HTC DROID Incredible 4G LTE review: In small packages
Gallery for both offline and online images
The HTC DROID Incredible 4G LTE uses the in-house HTC gallery - a custom app, which stacks photos much like the vanilla Android gallery. The app automatically locates images and videos, no matter where they are stored.
A tap on the Albums dropdown lets you view local albums, albums on a network (DLNA) device or online albums. On the cloud side, you get Facebook, Flickr, Dropbox, Picasa or SkyDrive.
Ones you pick one of the "stacks" (each standing for a folder), you're presented with a grid of the photos inside. Some photos have an icon indicating it's not a single photo but a burst shot instead. You can later go back and pick the keep or the one to be used as a thumbnail.
You can also mass delete images, but you can't copy/paste images across folders - you'd need a proper file manager for that. There are some basic editing tools - crop, rotate and effects (auto enhance, sepia, vintage, etc.).
The DROID supports multi-touch and you can take full advantage of it while browsing your images. You can zoom to 100% with a simple double tap on the screen. The implementation here is extra smooth.
Great video player
The video player on the DROID Incredible is built into the Gallery app - there's no dedicated shortcut inside the app drawer. It comes with a view mode toggle (full screen or best fit) and you can scrub through videos. There's a shortcut that lets you adjust screen brightness and another one to take screenshots of videos. Overall the included options are more than enough and they are all implemented in a nice out-of-the-way manner.
The DROID played most files we threw at it - AVI, MP4, MKV - though it did choke on some old XviD AVI videos. Codec support on the video side is excellent - all popular video codecs run at up to 1080p resolution easily. Sound is more problematic and AAC or DTS wouldn't play (that's true for most other phones though).
Speaking of audio, you can choose between Beats Audio, HTC enhancer or No effects.
Subtitle support is available, though you can't manually pick a subtitle file, so you have to name it the same as the video file.
DLNA connectivity comes handy too - the handset can stream the videos wirelessly to your TV.
There's the MHL port too - if you have the proper adapter, you can hook up your HDTV using an HDMI cable.
Music player has the Beats for
The Music app starts off by offering you several shortcuts - music library on the phone, TuneIn or Slacker Radio, as well as access to Amazon MP3 store and Verizon's own Backup Plus service. Below is a line that shows a recently played song and further down is the currently playing song.
Once you get into the music library available on the phone you get a dropdown menu to browse it by artist, album, playlist or genre. There's a search tool too.
The now playing interface is a Cover-Flow-like visualization of the current playlist - you can swipe sideways to skip songs back or forward. You can opt to view the full playlist if you need to skip more than a few tracks.
You can tap the ellipsis to automatically fetch album art for a track or look it up on Google or YouTube. From the Menu you get a Select player option, which is how you can play the song on a DLNA-enabled sound system or over Bluetooth.
The DROID Incredible has Beats Audio, which means your sound is enhanced to boost the sonic experience - you can use it with any headset you want. You can choose between multiple presets - Beats audio, classical, bass boost and so on. HTC finally allow you to turn the effects completely off, which is great news for those of us who are not that bass oriented.
Even though the phone doesn't come with a Beats headset it supports several of them - iBeats/urBeats, Beats Solo, Beats Pro or Beats Studio. You should pick the correct one as it adjusts the equalizer according to the characteristics of the headset. There's an "Other" option too, but if you're not using Beats you can just pick the one that sounds best to you.
The lockscreen shows the album art and name of the song and artist along with playback controls. You can drag this card into the ring to unlock the phone and go straight to the music player.
Great audio output
The HTC DROID Incredible 4G LTE audio output turned out quite good, according to the measurements in our test.
The HTC smartphone demonstrated faultless frequency response and very good signal-to-noise ratio and dynamic range. The stereo crosstalk is kept well under control, too and so are the distortion levels.
Here go the results so you can see for yourselves.
|Test||Frequency response||Noise level||Dynamic range||THD||IMD + Noise||Stereo crosstalk|
|Samsung Galaxy S III (US)||+0.02, -0.07||-82.3||82.3||0.0096||0.022||-78.4|
|Samsung I9300 Galaxy S III||+0.03, -0.05||-90.3||90.3||0.012||0.018||-92.6|
|Samsung Galaxy Nexus||+0.11, -0.69||-90.6||90.6||0.0085||0.014||-91.8|
HTC DROID Incredible 4G LTE frequency response
You can learn more about the whole testing process here.