- Slim design
- Decent screen
- Loads of useful and fun apps
- No D-pad or trackball
- No hardware keyboard
- Processor not impressive
The AT&T Pure is this carrier’s version of the HTC Touch Diamond2 — one of the premier touchscreen-oriented Windows phones on the market today.
It will have a high-resolution touchscreen, mobile broadband, Wi-Fi, GPS, and the very latest version of Microsoft’s operating system for smartphones.
The AT&T Pure has just launched at $150 with a two-year service contract of at least $70 per month, and a $50 mail-in rebate.
DESIGN & BUILD
The Pure has a simple tablet shape that’s centered around its 3.2-inch WVGA touchscreen. It’s a relatively small device that’s long and thin.
And at just 4.25 inches tall, 2.1 inches wide, 0.5 inches thick, and 4.15 ounces, it rides well in a pocket.
The Pure has a larger screen than the original HTC Touch Diamond, but it’s not as big as the one that will be on the AT&T Tilt 2, a similar Windows phone with a built-in keyboard coming later this month. I think bigger screens are always better, but the Pure’s is a good size.
One of Microsoft’s goals is to make devices running Windows Mobile 6.5 easier to use with a fingertip, rather than a stylus. The device’s screen has to participate in this, though. The Pure does so fairly well — it’s not so small that screen elements are tiny, and it reacts well to finger touches. It’s not a capacitive screen, though, and you can use a regular stylus on it.
That’s important, because while Microsoft has made a lot of progress on it goal, there are still times you’re going to need to pull out the stylus.
This model doesn’t have a hardware keyboard, so you need to depend on its on-screen one for text input. This has a new design for the latest version of Windows Mobile. This is a significant improvement over Microsoft’s old one, but is similar to the keyboard HTC has been using for some time.
It has versions for both portrait and landscape modes, and as usually happens the landscape version has larger buttons that are easier to type on. The portrait mode is decent, if a bit cramped.
Because this model is so focused on its screen, it has a fairly minimal set of other controls.
On the front are the Call and Disconnect buttons, a Back Button, and the new Start button, which opens the Start menu. On the left side are the Volume Up and Down buttons, and there’s a Power button on the top.
Underneath the display is the Zoom bar, which lets you easily control how you see things on the screen. It can enlarge or reduce the size of the text in most applications, and in the web browsers it zooms and and out on pages.
There is no directional pad or trackball, which is something I’m not thrilled about. The on-screen keyboard has directional buttons on it, which help a bit.