The HTC Arrive is one of the most promising Windows Phone 7 handsets right now. We’ve been using ours for a few weeks. This review mix is, in a nutshell, our review. Our views are on par with the reviews we’ve read, and it’s hard to disagree with what’s been said. It’s a great Windows Phone 7 device, and it has some great features (Welcome, Copy+Paste!) but it’s not the best device out there. Still, it’s the best Windows Phone 7 handset you can buy right now.
This handset wasn’t surrounded by the hype of some of the other things we’ve seen. For instance, the Xoom. However, that may not be a bad thing. Overhyping a product and raising our expectations can be worse than releasing to average expectations and going beyond what most had expected.
Engadget – One area while the Arrive falls short is the display: at 3.6 inches, it’s a little cramped…What bugged us more than the size, though, is the quality…the Arrive’s run-of-the-mill TFT LCD falls short.
Boy Genius Report – The Arrive display is vibrant and it renders colors quite nicely, though some deeper colors do appear a bit washed out at times. I leave the brightness cranked up to 11, though, and it looks fantastic.
Slashgear – The screen is bright and will satisfy anyone hoping to play some fabulous Xbox games like Katamari or Need for Speed, and every control you‚Äö√Ñ√¥ll be needing for those games or any other applications are at the top of their game here as well. The touchscreen, for example, is as responsive as I‚Äö√Ñ√¥ve ever felt a phone being.
Cnet – At 3.6 inches, the WVGA capacitive touch screen is slightly smaller than that of the HTC Surround, but has the same 800×480-pixel resolution. While it’s a fine screen that shows off bright colors and sharp edges, it doesn’t have the richness or pop of the Super AMOLED display on the Samsung Focus.
iSmashPhone Verdict – Looks like everyone was okay with the screen except for Engadget. While most described it as bright, and satisfying, Engadget said it was cramped and isn’t as great as many of the other screens on the market. While they may be right, it’s not as bad as they made it sound.
Engadget – The Arrive seems to do a commendable job of holding up through a normal day. From 100 percent to the critical warning, we got 21 hours and 8 minutes of usage including a 40-minute voice call, two hours of I Love Katamari, and one hour of Slacker at full loudspeaker volume.
Boy Genius Report – It also packs a 1500 mAh battery said to deliver 6 hours of talk time per charge. (Though no mention was made of how much they were able to squeeze out of the battery)
Slashgear – No direct mention
Cnet – No Direct mention
iSmashPhone Verdict – Still, Engadget made it a point to say that the battery is solid, and even highlighted it as one of the positives of the phone in their summary.
Engadget – The camera on the HTC Arrive is disappointing. It exhibits a lot of the same flaws as its WP7 sibling, the HTC Surround: over-exposure and over-sharpening in bright scenes, random blurry spots that look like severe compression artifacts, plus lack of detail and excessive noise in low light.
Boy Genius Report –The 5 megapixel camera on the Arrive captures subpar images, which is unfortunately in line with my expectations. HTC does so many things well but imaging simply isn‚Äö√Ñ√¥t one of them.
Slashgear – Photo quality is OK, video quality is OK.
Cnet – Camera could be better
iSmashPhone Verdict – The camera was usable. It’s not going to get you the best pictures, but may do in a pinch. It’s definitely not nice enough to replace your little point and shoot.
Engadget – They’ve locked down the experience on Windows Phone 7 so comprehensively that you can seamlessly move between devices without skipping a beat…Secondly, as we’ve pointed out before, the Arrive is launching with Windows Phone 7’s so-called NoDo update — the platform’s first with actual feature changes — and that means that users now have access to copy and paste.
Boy Genius Report – Beginning with software, I‚Äö√Ñ√¥ve said before that I‚Äö√Ñ√¥m a fan of the Windows Phone 7 operating system and that hasn‚Äö√Ñ√¥t changed. It still has a lot of growing to do and I maintain that Microsoft was forced to release a rushed product, but buried beneath the surface is an amazing OS struggling to emerge.
Slashgear – That said, there‚Äö√Ñ√¥s a LOT of potential here…when it came to aesthetics, Windows Phone 7 appears fresh, daring, and new!
Cnet – It’s the first Windows Phone 7 device to ship with Microsoft’s cut-and-paste feature.
iSmashPhone Verdict – Windows Phone 7 is still in its infancy. The copy-paste feature is great. Still the OS needs some time to grow.
Engadget – After having used the Arrive for a few days, we think you could make a convincing argument that it’s the best Windows Phone 7 device currently available. Problem is, that’s still not saying much when you look at what’s currently out there.
Boy Genius Report – While new Microsoft-powered handsets will be announced, I believe the Arrive will still be one of the best available Windows Phones on the market for quite some time.
Slashgear – Speaking from the same perspective, if you‚Äö√Ñ√¥ve never used Windows Phone 7 before in your life, please do yourself a favor and give it a test drive.
Cnet – A solid effort that largely delivers, although it will disappoint those looking for a 4G smartphone.
iSmashPhone Verdict – It’s a nice phone, but lacks in some places. Again, it’s the best WP7 device out right now. The problem, according to Engadget, is that calling it the best Windows Phone isn’t saying much.
Windows Phone 7
This device shows what Windows 7 may really be capable of as it matures. This isn’t only an opinion held my the majority of reviewers. We agree with many of these sentiments as well. HTC knows how to make great hardware, and Microsoft seems to be getting the hang of that whole mobile OS thing. It may take a little while, but let’s keep in mind that Apple has been at it for quite some time as well. They’ve become near experts at the mobile operating system. Give Microsoft some time.
For new smartphone users, this Win7 Phone will be an absolute delight, but people jumping from Android and iPhone may find that some features and apps they need or want may be missing. That can change as Microsoft hears consumer feedback.