First impressions of HTCs latest QWERTY Android
It's not as sleek as the HTCs we've seen before, but with that extra girth comes a slide-out keyboard, which you can get a closer look at in our Desire Z gallery (opens in new tab). Here's what else we picked up on our first encounter with HTC's slightly budget-friendlier alternative to the Desire HD (opens in new tab):
At 3.7 inches, the screen on the Desire Z is the same size as the original Desire (opens in new tab), and 0.6 inches smaller than its big brother, the upcoming Desire HD. It's not OLED, but images are still bright and crisp. It's not quite up to the standard of the iPhone's retina display, but at the same time you'll see much more of it without the need for an on-screen keyboard.
The keyboard slides out on what HTC are calling a 'Z Hinge', which feels nice and sturdy, and shouldn't come open in pockets or bags. Typing on it feels responsive and the keys are decently sized and spaced, and despite the slightly expanded waistline, we reckon this will be a solid choice for those who never really took to on-screen keyboards.
The Desire Z runs Android 2.2 (FroYo) with the new Sense UI layered over the top, and packs a slightly cut-down 800Mhz processor under the hood.
Along with a slightly slower processor (when compared to the upcoming Desire HD), the Z also features a more budget-conscious 5MP camera. It still shoots 720p HD video, however, and you can pipe everything you film to a TV via DNLA or the built-in HDMI out.
It's a bit smaller, a bit less powerful and a bit cheaper (£499) than the Desire HD (£529), but it's on the strength of the excellent QWERTY keyboard that the Desire Z should be judged.
We'll have more on the Desire Z in the next few weeks. In the meantime, take a look at our HTC Desire HD and HTC Desire Z hands-on review (opens in new tab).