HTC Legend review: A Hero becomes a Legend

GSMArena team, 24 March 2010.
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Tags: HTC, Android, Touch UI

Image gallery has pinch zooming

The gallery has a the usual main menu list-with-thumbnail structure. The Albums app automatically locates images and videos, no matter where they are stored. Images and videos stored in different folders appear in different sub-galleries that automatically get the name of the folder - quite effective file management.

Unfortunately, the gallery undertakes reindexing of the content each time you open it and it does so even when you open a file for an instant and then get back to the thumbnail view. And that's a bugger as when cards are full of content, it's quite slow to complete.

Right next to the folder's name is a number indicating the count of images stored. Each sub-album has a thumbnail of the latest image. The contextual menu of the main Album view has only one shortcut to the settings menu. There is also a camera shortcut, but it’s only available once you start browsing any of the sub-folders.

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The Albums and some of the simple menu settings

At the bottom of the main album there are three virtual buttons - one for the actual folder list, another for Facebook and finally - Flickr. The latter two display images from either account or those posted by your friends.

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The Facebook app in Albums is great

Anywhere in the gallery except the main Album view you can launch the camera or camcorder to capture new images, share them on Facebook, Flickr, Gmail, HTC Mail, Messages, Peep and Picasa, and delete the current image.

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Taking an image is possible even while browsing Facebook photos, direct uploading is even easier

In the HTC Legend image folders you can choose between grid and filmstrip view. You are also able to mass delete images, but still no mass copy and paste options.

While you cannot copy/paste images from folder to folder (you'd need a proper file manager for that), you can still share multiple images from your albums on Facebook, Flickr, Gmail, HTC Mail, Messages, Peep and Picasa.

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Sharing images is easy • Grid and filmstrip type of views

HTC Legend supports multi-touch and you can take the full advantage of this while browsing your images. Zooming in and out is done in the same fashion as on the Apple iPhone. You can zoom to 100% with simple double tap on the screen.

The one here is extra smooth - just as it is on the iPhone (and those are 5 megapixel images we're talking about here).

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Smooth finger-sweep browsing of images and pinch zoom

Good video player, but no DivX/XviD

Video files can be accessed only from the Albums' subfolder as there is no separate icon for the video player in the main menu. The video files can also be viewed as a grid or filmstrip and can be shared via Gmail, HTC mail, Messages or YouTube.

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Portrait and landscape views

The video player application of HTC Legend has seen some cosmetic changes, but is still quite basic. The only new addition is the full screen mode, where the original clip is stretched / cropped to fit the screen.

Quite as expected, the player is capable of playing only 3GP and MP4 videos, which means that you will have to convert most your videos for watching on the go HTC Legend.

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Playing video files from the Gallery

All of MP4 files we threw on the Legend played excellent without any dropped frames or sound lag. We’ve tested up to 640x360 pixels resolution with 30fps videos, which is good enough given the native screen resolution and the 600 MHz processor. In fact the results are quite impressive, compared to the Hero, which wasn’t capable of playing anything more than QVGA@25fps clips.

There is already a player in the Android market that supports DivX and XviD videos. The yxflash player handled well all the files we threw at it although anything above VGA resolution was obviously too much for the hardware. The bad news is that you only get the trial version for free and you after it expires you need to pay 9.9 US dollars for the full app.

Music player is all the same

As with the rest of the multimedia department, the music player is also the same as in the Desire.

The standard music library view is the Artists section, but you can easily switch to one of the other six tabs beneath, which are for Albums, All Songs, Playlists, Genres, Composers and Purchased.

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The music library

The now playing user interface, though very sleek and more comfortable doesn't offer new features.

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The new player interface is nice, though no new features inside

We were disappointed to find no contextual search in the music player for songs and related stuff in YouTube or Google. The other music player weaknesses of the Android platform still need addressing too - no equalizer presets, nor any alternative visualizations.

FM radio

The HTC Legend is also equipped with an FM radio, which has a pretty simple interface. It automatically scans the area for the available stations and allows you to mark some of them as favorite for easier scrolling between them. It also supports RDS and allows playback through the loudspeaker.

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The FM radio UI

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