Introducing the HTC Magic with Google - everything you love about the internet, exactly how you want it. And it's exclusive to Vodafone!
The HTC Magic will keep you entertained and up to date wherever you are.
• Powered by 'Android'
• Features a single sign in for Google applications
• Available in black or white
• Available at discounted rates on a range of monthly plans
• GSM / EDGE / UMTS / HSDPA / HSUPA compatible
• Wi-Fi / Bluetooth 2.0
• Mini-USB port and MicroSD card expansion port
• Internal GPS antenna
• 3.2 inch HVGA Touchscreen Display
• 3.2 megapixel colour camera
• Search - Find the information you need quickly and easily
• Maps - Locate nearby businesses and get driving directions
• YouTube - Watch videos anytime
• Gmail - Stay connected with Gmail on the go
Standard pack contains:
• NZ Charger and Adapter
• Personal Handsfree Headset
• USB Cable
• 8GB SD Card
• Quick Start Guide
• Warranty Card
Other information: htcmagic.vodafone.co.uk
It's not often I get the opportunity to play with cutting-edge consumer goods such as this. It has everything a total geek could want... bluetooth, GPS, WiFi, and most critically, mobile broadband. On top of that you have a staggering array of downloadables: application, tools, utilities, customisations, data and media of all descriptions. Log in, tune out... no matter where you are! (Well, 97% of 'no matter', anyway.)
The touchscreen takes a little getting used to, as does the 'Android' operating system's way of doing things, but pretty soon even the most absent-minded user will have the knack... I mean, I gave it the 'typical male' test and passed pretty well. (A 'typical male' *NEVER* reads manuals, helpfiles or user guides! Instead he will hammer away at it until he either understands how to get it to behave itself, or he breaks it.) It only took me a few hours of experimentation to have a handle on things, and even managed to download, install and use a Twitter client called "Twidroid" to send and receive Twitter updates. And yes, I eventually had to turn OFF predictive text out of sheer frustration. I mean, repeatedly 'correcting' ".co.nz" in a URL to ".co.BA" - Really, does that make ANY sense?!
The GoogleMaps was stunning... able to zoom right in to a fairly clear image of wherever I was standing... give or take 200m if I let it attempt to do it automatically. So beware, the GPS is good, but not THAT good. If you are seriously lost, this *could* help you spot large landmarks nearby and allow you to manually correct the map, but don't expect it to tell you where you are to the 1m resolution. I was, however, impressed at the Google Streetview system when integrated with the Compass function. I am not quite sure why anyone would prefer to stare at a tiny digital representation instead of putting it in their pocket and using their own eyes, but it really was quite nifty. With an "Augmented Reality" overlay instead, this could be something quite spectacular to play with... I can easily envision bored geeks with too much time and money on their hands running around with their HTC Magic's, playing FPS games or WOW - HTC Edition in a real environment. Uh oh! Here comes the boss... strange how he looks like a Blue Giant Ogre in the handset... oh darn. Snapped again.
The ability to sense portrait vs landscape orientation of the handset proved quite effective when it came to reading websites. Those that format nicely for mobile devices were great to browse in either orientation, but those designed primarily for web use via desktops or laptops were still quite usable in landscape mode. I would have liked to have seen a smoother transition between the two modes though, as the blurring effect gave me a bit of vision problems after a while. Perhaps a fade-to-black-and-back approach instead of blur-between-the-two? On top of that, I found the onscreen keyboard a little more usable in landscape mode - larger button for my clodding great thumbs... even if I *did* look more like I was playing a video game than typing.
Data speeds were stunningly impressive, with data streaming down as fast as I get on my office console. Graphics scaled cleanly, Google operated flawlessly and even Google Images was beyond merely 'functional', which is all I was expecting, to be honest. I dearly would have loved to have seen Google Earth on this thing, but alas, despite some impressive power, it would still be like asking a nifty-50 to make a good top-10 showing in the stockcar races. For the amount of power it has, it truely is an impressive device in all respects I could assess. Music and movies played well, though bass was a little rattly when you wound it up. To be expected... bass needs room to move - you don't get room is a pocket device this slim. At an amazing 13.5mm thick, it's only slightly thicker than an iPod Classic.
The other 'on-board' tools are dinky, but nothing overly stunning, since they are merely the current versions of now-standard cellphone tools: camera (clear, easy to use, and nice res... but nothing unique or amazing nowdays), onboard storage card (again, commonplace. Not universal though, since many comparable products are hardlocked to onboard memory only, so good to have expansion options), USB interface (again, pretty normal for such devices) and handsfree rig (But this one has a CABLE! -shudder- C'mon people... BLUETOOTH = WIRELESS!)
Overall, if you are keen to get "the next best thing" then you should be checking one of these out. A little scary at almost $1100 for the handset alone, you can get it for a mere $320 if you are willing to sign up to a $130/month plan for a fixed term. Personally, I would simply *LOVE* to have one of these... I am sure I can live without a few luxuries for a while, so I can afford to keep in touch via every channel imaginable. Broadband may not be 'cheap' but it sure is becoming more affordable! Personal pick: The black unit. White just seems so keen to show dirt.
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