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Dec 19 2011

Review: HTC Rhyme, The Ultimate Feminine Phone

Adam Shear

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Many smartphone manufacturers today are focusing not just on power and software, but also style. Phones have to look just as good as they perform. HTC mainly focused on style when it comes to the HTC Rhyme. The phone just looks so nice, mostly because of its unibody design. While the HTC Rhyme may look good, does it have enough to stand out amongst its competition? Find out in my review.

The Hardware

On the outside, the HTC Rhyme is one of the best looking Android phones on the market. Its purple color and unibody design make it stand out. The Rhyme feels good in the hand and is not thick or heavy at all. In fact, the Rhyme is so light that I thought it had no battery inside when I first held it. Not only is the phone purple but it comes with a purple charm which plugs into the headphone jack and lights up when you receive a call or notification. I really could not figure out the significance of the charm but girls certainly will know their way around it. In terms of the look and feel of the device, the only major problem I had was that it sometimes overheated. There were a few times where I was streaming music on 3G data and that phone felt very hot afterwards. Phones do get hot after a lot of usage but this was definitely hotter than normal.

In the case of its internals, the HTC Rhyme unfortunately does not impress. For a $200 phone, it has only a 1 GHz single core processor. I can name so many phones at the same price that are more than twice as fast as the HTC Rhyme. This is pretty unacceptable. The speed difference is very noticeable, enough to say that Android phones really do need dual core processors to be decent phones. At least it has a decent amount of RAM at 768 mb. The amount of storage you get is also fine which is 4 GB of internal memory as well as 8 GB included on the micro SD card that came inside. The Rhyme’s battery at 1600 mAh actually was fairly great. I was able to get up to four hours of streaming music over 3G and the phone easily lasted a full day of moderate to heavy usage. The screen size at 3.7 inches is only small when being compared to other Android phones on the market. In general the screen is a nice size but the screen’s resolution is fairly low at 480 X 800 pixels. Phones half the price of the Rhyme has higher resolution screens. Just from what’s inside, it is clear that the HTC Rhyme is pretty overpriced for what one would actually get from any other phone with the same price tag.

The Service

Believe it or not, the HTC Rhyme is the first phone that I have ever reviewed on Verizon’s 3G network. I never used it before and I gotta say, the EVDO Rev.A technology is fairly decent. AT&T’s 3G network is still faster but Verizon’s service for the most part was on par with Sprint and maybe surpassing T-Mobile. The only difference with Verizon’s network was that I didn’t lose connection as much as I did for the other 3G networks. While in the Syracuse area, the other 3G networks were much better, Verizon was much more reliable than T-Mobile and Sprint and on par with AT&T everywhere else I went with the phone including areas in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and the New York metro area. I give two thumbs up to Verizon’s 3G network. I’d give more thumbs up to its incredible 4G LTE network as I’m using it now with the Galaxy Nexus but unfortunately the HTC Rhyme is only a 3G phone.

The Software

In terms of software, I have no complaints. I love HTC Sense and Gingerbread so if you have used any of those, you know exactly what to expect. Only real difference is that it comes with some more girly themes and wallpapers. My only complaint about software is that the single core 1 GHz processor limits what can be done on the phone and slows everything down. It’s clear that Android phones need dual core processors.

Final Thoughts

The HTC Rhyme is a pretty phone that feels great in the hand, but that’s all it really is. The HTC costs $200, probably double the price it should cost. There are so many other phones available on Verizon’s network at the same price that have more than twice the power and use Verizon’s amazing 4G LTE network. The Rhyme should be worth $100 at most. With so many better choices, I sadly cannot recommend the HTC Rhyme.

The Good

    • Pretty unibody design
    • Feels great in the hand
    • The charm is kind of cool if you’re into that thing
    • Runs HTC Sense and Gingerbread
    • Battery life is not pretty good

    The Bad

      • Overpriced
      • Underpowered with its single core processor
      • Overheats

      Final Score: 5.5/10

      Special thanks to Verizon for loaning TripTronicTech an HTC Rhyme for review.

      Nov 14 2011

      Review: HTC Flyer – This Thing Really Flies!

      Adam Shear

      Honeycomb seems to be all the rage these days when it comes to Android tablets.  Manufacturers are not even thinking about using Gingerbread, the same version of Android used on smartphones, for a tablet.  HTC thought different in this case with the HTC Flyer.  The original Samsung Galaxy Tab did the exact same thing before Honeycomb was even announced.  The one big difference with the Flyer is that it utilizes HTC Sense.   Is HTC Sense enough to make a tablet running phone software actually useful and enjoyable?  Find out in my review.

      Continue reading

      Nov 8 2011

      Barnes and Noble Unveils the New NOOK Tablet, Watch Out Amazon!

      Adam Shear

      Amazon may have introduced the Kindle Fire to the world, but Barnes and Noble looks to be competing head on with a similar product. Today, the book retailer introduced the newest version of the NOOK, the NOOK Tablet. So what makes the NOOK Tablet so special and unique? Like the Kindle Fire, the NOOK Tablet runs on an extremely modified version of Android 2.3 Gingerbread. The only major differences from the Kindle Fire are that it is .3 millimeters thicker, .5 ounces lighter, contains double the built in storage at 16 GB, double the RAM at 1GB, has a micro SD card slot, and a built in microphone. Barnes and Noble will also provide free customer support at their retail stores. Similarities include a beautiful 7 inch 1024 x 600 display and a powerful 1 GHz dual core processor.

