2nd impressions of the HTC Touch Dual

I have been using a Windows Mobile Smartphone (the T-Mobile Dash and then Shadow) or a Nokia N95-1 as my main device for the last year and was getting along just fine. A few years ago when I first started using converged devices, I was using Phone Edition devices like the MDA II and i-mate JAM. As a power user, the touch screen devices give you more options in terms of functionality and software, but I haven't found one that I really wanted to carry with me all day long due to the size or performance. I also thought I needed a device with everything, but the kitchen sink thrown in. However, after using the HTC Touch Dual for a couple of weeks (with no WiFi or US 3G support) I discovered that I rarely need to use some of the wireless options and can get 90% done what I want with a simple wireless data connection and solid Bluetooth stack.

I posted my first impressions of the HTC Touch Dual back on 1 December and only had a Nokia N95 to take video of the device in action. I have now been using the Touch Dual as my primary device for a couple of weeks and took an updated video below using a dedicated digital camcorder so you can get a better feel for the device.

I have been using a Windows Mobile Smartphone (the T-Mobile Dash and then Shadow) or a Nokia N95-1 as my main device for the last year and was getting along just fine. A few years ago when I first started using converged devices, I was using Phone Edition devices like the MDA II and i-mate JAM. As a power user, the touch screen devices give you more options in terms of functionality and software, but I haven't found one that I really wanted to carry with me all day long due to the size or performance. I also thought I needed a device with everything, but the kitchen sink thrown in. However, after using the HTC Touch Dual for a couple of weeks (with no WiFi or US 3G support) I discovered that I rarely need to use some of the wireless options and can get 90% done what I want with a simple wireless data connection and solid Bluetooth stack.

After I shot my first impressions video I actually went back to the Shadow for a couple of days because I really like using the SureType keyboard and am quite fast with it and I was getting a bit frustrated with the keypad on the Touch Dual. There still seems to be a bug/annoyance on the Touch Dual where the default input method changes back to ABC instead of staying in T9 mode all the time like I want it to and this does require an extra button press. I suppose I could try out the SureType 20-key version of the Touch Dual, but then you do lose the 4 extra hardware buttons (Start, Email, Back, and Internet Explorer) that I use ALL the time so I just need to get T9 working consistently.

I get a very good T-Mobile data and voice signal everywhere I am locally and find that I only use WiFi at my house, but that it is not critical for a mobile device for my usage patterns. I have also been using EDGE for wireless data and haven't been too spoiled by 3G yet (some day please T-Mobile) so EDGE connectivity has been fine for me to get my emails, sync to my hosted Exchange account and surf primarily in Google Reader. Battery life has been very good on the Touch Dual (at least a full day with pretty heavy usage). The solid construction and slim form factor are OUTSTANDING and it is a truly pocketable Windows Mobile 6 Professional device. The TouchFLO works a thousand times better than when I tried it on the original Touch and the quick dialing/shortcut page makes calling someone on a touch screen device an easy experience. I also like the HTC Home screen plugin that provides profiles, which is something that most Professional devices do not have.

I'll post more extensive thoughts on my usage and the device's performance in the future, but for now the HTC Touch Dual is my primary device.

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