Round Robin: TiPb vs. HTC FUZE Final Review

[This is an official Smartphone Experts Round Robin post! Every day you reply here, you're automatically entered for a chance to win an iPhone 3G, Case-Mate Naked Case, and Motorola H9 Bluetooth Headset! Full contest rules here!]

I thought my review last week for the Palm Treo Pro would be my toughest, little did I suspect Dieter would double up on my HTC and Windows Mobile experience (actually, triple up on HTC as I had the Android G1 for the first review). That's a LOT of Windows Mobile, especially for someone who abandoned the platform a long time ago, first for Palm OS, and now for the iPhone.

Reviewing the same OS two weeks in a row is a challenge. I originally focused on the PIM apps last week, including calendar, tasks, and notes, and through in email and web for good measure. This week I planned on focusing more on Windows Mobile from a media and "under the hood" perspective. However, something changed that: TouchFlo 3D. Turns out, not only was the FUZE's slider keyboard a big old hardware differentiator, their "skin" running on top of Windows Mobile was a fairly compelling software differentiator as well. So, instead of doing a poor job rehashing tech-specs that any writer over at WMExperts could run circles around, I'm going to go with the TouchFlo.

Just remember: I'm not coming at this device from a neutral point of view. That's not my job here. My job is to give you an iPhone user's opinion. So, consider me bias, a n00b, an iFanboy, a complete idiot, but consider this as well: my final, full review... after the break!

Introduction

Never had an intro on one of these before. Never needed it. Do now. I don't run Gentoo Linux as my primary, secondary, tertiary -- my any-ary -- OS. I'm sure it's powerful, configurable, and Stalman et al could give me a thousand reasons why I should. I only have one reason why I don't: user experience. I just don't want to work that hard. I've talked about this before, and I will again (fair warning, that!) but my smartphone should work for me, not the other way around. The WMExperts forum gave me tons of useful tweaks (thanks for those!) but I really don't want to tweak. I'm too tired of tweaking. I don't want to have to edit registries, tinker with ROMS, remember shortcut keys, or do any of the winzillion things I need to do to make a Windows Mobile device "just work" for 90% of what I want it to do. The barrier for entry is too high.

I'm in the process of deciding there are several segments of the smartphone market. BlackBerry hits productivity/business. Android hits early adapters/enthusiasts. Windows Mobile hits tinkerers. It hits people who want exactly what they want, and enjoy working at it almost as much as using it. Rather than tricking out the ultimate drag racer in their garage or building a robot in their basement, they're going to make their Windows Mobile smartphone do exactly what they want down to the 3rd alt-shortcut key in the 4th tabbed option screen (skinned, of course).

It's for those who enjoy the journey as much as the destination. (I suspect that's why Dieter has enough Windows Mobile devices to make a manwhich out of!) There are several cases where I'm exactly that guy. This isn't one of them. I want my smartphone to work pretty much effortlessly right out of the box, and I want it to perform as well or better than the best smartphones available in 2008. That's what I want.

Hardware

Yes it's creaky. I'll get that out of the way right at the beginning. The iPhone is a solid slab. Anything made out of plastic that includes a slider hinge that moves half of the device half the way off the device will be, decidedly, not so solid. Still, HTC makes really good plastic hardware, and much like the Android G1, the individual pieces of the slider by themselves are solid.

Buttons

When the device is closed, the front is very clean. There is a large central button. At first I thought this was just a big "okay" button, but commenters told me it had some gesture ability and was also a d-pad. The gestures were too inconsistent for me to really get into, an it's quite emphatically not a d-pad... however, the area around the large central button IS a d-pad. The integration is awesome -- so awesome I initially missed it, but if you press the entire facade on any side, it will tilt down and register a button click. Very nice!

But they're not done! The facade also holds 4 buttons. The first, "home" sorta brings you home. I'm not sure what "home" means to this device, as it doesn't bring you back to the Today Screen the way an iPhone does the Home screen, at least not consistently. Sometimes it brought me "back" instead, which is strange given that the next button is "back".

