Sprint HTC Evo 4G review… part 3
first impressions with the Sprint HTC Evo 4G cell phone.  Note to readers, there is no 4G in the state I live in, South Carolina (unless it bleeds over the border from North Carolina), and according to the maps, there are no current plans to add 4G to my state, so I have not gotten a chance to even test it, although I drove through Charlotte, NC 3 times now and keep forgetting to stop somewhere and see what happens when I turn 4G on and do a speed test.  Ok, the very first thing I noticed after turning onthe phone was a notification asking me what application I wanted to use for this request (I later determined it was asking about what to do when I pressed the home screen) and I was presented with two choices, HTC Sense and (I forgot the name and cannot seem to get it to come back up) the default android home screen, then when I selected the HTC Sense UI I got to see the Weather animation as it loaded the default widget layout.
many installed apps later I have noticed some interesting things about my new HTC Evo 4G:
1. the battery does drain quickly; however it is at the same speed or slower than the drain on my HTC Touch, so I am not upset about this, especially since the battery is the same size and the Evo is much more powerful.  this is a good thing (for those comparing to the iPhone you have to understand the iPhone uses a much more expensive battery technology, Lithium Polymer, which is more efficient as well)as it means that the power usage has been regulated a lot better in the Evo allowing a more powerful device to do more things with the same amount of power.  until HTC switches to Lithium Polymer batteries this is the best we will get without using bigger batteries (of which I will be buying a 3500mAh battery for my Evo ASAP, or at least as soon as it becomes comercially available, and probably I will wait till it goes on sale because of low sales volume!)  I can get a good 10-13 hours of life out of it, if I am not using it constantly the entire time, I think the most I have gotten so far was 15 hours and had 30% battery life left (did not charge over night one night), but I forgot to check the usage and uptime on the phone before the battery died on me while using it.  The good news is the phone will automatically shutdown when the battery reaches extremely low levels (between 2% and 4% remaining), so you do not have to worry about damaging the battery by draining it dry.
2. some devices cannot charge the Evo any better than they can charge an iPad.  plugged into my laptop while powered off, to charge my cell phone it took over 6 hours, but when plugged into the wall outlet it took 2 hours and 15 minutes.  Also, one time I was using an app that required wifi and gps, I also had auto-brightness on, was plugged into the laptop via usb, and used my phone for about 2 hours constant with those settings.  Well, the battery went from 33% when I started to 28% when I stopped, so the phone can actually use more power than some USB ports can provide!
3. the charge light changing from orange to green does not mean the battery is full.  I have noticed that unplugging the phone and turning the display on (or powering the phone on) within 10 minutes of the light changing to green, the Evo will display 91% or 92% battery charge!?!  I have noticed someplaces stating that you need to continue to charge the battery for approximately 2 hours to obtain 100% battery life, after the charge light changes to green.
4. 3 times now the Evo has not given me a keyboard when I touched a place that required me to type, and sometimes exiting out of the app and returning did not fix the issue.  Additionally in the game Robo Defense when returning to th egame after reading a text message, the game stated that it successfully restored the game, but the play/pause and fast forward buttons would not appear, and while I could scroll left to right, I could not scroll up and down.  The menu button worked however and I was able to “save and quit” then when I returned to the game, all was working again.  I believe these issues to be related.
5. one time today in fact, when I turned the display on my background was there, and the notification bar was at the top of the screen, but I never got an unlock bar to slide down.  multiple attempts never provided the bar, I finally had to remove the battery from the phone to power it off, then it worked just fine.
6. I have installed an app called “my lookout” that is an antivirus, anti-spyware (apps only), backup manager, and remote phone locator (vey cool , you can make it blast out a siren if your phone was stolen) application.  when this is scanning an app I have installed (or upgraded) the phone runs at about 30% performance of normal, not sure if this is a good trade off, since I don’t install apps from places other than the android market.
7. the phone does not do a very good job determining if you need the “web” application (the one with the “@” symbol and the “.com” button.
8. if you speak clearly and not too fast, the voice to text feature works perfectly as long as all the words are in the spell checker (this includes user defined words).
9. the HTC sense UI does NOT rotate into landscape mode, something I do not understand, as my HTC Touch used the first version of HTC Sense UI and it worked great in landscape mode, infact I went at least the last 9 months without ever switching it into portrait mode.
10. the dumbest thing about the phone is the search button on the bottom right hand corner of the screen, this is a touch sensitive button, like the rest of the buttons on the bottom of the screen, and I hit it by accident at least 8 times a day.  this initiates a voice search (most of the time) of the phone, no matter what else you are doing, pulling you out of any app to do so.  A friend of mine who also bought the Evo told me he has never had this problem, he also told me he never uses his phone in landscape mode.
Next up, “Let’s talk about th eEvo 4G camera…”

