TODO alt text

HTC Wildfire S review

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

HTC Wildfire S review: Verdict

HTC wildfire s review

The HTC Wildfire S is a solid, charming little phone, ideal for those making their first steps into the smartphone world. Experienced Android users won't be impressed by its average web performance and lack of gaming power, but those who don't mind the odd glitch will love its staggering collection of social features.

We liked

The physical form of the phone itself is good. It feels well made, HTC's rubberised back is nice in the hand and the screen feels solid. The capacitive menu buttons are very responsive too.

The updated HTC Sense 2.1 UI is another fantastic effort from HTC. Some of its widgets are a little bland-looking, but the functionality you get from having both Android 2.3 and HTC Sense is peerless.

HTC's contacts system is immensely impressive. A variety of Home screen widgets and easy customisation make it simple to invent your own one-click messaging powerhouse.

We disliked

Being limited to 640x480 video recording is a little disappointing, especially when many other smartphones with similar 5MP cameras manage 720p video capture with no trouble.

Also, the phone struggles to actually record. The digital zoom, while nice to have on occasion, is rendered useless by the lag.

The 600MHz processor does struggle to keep things running smoothly elsewhere, especially when using the web and gaming. Angry Birds is a bit jerky, which is an enormous crime in this day and age.

Verdict

The HTC Wildfire S is a solid and well-featured phone, no doubt about that, but the poor little thing struggles to render some web pages and isn't exactly future-proof in this fast-moving mobile world.

Yes, you get Android 2.3 and all the many joys of HTC Sense, but without Flash Player support and with a processor that would've been considered slow in 2010, it's hard to find a place in 2011's vibrant, multicultural smartphone scene for the HTC Wildfire S.

For only a few quid more – about an extra £3 per month on monthly tariffs – you could get the vastly more impressive HTC Desire S instead, which features much the same software running on significantly more capable hardware.

Or for much less money you could pick up a PAYG model such as the Orange San Francisco, the LG Optimus One or the Samsung Galaxy Ace.

Sadly for HTC, there are many cheaper options available to those looking for their first smartphone right now.

The only ace up the sleeve of the Wildfire S is its arrival to running Android 2.3, which simply isn't enough to warrant the extra money.

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
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 3.0
Operating System VersionAndroid 2.3 Gingerbread
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Height101.3 mm
Width59.4 mm
Depth12.4 mm
Radio TunerYes
Battery Standby Time360 Hour
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.