HTC Desire 500 review
- Bright display
- Sturdy build
- HTC Sense is inoffensive
- Not cheap enough
- Horrible accent colours
- Meagre resolution
Last year, Google released the Nexus 4, redefining the whole category of 'bargain' phones in the process. Last month, its successor - the Google Nexus 5 - was announced, again cramming a whole load of tech, into a package that you would normally expect to pay top whack for.
The Nexus devices are cheap, but then Motorola came along and took the wraps off the Moto G. For £160 you get a well-designed device, with a 720p display and a guaranteed update to the new version of Android, 4.4 Kit Kat.
The point we're trying to make is that you can now get a serious amount of phone for your buck, but that doesn't mean all companies are taking this same direction. The HTC Desire 500, which will you set you back around £220, sort of feels like it's stuck in the bargain phone old days, where that cheap price represented well, less value for money
HTC Desire 500: Size and build
While the Samsung Galaxy S4, S4 Mini and S4 Zoom did nothing to prove plastic phones feel good in the hand, the iPhone 5c, along with the Nexus 5, showed that good quality plastic could still make for a solid device.
The HTC Desire 500 is also plastic - pretty much completely plastic. The glossy white back (it's also available in black) is a fingerprint magnet, with it takes just a few seconds to get completely covered is greasy residue, though it's more comparable to the iPhone 5c, rather than the Samsung Galaxy S4.
Remove the plastic shell and it really is strong, a nice touch.
While it's not an ugly phone, the curvy nature and bright accent colours (again, available in a few colours - blue, red and black) make it feel a bit like a toy, though a toy that is at least sturdy and tough.
That curvy design does help with something, though. The HTC Desire 500 feels nice to hold and sits comfortably in the hand; it also feels really light, weighing just 123g. It's thin as well, with its measurements coming in at 131.8 x 66.9 x 9.9mm. For comparison, the Moto G weighs 143g, while the Nokia Lumia 625 comes in at 159g.
A few details, like the precision-drilled speaker grilles in the top and bottom of the rear, hark back to the industrial design we loved so much on the HTC One, but with the Desire 500, you can definitely tell which the cheaper device is.