I posted about the press release and kick-off event for the HTC Diamond this morning and after looking at some more of the videos and having the opportunity to find out more about the Diamond from a call with Jason B. Mackenzie, Executive Director, National Accounts, I think HTC has a potential big winner here. The UI is absolutely amazing and takes what you see on the latest HTC Touch to a new level that should appeal to many people looking for a rich experience from their mobile device. I was thinking about saving up for the 3G iPhone, but I think the HTC Diamond may have just knocked down the iPhone a bit for several reasons.
The HTC Diamond still has Windows Mobile at its core, 6.1 Professional this time, so it fully supports all of those great enterprise and consumer features I want from a device, such as Bluetooth keyboard and A2DP support, 3rd party application support, internet sharing with a laptop, standard USB to miniUSB charging support, video capture, cut/copy/paste, and more. With Windows Mobile at its core and HTC UI improvements and applications running on top of that the experience should be awesome.
I found out that the navigational pad on the device is actually touch sensitive so it adds functionality to the device. For example, when you are taking a photo with the 3.2 megapixel camera (I can't wait to see how this performs) placing your finger on the navigational pad auto-focuses the camera to help take clear shots. You can also use this touch sensitive navigational pad for scrolling in web pages and more.
I also learned that HTC has been working in collaberation with Opera to create a web browser that is Opera powered and HTC enabled so that should blow the socks off of any browser we have seen on a Windows Mobile device to date. I am very curious to see how it stacks up to the iPhone browser, but if you can select text, cut/copy/paste, and perform other functions seen in the Opera Mobile browser then it beats the iPhone Safari browser in my book.
I primarily use the T-Mobile Shadow as my Windows Mobile device and enjoy interacting with the Neo interface. It sounds like the HTC Diamond takes that to the next level and more with the ability to work with your email and text messages right from the Home screen without ever getting into the Windows Mobile Messaging application.
I can't wait to hold the device and feel how it stacks up to other devices I have, but the dimensions and images make it seem like it will be very pocketable. I see it also has a stainless steel frame so it should be rock solid. The angles on the back seem stylish and I think this is something to be seen in person to appreciate. Even the slick desktop cradle looks like a museum piece. The ability to carry all of this power in my shirt pocket impresses me and again, I cannot wait to try out this device.
I hope the device ends up coming to T-Mobile USA with 3G support, but know it should at least come to AT&T (and most likely Sprint and Verizon too). The only thing that curbs my enthusiasm is that I will have to wait a while for the U.S. version to hit the streets and would have loved to have seen HTC kick this device off here in the U.S. I suppose we have our regulatory system and wireless carriers to thank for the delay.