HTC Touch Pro2: Performance

September 9, 2009 by Ed Hardy Reads (28,063)


PERFORMANCE

This smartphone runs Windows Mobile 6.1 Pro on a 528 MHz processor.There have been quite a few models with this same configuration, and this one offers basically the same performance.

Whether it works for you really depends on how you feel about Microsoft’s operating system for phones. I’m generally a fan, so I’m accustomed to the fact that even the best Windows Mobile devices aren’t always snappy. To me, it’s a case of trading power and capabilities for speed.

HTC TouchFLO 3DDon’t get me wrong, there are no huge delays, and they are ones you wouldn’t even notice on your PC. Heck, if my PC was this fast I’d be thrilled. But people generally expect their phone to react instantaneously, and the Touch Pro2 can’t always provide that.

I would have been happier if HTC had put a faster processor in this model — 528 MHz processors have been the standard for over a year now.

User Interface
The Touch Pro2 doesn’t use the standard Windows Mobile user interface, but instead has a custom one from HTC called TouchFLO 3D. This has been designed to make the smartphone easier to use with a fingertip, rather than the stylus. As I mentioned earlier, it succeeds much of the time, but not always.

TouchFLO is divided up into a series of screens, each dedicated to a different function. You can easily use your fingertip to flick sideways between the different options, like Email, Music, Calendar, Internet, and more.

On T-Mobile’s version, the main status screen has been replaced with a myFaves screen. I wish this hadn’t happened, because I really miss the status screen, which collects a broad array of information together into one place.

If you don’t like TouchFLO, you have the option of reverting to the standard Windows Mobile user interface.

Wireless Capabilities
T-Mobile’s version of the Touch Pro2 offers the full range of wireless capabilities. It’s a GSM phone with mobile broadband (HSDPA), Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth. This means you can have a high-speed connection to the Internet over 3G when you’re on the road, and switch over the Wi-Fi for a slightly faster connection when you’re at home or in the office.

Incidentally, T-Mobile has no problems with you using this phone as a modem, and even includes software to make setting this up a snap.

Bluetooth allows you to use both wireless headsets and stereo headphones.

Voice quality is fine and I’ve had no dropped calls, but I have excellent T-Mobile coverage in my area — your mileage my vary.

Productivity
Windows Mobile makes this smartphone a productivity powerhouse. It is loaded with a wide array of software for organizing your life and getting things done on the go.

This starts with a suite Personal Information management apps: Calendar, Contracts, and Address Book. These can all be synchronized with either Microsoft Outlook or Microsoft Exchange if you or you company uses either of these.

HTC Touch Pro2 for T-MobileIt also comes with Microsoft Office Mobile, which allows you to work with Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files. And not just view them, but edit them, too. The relatively large keyboard and screen come in handy here.

As a smartphone, email is a requirement. The Touch Pro2 supports all the standard messaging protocols, and this includes Exchange ActiveSync. This means that Exchange users can get push email.

The Touch Pro2 comes with a built-in GPS receiver, and is bundled with Google Maps. This is a decent way of keeping track of where you are and helping you go where you want to go.

Web Browsing
T-Mobile’s version of this device comes with two web browsers: the basic Internet Explorer Mobile and the much better Opera Mobile 9.5. IE Mobile is slow to render pages, and generally not all that good. Opera Mobile, on the other hand, gives you a browsing experience that’s close to what you get on your desktop, especially when you are connected to the Internet over mobile broadband or Wi-Fi.

That’s why I’m unhappy that IE Mobile is the default browser on this model. This means that when you click on a link in an email, the page opens in the slower browser.

IE doesn’t even support tabs, a basic basic feature for any browser these days. Opera Mobile does, but for some reason the version on the Pro2 is limited to just two open windows.

Entertainment
Just because the HTC Touch Pro2 is so useful doesn’t mean it isn’t fun to use, too. It comes with the mobile version of Microsoft’s Windows Media Player, which lets you watch video and listen to audio in a variety of formats… even streaming over the Internet. This app even supports automatically transferring files from the desktop version.

It also comes with Instant Messaging apps for a variety of services: Google Talk, AIM, and even MySpace. Naturally, you can also use good old text messages.

Battery Life
I’m happy to say that battery life is one of the Touch Pro2’s strong points. T-Mobile promises that it offers up to 8.5 hours of talk time, and I think that’s reasonable. This smartphone can last me through a day of very, very heavy use, or a couple of days of moderate use.

Of course, how you use this device has a tremendous effect on battery life. Lengthy use of 3G, Wi-Fi, or the GPS will take a chunk, and so will anything that requires keeping the screen and processor going for hours, like watching a movie. Still, you have to be heavy user to not have a day’s use.


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