HTC Touch Pro

Competition in the smartphone space is fiercer than ever. Is HTC's Touch Pro as good as we initially hoped?

Out of the box at least, HTC has improved the performance over the Diamond, and as you press and hold your finger over an icon you can move swiftly between the different applications.

However, while it all seems smooth at first, when one gets to use the phone for a prolonged period problems start to surface. The issue is that Windows Mobile as an operating system is decidedly sluggish and nothing HTC has done on the surface can disguise this. When the phone rings, there seems to be an unnerving hesitation between pressing the answer button and the call connecting and ending a call is worse.

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Other bugs encountered include the camera application having a tendency to freeze up, and frequent manila.exe' crash messages that seems to occur when it's asked to do too much, too quickly.

If you put up with these, you'll find a very capable device, that's brimming with useful features but it has to be said that there are rather too many for it to earn a recommendation.

Battery life is at least better than the Diamond but with the wealth of features on board it needs to be. If you set up to your Exchange email to push messages to your phone, you'll do well not to have to charge every day. With light to medium use I was getting two days out of it, which while an improvement over the Diamond is less than I had hoped.

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There's much to be impressed about with the Touch Pro, and much of the time, impress it does, but the irritations of the interface of Windows Mobile and the responsiveness are never too far off, despite HTC's best efforts.

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If you're set on, or restricted to, Windows Mobile, and want a keyboard, the Touch Pro has to be recommended as the best of the bunch. If you're happy to cast your net wider however, we'd have to say that we'd choose a Blackberry Bold, Nokia E71, or indeed iPhone over this every time.

Verdict

The HTC Touch Pro manages to improve on the Touch Diamond, but still falls short as a truly satisfying phone, with the shortcomings of Windows Mobile primarily to blame.

Processor: 528MHz Memory: 512MB ROM, 288MB SDRAM, Display: 2.8in 480 x 640 touchscreen, Connectivity: Bluetooth, GSM/GPRS/EDGE/3G/HSDPA, 802.11bg WLAN, Camera: 3 megapixel camera, Extras: GPS, FM radio, Battery: 1,340mAh li-ion battery, Warranty: 2yrs RTB Dimensions (WxDxH): 51 x 18 x 102mm Weight: 165g.

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