The HTC Desire did much to push the Android operating system into the limelight and provide a credible alternative to the iPhone. Powered by version 2.1 (Eclair) with an HTC Sense UI, it impresses with a 3.7-inch AMOLED (480 x 800 pixel) display and a zippy 1GHz processor.
Most new smartphones aim to catch the eye with a skinny chassis and the Desire doesn’t disappoint. It feels good in your hand, measuring only 11.9mm thick and with a weight of no more than 135g. The camera is good too – a 5.0 Megapixel resolution with LED flash, face detection, smile detection, geo-tagging and video recording. There’s no video chat; no HD video recording. But the memory can be boosted to 32GB and HTC quotes 6.7 hours of talktime.
The Apple iPhone 4
The beautifully designed Apple iPhone 4 is currently the smartphone to beat, improving the spec of the old 3GS model and upgrading key specifications. Specifically, the 4th-gen iPhone debuts the iOS4 software, which adds features such as multi-tasking, ‘FaceTime’ video chat and HD video recording and editing.
In terms of raw technology, the 9.3mm-thick iPhone 4 is blessed with one of the best screens around. It’s only 3.5 inches, like the other iPhones before it. But the new ‘Retina’ displays offers a superior resolution of 640 x 960 pixels. A 5.0 MP camera improves on the old 3.15 MP lens in the oudated 3GS, while a 1GHz Apple A4 processor provides the grunt for faster web browsing and app-switching.
In a straight fight between the HTC Desire and the iPhone 4, the Apple handset is the one left standing. It now faces…
The Samsung Galaxy S
This Korean-built smartphone is easily one of the best Android-powered handsets around and has the best chance of knocking the iPhone 4 off its throne. Running version 2.1 of the Android OS, it turns heads thanks to a 4.0-inch, 480 x 800 pixel Super AMOLED display and a maximum memory capacity of 48GB. That’s lots of space for your music, videos, games and photos.
The Galaxy S is a looker too – 9.9mm around the waist and the lightest of the three phones here at 119g. Like the Desire and iPhone 4, it boasts a 5.0 MP camera with autofocus, geo-tagging, touch to focus functionality, face and smile detection and HD video recording. The only negative point is the lack of an LED flash. A 1GHz processor provides a good turn of speed, while talktime is rated at around 6.5 hours. Not bad.
So who wins the final battle? The iPhone 4 just takes it, helped by a superior screen, superior camera technology and an OS that is still just ahead of Android. But with new Android phones coming out all the time, how long will Apple’s rule last?