HTC Touch Diamond
Diamond in the rough, or rough Diamond?
- Design, TouchFLO design and interface, HSDPA 7.2, 4GB internal storage, Wi-Fi, A-GPS, Opera browser
- Interface is sluggish and slow, text entry is tedious, still requires stylus for more complex operations, no 3.5mm headphone jack, no memory card slot
The much-hyped Touch Diamond had plenty of potential, but ultimately it is a hugely frustrating phone to use. A great display, stylish design and reasonable browser are let down by a sluggish and slow user interface. Unfortunately, the great eye candy of the Diamond isn’t enough to push it over the line.
Price$ 999.00 (AUD)
Perhaps the only device currently on the market that can claim to be a true competitor to the iPhone 3G, HTC's Touch Diamond is an impressive looking smartphone packed with features. The TouchFLO 3D interface is designed to make using this Windows Mobile 6.1 smartphone hassle-free, but unfortunately it falls short.
If there is one aspect of the Touch Diamond that HTC deserves credit for, it's the excellent design. This is one of the most stylish smartphones on the market — it's significantly smaller and far more compact than the iPhone. The gloss black finish and control pad are classy touches, while the unique diamond plastic finish on the rear adds a stylish feel, though it does attract plenty of unwanted fingerprints.
The Touch Diamond features a full touch screen and stylus, but HTC has also included a navigational pad and touch sensitive scroll wheel, in addition to home, back and call keys. The 2.8in display is crystal clear and has an excellent viewing angle (though like the rear casing, it's almost impossible to keep clean).
The TouchFLO 3D interface looks superb and its design and layout is highly commendable. On the Home tab, a large flip style clock displays the time, while swiping your finger upwards allows you to view calendar appointments. For the rest of the functions a row of icons sit in a tab style interface across the bottom of the screen. You press down on the active tab and slide your finger left or right across the tabs to cycle through the menu selections. Animations are excellent, particularly the weather application, which shows raindrops hitting the screen and then being wiped away by a windscreen wiper when showers are forecast. Cycling through music albums and e-mail messages reveals more eye candy.
HTC has clearly gone out of its way to push Windows Mobile into the background as much as possible, but sadly it's not enough. Despite commendable graphics and the stylish user interface of TouchFLO 3D, using the Touch Diamond is a highly frustrating affair. For starters, you'll still need to have the stylus handy — once you delve deeper into most applications, you'll quickly realise this is still a Windows Mobile handset despite the coat of paint.
Selecting menu items and sliding through menus with your finger is frustrating as the touch screen requires a firm press to register. If your finger is slightly incorrectly positioned when attempting to slide, swipe or touch certain menus, you won't get a response. Speed is also an issue — we regularly experienced lag and slowdown when opening and closing applications, selecting menu items and using functions like e-mail and messaging. Despite HTC's attempt to provide as many options for messaging as possible, this is also painful affair. There are multiple touch screen text entry options available, including a full QWERTY keyboard, compact QWERTY keyboard and a keypad with T9 predictive text input, but tactile feedback is nonexistent and the keys are squashed together, so you'll need to use the stylus for any sort of accuracy.
Call quality is largely passable, but if you have to use an automated switchboard, the Touch Diamond is a little frustrating. While you're on a call the screen goes into power-save mode — unlike the iPhone, you need to wake the display from this mode by pressing a button before you can access the keypad.
Despite these issues, there are a number of positive features. The bundled Opera Mobile browser offers a solid experience on the whole. The built-in accelerometer automatically rotates a Web page, and you can zoom and pan using finger gestures — although the hit and miss nature of the touch screen rears its ugly head here as well. HSDPA 7.2 support means pages load fairly quickly over Telstra's Next G network.
The Diamond also features Wi-Fi, A-GPS and A2DP Stereo Bluetooth — the latter an important inclusion considering the USB headphone connection. While the included headphones are average, the port location at the bottom of the unit means you'll have to have the Touch Diamond upside down in your pocket when using them. HTC has conveniently included 4GB of internal flash storage, but the lack of a memory card slot is a huge oversight and one that may cause potential buyers to pass over this phone.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Huawei Mate 9
Acer Swift 7
Google Daydream VR headset
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Lexar® Portable SSD
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
HP Pavilion x360 13”
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Surface Pro 4
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
- 2 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 3 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 4 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
Latest News Articles
- Early iPhone 7 reviews: You'll miss the headphone jack, but the camera and battery life are tops
- Watch out: iOS 10 install is reportedly bricking some iPhones
- Google's Pixel Launcher leak hints at the demise of the Nexus brand
- It's official: iOS 10 launches with huge improvements to iMessage, Apple Music, Siri, and more
- Goodbye GPS? DARPA preparing alternative position-tracking technology
PCW Evaluation Team
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
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.
- Horizon Zero Dawn review
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Japan's pop culture, anime-friendly, J-Pop shrine, Kanda Myojin
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTPresales Solutions ArchitectQLD
- FTDeveloper - Java/J2EEQLD
- TPInformation Security OfficerACT
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- FTSenior IT Business Analyst - Permanent OpportunityNSW
- CCIT Senior Business AnalystNSW
- CCSenior Networks Specialist - DNS PlatformVIC
- CCWicked Front-End DeveloperQLD
- TPAEM DeveloperNSW
- TPChange and Communications CoordinatorQLD
- CCSenior Business AnalystVIC
- CCTest LeadQLD
- FTMid-Level Software Engineer x 2 - Adelaide Based (PV, NV2 or NV1 required)ACT
- CCInfrastructure Test AnalystACT
- TPProject Manager to manage two concurrent ProjectsQLD
- FTApplications DeveloperACT
- TPSOE AdministratorQLD
- TPSolution Architect - Transport DomainVIC
- CCProject Manager (Event Management)NSW
- CCBPM Technical AnalystVIC
- FTDatabase Modelling SpecialistACT
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- TPService Desk ManagerVIC
- TPSenior Network EngineerWA
- TPe-Learning Developer (Captivate 8)VIC