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HTC Wildfire S review

HTC's latest Android phone is nice and small, but does it offer too little?

Our Verdict

A rare off moment from HTC. If this was £99 it'd be a formidable entry-level Android phone, but for over £200 the Wildfire S is lacking compared with the competition.

Product features

  • Built-in Memory : 512 MB
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 5 Megapixel
  • Battery Talk Time : 7.16 Hour
  • Screen Resolution : 480 x 320

View full specification

For

  • Solid and durable body
  • Great features on HTC Sense 2.1
  • Responsive capacitive touchscreen
  • Fairly decent still shots

Against

  • Under-powered processor
  • Disappointing video recording
  • No DivX/Xvid video playback
  • Too expensive for what's on offer

HTC Wildfire S review: Maps and apps

Being an Android phone means you get the finest free sat nav tool in existence bundled in with your phone – Google Maps.

HTC wildfire s review

The Wildfire S is exceptionally quick to connect to a GPS satellite, taking only a few seconds to get a location. Once it knows where you are, the Navigation tool is a fully-featured sat nav, complete with voice directions.

Obviously you get the official Gmail app along with Google's Latitude and Places toys, plus HTC has put on a couple of competing choices of its own.

Apps

HTC wildfire s review

HTC Likes is the company's own app recommendation engine, which features a selection of apps pulled from the Android Market, with votes generated from HTC users.

It's a rather unnecessary duplication of the Android Market that's surely going to end up simply confusing people – especially as following the "install" option takes you to the Android Market.

HTC wildfire s review

You also have access to more widgets via the HTC Hub, which includes many less thrilling HTC Sense tools. One we like very much is the Bookmark Widget, which adds a list of your bookmarks to the Home screen for easy launching of sites.

HTC wildfire s review

HTC has fiddled with the Android Market page for this phone. The usual My Apps tab has been replaced by an HTC icon, which takes you to an off-putting and seemingly random collection of paid-for apps that, presumably, someone somewhere has paid HTC to try to sell to its users.

The My Apps tab is now hidden behind the Menu button, making it slightly less convenient to access and manage your software.

That said, the Android Market itself has improved massively in the year since the first HTC Wildfire launched. Android users can now install apps via the web, and there's a huge amount of free and paid content out there.

But can it play Angry Birds?

HTC wildfire s review

Yes, just about. It's usually quite smooth, although as the levels increase in complexity so the number of jerky moments does too. If the only reason you want a new telephone is to play Angry Birds, don't get the Wildfire S.

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 FlashYes
Memory Card SlotYes
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
Rear Camera Resolution5 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraNo
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
ColourDark Grey
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameHTC
Battery Talk Time7.16 Hour
Product ModelWildfire S
Screen Size8.1 cm (3.2")
Screen Resolution480 x 320
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)105 g
Maximum Video Resolution640 x 480
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, Call Timer, Conference Call
Height101.3 mm
Width59.4 mm
Depth12.4 mm
Radio TunerYes
ManufacturerHigh Tech Computer Corp
Product NameWildfire S Smartphone
Processor Speed600 MHz
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeG-sensor, Digital Compass, Proximity Sensor, Ambient Light Sensor, Accelerometer
Manufacturer Part Number99HMM152-00
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.europe.htc.com
Marketing Information

Surf in style

Your HTC Wildfire S knows that the online world, is your world. Being offline is not an option. With the HTC Wildfire S, surfing the web is easy. Enjoy multi-window browsing, watch text resize automatically on screen as you zoom in and out, and simply highlight text to quickly look up what you're reading about on Google, Wikipedia or YouTube. You're as connected on the move as you are at home.

Snap, tag and share

Whether it's a photo you've snapped with your HTC Wildfire S camera, or one you've received, it's easy to share it on Facebook and other social networks. Select any photo you want on your phone, upload it and tag it for all your friends to see.

Share apps in a snap

The Android market has over 100 thousand of the latest applications, games and tools that you can download straight to your phone and easily share with your friends. So you can fill your phone and your life with everything you love.