HTC Sensation review A hotly anticipated smartphone with a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, a “Super” 4.3-inch screen, and a manufacturer-skinned version of Android 2.3 — we must be talking about the Samsung Galaxy S II, right? Not on this occasion, squire. Today we’re taking a gander at HTC’s Sensation, a handset that’s just begun shipping in Europe under a short-term Vodafone exclusive and which should be making its way to T-Mobile in the USA early next month. By beating its stablemate the EVO 3D and Moto’s Droid X2 to the market, the Sensation becomes the world’s first 4.3-inch smartphone with qHD resolution, while also serving as the debut phone for HTC’s Watch movie streaming service and Sense 3.0 UI customizations. That leaves us with an abundance of newness to review, so what are we waiting for?

HTC Sensation Review
Hardware

Before delving into the minutiae of the Sensation’s construction, let’s take a moment to address its most outstanding physical asset: it feels small. 4.3-inch smartphones, starting with HTC’s own HD2, have always been impressive beasts, but beasts is what they were — ungainly, crude, and occasionally harder to handle than an angry carp. Not so with the Sensation. This handset is only 6mm taller, a single millimeter wider, and — at 11.3mm — actually slightly thinner than the 4-inch HTC Incredible S. Putting aside the measuring tape and grappling with the pair confirms what those numbers suggest: the 4.3-inch Sensation is nigh indistinguishable from its more modest family mate.

That’s been achieved with a shrinking of the top and bottom bezels framing the screen and few other changes. You’ll still find an extra-large volume rocker on the Sensation’s left side, as you would on the Incredible S, accompanied by a micro-USB input a little further down. The bottom of each phone is home to a microphone and a notch for opening up the back cover, the right sides are left barren, and the tops feature headphone jacks and power / lock buttons. Also functionally identical are the rear layouts, with an 8 megapixel autofocus camera sat next to a dual LED flash and a single loudspeaker grille. All these design similarities are hardly coincidental, HTC sees that arrangement and styling as a winning combination and we have to agree. HTC Sensation review