Welcome back to part 3, glad to have you here, I’ve been a little distracted the last few days and apologize for not getting this done sooner.  So, here are some first impressions with the Sprint HTC Evo 4G cell phone.  I am completely in love with my Evo, despite any flaws I may complain about on here, I just need to get used to touching the screen softer (my previous phone the HTC Touch, has a resistive screen and requires a moderate amount of pressure to sense your touches), as my finger hurts if I use it too much at this time…

Note to readers, there is no 4G in the state I live in, South Carolina (unless it bleeds over the border from North Carolina), and according to the maps, there are no current plans to add 4G to my state, so I have not gotten a chance to even test it, although I drove through Charlotte, NC 3 times now and keep forgetting to stop somewhere and see what happens when I turn 4G on and do a speed test.

Ok, the very first thing I noticed after turning onthe phone was a notification asking me what application I wanted to use for this request (I later determined it was asking about what to do when I pressed the home screen) and I was presented with two choices, HTC Sense and (I forgot the name and cannot seem to get it to come back up) the default android home screen, then when I selected the HTC Sense UI I got to see the Weather animation as it loaded the default widget layout.

many installed apps later I have noticed some interesting things about my new HTC Evo 4G:

1. the battery does drain quickly; however it is at the same speed or slower than the drain on my HTC Touch, so I am not upset about this, especially since the battery is only 15% larger and the Evo is much more powerful with a display almost twice the size.  This IS a good thing (for those comparing to the iPhone you have to understand the iPhone uses a much more expensive battery technology, Lithium Polymer, which is more efficient as well and can also blow up if it gets too hot) as it means that the power usage has been regulated a lot better in the Evo allowing a more powerful device to do more things with the not that much more power.  This is the best we will get without using bigger batteries (of which I will be buying a 3500mAh battery for my Evo ASAP, or at least as soon as it becomes comercially available, and probably I will wait till it goes on sale because of low sales volume!)  I can get a good 10-13 hours of life out of it, if I am not using it constantly the entire time, I think the most I have gotten so far was 15 hours and had 30% battery life left (did not charge over night one night), but I forgot to check the usage and uptime on the phone before the battery died on me while using it.  The good news is the phone will automatically shutdown when the battery reaches extremely low levels (between 2% and 4% remaining), so you do not have to worry about damaging the battery by draining it dry.

2. Some devices cannot charge the Evo any better than they can charge an iPad.  plugged into my laptop while powered off, to charge my cell phone it took over 6 hours, but when plugged into the wall outlet it took 2 hours and 15 minutes.  Also, one time I was using an app that required wifi and gps, I also had auto-brightness on, was plugged into the laptop via usb, and used my phone for about 2 hours constant with those settings.  Well, the battery went from 33% when I started to 28% when I stopped, so the phone can actually use more power than some USB ports can provide!

3. The charge light changing from orange to green does not mean the battery is full.  I have noticed that unplugging the phone and turning the display on (or powering the phone on) within 10 minutes of the light changing to green, the Evo will display 91% or 92% battery charge!?!  I have noticed someplaces stating that you need to continue to charge the battery for approximately 2 hours to obtain 100% battery life, after the charge light changes to green.

