While the HTC has been known for its flagship phones, many might not be aware of the fact that HTC doesn’t necessarily compromise on the quality built of their devices. And the successor to the desire 816, is the Desire 820. We have been testing this device since past weeks, and here’s our review of the same.
First talking about the design on Desire 820. HTC has taken some design aesthetics from the spiritual successor Desire 816. But it’s been improved pretty much in the overall design. Though, it’s still made of polycarbonate glossy material and round corners, and sides. But this time around the device is completely Unibody, as well as a lot thinner. Whether it is plastic or metal, HTC has proven to build quality phones over the time. And they have done it again with the desire 820. However, it does feel slippery solid, but it also feel lightweight for big screen device with large bezels.
My favorite part about the design is its accent colors, which makes it stand out from the crowd. Talking about the edges, the volume is choked up to high for a single-handed usage while the power placement was much-needed improvement done by HTC. Everything is usually placed; 3.5mm jack is at top, microUSB port at bottom and a single plastic flap on the left side that houses a single microSD and two SIM slots. This won’t be an HTC device if it does not have front facing Boomsound speakers. And there are absolutely no surprises here; they sound extremely good.
Between those two speakers is the 5.5.-inch display, coming in a 720p resolution. Though, it might not be the sharpest thing in the world, with resolution being spread in 5.5-inch screen. But HTC does know how to make a good display panel regardless of the display resolution. And here 820’s display is as good as it can be on a 720p display. With a nice amount of brightness, natural color, and solid outdoor visibility, it might not be the highest-end panel out there. But it still every enjoyable to use, especially for games and videos.
Inside the Desire 820 the work starts to get interesting, as it is powered by the new 64-bit Snapdragon processor from Qualcomm, which is an Octa-core chip. While it is still running the 32-bit software, you still have the comfort to know that if and when the Android Lollipop update arrives, then your phone will have the hardware to take advantage of the major upgrade. The performance right now stands as a very snappy and responsive.
Considering this is a mid-range phone, for that the experience is pretty high-end. So, whether it is doing something as simple as opening an app or doing multitasking and playing high-end game, the Desire 820 handles everything pretty neat, without causing a much of the problem. As far as the battery life is concerned you are looking at the 2600mAh battery. I would say that battery life is quite good, but nothing spectacular, as I was getting around 12-15 hours of charging. So, it’s definitely enough to get you through full day, but wouldn’t expect it more than that.
Taking a look at the software, you are looking at Android 4.4.4 Kitkat with Sense 6.0 on top of it. And if you are familiar with HTC’s UI, you find your way around quickly, as the experience hasn’t changed all that much. And that’s why it is still a fan favorite. Best part about sense is that it brings all the enhancements to Android, while still maintain a smooth and snappy experience, which is something you can’t say about other Android interfaces.
With the camera on Desire, you are looking at the 13MP sensor with LED flash. And the camera interface hasn’t changed much from previous HTC devices, which is a simple and cleaner interface. You can control, ISO, white balance, exposure and all the usual stuff you might expect. There are couple of new modes now like a split capture that lets you take photos front the front and back camera at a time. As well as a photo booth mode, which lets you take several photos and compile them together just like the real photo booth photos.
With 13MP sensor you can take pretty good photos in the natural sufficient light conditions. But more often the exposure and white balance will usually be way off, causing a lot of details to be lost. HDR however does eliminate the issue to some extent. Though, it doesn’t get much better in low-light, resulting in a lot of noise. It is virtually impossible to take useful photos in dim-light conditions. The front-facing camera is worth mentioning simply because it has a high-resolution 8MP module. So, if you are into selfies, you can take a lot of advantage from the photo booth and split capture feature that I mentioned earlier.
There are no particular things that I didn’t like about Desire 820, but the device does get heat up more than usual while playing games, and that’s all thanks to the 64-bit chipset. And as well as the glossy design goes, the smudge and fingerprints were left all the time on its back panel.
Coming down to the verdict, the device is a great catch for the HTC fans, Even though, company supposedly placing it in mid-range, we are not sure why. With great build quality at the price tag of around INR 21,000, this will be the as closest it gets to have a high-end specs under a mid-range price point.