Since the Android G1, I've really liked the idea of a "back" button. It works well here, especially when you're new and you sometimes take a wrong turn, or when you're moving in a rush and hit a wrong app or function.

The last two buttons are an upside down, and downside up phone. These are what, on other devices, are usually the green and red "phone" buttons. I like the minimalism of the HTC design, if not the penetrability of the iconography. Like other Windows Mobile handsets, the left "phone" button sends you to the call app, and the right "phone" button ends a call... and takes you to the Today screen (memo to Redmond: the home button is a great idea, and a better usability experience).

Strangely, none of these buttons turned (woke) the device for me. None of them. Only the top "power" button did that. I'm not sure if I prefer this to the Treo Pro's seemingly random "every button but center and okay" with "center to unlock" arrangement. Like many things, there are some advantages, some drawbacks.

Oh, and it has volume and PTT (push to talk). I miss the Treo Pro (and iPhone) mute button.


Keyboard

Star Destroyer class. I'll say it again, this keyboard has everything imaginable on it. I'm not a fan of sliders. The way I type, the less "travel" the better, so the traditional Treo (i.e. 650) keyboard is more to my liking, but it's hard to hate the FUZE when it's almost as full as a Netbook!

Compared to the G1, the feel of the FUZE keyboard felt better to me, and the lack of a "chin" was a huge plus. Again, since hard keyboard can't change to reflect state (i.e. when you hit shift or alt, the key doesn't change to show you exactly what you'll be typing) it did cause some self-doubt in password fields, but that's an uncommon enough situation. Also, since the keyboard slides in and out, it can be hidden when you don't need it. That's an advantage over the front-facing Qwerty's, but it comes at the price of making a really thick phone. I found it a bit chunky, but it won't be a deal breaker for most.

Screen

Bright and beautiful, it reminds of the G1's absent the capacitive touch. Since it's a touch screen device, that means it makes you really want to touch it, but resistive technology is outdated enough to make it a less than premium experience. Instead of tapping and flicking like on an iPhone or G1, you have to press hard enough to smush the layers together, or press and drag hard enough for them to register movement. After the iPhone and G1 experience, it's like touch in quicksand. This is something we'll revisit when you meet TouchFlo 3D.

Fit and Finish

The fit an finish isn't quite up there with the Treo Pro in that I think Palm looking over their shoulder made HTC sweat the details more. Yet it remains a solid device with an interesting faceted back plate (identical, far as I could tell, to the its eponymous "diamond" cousin). One interesting addition, however, is that the stylus on this device is magnetic, so when you pull it out, the FUZE automagically turns on, as it does when you slide out the keyboard. Given the paucity of buttons with which to wake it, these are both excellent touches.

Windows Mobile TouchFlo 3D

I joked in my video that TouchFlo 3D should more properly be named "Press Really Hard and Stammer 2D" and I stand by that. As a user experience goes, it mixes brilliant animation with resistively-challenging control and inconsistent gestures to truly confusing ends.

I love the visuals. The visuals are killer. Introduced after the iPhone, it's obvious HTC decided to take the fight to Apple on the iCandy front, and when you consider the bright, vivid animations, the results are just gorgeous. Mad props to HTC's design firm (which I think they recently bought out -- smart move!)

Taken as set pieces alone, I'll go so far as to say that in some cases they look even better than the iPhone's older alternatives. For example, I love the weather app. The animating clouds and rain -- or snow in Montreal's case now -- are stupendous and I'd love nothing more than for Apple (or a 3rd party weather app) to steal them immediately.

The picture and contact apps are likewise beautiful.


The music app would garner similar praise if not for the downright awkward integration of the control buttons along the right side. Surely something more fitting the rest of the design could be worked up?

Bringing it all home, literally, we have the Today screen which I must admit is a bit of a let down. It's still very pretty, but the huge clock means there's not as much room for the actual "today" content I've always loved from Windows Mobile. I'm sure it, like everything else, can be tweaked, but it's a strange choice for the default.

