HTC has released a string of popular touch only devices, but the company came to prominence making stylish phones with a quality keyboard and they haven’t stopped making them since. HTC keyboards either slide out to the left of the phone, or are featured prominently on the front. HTC keyboards are known for having large keys and proper spacing. While some of these phones have had issues, the keyboard has generally always been very good.
MyTouch 3G Slide
Available through T-Mobile, the MyTouch 3G Slide features a full keyboard that slides out of the left side of the phone. When you are not using the keyboard, it has a 3.4 inch touchscreen that also includes a virtual keyboard, in case you don’t want to slide the device open. The Slide also has replaced the trackball found on earlier HTC models with a trackpad. The phone runs on version 2.1 of the Android operating system with the HTC Sense UI, and will likely be able to upgrade to later versions as they arrive.
Read the full HTC MyTouch Slide review.
While essentially a version of the HTC Touch Pro 2, the Tilt 2 has a handful of features that make it a separate device. The phone has a slide-out full keyboard that has five rows of large keys and a tilting display, which makes texting much easier. The phone has a 3.6-inch resistive touch screen and a 3.2 megapixel camera. The device ships with Windows Mobile 6.5 and includes both the Internet Explorer Mobile browser as well as the Opera Mobile browser. The Tilt 2 is available from AT&T.
Touch Pro 2
The Touch Pro 2 is HTC’s response to criticism about the quality of the noble failure the HTC Touch Pro. The QWERTY keyboard slides out from the side and the display swivels forward, allowing you to see the screen more easily while you are using the keyboard. Most of the phone specs are similar to the Tilt 2, although the Touch Pro 2 ships with Windows Mobile 6.1, although a quick upgrade will give you the features in 6.5. On top of the operating system you will find the TouchFLO 3D interface, which has been greatly improved from earlier models. The HTC Touch Pro 2 is available from Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile and US Cellular.
Read the full HTC Touch Pro 2 review.
The HTC Touch Pro was one of HTCs first attempts at a touchscreen device that also included a sliding full keyboard. The keyboard slides out from the left of the phone, like all HTC models, and there are four input buttons surrounding a circular button on the front of the device. For such a large device, a 2.8-inch touchscreen is a little disappointing, but the screen itself works fairly well. The HTC Touch Pro runs on Windows 6.1 and has the TouchFLO 3D interface. While the phone has some decent specs, it frequently suffers from operating system slowdowns that make navigating through the device a royal pain.
Read the full HTC Touch Pro review.
The first phone on this list without a touchscreen, the HTC Snap features a full keyboard, a set of navigation controls and a 2.4-inch screen. The Snap runs on Windows Mobile 6.1 and include HTC’s Inner Circle feature, which gives you quick access to communications from a select group of contacts. The Snap uses CDMA2000 1X/EVDO Rev. A technology and the speeds while you are browsing are pretty good. The Snap also has a 2.0 megapixel camera, but the quality is fairly poor. Although it’s a fairly big device, at only 4.2 ounces, you can stick it in your pocket without it weighing you down. The Snap is available from Sprint and US Cellular.
Read the full HTC Snap review.
The Dash 3G is basically T-Mobile’s version of the HTC Snap, but the device has several upgrades that make it a better device overall. Like the Snap, the Dash 3G has a large full keyboard, a few navigation buttons and a 2.4-inch screen. The Dash also has a trackball in the center, which you can use to navigate since the screen is not a touchscreen. There is a 2.0 megapixel camera, but the quality is generally better than what you will find on the Snap. Although the device looks more finished and feels more solid than the Snap, it still only weighs 4.2 ounces.
HTC also made a Snap device for Verizon Wireless, called the HTC Ozone. While the device is the same size and has a similar screen to the Snap, the Ozone weighs in at a remarkably low 3.7 ounces. The Ozone’s full keyboard runs straight across, instead of curving like on the Snap and Dash, but the buttons are still large and it is still a pleasure to type on it. The Ozone runs on Windows Mobile 6.1 as has a host of messaging features like Microsoft Direct Push technology.
Read the HTC Ozone review.
When you think of devices with a full keyboard, the HTC Shadow Hotspot from T-Mobile might not be the first phone that comes to mind. The phone has a keypad like the BlackBerry Pearl, essentially cramming a full keyboard into 20 keys. This may look acceptable, as you have access to all of the keys, but double tapping is a difficult way to type into a device, and really defeats the purpose of a dedicated keyboard. Apart from the keyboard the device is a good one, running Windows Mobile 6.1. The 1.6-inch screen looks good and doesn’t look as small as it is, since the device is so streamlined.
The HTC Vision, rumored to be called the G1 Blaze, has not been officially announced so most of what we know is simply rumor, and any specs mentioned here are subject to change. The device will be available from T-Mobile, although the release date is still unknown. The Blaze will be the first device to run a dual core processor, meaning it should have blazing fast speeds when you run application and browse the web. The screen will measure 3.7-inches and have 480×800 pixels. The Blaze will be a touchscreen device, but is will also have a slide-out full keyboard.
Information on the HTC Salsa was leaked in late 2009 that claimed the device would have a June 2010 release date. It is now unknown if the device will be released later in the year, or if it will continue to get pushed back. The Salsa has a candy bar design, like the Snap but much thinner with a more square look. There is a 2.6-inch touchscreen and a full keyboard on the bottom of the device. There are rumors that the Salsa will launch with Windows Mobile 7, but this looks to be pure speculation at this point.