HTC Radar 4G Review

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In this article, I give you my HTC Radar 4G review with specs included. I got this phone from T-Mobile with a contract for the price of $99. This is T-mobile’s Windows Phone 7.5 Mango, a second-generation phone.

The HTC Radar is well-designed for carrying in pockets. It has a 3.8-inch display with a standard resolution for Windows Phones of 800 by 480 pixels. And it’s a nice pixel density relative to screen size. For example, the Windows menu tiles don’t look too big yet photos and little pictures on those tiles look nice and sharp.

Below the screen, there are the 3 standard capacitive buttons. They are mandated by Windows Phone. Microsoft mandates a whole lot of stuff including what kind of CPU must be used.

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HTC Radar 4G has a second-generation Qualcomm Snapdragon CPU with Adreno 205 graphics acceleration inside. Now, this CPU is only clocked at 1 gigahertz because it’s a $99 phone and not a $200 phone, for example. So, they had to cut back on something for the price that you’re paying.

In terms of processing speed, you’re still getting something faster here than the last-generation phones. They were also 1 gigahertz but you’ve got a slightly more modern CPU inside of this one and that does make a difference for performance.

For a relatively reasonable price, you get a really nice-built phone. HTC phones are known for their build quality and with this one, they don’t disappoint.

HTC Radar 4G has an aluminum unibody design and the metal feels nice. On the right side, there is a volume rocker button and a dedicated camera button, again, standard for Windows Phone.

Even if the phone is asleep you can press and hold the camera button and launch the camera app which is pretty good for capturing shots quickly.

On the top side, there is the antenna, the power button, and the 3.5-millimeter headphone jack. On the backside, there is a 5-megapixel camera, LED flash, and a speaker grille.

On the bottom backside, there is the only removable part. This is where you access the SIM card slot. You just pull off the plastic lid (with some difficulty) and you can see the antenna contacts (you need to keep this lid on if you actually want to get reception with the phone). Also, there is a SIM card slot and really nothing else.

You cannot access the 1520 milliamp battery, it is sealed inside the unibody casing.

On the left side is a micro-USB port for charging and syncing with Zune on Windows desktops and you can use the Windows Media connector on Macs to sync this phone to iTunes and to copy information on and off the phone. You can also sync stuff up to the cloud, Windows Live, Facebook, Twitter, and all that kind of stuff. Windows Live is also pretty handy for getting anything and everything on and off the phone using a cloud service.

The other compromise for the low 99-dollar price is you don’t get as much storage as you do on some of the other phones. Most have 16 GB of internal storage but this one only has 8 with about 6 GB being available. That’s not so bad for a Zune phone or a music phone. You can save some videos but it will fill that storage space pretty quickly so keep that in mind because there is no expansion card. Expansion cards are pretty difficult to deal with in Windows Phone 7 so manufacturers just don’t make user-accessible MicroSD card slots.

The HTC Radar 4G offers impressive battery life, thanks to its 1520 milliampere-hour battery and efficient single-core CPU. With moderate use, the device can easily last through a day and a half on a single charge. This extended battery life is particularly refreshing for users accustomed to power-hungry smartphones or older devices with less energy-efficient processors.

Featuring an underclocked 1 GHz CPU, the HTC Radar 4G delivers exceptional longevity without sacrificing performance. The device’s Super LCD display offers excellent viewing angles, brightness, and sharpness, making it a pleasure to use for various tasks. While not as visually vibrant as Super AMOLED displays found in competing devices like the Samsung Focus Flash, the HTC Radar 4G still provides pleasing colors and accurate rendering.

The device’s design aesthetic is reminiscent of other HTC models, with metal backs and plastic caps at the bottom, resulting in an attractive and pocketable form factor. Despite its smaller size compared to other smartphones like the HTC Titan, the HTC Radar 4G maintains a stylish appearance and solid build quality.

In terms of camera capabilities, the HTC Radar 4G boasts a 5-megapixel camera with an F2.2 lens and an illuminated backlit sensor, enabling decent low-light performance. While not as advanced as the cameras found in higher-end models like the HTC Titan, the HTC Radar 4G still delivers satisfactory results, with various shooting modes and settings available for customization.

The device’s Windows Phone operating system provides seamless integration with Microsoft services, including Exchange email support and an Office suite for productivity tasks. Additionally, bundled applications from T-Mobile, such as T-Mobile TV and Netflix, enhance the user experience, although users may encounter occasional issues with custom versions of certain apps.

For navigation and mapping, the HTC Radar 4G offers Bing Maps with navigation and spoken directions, supplemented by Telenav GPS provided by T-Mobile as an alternative option. While Google Maps remains a popular choice for many users, the device’s built-in mapping capabilities are sufficient for routing and locating points of interest.

