HTC Diamond Extra Features

I’ve had my HTC Diamond for about 8 months but have just discovered some extra features!

I was listening to some music (Happy Mondays I think) in Windows Media Player and the track started jumping all over the shop-backwards, forwards, back again and so on. It took me quite a while to figure out that I’d be absent-mindedly running my thumb around the circle in between the home, call etc buttons…and this was the cause. A circular motion similar to how one controls an iPod will move the track forwards or backward in  5 second blocks. I find this to be very handy…

I thought that was the end of these hidden extras but no. If you do the same thing while viewing photos, you can zoom in and out of them-this also works for pictures inserted in to OneNote Mobile…again pretty cool.

The final effect of this is that it can zoom in on text messages and make the text bigger, should you need it.

Perhaps these aren’t HUGE extras but they’re pretty neat and useful…and help show just how advanced the Diamond was/is 🙂

WinMo 6.5 Available to Run?

Both Gizmodo & Engadget are reporting that there are some homebrew-style builds that are “mostly” Windows Mobile 6.5 available for install now.

Heads over at XDA Developers have got it running on some old school HTC models such as the MDA 3 and Qtek 9090, but it doesn’t look like much cop to me. It doesn’t look like the screenshots in my other recent postand I’m inclined to believe it’s just WinMo 6.1 with a new skin really.

The Gizmodo article with links is here.

HTC Diamond vs iPhone

I’ve got an HTC Diamond,  which of course draws a number of comparisons to the iPhone. I have to say that I can’t think of any real reasons not to choose the HTC Diamond.

Yes, the iPhone come with 8/16GB compared to the Diamond’s 4GB, but really-when do you need more than that? I’ve got an old school 40GB iPod that I’ve still not filled to even 50% yet..and my music collection, if all digitized) would fill over twice that I reckon yet still I’m more than happy with the 4GB my Diamond offers me. I’ve got plenty of albums on there along with a crazy number of pictures of my son AND various documents for work (excel, word, pdf etc), still with GB’s of room!

The styling of the HTC Diamond with it’s big screen and sleek, shiny black casing make it at least as attractive as Apple’s alternative. We could get stuck in debating the variances of design for days and never get anywhere so let’s move on. Let’s move on to the “Things I can’t believe the iPhone doesn’t do” section; these are all major omissions but not always well known….

The iPhone doesn’t include/support:

Video camera
MMS (Picture Messaging)
Copying & pasting
SMS (text message) forwarding
File transfer via bluetooth
Being used as a modem, connecting to a laptop to give internet access.

Of these, certainly MMS and Bluetooth file transfer are available in even the most basic handsets these days..I reckon it must take more effort to NOT include these features! 🙂

The lack of copy & paste functionality and it’s inability to forward text messages also prevent it from making any real impact in the business world.

Another element I love which pits it against the iPhone, is the fact that you don’t really need to use the stylus. I can navigate menus, turn features on/off and even compose emails and text messages, all without the stylus 🙂

Windows Mobile 6.1 HTC Diamond

Windows Mobile 6.1 and the HTC Diamond is a great combination. This post has a dual purpose, to discuss WinMo 6.1 and also the HTC favourite ever phone and I really believe it’s the best phone available (even including the iPhone!!!).

I went to the WPC (Worldwide Partner Conference) 2008 in Houston with an HTC WinMo 5 PPC (Pocket PC) that I was pretty happy with. I was thinking about an upgrade (but just because I wanted a new gadget..not for any specific usability reasons) and so decided there was no real point.

Then I went to one of the Breakout sessions hosted by Andy Lees, Senior Vice President of Mobile Communications Business at Microsoft, saw his demo of WinMo 6.1 and was blown away! The new home screen is much cooler/slicker and certain things I’d been wishing for (such as the ability to select multiple messages then mass move/delete) had been implemented…(maybe Bill can hear the thoughts of Gold Partners?!)

I did pop into the T-Mobile shop in Houston to see what WinMo 6.1 phones they had..that’s how excited I was 🙂

Some of the other features from a personal view that I like are the threaded SMS (so they’re like emails-makes things so much easier!) and IE full page zooming. From a corporate view, the big addition was “Domain Enroll” which allows WinMo devices to be managed via System Center Mobile Device Manager (MSM) 2008.

*Update* It’s been confirmed by Steve Ballmer (after a leak from Motorola) that we’re going to see Windows Mobile 6.5 to which features will be in that and which will be saved for WinMo 7, I’ve not seen anything yet…

Windows Mobile 7-is expected in the 2nd half of 2009 and should feature a new, revamped UI, multi-touch and motion sensing features. There should also be a new version of IE, a new version of Office Mobile and a new version of Media Player-this could well be the Zune software (see here).

The HTC Diamond is awesome…and I mean that in it’s original sense, in that it did fill me with awe! That might seem a bit overboard but the Touch-Flo 3D UI makes using the phone a joy. The menu layout is easy to navigate, it’s quick and easy to get to the majority of things you need whether they’re apps, settings, downloads etc and the UI is very responsive. Another element I love which pits it against the iPhone, is the fact that you don’t really need to use the stylus. I can navigate menus, turn features on/off and even compose emails and text messages, all without the stylus 🙂

The HTC music player is full of features and easy to use…a good quick alternative to Media Player (although Media Player is far superior for connecting to Bluetooth Headphone devices) if you just need audio. The camera is 3 Mega Pixels so quite mid-range spec but the quality of picture is much higher than you’d expect…we’ve got a number of pictures framed on the wall that came from my Diamond…often replacing pictures taken with a “proper” digital camera.

Another feature of the Diamond that I’ve seen via a video over at Engadget is that the HTC Diamond has Multi Touch capabilities! The video only shows it bwing used for a de-bugging app but it could be the start of something prettty awesome..maybe some homebrew coders can get something great going there?! Even if nothing comes of it at the moment it certainly looks positive for when Windows Mobile 7 arrives!

If you’v got any questions about WinMo and/or the HTC Diamond, drop a comment and let me know!



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