      Having a completely modified operating system means you will not have access to all of the apps in the Android Marketplace. Barnes and Noble will be offering select Android apps in their NOOK Apps store, already available on the NOOK Color. For starters, the NOOK Tablet will come pre loaded with apps such as Netflix, Hulu Plus, Pandora, Chess, Crossword, Sudoku, Media Gallery, NOOK Friends, and an email application. You’ll get plenty of games such as Angry Birds and Scrabble, as well as Barnes and Noble’s large selection of books and magazines. The NOOK Tablet arrives on store shelves on November 18 for $249, just $50 more than the Kindle Fire.

      The NOOK Tablet looks like a pretty fine tablet for its asking price. Just like the Kindle Fire, it is more for media consumption than anything else but nonetheless, it is a great addition to the NOOK lineup. It’s up to the user to decide whether to get their apps and books through Amazon or Barnes and Noble. For some, this may be a tough choice but either way, you can’t go wrong.

      Source- [Barnes and Noble]

      Oct 26 2011

      Yo Dawg, I Heard You Needed A New Phone – The Exhibit II 4G From T-Mobile USA


      Well, the whole AT&T purchasing T-Mobile ordeal certainly isn’t stopping T-Mobile from dishing out new phones! In fact, it almost seems as though more phones started coming out after the whole ordeal was announced. Today, we’ve got another new phone for those of you on Magenta! T-Mobile and Samsung announced the Exhibit II 4G just a little while ago. While it’s not packing a dual core processor, it’s certainly no weak phone! It seems like a great option for those who want to experience a nice version of Android, nothing too extravagant. The Exhibit II 4G is sportin’ a a 3.7-inch WVGA TFT touchscreen, a 1 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, a VGA front facing camera, and a 3 megapixel camera on back, with flash, along with T-Mobile’s 4G (HSPA) network, on the latest Android OS, Gingerbread, running Samsung’s TouchWiz user interface. It comes in a marine blue color.

      You’ve several purchasing options for this phone; on a two year contract, this phone will run you a mere cost $29.99 after a $50 mail-in-rebate card, and $199.99 via no annual contract. It will be available at most Walmart stores starting Oct. 27, and it’s planned to be available nationwide at T-Mobile retail stores, online via and at select dealers beginning Nov. 2. Will you be picking one up? It’s certainly a great, affordable option!

      We’ll certainly be reviewing one and let you know how it is!

      Full PR after the bump! Continue reading

      Aug 22 2011

      Review: HTC EVO 3D, Entering the Third Dimension, Sort Of

      Adam Shear

      As the first 3D phone to hit the market, the HTC EVO 3D has a lot to live up to.  3D technology is new and people are definitely skeptical of it.  The EVO line from HTC and Sprint has been incredibly popular and aside from being the first 3D phone, it is also the latest, most powerful addition to Sprint’s 4G Android lineup.  What can 3D add to the Android experience and does the HTC EVO 3D have a lot to offer?

      Continue reading

      Jun 2 2011

      HTC Doubleshot – Codename For The Upcoming MyTouch 4G Slide?


      Ready for another HTC made Android phone? It seems like every week we see another code name or FCC listing for a new Android phone. This time, it’s the HTC Doubleshot.

      The Doubleshot is rumored to be an upcoming phone for the T-Mobile myTouch Series; this would be known as the myTouch 4G Slide. According to Boy Genius Report:

      It runs Android 2.3.4 Gingerbread and also features HTC’s latest Sense UI 3.0. We’ve been told the device runs “just as smoothly as the HTC Sensation” and is “much faster than the myTouch 4G.” An 8-megapixel camera is confirmed as is a shiny metal back cover, though our source indicates that the display isn’t 3D as had been rumored by other publications. In fact, the screen “isn’t anything to write home about,” but apparently the Android navigation buttons are softer than on the myTouch 4G and the slide-out QWERTY keyboard keys are “squishy” like the T-Mobile G2. T-Mobile is shooting for a launch during the first or second week in July, we’re told.

      via FCC

      Jun 1 2011

      Another Sensational Phone Release by T-Mobile USA!


      T-Mobile USA is at it again! It seems as if they’ve been releasing a plethora of super phones AFTER the AT&T acquisition announcement. One would wonder why this is. Wouldn’t it have made more sense to release awesome phones earlier, getting more customers?

      This beast of a phone, the HTC Sensation, will be arriving to T-Mobile stores June 15th or to a Walmart near you, as early as June 12th! The HTC Sensation features a 4.3 inch qHD screen, competitive with the iPhone 4′s IPS display, a 1.2 GHZ dual core processor, Android 2.3, Gingerbread with HTC’s Sense UI (User Interface), 768 MB RAM, an 8 MP camera, capable of 1080p video, a front facing VGA camera for video chat, 1 GB internal memory (Yeah, just One gig.) and T-Mobile’s 4G network compatibility!

      Will you be picking up one of these little beasts, or will you be waiting around for the Samsung Galaxy S 2? Continue reading