Review of HTC Mozart with Windows Phone 7

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Well I’ve had my new HTC Mozart with Windows Phone 7 from Telstra for 3 days now so I thought I’d throw my hat into the ring with a review.

Phone:

The HTC Mozart is an excellent handset. It looks great, is light to carry and has an extremely bright and crisp screen.

I find the Back, Windows and Search buttons at the bottom of the screen a little sensitive and I am regularly bringing up the search screen without meaning to. This is probably just a case of me getting used to the phone than a reflection on the design.

The speaker works well and is loud enough to clearly hear the person your talking too even if there’s background noise.

I initially set the email to deliver to the phone as it was received but that was chewing the battery quite quickly. It used nearly half the battery in 5 hours. I changed it to check email every 30 minutes and it’s made a huge difference. It’s been off the charge for 4 hours today and the battery level still shows aprox 95%.

My one complaint is that the camera button maybe requires too firm a press to take a photo. The extra pressure needed tends to move the phone a little and make the photo’s blurry.

Windows Phone 7 OS:

After using a Palm Treo with Windows 6.0 on it for 2 years all I can say about Windows Phone 7 is WOW!! The OS is a huge improvement over it’s predecessors. With the offerings from Apple and Google with the iPhone and Android phones they had big shoes to fill. In my opinion they have met and exceeded expectations in most areas.

The initial home screen shown in the picture above is simple but powerful. The active tiles provide an excellent snapshot of everything you need to know at a glance like number of emails, text messages and missed calls. It is also easy to scroll down the screen to quickly access your favourite applications or even people you contact regularly.

The People listing groups data for each of your contacts from Outlook, Facebook and Windows Live showing a complete list. You can scroll through the users or click on a heading letter to bring up the alphabet to jump to a specific letter. The contact profile page shows combined data from all sources including related people like partners and children. My one complaint about the profile is that it shows you updates and information from Facebook, but not recent email activity from that person.

As you would expect, Internet Explorer is the standard browser and seems to be quite quick to load sites. The pinch zoom feature of the phone is very handy when browsing sites. The fact that every time you open a link from an app or email it opens as a new tab in IE is a bit annoying. You then have to keep going in and closing the tabs so you don’t end up with 20 tabs open.

There are a lot of great apps out already with I’m certain a lot more to come. Having the Foxtel app and being able to browse the guide and set my IQ to record from my phone is very cool. You will also find apps for the main social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook.

We run an exchange server in our office and having my email synced to my phone is a critical requirement for me. Email integration is very simple to setup and get working quickly. I have my emails syncing within about 2 minutes of turning the phone on. Reading and replying to email is easy and the on screen keyboard is easy to use and allows you to type quickly.

I only have 3 issues with the new OS and I hope to see them resolved quickly my Microsoft.

  1. No Tethering
  2. No Copy and Paste
  3. Cannot easily move cursor back into email or message to change or add

No Tethering

I used my Palm Treo a lot to connect to my laptop and use the internet via the internet connection sharing. I was very surprised to see that the new Windows Phone 7 OS doesn’t yet support this. People have been tethering phones to laptops for years and this is a glaring omission and frankly quite disappointing.

No Copy and Paste

I don’t use copy and paste all that often but it is very helpful to have it when I need it. Once again a surprising omission from a phone OS that has Email, Messaging and Word running on it.

Moving Cursor

This may be related to the copy and paste issue above. If I am typing an email and want to go back to change or add a section of text it’s quite difficult. The only option I have is to click on a word and select the whole word. If I then start typing my text replaces the word. From there I can retype the word and add my additional text. It really shouldn’t be that hard.

Summary

In summary, despite the few shortcomings of the OS (which I’m certain will be fixed in time), the HTC Mozart with Windows Phone 7 is an excellent combination and a phone that I’ll enjoy using each day.