4. 3 times now the Evo has not given me a keyboard when I touched a place that required me to type, and sometimes exiting out of the app and returning did not fix the issue.  Additionally in the game RoboDefense when returning to the game after reading a text message, the game stated that it successfully restored the game, but the play/pause and fast forward buttons would not appear, and while I could scroll left to right, I could not scroll up and down.  The menu button worked however and I was able to “save and quit” then when I returned to the game, all was working again.  I believe these issues to all be related to one another.

5. One time, actually while I was writing all this over the weekend, when I turned the display on, my background was there, and the notification bar was at the top of the screen, but I never got an unlock bar to slide down.  Multiple attempts never provided the bar, I finally had to remove the battery from the phone to power it off, then it worked just fine.

6. I have installed an app called “My Lookout” that is an antivirus, anti-spyware (apps only), backup manager, and remote phone locator (vey cool, you can make it blast out a siren if your phone was stolen) application.  When this is scanning an app I have installed (or upgraded) the phone runs at about 20% performance of normal (I checked with the app System Panel and the CPU is only running at 54%, so I do not know why it is doing this, maybe it is maxing out the IO capabilities of the flash memory), not sure if this is a good trade off, since I don’t install apps from places other than the android market.

7. The phone does not do a very good job determining if you need the “web” keyboard (the one with the “@” symbol and the “.com” button) or the standard keyboard, it also fails to automatically show the #’s keyboard when you click on phone number fields.  I have gotten entry into the SWYPE keyboard beta, and while it does not have a “web keyboard” (or at least I have not seen it), it is absolutely fantastic, I LOVE IT, and will never get rid of it!! I can type almost twice as fast on my phone with it!

8. If you speak clearly and not too fast, the voice to text feature works perfectly as long as all the words are in the spell checker (this includes user defined words thankfully).

9. The HTC sense UI does NOT rotate into landscape mode, something I do not understand, as my HTC Touch, which uses the first version of HTC Sense UI, works great in landscape mode, in fact I went at least the last 9 months without ever switching it into portrait mode.

10. The dumbest thing about the phone is the search button on the bottom right hand corner of the screen, this is a touch sensitive button, like the rest of the buttons on the bottom of the screen, and I hit it by accident at least 8 times a day.  This initiates a search everything screen in some apps and a Voice-to-Text search most of the time, no matter what else you are doing, pulling you out of any app to do so.  A friend of mine who also bought the Evo told me he has never had this problem, he also told me he never uses his phone in landscape mode…

11. Yesterday I had the first instance of my phone randomly rebooting itself

12. Today I had an issue where my phone refused to go to my home screen when I pressed home, instead it went to a very clean interface only allowing my to choose from 6 options, mostly make a phone call or use navigation choices, only by hitting the menu button and changing the settings of the app I was able to get out of it. apparently it is some kind of a lockdown system to prevent you from doing things you shouldn’t while driving.  Except it activated when I plugged my phone into a wall charger…  I have since turned that off of automatically activating; however hitting the Home button still does nothing but “refresh” whatever screen I am currently looking at…

Next up, “Let’s talk about the Evo 4G camera…”

(ok, just direct FTP’d 14 pics and videos from my phone to my website using AndFTP app for Android, I got the stats on 3 files for you…)

1.  a 2.0 MB picture

in 22 seconds transfer time

with a 3 second setup time

peak transfer rate of 86.4MB/s

2. a 13.6MB video

in 1 min 34 seconds total

with a peak transfer rate of 91.3KB/s

3. a 41.9MB video

in 8 mins 7 seconds total

with a peak transfer rate of 87.5KB/s

All files uploaded on 3G with a full 6 bars of signal, with a max data upload rate of 92.4KB/s

(I had a hard time adding the images to this post, I kept getting errors adding them to the wordpress gallery and had to manually link to them)

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