Mobile Phones Guide

HTC Sensation review

HTC Sensation - The Sensational Android

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Overall rating 9/10
Improved HTC Sense 3.0 with enhanced lock screen
Smooth performance
Solid build quality
Affordable in its class
Low battery mileage
Lack of portability due to weight
Below average imaging quality
More Awards:
Best Value


A Keen Third Sense

HTC is known to put some spark into the Android interface, and we've seen that happening with HTC's Sense user interface. Over the years, the Sense UI has seen some incremental changes, slowly added onto HTC's ongoing lineup.

As such, the Sensation's Sense 3.0 (first seen on the HTC Flyer tablet) builds upon its previous siblings' interface, adding on more elements to enhance the overall usability. Sense 3.0 also provided the opportunity for HTC to introduce a new lock screen that's both customizable and interactive. Much like what we saw on the HTC Flyer, the device is unlocked by pulling the lock ring upwards. You can also gain immediate access to four apps of your choosing by dragging the app icon into the ring.

Besides the four customizable app shortcuts, Sense 3.0 also lets you add another layer of interactivity to the lock screen. This is achieved by pulling relevant materials from apps such as the Friend Stream, Gallery, Stock and even Weather, which are promptly displayed on the lock screen. As such, you can choose to scroll through the latest social network updates, or view a stream of photos from the album straight from the lock screen. Further to that, the abovementioned widgets can also be dragged into the lock ring, which brings you straight to that specific update or photo.

Widgets have always been one of the key focus points of the Android platform. With a wide variety of widgets found on Google Android 2.3 and from the accompanying apps within Android Market, the choices won't end there on this smartphone. Within the Sensation, we found a total of 83 HTC widgets preloaded onto the device. The usual Music, Calendar and many more basic features are given the widget treatment. Some of which are essentially a combination, like the Social Clock that displays the current time and latest update from your social networks.

Certain elements, such as the Quick Settings tab integrated into the notifications system, remain on Sense 3.0. This provides you with immediate access to wireless features such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi Hotspot and GPS. If you're particular about keeping the Sensation as efficient as possible, you can also access the task manager to kill unnecessary apps running in the background.