HTC Vivid review: Welcome to 4G

GSMArena team, 23 December 2011.
Pages: 123456789

Tags: HTC, Android, Touch UI

Introduction

The final member of AT&Ts LTE smartphone 2011 lineup is at the start line, ready to impress. The HTC Vivid is joining the company of the Samsung Galaxy S II Skyrocket and LG Nitro HD in a bid to defend the reputation of the Taiwanese company.

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HTC Vivid official photos

Hardware wise, the HTC Vivid is a familiar sight. The smartphone is essentially put together from the parts bin of the HTC Sensation 4G and HTC EVO 3D, save for its 4.5 screen and beefed up built-in memory - it packs a well familiar dual-core CPU, clocked at 1.2GHz and a Snapdragon S3 chipset.

We do suspect that HTC has intentionally omitted features such as an HD screen and a beefed up CPU in order to maintain the flagship status of the Beats Audio sporting, HTC Rezound for Verizon Wireless. Thankfully, the Vivid is priced accordingly as well.

Key features

  • Quad-band GSM and tri-band 3G support
  • 21 Mbps HSDPA and 5.76 Mbps HSUPA
  • LTE network compatibility
  • 4.5" capacitive LCD touchscreen with qHD resolution (540 x 960 pixels); Gorilla glass
  • Android OS v2.3.4 Gingerbread with HTC Sense 3.0
  • 1.2 GHz dual Scorpion CPUs, Qualcomm Snapdragon S3 chipset
  • 1GB RAM and 16 GB built-in storage; microSD slot up to 32GB
  • 8 MP autofocus camera with LED flash; 1.3MP front-facing unit
  • 1080p and 720p video recording
  • Wi-Fi b/g/n and DLNA
  • GPS with A-GPS
  • Stereo FM radio with RDS
  • Accelerometer, proximity sensor and an auto-brightness sensor
  • Standard 3.5 mm audio jack (SRS enhancement)
  • microUSB port (charging) and stereo Bluetooth v3.0
  • MHL TV-out (requires MHL-to-HDMI adapter)
  • Smart dialing, voice dialing
  • DivX/XviD video support
  • HTCSense.com integration
  • HTC Portable Hotspot
  • Office document editor

Main Disadvantages

  • Screen performance is not on par with the best offerings
  • At 177 grams, the device is downright heavy
  • The glossy finish plastic is fingerprint and dust magnet; especially on the black version
  • No dedicated camera button

As you can notice above, the spec sheet of the HTC Vivid is mostly a familiar sight. HTC have grown the screen to put it in line with the rest of the LTE offerings from AT&T.

We are not sure however, how the feeling of familiarity will bode for the smartphone it simply does not feel like a brand new product. It is the end of 2011 now a good eight months since HTC took the wraps off the similarly equipped Sensation 4G.

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HTC Vivid live shots

We are now going to try and find out whether the HTC has what it takes to sway potential consumers away from the impressive Samsung and LG offerings. We are going to continue with unboxing, followed by design and build quality inspection on the next page.

Editorial: You might notice that this review is shorter than usual and doesn't include all of our proprietary tests. The reason is it has been prepared and written far away from our office and test lab. The HTC Vivid is a US-only phone, so it will probably never get to the shores of the Old Continent. Still, we think we've captured the essence of the phone in the same precise, informative and detailed way that's become our trademark. Enjoy the good read!

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