G Styled: The HTC HD2 May Have A Sexy Screen, But Otherwise It's A Hot Mess

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Pet Peeves: we’ve all got them. That one or two or three or ten things that drive you crazy about your friends or your job or your tech. Looking at as many gadgets as I do, there are certain things I can’t forgive anymore: bad style, design flaws, and stuff that just makes no sense.

While taking a look at the HTC HD2 this week, I could tell the force was strong with this one, but a Jedi it isn't. This phone worked more than one of my top Tech Peeves even though, as a piece of hardware, it’s all right. (Check the review for more.) But it’s obviously time to drop some G Style on HTC.

Before I say why I think HTC messed up on this one, I have to first admit that the screen is gorgeous on this phone (although not so much once a few fingers have smudged it). I used to think the Motorola Droid is the only phone right now with a sexy looking screen, but the HD2 definitely is in the same category.

That being said, HTC missed the mark with the design. While I do give them all the kudos in the world for taking Sense UI and actually making Windows Mobile 6.5 look good on the surface, the design needs some tweaks.

Tech Peeve #1: Messing up an already hot design. When you have a winning design, you don't change it; instead you improve on it. HTC failed to do this with the HD2 -- it’s one giant rectangle. The first HTC Touch HD looked sexy and had a nice shape and curves. The Nexus one has curves. Hell, even the Sprit HTC Hero has some. So why do a boxy device after all of that?

Tech Peeve #2: Using a played out OS. Yes Sense UI looks good, but once you get to the functions Sense UI covers it still has Windows Mobile 6.5 underneath. I mean, when the Touch HD first came out, HTC went with Windows Mobile when they should have chosen Android. Now here we are with the same situation all over again.

Tech Peeve #3: Awkward buttons sticking up from the device. The buttons aren't as sexy as say the Nexus One, which has its buttons flush with the chassis.

Tech Peeve #4: The camera. Can someone tell me why it sticks out so much? Again HTC, you couldn't make the camera flush with the HD2? The overall look already exists, but really that camera sticks out like a sore thumb.

Tech Peeve #5: Carrier boot up screens. While, yes, I understand that they need to be there, I feel it makes the phone cheesy and devalues it.

I think HTC dropped the ball on this one. We all know they can do better than that, so what happened? The HD2 just isn't sexy enough to make me want to buy it, so I'm going to pass on this based on style. HTC, I still love you, though!

G Style Rating: Hot Mess

Jason Anderson is a self-proclaimed gadget head and publisher of G Style Magazine where he covers all things “fashionably technical.” He contributes a weekly post on laptop and gadget panache.

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Add a comment
  • gma Says:

    At least its got proper bluetooth and flashplayer lmao. Not pointing any elbow at fruity phones.

  • m Says:

    HD2 running the latest Cyanogen Mod Android.. nuff said.

  • neil Says:

    Cant believe someone actually described this phone as "UGLY" the hd2 is way up there in terms of asthetics in fact i would go as far as to say it is probably the most beautifull gadget/device i have owned. Besides looks are secondary real beuty comes from within and like all personalities the HD2 has its flaws but these are outshined by a snappy, vibrant & smooth temprement... A Great User Experience.

  • Philo Says:

    Yet another article criticizing Win 6.5 without saying what's wrong with it, once Sense is on top. Please give an example! And there's a contradiction if this article is all about style, in it being a peeve if "Yes Sense UI looks good"

  • byron floyd Says:

    The phone is dead. Honestly. It's got so many problems and most people want a phone they can use out of the box. Seems recommendations about going to xda just to make it operable is a bad sign.

    its a business phone with the sense ui trying to cover up its sins. No Can do.

    better off with the EVO from spint that is everything the htc hd2 should have been..but is not due to Windows mobile 6.5. A dead OS per MS.

  • Jason Anderson Says:

    B I agree with you! The specs of the HD2 rocks, it is a processing dream, however you clearly missed the fact that this article was about the "style" of the device, hence the column being called "G Styled". There is no doubt that the Snapdragon processor is great, but this wasn't about the horsepower of the car so to speak but about the overall look.

    Plus think about when the original Touch HD came out? That thing was sexy! So I'd expect just as much or more for the HD2. The HD2 didn't live up to the styling of the Touch HD, so it was a letdown. Had this been an article about what was under the hood, then the HD2 is sweet. But since this was about style, I had to give it low remarks. I still love HTC though, even the best has an off day lol.

  • told you so.com Says:


    exactly, he wasnt talking about the specs, so I agree with him on his points he made. Also forget android processor they should have went with a Palm Web OS, maybe that might happen since the HTC rumor of a merger or aquisition.

  • ensaburnur Says:

    If the first comment is irrelevant, so are the opinions of the writer of the article. Both are just writing there opinions about the phone, which is subjective.

  • Corinn Says:

    First user comment is irrelevant; reviewer was talking about the HD2's design and aesthetics, NOT about its internals. The HD2 plainly rocks, but I agree with this guy. It's ugly.

  • Lol Says:

    Writer got pwned by the first user comment. Well played sir.

  • G Says:

    B brings up much better points than the writer of the article does.

  • B Says:

    Pretty minor complaints to call the HD2 a "Hot Mess". How about the 1Ghz Snapdragon processor that rips holes through other smartphones? How about the speaker phone that blows any other I've heard out of the water? Or the dual LED flash (for the camera that protrudes a whopping 2mm out of the back) that makes for fantastic pics?

    Personally, I'm a fan of the raised buttons. I like the tactile feedback when I'm driving or distracted by something else. HTC's sense takes care of the majority of phone features and it's not like Windows 6.5 is a pain to use when you have that 1Ghz processor. Don't forget the 16GB expansion card.

    If you want to really get the most of of Sense, go over to XDA and pickup Cookie's Home Tabs. It will put everything on the phone within a couple of touches of the home screen. And if the "Hot Mess" boot screen is too terribly annoying for you, you can grab a new HTC boot loader screen while you're there.

    If you're calling this phone's form factor rectangular and "clunky", take another look at the droid. It's like carrying a lego car in your pocket. I'm worried I'd hit myself in the temple with that brick, wake up delusional, and start writing nonsensical articles about quality hardware.

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