After yesterday's absolutely insane phone announcement-bomb, HTC and Sprint have subtly unveiled the EVO Design 4G. If you're looking for an upper mid-range device that won't break the bank, the Design 4G has your number, as it's packing decent, but not (yet) outdated hardware:
4-inch qHD display
1.2Ghz single-core Snapdragon processor
5MP rear shooter with HD video capture (720p), 1.3MP ffc
Android 2.3.5 with Sense
Sure, it doesn't compare to the recently announced Motorola Droid RAZR or the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, but at $200 cheaper it definitely has its appeal. If the Design is calling your name, it will be available on October 23rd for $99 with a two-year agreement.
It's hard not to love SetCPU developer Michael Huang. He's been on the overclocking frontline for many devices, including the Samsung Galaxy S II and Motorola XOOM, and now he strikes again with an custom tweaked kernel (update: to clarify, the kernel source isn't available, so this isn't a rewritten kernel - he used a hex editor to modify it) for the HTC EVO 3D that allows for a stable 1.8GHz. With a few minor tweaks the kernel should work for the Sensation as well, although he hasn't had time to get it working without a device in hand.
EVO 3D owners across the US have been patiently waiting a whole 3 days (I know, it's an eternity) for HTC to make good on its promise to unlock the phone's bootloader. HTC has now issued a statement on the matter in response to a wall post on its Facebook page, which is overrun with complaints from EVO 3D owners (or people who just like to whine) criticizing what they perceive to be the slowness of the company's efforts to issue a bootloader unlock solution.
While HTC never made promises about a time frame, there's still no shortage of angry EVO 3D customers to be found on the company's Facebook wall.
Last week, I listed the EVO Shift 4G in my roundup of the best Android phones under $50, but that was when it was priced at $40 on AmazonWireless. Wirefly has now gone and beaten that price silly, offering the QWERTY-keyboard slider phone for the low, low price of "free" if you open a new Sprint account, or add a new line to your existing plan.
The EVO Shift 4G does have a tiny 3.6" display, but it's also packing a next-gen single core Snapdragon processor and a big 1530mAh battery - along with a fresh update to Android 2.3.3 Gingerbread.
It's June 24th, and you know what that means: the heir to the throne of the EVO 4G, one of Sprint's most successful Android devices ever,has officially gone on sale. But considering that reviews have been mixed and that purchasing the EVO 3D will lock you into a two-year contract, the buying decision is understandably difficult.
To help you find out whether Sprint's latest flagship phone is right for you, we've put together a handy-dandy table comparing the specs of all three members of the EVO family:
4.3" qHD (960x540) SLCD with stereoscopic 3D capabilities
Two 5MP shooters
4GB (note that the OS takes up a lot of that)
Included SD card
Kind of (via MHL adapter)
4.8 x 2.6 x 0.5 inches
4.61 x 2.32 x 0.59 inches
5 x 2.6 x 0.47 inches
Price on contract
Of course, a phone cannot live on horsepower alone, so rest assured that we're already testing the EVO 3D to see if its formidable specs amount to a good user experience (and yes, our review will be up soon - stay tuned!).
Corrects issue with hearing aid compatibility menu disappearing (from 4.22.651.2)
Netflix compatibility (from 4.22.651.2)
You heard it here first, folks - the EVO 4G is receiving an update in just 5 short days to address two of the major problems that users have experienced after the jump to Gingerbread. Specifically, non-working Netflix (boooo), and odd Visual Voicemail notification behavior. The turnaround time in getting this update out is pretty impressive, considering the Gingerbread OTA landed just a little over 2 weeks ago.
Update: The EVO Shift 4G will be getting this OTA on the 17th if you initiate the update check manually, and by June 20th, it should start rolling out to all devices automatically! So be on the lookout for it on Friday.
You thought we couldn't pack any more EVO exclusives in today? Well, you thought wrong! We've learned from our intrepid tipster, Captain Anonymous, another interesting tidbit this afternoon: EVO Shift 4G Gingerbread update (version 2.76.651.4) - June 20th. The EVO's younger sibling won't have any reason for version envy come Monday. Oh, Shift users will also be getting Swype as their new stock software keyboard option - so that's a plus, if you like Swype.
Update 6/8/11: If you're set to only order from Amazon for some reason, their EVO 3D pre-order page just went up as well with the same price.
The official launch date and price for the HTC EVO 3D was just announced this morning, but Wirefly already has a pre-order deal of its own going on. Right now, you can ensure that you'll have this device ready and waiting for you on launch day for $180 with a two-year agreement, which is about $20 less then you'll be paying at Sprint. This deal includes free shipping, and you probably won't have to worry about paying sales tax (in most states), either.
We're big fans of Wirefly over here at Android Police, and frankly, we're always a bit covetous when the online retailer gets their hands on a new piece of kit before everyone else. Still, we watched this review longingly, as it demonstrates many of the changes in Sense 3.0, benchmarks, and some of the built-in games on the 3D. It's over 12 minutes long, so, pull up a chair: