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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: Media

The technical specs of the HTC Wildfire S state the phone is able to play 3GP, 3G2, MP4 and WMV video files, with audio support for AAC, AMR, OGG, M4A, MOD, MP3, WAV and WMA music files.

HTC wildfire s

In reality, this means most mainstream, paid-for video downloads will play, but there's no joy for those of you hoping to play any of the more popular AVI or MKV video formats.

The Android video player is always something of a disappointment, offering nothing more than the option to play/pause, skip through the clip and toggle between a zoomed-in full-screen view and a bordered original scale.

HTC wildfire s

The music player is rather standard too, letting you sort tracks on SD card by artist, album, playlist or a massive list of everything. There are no affiliated shopping systems on here, so if you want to buy music directly through the phone, you'll need a standalone app.

HTC wildfire s

HTC supplies a full-page app for playing music, although there's not much use in it. It plays and pauses and lets you skip tracks, but that's all. Pressing the album art opens up the main player. There are no lock screen audio controls, either.

Of course, being a Google-powered phone means you get the official YouTube app on here. The HTC Wildfire S handles this with ease, even supporting direct uploads of your own video recordings from within the player.

HTC wildfire s

HTC has also stuck in an FM radio, which comes with plenty of customisable presets. It's possible to route the sound through the speaker, although it still requires the headphones to be plugged in to act as an antenna.

Sound quality through the onboard speaker is good, lacking bass as ever, but sharp enough. HTC's headphones are simple in-ear bud things, with one button – Play and pause – on the cord. They do a good job.

There's not much in the way of onboard storage space for downloaded applications, sadly. Just installing a few essentials took us up to 60MB of used memory, with only another 90MB free. If you plan on playing some of the bigger games, memory space is going to be an issue with the Wildfire S, no doubt about it.

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.