The HTC Radar 4G offers a compelling combination of performance, battery life, and features at an affordable price point. With its efficient single-core CPU, vibrant Super LCD display, and capable camera, the device caters to users seeking a reliable and user-friendly smartphone experience. Despite its budget-friendly nature, the HTC Radar 4G delivers solid performance and functionality, making it a worthy option for those in search of a dependable everyday device.

The HTC Radar 4G provides a unique user experience with its HTC Hub, where manufacturers can showcase their own tiles and offer a selection of downloadable apps. HTC’s offerings include useful tools like the HTC Weather app, which allows users to monitor multiple locations for weather updates, and HTC Stocks for tracking stock market information. Additionally, users can customize their experience by selecting different tiles and arranging them to their liking.

Among the featured applications on the HTC Radar 4G is the HTC Watch, a platform for streaming, renting, and downloading movies. Tango enables video calls using the front-facing camera, while HTC Photo Enhancer offers various effects and fixes for outdoor shots. The device also features Connected Media, a DLNA-enabled media player, and Doc Mo for weather and calendar updates.

While HTC’s app selection may not match that of iOS or Android, the Windows Phone Store boasts around 40,000 apps and continues to grow rapidly. Popular apps like Amazon Kindle, Fandango, and IMDb are available, although some notable omissions include Pandora and Nook. Users interested in specific apps should consult the Windows Phone website to ensure compatibility.

In terms of core functionality, the HTC Radar 4G offers standard phone features like call history and contacts management, with threaded messaging and preset integration with Hotmail. Xbox Live gaming is supported, providing access to a range of games optimized for Windows Phones. Additionally, the device includes Internet Explorer 9 Mobile for browsing, with HTML5 support and access to mobile YouTube.

The built-in apps on the HTC Radar 4G cover a range of needs, including photo viewing, music playback, and video streaming. The device features an alarm clock, calculator, and calendar, along with online help and tutorials for new users. Users can set up email accounts of their choice, including Gmail, and sync contacts and calendars accordingly.

The People application serves as a central hub for social media integration, providing easy access to Twitter and Facebook updates, as well as contact information. The Zoom music and video player offers a user-friendly interface for accessing media content, with options for subscription music through Zoom Pass or DRM-free tracks. The device’s speakers deliver clear sound quality, making it suitable for multimedia consumption.

The HTC Radar 4G offers a compelling package of features and functionality, with its unique HTC Hub, extensive app selection, and seamless integration with Microsoft services. While it may not match the app ecosystem of competing platforms, the device provides a solid user experience and caters to users seeking a reliable and versatile smartphone option.

The HTC Radar 4G offers a diverse array of titles, demonstrating high-quality and engaging gameplay. While the hardware may not boast the highest processing power, it proves capable of handling tasks with ease. Although there’s a temptation to opt for devices with faster processors, such as those clocked at 1.4 or 1.5 gigahertz, the Radar 4G holds its own in performance. Let’s delve into its screen quality, which presents crisp visuals and vibrant colors.

The speaker delivers impressive volume, enhancing the overall gaming experience. Despite not featuring a dual-core CPU, the device handles games smoothly, according to Microsoft’s standards. However, it’s worth noting that gameplay may not be as seamless as on the HTC Titan, where extra processing speed contributes to enhanced performance. Nevertheless, the Radar 4G remains highly playable, with impressive graphics and a diverse selection of games, including popular titles like Angry Birds, Lights Golf, and Kinnectimals.

For multimedia enthusiasts, the device supports streaming of HTML5 videos, including mobile YouTube content. Additionally, T-Mobile TV, powered by MobiTV, offers on-demand TV shows for a monthly fee. With access to T-Mobile’s HSPA+ network, boasting download speeds of up to 14.4 megabits per second, users can enjoy fast and reliable connectivity. Call quality on the Radar 4G is commendable, with outgoing calls delivering clear sound and recipients expressing satisfaction with volume and clarity. While incoming call quality may not be the absolute best, it remains solid and dependable.

Priced at $99 with a contract, the HTC Radar 4G offers excellent build quality, a sharp display, and a decent 5-megapixel camera. Voice quality is notably strong, despite the device featuring a 1-gigahertz CPU. Despite its modest processing power, the Radar 4G delivers swift and responsive performance, excelling in everyday tasks.

While gaming performance may benefit from faster speeds, the device remains a solid choice, especially considering that first-generation Windows Phones were designed around 1-gigahertz CPUs. Overall, the HTC Radar 4G offers a compelling blend of features, performance, and affordability, making it a viable option for users seeking a reliable and capable smartphone experience.

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HTC Radar 4G
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    Performance - 92%
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    Value - 95%