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HTC Explorer review

Budget Android smartphone that looks good - apart from the touchscreen

Our Verdict

With its intuitive operating system skin, the HTC Explorer would make an excellent first smartphone.

Product features

  • Built-in Memory : 512 MB
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 3 Megapixel
  • Battery Talk Time : 7.66 Hour
  • Screen Resolution : 480 x 320

View full specification

For

  • Fluid user interface
  • Sturdy construction
  • Strong web browser
  • Responsive display

Against

  • Low quality 3.15MP camera
  • Small, grainy screen
  • Occasional lag
  • No boxed headphones

As with the large majority of Android-filled handsets, no matter which company's user interface they are overlaid with, the HTC Explorer's contacts storage system is a very simplistic affair with a well labelled, intuitively laid out entry form enabling you to input new contacts with zero fuss, faff or fiddliness.

As always, contacts are easily accessible via a dedicated app icon found in the handset's centralised app menu. Strangely, HTC has opted to label its contacts app 'People', a choice that while marginally confusing at first is quickly forgotten, with the rudimentary icon image of a contacts card helping out.

HTC Explorer review

With a simple, and classic, alphabetical layout, the contacts aspect of the HTC Explorer is similar to a number of its similarly priced rivals, with the full collection of personal details just a simple click away. While social networking features aren't integrated directly into the handset's contacts service, instant messaging handles can be stored for improved methods of communication between friends, family and colleagues.

Helping further distinguish these set contact types, you can opt to group your acquaintances in a simplistic fashion, with the HTC Explorer's customised and individually named groups offering rapid access to select contacts at will - a feature that proves useful on occasion.

Despite the hearty number of new performance enhancing and user engaging features, such as an integrated camera and the wide selection of app-based games, where performance really counts for any smartphone is its ability to make and receive calls.

HTC Explorer review

Now quite an antiquated means of communication, the calling features of the HTC Explorer do not fall beneath those of the handset's closest rivals, although this isn't to say they are the perfect combination of signal strength and in-call clarity.

As with many smartphones, calling is an area that appears to have been overlooked in terms of quality results, with calls often sounding slightly muffled with a distinct lack of defined clarity causing a certain level of annoyance.

Although we suffered no dropped calls during our time with the HTC Explorer, the service provided wasn't reassuring enough to put us at ease when using the handset, even in areas of strong signal.

What's more, with the standard dialling options lacking any additional bells and whistles, the handset's calling options are further diminished by answer and end call buttons that prove sluggish - an issue that although it didn't cause us to miss any calls proved an irritable flaw that continues to annoy and infuriate far beyond the first use.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Contract TypeSIM-free
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported32 GB
Built-in Memory512 MB
Built-in FlashNo
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA, HSUPA
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationNo
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyExplorer
Cellular Generation3G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 2100
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution3 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraNo
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
ColourBlack
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameHTC
Battery Talk Time7.66 Hour
Screen Size8.1 cm (3.2")
Screen Resolution480 x 320
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)108 g
Maximum Video Resolution720 x 480
Processor ManufacturerQualcomm
Operating System VersionAndroid 2.3 Gingerbread
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
RealtoneYes
Radio Tuner TypeFM
Call FeaturesCall Log, Caller ID, Call Barring, Call Waiting, Smart Dialing, Fixed Dialing, Call Forwarding, Conference Call
Pixel Density180 ppi
Height102.8 mm
Width57.2 mm
Depth12.9 mm
Radio TunerYes
ManufacturerHigh Tech Computer Corp
Product NameExplorer Smartphone
Processor Speed600 MHz
Processor TypeSnapdragon
Product LineExplorer
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeG-sensor, Accelerometer, Proximity Sensor, Ambient Light Sensor
Manufacturer Part Number99HNZ004-00
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.europe.htc.com
Marketing Information

Intuitive, easy to use lockscreen and homescreen

With HTC Explorer we've put what's most important to you right at your fingertips. The lockscreen lets you access your contacts, mail, camera, and messages in one swipe even when your phone is locked. And to make things convenient for you, HTC Explorer offers an intuitive, clean homescreen design that focuses on the most frequently used features and notifies you when you've received an email or text message or have a calendar event.

Package Contents
  • Explorer Smartphone
  • Battery
  • USB Cable
  • Power Adapter
  • Safety and Regulatory Guide
Limited Warranty1 Year