HTC Sensation Android phone
HTC Sensation review: A powerful beast wrapped in a sturdy, aluminium shell
- Premium unibody design
- qHD display
- Slick Android and Sense software
- Battery life
- Doesn't feel as snappy as other dual-core phones
- Slow camera
The HTC Sensation combines a large, qHD display with an excellent unibody aluminium design. It may not feel as snappy as other dual-core Android phones, nor offer anything hugely new or innovative over previous HTC models, but it remains a great smartphone.
Price$ 792.00 (AUD)
Joining the Samsung Galaxy S II, the Motorola Atrix and the LG Optimus 2X, the latest dual-core powered Android smartphone is the HTC Sensation. The Sensation has a 4.3in qHD-resolution display, the latest version of HTC's Sense user interface, and a sturdy, aluminium unibody casing.
HTC Sensation: Unibody design
One of the highlights of the Sensation is HTC's unibody aluminium design, which has been used on a number of HTC's other Android phones including the original Desire, the Desire HD, the Legend and the recently launched Incredible S and Desire S phones. The HTC Sensation's unibody casing is constructed from a single piece of aluminium and it does feel very well put together. There are no noticeable creaks or rattles, and it feels like a product of quality craftsmanship.
The HTC Sensation's battery cover feels a little awkward to remove — taking it off feels as though you are snapping the phone into two separate pieces. The battery cover consists of almost the entire shell of the handset, with the screen and the body of the phone completing the shell. The actual phone and screen part itself is quite thin — it's almost exactly the same thickness as the Samsung Galaxy S II. The Sensation has a thicker design than most of its competitors, but the extra girth is a trade-off we think many users would be willing to make for the added durability of the unibody design. The impressive build quality really does make the HTC Sensation feel like a premium device should.
The HTC Sensation includes four touch-sensitive shortcut buttons below the display (home, menu, back, and search) and the keys are backlit and responsive. It's a shame there is no physical shutter button, as it's hard to keep the Sensation still when taking a photo with the on-screen shutter key.
HTC Sensation: qHD display
The HTC Sensation has a 4.3in super LCD (SLCD) display. The big draw card here is the resolution — the Sensation's 540x960-pixel resolution makes it a quarter HD (qHD) screen. In general, the higher the resolution the better, as it increases the pixels per inch on the display. The Sensation's qHD screen means you see more of a website at once, and it is great for video playback and mobile gaming.
In a side-by-side comparison, we immediately noticed that the HTC Sensation displays crisper text, and more natural looking colours than the Samsung Galaxy S II. The crisper text is most evident when zoomed out in a web page; it's here that the HTC Sensation really shines. However, its SLCD screen simply can't match the vibrancy, brightness, and viewing angles of the Galaxy S II's Super AMOLED Plus display. The Sensation is also hard to see in direct sunlight. It's a great screen in its own right, but it's beaten by the Galaxy S II.
The glossy surface of the HTC Sensation's display is something we don't like. The surface seems extra glossy but doesn't feel as smooth to slide your finger across as most other Android phones we've tested. On a positive note, we do like how the edges of the glass curve upward toward the edge of the screen — this means the screen doesn't actually come into contact with surfaces when the phone is placed face down on a desk or table.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: Is the world ready for a 4K phone?
- 2 D-Link Taipan AC3200 Ultra tri-band modem-router review
- 3 Dell XPS 13 (2016) review: Making the very best Ultrabook
- 4 Microsoft Surface Book review: The verdict on Microsoft's first notebook
- 5 Telstra Wi-Fi 4GX Advanced III review: Testing the world's first 600Mbps wireless hotspot
Best Deals on PC World
Latest News Articles
- How Intel knocked itself out of the smartphone chip market
- Intel's Atom architecture to live on despite smartphone chip cancellations
- Galaxy Note 6 rumors hint at IR autofocus, USB-C connectivity, new Snapdragon SoC
- LG shows off a smartphone display panel with integrated fingerprint reader
- Smartphone uptake passes its peak as industry appetite wanes
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- CCSr System AnalystACT
- FTTechnical Writer - Sydney BasedNSW
- CCSenior Front End / UI Developer (React.js / LESS / SASS)NSW
- FTSQL DeveloperNSW
- FTOIM Specialist- Oracle Identity and Access Management 11Gr2NSW
- CCSolution ArchitectQLD
- CCOperational Team LeadVIC
- CCTest Analyst - Contact Centre TechnologiesVIC
- CCData Management & Reporting Development OfficerSA
- CCInstructional DesignerQLD
- FTSenior Application SpecialistACT
- FT.NET DeveloperWA
- CCSenior Analyst Designer / AWS and AzureVIC
- CCFull Stack Developers - JavaNSW
- CCFront End Developer x 2QLD
- CCJava Developer (front end)WA
- CCApplication Migration ArchitectACT
- FTSupport AnalystQLD
- CCAnalyst Programmer (JAVA/Windows Programming) 160428/AP/143Asia
- CCEnterprise Architect (Security)NSW
- CCDesktop Engineer, renewable contractAsia
- FTDeveloper - OSB/BPELNSW
- FTMs Dynamics Nav Support Analyst- Level 1/2WA
- FTPMO AnalystNSW
- CCICT Transformation Project Manager- University, Education bckgNSW