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HTC Radar review

Could the Titan's little brother bring Mango to the masses?

Our Verdict

Product features

  • Built-in Memory : 8 GB
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 5 Megapixel
  • Battery Talk Time : 10 Hour
  • Screen Resolution : 480 x 800

View full specification

For

  • Great, quality build
  • Loud speakerphone
  • Contacts integration is top-notch
  • Keyboard is fantastic
  • Browser is great and text looks clear

Against

  • Battery isn't removable and storage isn't expandable
  • Voice search shown up now we have Siri
  • Too many quirks with camera options for comfort
  • Sharing videos is painful
  • Very little skinning and customisation allowed other than Windows' offerings

The HTC Radar is the latest smartphone to run Windows Phone 7.5, following on from the HTC Titan. With a smooth unibody design, HD video recording and 5MP camera, will it be enough to make Windows Phone a success?

If HTC was at school right now, you can't help feeling it'd be getting an A for effort. The Taiwanese manufacturer is certainly churning out handsets like nobody's business.

For the last few years, it's been concentrating mainly on Android - but now Windows Phone 7.5 Mango is here, it's going for gold. Probably much to the annoyance of Nokia, which adopted WP as its main operating system months ago, but is still being pipped to the post by HTC when it comes to getting handsets on the shelves.

Little brother of the HTC Titan and the second handset from HTC to run Windows Phone 7.5 (or Mango to its friends), the HTC Radar is a solid little handset. It's crafted from a single piece of metal and has enough weight at 137g to make it feel like it means business without giving your biceps a workout.

HTC radar

To look at it, the dull aluminium fascia, the size (120.5mm x 61.5mm x 10.9mm) and even the slight dip at the bottom immediately puts us in mind of a Google Nexus One (which HTC manufactured almost two years ago). But, obviously, there's no trackball here, with the HTC Radar relying on the compulsory three Windows Phone 7.5 soft keys on the front.

HTC radar

The back holds that 5MP camera, LED light and speaker, while there's very little around the edges to write home about. There's a power and headphone jack up top, micro USB slot on the left and volume rocker and camera button on the right.

HTC radar

To open the HTC Radar, you slide the bottom down to reveal a little section that invites you to insert a SIM card. Strangely, the HTC Radar seems to restart if you do this - even though you're not interrupting the power supply.

HTC radar

There's no space for a microSD card because HTC has, just like it did for the Titan, decided to stifle this handset, enabling you to only use the onboard memory. With 8GB storage (just 6.54GB of which is available to the user, once the operating system has taken its share), it really does beggar belief.

HTC radar review

For those who like their photos, music and videos in one place, it makes the HTC Radar instantly less attractive compared to the various crop of Android devices out there such as the stunning Samsung Galaxy S2 and, of course, the iPhone 4 or iPhone 4S.

HTC radar review

Another handicap is the lack of removable battery. You can't access it at all, and although there always seems to be someone about in the office who you can nick an iPhone charger off, there are likely to be fewer carrying around micro USB cables. So, as an HTC Radar owner, that task may fall at your feet.

HTC radar

If we were to pit the HTC Radar against other handsets on the market right now, we'd have to say we think it's up there with the BlackBerry Curve 9360 in terms of its professional abilities. The memory is on a par with Apple's most basic offering, the iPhone 3GS, while we can't help thinking that (apart from the colour), the HTC Radar looks identical to the Android-toting HTC Rhyme, which it certainly matches up against for the majority of its internal workings.

You can buy one SIM-free for around £340, which isn't too bad a price - it's certainly much cheaper than its big brother, the Titan, which is nearer the £500 mark. You can pick one up for free on contract, providing you're willing to part with around £25 a month and sign the next two years of your life away.

HTC radar review

It also appears to be available in two colours - all publicity shots show the handset in white. However, our review unit was grey and black, and although sites such as Carphone Warehouse show the white version on their page, they also state that it's only on their systems in grey. It may very well depend on where in the world you purchase it.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Contract TypeSIM-free
Built-in Memory8 GB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotNo
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA, HSUPA
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationNo
Integrated TV TunerNo
Cellular Generation3.5G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 2100
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution5 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraYes
Phone StyleBar
ColourMetal Gray
Operating SystemWindows Mobile
Brand NameHTC
Battery Talk Time10 Hour
Product ModelRadar
Screen Size9.7 cm (3.8")
Screen Resolution480 x 800
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)13 g
Maximum Video Resolution1280 x 720
Processor ManufacturerQualcomm
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 2.1
Operating System VersionWindows Phone 7.5
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Pixel Density246 ppi
Height120.5 mm
Width61.5 mm
Depth10.9 mm
Radio TunerYes
Battery Standby Time480 Hour
ManufacturerHigh Tech Computer Corp
Product NameRadar Smartphone
Processor Speed1 GHz
Processor TypeSnapdragon
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeG-sensor, Gyro Sensor, Accelerometer, Digital Compass, Proximity Sensor, Ambient Light Sensor
Manufacturer Part Number99HPF002-00
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.europe.htc.com
Marketing Information

Real-time close

The HTC Radar is the intuitive phone that keeps it all on your radar and lets you get real-time close...with everything. Crafted from a single piece of metal, it offers a premium design. With People Hub, pull together your contacts and social networks into one place, so you can easily follow them and stay connected. The lively 5 megapixel camera with an F2.2 lens, LED Flash and BSI Sensor lets you capture life's memorable moments to share instantly with your friends.

Limited Warranty1 Year