Windows Phone 7 – it’s has been out since November and the first phones have started emerging. As part of their launch lineup, HTC created several Windows Phone 7 phones for different markets, and now we have two here in Australia, both ready for our verdict.
Does the HTC 7 Trophy stack up well with the other phones? What about the OS? Our verdict on the phone can be found right after the jump.
7.5 / 10
Nice design; Call quality is good; Fast processor
Colours tad mute on photos; battery life about a day or two; data quality is slow
The HTC 7 Trophy is an average Windows Phone 7 phone.
Design and Features
The HTC 7 Trophy features a sleak black body. The shell is plastic, though designed to look metallic, and features a soft-touch back – but like all HTC phones, they look really good. The screen is a bright 3.8-inch touchscreen display, and is able to display bright and vivid colours. The power button and headphone jack are on the top, unfortunately it seems that the usual placement of the power button on the right has been moved to the left. The headphone jack at the top does mean that it is more accessible to carry the phone in your pocket – which is an added plus.
At the bottom of the screen, you have the usual three buttons mandated by Windows Phone 7, the Search button, back button and Windows button (also known as a home button). However, we do wish there were physical keys.
It also features 8GB of internal storage, and that’s about it. You can’t expand that since there is no microSD card slot (and we looked everywhere for the actual slot, and even got people to try finding it), despite the fact that its the norm. The phone features a 5-megapixel camera with LED flash. However, while it does come with a photo correction application, the photo colours are a tad muted compared to the HTC 7 Mozart (on Telstra), and the Flash does spoil some shots – especially in a bright light setting if you left the flash on. The interface is the stock-standard camera interface, so don’t expect any new additions from Windows Phone 7’s camera options – which does add a big difference to Android phones who have really good controls of the phones. Another feature is the integration of Dolby Mobile audio, creating the illusion of surround sound, and it’s pretty decent.
Microsoft’s approach of a mandated minimum set of features does have some drawbacks because it rarely distinguishes the phones using the operating system and also a confusing task for the consumer to get a good Windows Phone 7 phone.
While HTC is not able to produce a skin for the device, it has produced a HTC Hub application. However, unlike the HTC skin, it is sluggish to use and offers limited stuff – such as weather forecasts and links to other applications available on the phone such as a Photo Enhancer, Sound Enhancer and a Stocks application. While these differences extend some of the basic features of Windows Phone 7. However, because they are standalone applications, why is there a need of a Hub. Other than that, HTC haven’t bothered in customising it that much.
If you are wondering about our review of the operating system – we have publish a separate review, because there’s not much of a difference between the phones.
The phone’s performance, thanks to its 1GHz processor, is really good and we have done some real-world testing. We found that it was able to do most of the tasks we put it through – browsing the web, updating Twitter and sending mail – all relatively fast and with no interruptions. We’ve noticed that the battery life drains about a day or two, which is alright for some and not for others.
However, using the internet, we noticed a considerable difference in download time with the HTC 7 Mozart – and this is due to the fact that it’s on Vodafone, while the Mozart is on Telstra. Call quality, despite being on Vodafone, is pretty decent and was able to hear the other side clearly, and the other side was able to hear me clearly.
The phone is pretty much a cheaper version of the HTC Mozart, carrying similar specifications with the exception of the camera and the design; and because of the non-differences between Windows Phone 7, it makes it harder to distinguish which one is good and which one is not good – something that could be Microsoft’s intention to have minimal specifications.
While Windows Phone 7 have some kinks, if you feel like to take the jump and be an early adopter, then feel free. Otherwise, there are pretty much other phones on the market, and maybe you should wait for Nokia to release their phones with maybe some slight modifications to the OS.