So, what do I want out of my next laptop and what must it include?
HTC Touch Pro
Touch Diamond gets a slide-out keyboard
- Design, TouchFLO 3D, HSDPA, microSD storage slot, Wi-Fi, A-GPS, Opera browser
- Sluggish Interface, still requires stylus for more complex operations, no 3.5mm headphone jack
For heavy text input, the Touch Pro is a much better option than its little brother, the Touch Diamond. There are still plenty of issues, but the sluggish interface has been slightly improved, and removable storage is a welcome addition.
Price$ 1,099.00 (AUD)
Hot on the heels of the Touch Diamond comes HTC’s Touch Pro, a more business-centric version of its little brother. Along with a full slide-out QWERTY keyboard, the Touch Pro gets more RAM, a microSD card slot for expandable memory and a flash for the 3.2-megapixel camera.
Where the Touch Diamond is more of an iPhone 3G competitor, the Touch Pro fills the void for heavy e-mailers who wouldn’t be impressed with a touch screen–based keyboard. The stylish design emphasis remains, but the slide-out QWERTY keyboard is a nice addition. The keys are small and relatively flat, but are easy to get used to. We would have appreciated a bit more space between each key though, as it is easy to accidentally bump the incorrect button. A nice touch was the caps and function status light just above the keyboard, similar to those on a regular PC keyboard.
As with the Diamond, HTC deserves credit for an excellent design. Despite being reasonably thick, the Touch Pro is still one of the more stylish smartphones on the market. The gloss black finish on the rear of the Diamond has been replaced with a matte black one, which is good news for those who hate fingerprint smudges.
The Touch Pro 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 we were disappointed it doesn’t tilt like the TyTN II. A neat touch is the magnetic stylus storage slot; the stylus clicks neatly into place. Removing the stylus automatically wakes the screen from power save mode.
The TouchFLO 3D interface once again looks superb and its design and layout are highly commendable. On the Home tab, a large flip-style clock displays the time; swiping your finger upwards allows you to view calendar appointments. For the rest of the functions a row of icons sit in a tabbed 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. The 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 it's ultimately not enough. Despite commendable graphics and the stylish user interface of TouchFLO 3D, once you delve deeper into most applications you'll quickly realise this is still a Windows Mobile handset despite the coat of paint.
Conveniently, when the keyboard is slid open the device reveals a handy shortcut menu with commonly accessed shortcuts including e-mail, messages, bookmarks and calendar. One annoying glitch is that when typing in passwords for Wi-Fi networks you aren’t able to enter the password using the physical keyboard. Instead an on-screen keyboard appears.
Selecting menu items and sliding through menus with your finger requires a firm press. 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, though there is definitely an improvement over the Touch Diamond in this regard (mainly thanks to the extra RAM).
Call quality is average, though it can be difficult to hear in a noisy environment. The Touch Pro’s screen goes into power-save mode when you’re on a call, which can be an issue if you need to use an automated switchboard. To access the keypad, you need to press a button to wake up the screen.
Despite these issues, there are plenty of positive features. The bundled Opera Mobile browser offers a reasonable Web browsing experience and is certainly much better than the standard Internet Explorer application. The built-in accelerometer automatically rotates a Web page, and you can zoom and pan using finger gestures. Pages loaded swiftly over 3 Mobile’s HSDPA network; videos in the YouTube application were also fairly quick.
The Touch Pro features Wi-Fi, A-GPS and A2DP Stereo Bluetooth (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. Finally, HTC has done away with the 4GB of internal storage seen on the Diamond and instead provided a microSD card slot for removable memory.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Nokia 6 (2018) review: Simple. Solid. Supreme.
- 2 Samsung Q9F Series QLED: Peak performance from a home entertainment heavyweight
- 3 Hisense takes the fight to home entertainment heavyweights with flagship Series 8 and 9 ULED TVs
- 4 D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD DSH-C310 review
- 5 Ring Video Doorbell review
Latest News Articles
- Exciting New Aussie Dash-Cams Unveiled Ahead of Holiday Road Trip Season
- Latest Spartan sports watches hit the scene
- 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
PCW Evaluation Team
If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.
If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.
Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category
The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
- Computex 2018: Everything you missed at Asia's biggest tech tradeshow
- Computex 2018: Nvidia launches new AI-focused hardware and software platforms
- Huawei P20 Pro review: See it and believe the hype
- 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