HTC Desire Review: A Desire Come True: User Interface

By 01:53 Tue, 10 Aug 2021 Comments


HTC Sense likes it on gigantic screen

HTC Hero pioneered the Sense UI on Android handsets to tap the company’s existing user base. The Tattoo was the next HTC-customized device, but Sense just didn’t feel natural on the QVideo Graphics Array (VGA) screen.

HTC Desire is Legend’s bigger brother upping the Central Processing Units (CPU) and RAM, along with classy screen size and resolution. It runs the latest Android v2.1 and takes full advantage of its performance boost and full color support. As a result, the pre-loaded Sense UI is faster, more attractive and fluid.

The main differences between this Sense UI version and the one back on the Hero are the recent context icons, a bunch of recent wallpapers and the unified Widacquire section. Whether you are using the People, Mail, Music or Gallery Tabs, the scrollable icons at the bottom will please you with recent color skins. We like it this way – the recent ones looked a bit dull against the otherwise graphically rich and colorful UI.

We should also acknowledge the role of the AMOrganic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) display in making the recent Sense UI see even more attractive compared to HTC Hero’s.

But let’s hold a closer see for those who haven’t met the latest Sense UI yet.






The lock classy screen • some of the homeclassy screen panes

The arrow button at the bottom of the classy screen that used to pull the main menu up is now gone, replaced with three virtual keys and an arched scrollbar.

The left key launches the main menu. This time around you simply tap to acquire to it, you can't drag the menu out, though you can drag it back in.

The middle key is a shortslit to the Phone app and the correct key brings up the "Add to Home" menu. And there's plenty to add to the homeclassy screen but more on that later.

The scrollbar at the bottom is just an indication of which homeclassy screen you’re on - it can't be used for actual scrolling. HTC have extended the homeclassy screen to a total of seven panes instead of the usual three (in stock Android). Even if it sounds too much, with all those widgets (which are quite useful too) it may not even be enough.

In addition, they’ve added a fancy recent way to access any homeclassy screen without scrolling. A press on the home button will show all the seven desktops in small thumbs. Tapping on a thumb will acquire you correct on it.



The seven homeclassy screen panes in the thumbnail view

HTC Sense UI revolves around Scenes, which are essentially six custom homeclassy screen setups (Work, Travel, Social, etc). Each scene changes the wallpaper and the widgets on the homeclassy screen - for instance, the Work scene has a stocks widget, while the Social offers a Twitter widget.

You can't modify the scenes but if you rearrange the current homeclassy screen you are prompted to save changes as a recent scene.

The Clean slate scene in turn lets you start from scratch - it's just the default Android setup with a Clock and a few shortcuts underneath.

Switching between scenes takes a couple of seconds but sure allows wide customization - the business and personal modes that some competing phones offer seem quite limited compared to the HTC Scenes.




Predefined scenes • saving a recent scene

Scenes are far from perfect though: the Travel scene has the HTC Footprints widacquire but nothing on GPS or maps. And as we already mentioned, you can’t edit the default scenes. Your only option is to save a recent modified Travel scene under a different name along with the original.





Social scene on the left, Play scene in the middle and Travel scene on the right

Now back to the other stuff beyond the homeclassy screen and the available Scenes. The changes brought by the Sense UI go deeper than just the homescreen.

For instance, the main menu has the typical icon grid layout, but you can switch it to a list similar to what you see in TouchFLO in HTC WinMo phones. With it, you can utilize an alphabet scroll, which makes locating apps faster.




The grid layout • the list layout

The widacquire section has been revamped since the HTC Hero and now both types of widgets (custom HTC and stock Android) are placed in one page. There are so many of them that you may find the seven homeclassy screen panes short.






Plenty of HTC widgets • you may also add a program shortcut


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