The Surround is a slider phone – but it doesn’t have a slide-out keyboard. What DOES slides out is some “hi-fi” Yamaha speakers that are normally hiding behind the screen. HTC also includes a little flip-open kick-stand on the back to reinforce the illusion of this device having hi-fi speakers. As a long-time audiophile I can tell the phone sounds fine – but hi-fi? I’ll let you be the judge.
On the other hand, it IS called the Surround for a good reason – there’s also Dolby Surround sound built inside to go with the HD video capabilities that bears some attention.
The handset has terrific hand-feel – a 3.8-inch touchscreen and all the features and standard software necessary for the phone to bear the WP7 moniker. Microsoft has strict rules about what goes on – and into (down to the processor and memory) – their new phones. They want to assure consistently great devices. For instance:
Minimum Hardware Requirements
- Qualcomm Snapdragon processor
- Minimum 256 MB of RAM
- Minimum 8 GB Flash Memory
- 4 point true multi-touch capacitive screen
- WVGA screen (480×800 pixel resolution)
- DirectX GPU support
- 5 sensors (A-GPS, accelerometer, compass, proximity and light).
- Minimum 5-megapixel camera with dedicated flash
- Start, search, back, camera, volume and power buttons
- FM radio support
Because of those rules, manufacturers aren’t even allowed to change the look or feel of the start page – but they can place those features in a separate applet. HTC’s Hub contains a lot of the items you’ve see on Sprint’s EVO 4G and other famous HTC handsets.
Read the full HTC 7 Surround review at our sister site, Know Your Cell