The HTC Status embraces a landscape first, portrait second design with a comfortable and ergonomically shaped body. The screen is a HVGA 2.6-inch touch screen with a 480 x 320 resolution that fits the phone’s size particularly well. The screen size will work for some and not be usable for others; it is a really narrow line that this phone walks on. The resolution is great if you use the phone for e-mail, texting, social networking and basic organizational things like a to-do list. However, if you’re looking for a web-browsing, excel editing, gaming powerhouse – the screen size will become an issue. Looking at larger canvases such as an e-mail attachments, websites and pictures is still totally doable but will require some work when it comes to scrolling. So the functionality is there it just may not be as easy to peruse things as on other 4-inch + sized smart phones.
The Status has a 5.0 MP main and a VGA front-facing camera which just so happens to work wonderfully for a quick hair status check using the Mirror app. The flash is bright, almost a little too bright, when taking a close up shot it almost fades out/creates a huge reflection in the picture. However, we’re talking about a night shot with a cell phone can’t we can’t be too picky. The speaker, which is really small, is quite potent sounded great on phone calls and when I was rocking out to my favorite jams. Even with it’s location on the back, I never covered up the speaker when texting/e-mailing. Overall, the design of the Status is rock solid.
The Status’ design is sleek, cleverly shaped and fits into your hand ever so softly – almost like it was meant to be. The keyboard is great, the buttons aren’t spaced out too far, arrow keys are great for navigating text fields, and the shortcuts utilizing the arrow keys even put a smile on my face when I stumbled across them. The only qualm I had with the keyboard is the illumination at night. You can see the numbers and letters just fine but the symbols aren’t lit up at all! You can easily access the symbols through screen menus but when I’m in the zone typing, I don’t want to have to reach up to my screen to put in a smiley face.
HTC Sense is beautiful. I’ve used Motorola and Samsung Android devices previously, so this was my first phone with HTC Sense (well legitimately) pre-loaded on it. The lock screen with the selectable apps to unlock to is so convenient. The HTC widgets are, in my professionally unprofessional opinion, beautifully designed and easy to read even on this screen. I keep a calendar, task manager, Pandora and easy access to Google stuff such as Google +, Docs and the ilk readily available on my home screens no matter on what device I’ve had as standard issue. I was a bit skeptical about how I’d be able to see all my necessities on this device and the built in Sense Widgets totally satisfied my widget needs.
I’ve commonly used ADW or Launcher Pro depending on the day of the week and I felt no need to go back to them using what was pre-loaded on the Status. Granted on the smaller screen I couldn’t see my entire month but the scrollable widgets are easy enough to use that navigating around the smaller widgets isn’t bad at all. The only part I didn’t like about the setup was the app drawer was only accessible from the main home screen. Compile that with the fact that the home screens don’t rotate continuously – so if you have a lot of homes screens you will loose a few precious seconds of your life going back to the home screen just to access the app drawer.
Navigating around through the phone’s app drawer is very easy – instead of having to worry about finding the right row of apps on a small screen, the drawer has a set amount of apps it will show and you can scroll down to the next page of apps with one flick. There is also a convenient “Frequent” apps tab that has a history of the last few apps you used so it makes getting to your favorite apps very easy. By far though, the easiest app to use on the Status is Facebook due to the dedicated Facebook button.
The Facebook Button
If a widget wasn’t easy enough to use, the Status has a dedicated Facebook button that makes posting and sharing information on the social networking site extremely easy. Even if you’re new to the social networking world and find yourself unsure about what is acceptable to share to the world: the Facebook button illuminates when you are doing something you can share with your friends. Holding down the Facebook button will share your location with your fellow Facebook friends so you can see exactly you are at that particular moment.
Text messaging as well as posting is easy but both have large typing fields so, posting on Facebook in particular, you can only see what you’re typing and not much else. In the text message settings you can turn down the font size so that does help but if you have one of those friends who likes to type a novel then you’ll find yourself scrolling up and down a bit more than usual.
Overall the HTC Status is a phone that seemingly leans towards the social/messaging crowd but can easily appease the more advanced phone users.
The phone has a 800mhz processor which is peppy enough for your average user but could show signs of slow down if you had a lot of live widgets/wallpaper going on all at once. I consider myself an advanced phone user and there was nothing I could do on my current Android device that I could not do on the Status. I really liked the keyboard and I didn’t mind the smaller screen (even though I couldn’t play Age of Zombies…) when I’ve been used to larger screens thus far. The battery was around standard life; I’d get a full day of usage out of the Status but it’d be ready to be charged by the end of the night. Gingerbread operates smoothly on this powerful device that has a lot in a small package. I really enjoyed my time spent with this phone; it will be missed.
Great keyboard, Gingerbread, HTC Sense, charging port is illuminated for easy night charging, speaker is solid, ergonomic design feels good in your hand, battery life was good even on a smaller device
Small screen, app drawer only accessible from home screen, typing fields large to the point where you can’t see much else on the screen, large widgets on little screen don’t leave room for much else
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