3, 2011
I was extremely aprehensive about buying this phone after reading the negative reviews. I am new to the smartphone experience but knew that I didn't want to pad Jobs' pockets any more than they already are so I wanted an Android device. I know battery life is said to be an issue with all smart phones, but most reviews say that this phone is particularly horrible. I would have to disagree, if you are a moderate user like me. I get more than a full day's use from a charge and I surf for approx. an hour or two a day and use apps/play games for another 1-2 hours. If battery life is the only reason you are not considering buying this phone and you do not plan on using it as your primary business computer you should purchase this phone.
I have been using the device for a couple weeks and could not be happier. I would recommend this to anyone who wants a functional and aesthetically pleasing phone.
First phone I've actually liked since my Razr May 11, 2011
Reviewer: AutumnRowan (Montana) -
I made the move to a smart phone as part of the AT&T buy out of Alltel. Apparently it's no longer possible to buy a regular phone that's designed for adults, not tweens. I was completely prepared to buy an iPhone 4 (I'm an avid iPod Touch user) when I made the trip into the store. I saw this phone while standing in line and was very impressed by the size and clarity of the screen. Many times with my iPod Touch I'm scrambling for my reading glasses, which is a real inconvenience, especially while driving (spare me the hands-free device lecture, that's my next project). With this phone I can see the screen clearly, navigate and type on the on-screen keyboard easily.
I love all the apps and features. It's easy to customize and by turning mobile data off and using wi-fi at home and work, I've only used around 14mb of my 200mb plan, eighteen days into the billing cycle. This may increase as I find more mobile apps that I want to use while driving, but you do not need to have mobile data enabled in order to use Google maps; only to do things like check email or surf the web.
On the advice of several people I downloaded a Task Killer app. Similar to a pc, there is a lot of stuff running in the background which can be shut off in order to speed things up and reduce battery drain (not that I would ever describe this phone as slow). I charge all my devices every night so I have no issues with battery life.
My only complaint is that the speaker-phone sucks. Callers on the other end can't hear me and even in a quiet room they report excessive background noise.
Worth The Wait! April 15, 2011
Reviewer: Eddie (Harker Heights) -
I switched to this phone from the Samsung Captivate, which I was very happy with. Even though I have had the Inspire for less than a full day, I am already happier with it than I was with the Captivate. Although the display is not Super AMOLED, it is slightly bigger than the Captivate's and plenty clear. I love the design of this phone, the 8-megapixel camera with dual LED flash, Android 2.2 is significantly faster than 2.1, and I am anxious to see how useful HTC Sense is. After getting used to Swype on the Captivate, not having it is a minor issue compared to all of the other features on this phone. I would highly recommend this phone to anyone and I'll update this review after using it for a longer period of time. But for now, I love it! By the way, as far as the battery life is concerned, any smartphone will have issues with battery life if you're a heavy internet browser, video streamer, game player, or multimedia message sender.
Great screen, great camera, terrible battery life. February 26, 2011
Reviewer: stray (San Diego, CA) -
I had an Inspire for about 10 days before I broke down and decided to return it. Screen is beautiful, although the glass seems to give a lot of glare. 8 megapixel camera takes great (although in some circumstances slightly high contrast) pictures overall, I tried some night shots and was fairly impressed. Sense 2.0 is... well it's Sense, if you like the htc interface you'll probably be happy with it. I'm not a big fan of htc's full page widgets, but I was able to switch to Android widgets instead fairly easily. The absolute killer for me was the battery life. With moderate use I felt like I needed to put it on the charger at every opportunity; I thought it might have been a bad battery but a little research showed htc put a tiny 1230 mAh battery in it, and that battery life concerns were a pretty common complaint for it and it's European namesake, the Desire HD. Charging twice a day or so seems to be about normal. Some things I tried did seem to help the battery situation, but I can't recommend the Inspire to anyone unless they are a very light user, or don't mind being tethered.
Best phone I've ever owned! April 10, 2011
Reviewer: C. EDWARDS
After realizing I was due for an upgrade, I read the reviews about this phone and decided to go shopping. I started at the AT&T store so I could actually try a functional phone. It looked and felt great. This phone is loaded with apps and has lots of options. I decided that this would be my next phone, but not from AT&T for $100.00. I eventually found it at Costco for $19.99...SOLD!!! I was even able to grandfather in my unlimited data plan.
I initially had the same "short battery life" experience that some complained about, but after doing some research and downloading a battery tender app I have greatly extended the battery life. I'm still learning about this phone and enjoying everything I discover about it.
Anyone who has this phone should go to this forum to discover answers to any questions or problems: [...]. It has lots of good info about this phone that makes it an even better experience. The App Market is full of lots of free and paid apps to do just about anything you can think of. I haven't found anything about this phone that I don't like so far.
Be careful when ordering from Amazon Wireless... May 2, 2012
This phone has been OK -- I agree with most of the other reviewers' comments and have found the HTC interface and the phone overall very easy to use despite its size and weight (which is not a huge problem for me since I usually have it in my purse). It is also much more durable than expected -- I've dropped it several times on various surfaces and the screen is still intact...the battery life is not great but I don't notice it too much as I have chargers at home, at work, and in my car.
The camera is OK -- kind of blurry at times and not as naturally warm toned as the iPhone but gets the job done. Voice calls (which I don't do very often) have been good -- as clear as a normal non-cell phone. I've had this phone for almost a year and am mostly satisfied with it. However, it had been having a lot of software problems lately, so I took it to an AT&T Device Support Center in the middle of nowhere...it had been almost a year since I had ordered it, but since I still had about a week left until it would be exactly a year, I thought it should still be covered under a one-year warranty.
However, at the Device Support Center, I learned that they would do a hard restart of my phone (erasing everything) but that if that didn't solve my problems, there was no way they could replace my phone for free because the one year warranty had expired. Thinking that I had bought a brand new phone off of Amazon Wireless, it was an unpleasant surprise to hear that the phone had gone off warranty about a month before because that was when the serial number that corresponded to it had been activated. Amazon Wireless has simply said that it cannot offer any additional insight or action after I asked them why they sold me someone else's used phone as new, so my only advice to others is buyer beware!
Glitchy glitchy glitchy, HTC rep tells me "known issue" February 13, 2012
Don't buy this phone!! I purchased this phone in May 2011 from Amazon wireless. Later in the summer, HTC sends me an OS upgrade, so I download it. The results? Terrible glitches in the texting (particularly when it qwerty mode), frequent crashes (several times a week the phone shuts itself off and restarts), the touch screen often freezes or goes to black and I have to remove the battery to get it to come back on (no easy task given the way the battery is shoved so tightly into the battery compartment). Since I bought this on Amazon, I turned to HTC first. The HTC rep told me over the phone they are aware of all these issues, but they don't have a fix for them. Thanks HTC. So, I went to the AT&T store, the rep there said they couldn't help me, to try AT&T technical support. Tech support sent me on to warranty. Warranty ships me a new (refurbished) phone to replace the old glitchy one. Not 6hrs after turning on the new phone, it's already doing the same things as the old phone. At this point, the warranty on the phone runs out before I am eligible for an upgrade. I will NEVER buy another HTC.