Tuesday, September 4, 2012

HTC Radar 4G

HTC Radar 4G Review: Beautiful and Affordable Windows Phone

The HTC Radar 4G ($100 with a new two-year arrangement from T-Mobile; amount as of November 9, 2011) isn't a big bound advanced for the Windows Buzz 7 platform. The Radar 4G does address with the latest software version, Mango, and it supports T-Mobile's HSPA+ network. But otherwise, the Radar relies mainly on an arrangement of aftermost year's specs. That isn't to say it is a bad phone. Its beautiful architecture and active performance, commutual with the clean, easy-to-use Mango interface and reliable advantage on T-Mobile's HSPA+ arrangement makes it a solid, yet affordable Windows Phone.

Solid Hardware

The HTC Radar is a beauteous allotment of hardware. Like best added high-end HTC phones, it has a solid yet adorable unibody aluminum build. What makes it angle out, though, is its all-white blush scheme. The white accouterments is absolutely arresting adjoin the adventurous color-block attending of Mango. Measuring 4.74 by 2.42 by 0.43 inches and belief 4.83 ounces, the Radar won't booty up a lot of amplitude in your abridged or bag, nor will it counterbalance you down. Despite the low amount tag, the Radar feels sturdily fabricated and durable.

The 3.8-inch affectation seems a bit on the baby ancillary aback compared to the behemothic 4.3-inch and 4.5-inch displays we've apparent on contempo smartphones, but it is beyond than the iPhone 4S's (at 3.5 inches). I adopt a hardly abate affectation because my calmly are adequately baby and those 4.5-inch giants feel a bit unwieldy.

The Radar's accouterments includes two letdowns: Its nonremovable array and its bound accumulator accommodation (there's no microSD slot)--8GB of ROM and 512MB of RAM. Fortunately, you get 25GB of chargeless billow accumulator via Microsoft SkyDrive, so you can upload some of your photos, videos and music there.

Windows Buzz Mango Is Delicious

Local Scout on Bing I've covered the Mango amend absolutely a bit, but I'll briefly analysis some of its best features. For the best part, Mango looks and behaves analogously to the aboriginal adaptation of Windows Buzz 7, but it offers some actual cogent additions. For a accepted overview of Windows Buzz 7, go here. For a aboriginal attending at the new appearance in Mango, go here.

With Mango, you assuredly get accurate multitasking with third-party apps, as able-bodied as Internet Explorer 9. You can bound about-face amid afresh acclimated applications by acute and captivation the aback button. All of your accessible apps are alluringly displayed in archival adjustment based on aback you aftermost acclimated them.

In the messaging app, you can calmly about-face amid SMS, Facebook chat, and Windows Live Messenger aural the aforementioned thread. This abstraction sounds helpful, but I don't use Facebook babble or Windows Live Messenger. At atomic for me, AIM or Google GTalk affiliation would be abundant added useful.

All of your Hubs accept been added with candied new features. For example, the Bodies Hub connects Facebook, Twitter, Outlook, LinkedIn, and Windows Live Messenger in one place, so you don't accept to jump from app to app to acquaint with your accompany and colleagues. You can additionally accumulation and assort your contacts based on how you anticipate of them--friends, coworkers, enemies, or whatever.

The Account Hub now has a tagging system, which simplifies the assignment of acclimation your photos. Aback you allotment your photos on Facebook or SkyDrive, the Photo Hub automatically detects any photo of a being and asks whether you demand to tag it. It doesn't handle face recognition, however, so it can't accomplish automated tagging.

The Bing look agent gets a complete makeover. A new affection alleged Local Scout uses GPS to admit area you are and again provides you with hyperlocal look after-effects based on your preferences. If you demand to acquisition a restaurant, Local Scout will account restaurants in the Eat+Drink adviser that lie aural a 25-mile ambit of your accepted location.

Another air-conditioned and advantageous affection in Bing is Music search. Hold your buzz up to a speaker, and Bing will analyze the clue that's arena and accord you advice about the artist, the song, and area to buy it--sort of like Shazam on iOS and Android.

Visual look resembles Google Goggles to some extent, except that it's congenital into the Windows Buzz platform. Suppose that you're in a bookstore, you see a book, and you demand to apperceive added about it. If you point your phone's camera at the book's cover, Bing will look for reviews, prices, and added advice about the book.

And of course, you get all of the abundant appearance of Windows Buzz 7 such as Microsoft Office (you can create, edit, and appearance Excel spreadsheets, Word docs, and PowerPoint presentations), XBox Live, and the Zune media player. The Radar additionally has a few added apps, including Netflix, Slacker Radio, T-Mobile TV, HTC Watch (for renting videos, a bottom Netflix), and the HTC Hub.


The Radar's 5-megapixel camera airtight appealing acceptable pictures. The camera has a f/2.2 lens and a backside-illuminated sensor, which is advantageous for shots in low-light conditions. My alfresco photos had nice blush accurateness and aciculate detail, but looked a little aerial aback I loaded them on my PC. The cityscape picture, to the left, was taken at 4:30 p.m., as the sun was setting. The account angry out nicely, with the Radar capturing capacity in caliginosity and accurately allegory the altered levels of light. Aback I approved to booty a photo an hour later, however, it came out addled and grainy. The camera does accept a flash, but it assault out detail and colors (as corpuscle buzz camera flashes are wont to do) while lighting up your subject.

Unfortunately, the Radar's camera can't almanac 1080p video; it maxes out at 720p. Still, it handled fast-moving activity absolutely able-bodied after any artifacting and alone a bit of pixelation.


The Radar is the aboriginal Mango buzz to abutment T-Mobile's HSPA+ 4G network. Unlike the Samsung Galaxy S II and the HTC Amaze 4G, it doesn't abutment T-Mobile's faster HSPA+ 42 network; instead, it supports HSPA+ 14.4. I abstinent abstracts speeds in three altered areas of San Francisco and accomplished an boilerplate upload acceleration of 1.04 mbps and an boilerplate download acceleration of 2.64 mbps. That's appealing fast, but we've apparent abundant swifter speeds on Verizon's LTE network. For allegory purposes, the Droid Razr accomplished 1.98 mbps for download speeds and 3.01 mbps for upload speeds

In a apple of dual-core phones, a buzz with a 1GHz processor seems a bit dated. But don't let the specs billow your judgment: The Qualcomm Snapdragon processor was active abundant for browsing the Web, administration assorted accessible apps, and gaming via XBox Live.

Call affection over T-Mobile's arrangement was actual good. My accompany told me that I articulate bright over the line, with abounding volume. One of the bodies I alleged articulate a bit faint, but that may accept been due to their buzz or network.

We haven't had a adventitious to lab analysis array activity formally (we'll amend this commodity already the after-effects are in); but in my hands-on testing, the Radar 4G kept a allegation through a accomplished day of abundant use.

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