HTC Touch review: Smart to touch the spot

GSMArena team, 28 November 2007.
Pages: «123456»

Downed by the camera again

PocketPC are probably bottom of the ladder when it comes to camera performance. It's not about the megapixel count. It's just that their photos are really nothing to speak of. Regrettably, the no autofocus 2 megapixel camera of HTC Touch produces poor photos, compared to other phones with the same megapixel count.

HTC Touch
The ample camera viewfinder

The camera menu is easy to operate with your fingers only. White balance can be either automatic or custom set to daylight, night, incandescent or fluorescent. You can apply several color effects (Grayscale, Sepia, Cool, Negative) and use the special camera modes such as Sports and Burst. In Burst mode the camera takes a total of 30 snapshots relatively fast for you to choose from but they are in VGA resolution only. In Sports mode it takes a series of up to 3 shots. Unfortunately, the Panorama mode is missing, as opposed to the HTC TyTN II. The camera can also apply Date stamps to your photos.

HTC Touch HTC Touch HTC Touch
Quick camera menu • white balance settings • capture mode

The last tab in the camera menu is the "Advanced" tab, which holds different settings divided on three pages.

HTC Touch HTC Touch HTC Touch
Advanced tab provides several settings on three screens

The Adjust menu item is responsible for setting the contrast, saturation, hue and sharpness. Generally, the camera interface is a bit slow.

HTC Touch
The Adjust tab lets you set contrast, saturation, hue and sharpness

Photos taken with HTC Touch suffer detail loss, sharpening artifacts and chromatic aberrations. We were unable to interpret the results using EXIF data, as no readings were available on ISO level, lens, speed and other relevant data. Generally, the camera is not among the worst 2 megapixel modules, but has to undergo significant improvements to achieve the quality level of, say, Sony Ericsson K750.

"... Photos taken with HTC Touch suffer detail loss, sharpening artifacts and chromatic aberrations. However, the camera is not among the worst 2 megapixel modules. When it comes to video, the camera captures MPEG4 video in the inadequate QCIF resolution (176x144 pixels) at 10fps, which is way unacceptable ..."

When viewing the sample images, bear in mind that our version of HTC Touch has an evident blur on the right side of the picture, probably due to an optical misalignment.

HTC Touch HTC Touch HTC Touch
Camera photos demonstrate sharpening errors and purple fringing

Indoor test of the HTC Touch and Sony Ericsson W910 cameras reveal that HTC Touch photos look better, has more contrast and details, too.

HTC Touch HTC Touch HTC Touch HTC Touch
Indoor test of the HTC Touch and Sony Ericsson W910 cameras - HTC looks better with images having more contrast and details (the first photo in each pair is Touch, the second W910)

The HTC Touch camera captures MPEG4 video in the ancient QCIF resolution (176x144 pixels) at 10fps, which is way unacceptable. Do you remember the first top selling smartphone Nokia 6630 revealed in mid 2002? Well, it too records unlimited video in the same resolution, but at 15 fps. So, after more than five years of break-neck development, HTC are pulling the wool over our eyes. Video camera settings outdo the video camera performance for sure. Alongside white balance and color effects, you can also set the Flicker adjustment, contrast, saturation, hue and sharpness.

HTC Touch HTC Touch HTC Touch
HTC Touch HTC Touch HTC Touch
Video camera interface and some of the available settings

Data transfers

Now, back to what PocketPCs are really about - connectivity, both wired and wireless. The HTC Touch has enough to offer in that department. The miniUSB connectivity allows seamless synchronization with MS Outlook. However you can also use Bluetooth 2.0 for that purpose. Speaking of wireless communication, we should mention there is no Infrared port, but you have Wi-Fi at your disposal. There are also GPRS and EDGE, so you always have data connectivity options available.

HTC Touch comes with the Internet Explorer Mobile web browser. It falls behind most of the third-party browsers out there and a few PocketPC manufacturers even ship their devices with an alternative web browser preinstalled.

The Internet Explorer has several interesting view options. You can have it fit the text to the screen, show everything in one column or show the website as it is. Landscape mode and fullscreen mode are also available.

HTC Touch HTC Touch HTC Touch
Browsing GSMArena.com: fit-to-screen, desktop and fullscreen mode

Next Page »

Pages: «123456»