HTC Desire gets Android 2.2 (Froyo)

Well, it finally happened, Google Nexus One users can stop spiting those who thought the HTC skin was worth it more, 2.2 is on the Desire.
Now before you read through this more, just to let you know, this is not a Froyo based blog, this is about the HTC Desire and notable changes to the Desire after the 2.2 update.

One thing I do like about Android has to be the fact you can literally get an Android device and never touch acomputer, something the iPhone still lacks. When an update is available you get a prompt and the two options to download using your 3G connection, in which will switch to Wi-Fi as soon as a network is detected, or Wi-Fi only which is obviously recommended for such tasks. I actually recommend leaving the phone for a while as you can’t really trust percentage bars, well especially when its the first of about 5 you see throughout the process, then the multiple restarts, its definitely something to do whilst your occupied with something else.

HTC Desire + Froyo = New Features, ooo goodie!!!
Remember when HTC was announcing the Desire they said it would have HD video recording after “an update”, well that update has arrived, more on that in a minute, but their is of course all of 2.2s features as well to add to the table, but more things have been added and below are the notable additions to the Desire.

Adobe Flash 10
Adobe Flash was already on the HTC Desire with 2.1 (Eclair) as part of HTC Sense with Adobe Flash Lite, but now its the full version. Still not convinced, Flash is still very sluggish, if its video its barely watchable, games are impossible. Put it this way, if I was Apple, I’d reject it. But, for adverts, small little website widgets its fine. And of course some sites are completely Flash based, didn’t visit many, but it handles them quite well. But to say theDesire has a 1GHz SnapDragon processor and Flash is performing like this, Adobe need to still do some more work.

HD 720P Video Recording Option!
It had the hardware to do it and now it can. The HTC Desire can indeed now record video in 720P, options include;
320×240 (QVGA)
352×288 (CIF)
640×480 (VGA)
800×480 (WVGA)
1280×720 (720HD)
However, HD is only available in MPEG4 option and not in either H.264 or H.263 options, something which is ratherconfusing when the resulting file is in .3gp but we won’t judge.
Quality: Now, with many phones out their with HD video recording including HTCs EVO 4G which was rather disappointing to be honest, and the great quality from the iPhone 4, lets see what the Desire can do. Well, to be honest its about exactly the same as the HTC EVO 4G when it comes to quality, which is great news for Desiresales as 4G is not available in the UK and people were only getting the EVO because of its HD recording, and maybe for its larger stupid-in-the-pocket-looking size. The quality of images is rather jerky, not the best frame-rate, definitely not 30fps, and audio is still terrible, so yes HD is nice but delivery is not enough to get excited about. Although we’re thankful that Videos now have their own program rather than oddly tapping Photos to get to your Videos which was just stupid.

Added Apps
We mentioned Videos is now added to the collection, which is far better than mixing it all into Photos, if you’re going to do that you’d call it ‘Media’ wouldn’t you, oh well.
App Sharing
A simple to use application that allows you to share certain open apps with other Android owners, haven’t really looked in to this, but seems a bit profitless for developers.
A very simple app with quite a nice interface that displays a HTC branded Torch on display and if you touch the button on the torch you can chose from three bright options, quite useful to have really, rather than most apps that display white on the display.
News and Weather
The News and Weather app is another HTC bundled app, on first launch it will track your location, you can add a Weather location, look in the top stories, and news from your location. Or if you keep dragging to the right you will find Sports and Entertainment. Not bad, but nothing special, there’s probably better in the Market, but nice to have pre-loaded. An additional widget is available for this app.
Wi-Fi Hotspot
This kinda speaks for itself. The Wi-Fi Hotspot app uses your phones connection to the 3G, EDGE or GSM network and sends it out as a Wi-Fi signal that up to 5 devices can pick up, whether your Computer, an iPod Touch etc. Not bad, but check your data plans first.

App Changes
-Photos is now called ‘Gallery’, videos obviously are in the Videos app.
-Messages has had some changes making it easier to send an MMS with two options on the right, one to send to multiple people, and another as a paper-clip to add Photos, Music, Contact Info, Calendar, etc.

Summary/Overview/Whatever you want to call it.
Getting Froyo on the Desire is something that should have happened when the Nexus got it, I still fail to see whyAndroid phones need to have such a wait for updates, of course we don’t know everything behind that. The update process was lengthy but without a computer which I liked. The update makes the phone that extra bit better, which for any phone can only be a good thing, fixes bugs, performance seems better as well. 720P video is nice, but let down by .3gp only format and the quite frankly terrible microphone in the Desire, just like the EVO the sound is terrible and delivered frame-rates let it down.
Nice update, should have come earlier.

If you have an HTC Desire and haven’t got the update pop-up you can manually get it by going to All Apps by pressing the bottom left arrow on homescreen, then Settings, scroll to About Phone, then System software updates, then Check Now.


Published by R-Tech

R-Tech is the source of all the latest Technology posts on RKUK Media.

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