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A closer look at the HTC Shift from Sprint The last major HTC device I reviewed was the HTC Advantage and since that time I have been a bit excited, as has most of the ultra portable crowd, about the HTC Shift. There are some reviews online for the GSM version of the HTC Shift that is available in Europe, but that is not the version being officially announced in the U.S. Next week since there are still legal issues with Qualcomm and their chips. Sprint will be announcing the HTC Shift on Monday, 24 March and this version has an integrated EV-DO/CDMA radio for wireless access on the go. I've been using an HTC Shift from Sprint for over a week now and as you can see in the more than 140 found in my image gallery and quick and dirty post yesterday I have had a chance to try out most all aspects of the device. As I said yesterday, I was planning to post my full review next Monday, 24 March, but posted a pre-order page of the device.
The HTC Shift from Sprint has a model designtation of HTC X9000 and a suggested retail price of US$1,499. The last major HTC device I reviewed was the and since that time I have been a bit excited, as has most of the ultra portable crowd, about the HTC Shift.
There are some reviews online for the GSM version of the HTC Shift that is available in Europe, but that is not the version being officially announced in the U.S. Next week since there are still legal issues with Qualcomm and their chips.
Sprint will be announcing the HTC Shift on Monday, 24 March and this version has an integrated EV-DO/CDMA radio for wireless access on the go. What's in the box?
I have couple of unboxing photos in my image gallery and as you can see HTC and Sprint did an excellent job in packaging the Shift, which I would expect for a device costing almost US$1500. The black inner box is solid, lined with thick foam and protects the contents. Inside you will find a very compact A/C adapter (great job here HTC) in a cool draw string sack, screen protector, USB hub with 3 USB ports, an ethernet port, and a miniUSB port, and the HTC Shift in brown leather case. There were no recovery disks included with my review sample and HTC later sent along the trial of Microsoft Office that should be included with shipping models.
What is up with the leather case? The device has a leather case made out of the same high quality material found on the HTC Advantage. I noticed that the case is secured with 3 posts to the device and there did not appear to be any way to remove the case. I talked with HTC about this and apparently the case is actually required to pass FCC testing because it increases the buffer zone (distance between the device and your body). The Shift is different than other UMPC/ulta portable computers because it has an always-on component with SnapVUE. It also has a CDMA radio that actually pings the cell towers more often than a GSM device. I guess the test simulated carrying the HTC Shift under your arm like a small woman's handbag and the case was needed to pass this test.
I do not recommend you try removing the case because you may never get it back on. Then again, as I will talk about below I noticed the case can get in the way at time too. On the right side, you will find the DC-in port, USB 2.0 port, power/hold switch, and Secure Digital slot. Along the back (top) you will find the VGA out port so you can easily connect to an external monitor. On the back you will find 3 small vents and the battery cover that takes up the entire width and about half of the height of the Shift. Starting at the top left of the front of the Shift is the 640x480 VGA camera for video conferencing with the left and right mouse buttons below this, the left stereo speaker and finally the SnapVUE button on the lower left of the display. There is a light sensor at the top right, then the Control Center button, resolution switch button, microPad touch pad, right stereo speaker, and biometric fingerprint scanner.
The microPad touch pad and two mouse buttons work very well together and let you navigate and operate the Shift with ease. I would like to see this touch pad included on other ultra portables too.