If you liked the first Android phone, aptly named the G1, you’ll enjoy myTouch even better. It improves on its predecessor as all phones should, focusing on ease of use, customization, slicker and more attractive design, and meaningful functionality.
This is a direct descendant device, as opposed to just another phone that bears the backing of both Google and HTC. The point here is that a lot of smart people are working real hard to produce a newer, better device using the Android OS that has emerged and thrived solely on its ability to deliver and satisfy, rather than a so-so OS driven by slick hype.
Currently exclusive to T-Mobile, the HTC myTouch 3G, rebranded the HTC Magic, is a good choice for folks who have embraced the full-touch trend. And I do mean full-touch.
Aside from a few old school dedicated buttons nestled comfortably at the bottom of the display, and a trackball, this phone relies entirely on tactile interaction. No full QWERTY slide-out keyboard, no secondary means of data entry. And by the way, the trackball on the HTC Magic is not the entry point to unicorns and rainbows, as in the BlackBerry line; it is a navigation solution only, so set your expectations accordingly.
The HTC Magic boasts an attractive 3.2 inch 480 x 320 pixel resolution screen. It’s bright and crisp and very well built. Everything looks good on this screen. Colors are vibrant, icons have defined edges, and there is little to no bleeding on the edges.
The home screen consists of three primary panels which you navigate by swiping your finger across the display. The HTC Magic does allow for customization, letting you play with and arrange the default icons, delete them or place them in customized folders. Because the touch interface is capacitive, you do need to use your finger; a stylus or even a fingernail will not work. Also, the HTC Magic doesn’t let you zoom by pinching your fingers as the iPhone does.
One really nice feature is a tab at the bottom of the display which allows you to pull up the icon list. It’s clean and very manageable, so you will have no trouble getting to whichever app your want. And while certainly cleaner than other touch OS’s, it must be mentioned that, overall, the HTC Magic does not possess the simplicity and intuitiveness of the iPhone. (Touch screens are a big deal to customers, and using the iPhone as a baseline for quality and expectation is natural).
So what do you get? Well, the HTC Magic comes with a 3.2MP camera with video, expandable microSD memory storage, full HTML Browser, a starter set of applications with access to many more and a talk time rated at 7.5 hours and a standby time rated at 420 hours. (Please note that battery times vary based on personal use).
If you dig the Android OS, the HTC Magic is a competent phone that can be customized to fit into your world…mostly.
Review by: Scot Cerullo
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