Top critical review
183 people found this helpful
on May 19, 2011
Overall it's a good sized phone. To me coming from an iPhone, the Incredible 2 has a similar look as the iPhone. The big difference is that the Incredible 2 is a bigger screen. I'm overall impressed with the design. It's sleek and fits well in the hands and pocket. It's not cumbersome like the HTC thunderbolt. I also like that that there is a notification light at the top of the phone (something that the iPhone does not have). The screen itself has good resolution, it might not be the Retina display of the iPhone or the super AMOLED of the droid charge, but to my eye it's good enough to watch movies clearly.
I really like the HTC Sense. Some people prefer the unadulterated google android system, but I think HTC sense is a very fluid system. I like the large clock in the center screen. I also love the weather clearly displayed on the home screen (often with cute animations, such as rain drops or clouds). If you pinch the home screen, you are able to zoom out and see the total of 7 screens where you are able to place shortcuts to apps or use widgets. I like that the main home screen is at the center of all the other screens (with 3 on the left and 3 on the right). The iPhone has the main home screen all the way on the left (like the first page in a book), so that if you want to go to page 5, you have to shuffle across several pages, which is annoying. Using the keyboard is fluid and I like the use of auto-correction/suggestion. On the main screen is a button to go straight to the phone. When you press it, it launches the phone and large number pad appears, on the bottom of the screen, while on the top it lists your recent calls. Accessing your contact list from the screen is a bit of pain and requires several button pushes. But then I realized there is a smart dial feature (where you use the number pad to enter a person's name, and a matched contact name appears). Makes it really easy.
Android software I think has become on par with Apple's iPhone. There are also some great apps that iPhone does not have, like free navigation from google, full integration with google voice, and plenty of other amazing google apps (like google sky). I've found all the apps I've wanted from the android market. The phone is quick and very responsive. 3G to me is good enough and internet pages launch quickly enough.
Good quality. The pictures come out well. The video camera is great but has difficulty picking out sounds so that if you are filming someone who is talking, on playback on your computer you can't really hear them. The camera as expected does poorly in low light.
My phone has a distinct but faint echo when speaking into it. I can hear my own voice (the person on the other line does not hear an echo). It's not very obvious but somewhat annoying. I considered whether this was a deal breaker, but didn't think that it was that much of annoyance. It seems that the first droid incredible also suffered from similar issues. I haven't found that many people complaining of this in the Droid Incredible 2. Verizon was unable to help fix the problem and HTC recommended replacing the system, which I haven't decided on whether to do it, not wanting to get a badly refurbed version. The other annoyance is that the speaker phone is on the underside of the phone, so that when you put the phone with the screen face up, the speaker gets muffled (which is annoying when making calls and wanting to use the speaker phone). Obviously turning the phone face down helps solve this problem, but then I can't input anything (since the screen is now covered).
Overall the phone has all the features you want to listen to your music and podcasts. I have found that on HTC models there is a soft though obvious hiss when listening to music with headphones. It's more noticeable during quieted points in the music. It also is obvious between songs and will last for 2-3 seconds after you turn off the music. Apparently this has been a problem with HTC phones (just search for this on the internet). I have a high end set of skullcandy in-ear headphones, with my iPod and prior iPhone I never noticed a hiss. The hiss can be stopped by getting a high impedance (20-30 ohms) headphones or getting a headphone with inline volume control (which then then can be adjusted to get rid of the hiss). I already have a nice set of headphone, so I'm not sure what to do here (paying another $40 or just dealing with it). But this is annoying that there even is a hiss (though you can only notice it in quiet environments, while walking on the street you can't hear).
If you are a mac user, then no worries you can easily sync your droid (in fact any droid) to the Mac. Doubletwist is not recommended because often times it does not sync album art. The best is iSyncr which costs like $3 from the store and does a great job syncing photos, videos, and movies. Your contacts and calender can be synced using Google (both iCal and the Address book on your mac can be synced to google, which then is synced to your phone). As an aside, you might be used to beautiful high pixel photos on your phone, unfortunately when you sync with google your pics are downgraded so that when you get them on your phone they are heavily pixelated.
This phone gets 3.5 stars. The HTC sense is great and easy to use. The camera and video recorder gives good clear pictures (with nice strong flash). But the echo during calls is off putting and the hiss on music playback is extremely annoying. The dilemma I faced was whether to return it for another phone. If I had paid the retail value of $200, it would be a no brainer and this phone would be gone in a heartbeat. But since I paid $80 it's maybe worthwhile to keep around, because there are a lot of great pluses (though two major minuses). Bottom line, if you have $200 to blow, shop elsewhere. If you're budget is less than $100 then I recommend checking out this phone.
ONE MONTH UPDATE
I've been using this phone for a full month now. I decided not to return it. Overall I really like it. I originally gave it 3 stars but now I've bumped it to 4 stars. The echo on phone calls is there, but I've gotten used to it and it doesn't bother me. The soft hiss on the music is also not noticeable in most places I use the phone, traveling on the bus or car (walking down the street). I really like all the great apps I get on it (for free from Amazon) and I love Google Music (having all your music in the clouds, so I don't even have to sync my music to my phone). Also Google voice allows me to send free text messages. So overall 4/5 stars after a month of use.
FOUR MONTH UPDATE
So this is my final update. I thought I'd share my experience. The major thing I'd found annoying is battery life. I've noticed lately that battery use is somewhat sub-par. Sometimes I find that my phone has drained itself to less than 40% power. This occurs with what I consider, light use, including listening to music for my 20 minute drive, checking email maybe twice, sending a few text messages, browsing the net (one page at most) for 15 minutes at most, and one or two calls. And with this light use, I drain my battery. For example today, I'm down to 40% (it's 2 pm in the afternoon).
Here are my stats:
Display= 39%, used for ~40 minutes (set at 50% brightness)
Google Maps= 11%, used for 4 minutes, with GPS nav used for 8 minutes
Wifi= 9%, used since the AM 6 hours (though I haven't surfed the net today)
Voice calls= 7%, 3 minute conversation
Those were my top applications used, yet I'm down to 40%, which is pathetic. My only guess is that the Wifi is constantly checking for a signal and perhaps draining the battery. I've never had the phone die on me, as an aside. This battery life is as good as my 3 year old iPhone. This is problematic enough that I'm downgrading the phone to 3.5 stars (unfortunately, amazon doesn't allow this so it'll be set to 3 stars). I like to keep my phones for several years and with this one I'm foreseeing having to buy another battery for it in the future, which is annoying.
In retrospect, would I still buy the phone? I'd definitely get an android phone. I've now heavily customized it that probably any android phone would probably do. I'd likely consider looking elsewhere if the phone costs > $100.