HTC Hero Review

HTC Hero is the first phone to embody HTC Sense - an intuitive, seamless experience built upon three fundamental principles - make it mine, stay close, and discover the unexpected. With HTC Hero, personalization reaches a level never before possible. Rather than burying important content under layers of menus, the HTC Hero lets you put it at glance view, with a selection of widgets that can be placed right on the home screen. The widgets themselves can be personalized with a variety of designs and sizes that best match your personality. With Scenes, a new profile feature, HTC Hero becomes multiple phones in one. Create and switch between Scenes that reflect different moments in your life. Your Hero becomes a weekend phone that helps you relax with your choice of tunes, catch up with your favorite friends and capture some memories with HTC Footprints. And when you go on a trip, your phone becomes your personal guide and gives you instant access to local time, weather and maps. Today, staying in touch with the people in your life means managing a variety of communication channels and applications ranging from phone calls and emails to Facebook updates. HTC Hero makes staying close as simple as turning to your friend and saying hello. When you view people, you see the different ways to get in touch, you also see all your interactions like emails sent to your personal and work accounts. You can even check for social network updates and event notices as well as see the latest pictures your friends uploaded to popular photo sharing sites.

An Android phone so good I've named him Data
Caveat: This is not a tech-savvy review. So if you're an average user, this is how I, a fellow average user, found the phone.

This is my first time having a phone that isn't ghetto. I got this through Orange the day before it was due to come out in the US, which made me feel quite spiffy. It's meant to be an alternative to the iPhone, and I think it works quite well. I must say, Google has yet to steer me wrong; I'm digging the Android system.

The Hero is very adaptable. For example, I have a variety of home screens set up on my phone. There is the main home screen that has the time, weather, and the main settings like on the picture above. I also have screens that show: my e-mail, text messages, more detailed weather information, one that has main widgets like Google Talk, one for music, and one that has additional widgets I downloaded for free. There are a wide variety of widgets that can be downloaded--I got useful ones like a currency coverter, MSN, Skype, etc, but I also downloaded a lightsabre that makes awesome swishy noises and a Star Trek soundboard, so now whenever I get it a text Worf says "Captain, incoming message."

There are a couple of annoyances and quirks I've found, but I'm not sure if it's due to the phone or the fact that I haven't figured out how to make it easier on myself. It automatically adds EVERYONE to my contact list. A person I e-mailed once about a job? On my phone. Forever. It's annoying. Also, because my contact list is now large and a bit unwieldy, I have to view contact groups, and it takes far too many presses of a button to get to it. Perhaps there is a way to install a shortcut, but I haven't figured it out. Also, sometimes the e-mail screen isn't completely up to date and lags.

Otherwise, though, I've had very little trouble with it and I've learned to use it quickly and easily. It gets great reception and I was able to chat with my friend as I was riding through the countryside. The map function is good as well. It's an excellent phone. However; I would never spend so much money on it; I'd get it with a contract, definitely.


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