Since the iPhone has no built-in Today app, the programs tab for the FUZE is the closest match for the iPhone's Home screen. (I am ignoring the entire secondary program tab AT&T injected into the experience -- and WMExperts will give you helpful instructions for defenestrating it entirely if you so choose). Opera is where my focus was -- though it turns out it wouldn't run off AT&T. Bummer.


Now for the negatives. As previously stated, touch on a resistive devices is like moving in quicksand after you've had a chance at a capacitive device. WMExperts will also tell you how to tweak preferences to speed this up, but check out my introduction for why I won't bother with that. Given the technology, that's understandable. What's unforgivable, however, is the poor usability chosen for TouchFlo 3D. My video shows this off better, but basically there's no consistency from one interface to the next. For mail, you have to start by swiping down. For photos, you have to start by swiping up. For music, even though the album art is presented horizontally, you need to swipe vertically. Going back to photos, once you swipe up and press really hard to choose your photo (yes, I know, use my nail, not my finger -- fine!), you then have to swipe sideways to move between photos.

And the tab bar itself? Don't get me started. It's stroke-inducing to use from a pure touch point of view. Not only is it more random application generator than launcher, compounded by the above inconsistency, if you ever gesture in a way incorrect for the exact application you're on at the time, the tab bar will gleefully decide you meant to engage said random app generator, and send you on a quick journey to precisely somewhere else.

Very frustrating.

Also frustrating, just when you're getting used to the fresh, modern, 2008 UI of TouchFlo 3D, it will dump you back out into the cold, archaic, 1999 UI of Windows Mobile 6.1. It's an entirely different user experience and frankly, it's jarring. It's bait-and-switch. It's "she ain't pretty she just looks that way" gone wired.

I previously said HTC should take TouchFlo and rather than slap it over Windows Mobile, turn it into a complete Samsung Instinct-type OS. I was only half joking. If they could get more consistent with the gestures, add a capacitive screen, and get rid of the Windows Mobile sword of Damocles, they could have a really compelling offering on their hands.

Windows Mobile Redux

Here are some screen shots. Tweak your hearts out.

Conclusion

See introduction. I wasn't sure how many would actually make it this far, so I pulled a little bait and switch of my own.

But there's more: After two devices in so many weeks, Windows Mobile has failed to win me over. It's powerful, yes, and configurable, bless it's kernel, but it's just not for me, not any more. Maybe Windows 7 will change my mind, but I think Microsoft's mind needs changing first. Ballmer says (in between monkey boy dances, no doubt), that Microsoft "just keeps coming and coming and coming" and that's certainly true, but they need to get there soon or the smartphone train will have left the station.

I think I'm going to officially toss my hat into the ring of those who think a ZunePhone (Xphone?) wouldn't be a bad idea, but I'm going to throw an even bigger hat into an even bigger ring and say Microsoft needs to leverage Microsoft.

Apple provides a 360 degree ecosystem for the iPhone. If Microsoft could just get their multi-marketplace'd ducks in a row and offer seamless integration from Azure Cloud to Server backend to Windows Desktop to Xbox console to Zune mobile (with consistent branding to go with it, b'okay?)... well, I'd be very worried for their competitors.

As it currently stands, however, it's old gen tech that doesn't play nice even with it's own. Great if you're anticipating Cylon invasion, not so great if you're a smartphone platform in 2008.

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, The TV Show, Vector, ZEN & TECH, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Round Robin: TiPb vs. HTC FUZE Final Review

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This is a fair - honest review and I agree. I wanted to love this device myself but it fell flat on it's face. You can put that TF3D to try to dress WM up but it still can't cover up the ugliness lies beneath. Maybe next year WM users...

Good review, even if you are a tinkerer like myself, the Fuze earned low marks for usability on my scale as well. I dumped the Fuze and went to the Tilt.
I do miss the screen and keyboard from my Fuze though..

When I look at those screen shots I can't even make out what it is I'm looking at. It's a typical cluster-f**k of Windows icons, menus, and tabs. What do I click on? What will happen? I can't tell. I'd need to read the manual (which I've never needed to do with the iPhone).
It's a mess. Just like all Windows apps have always been since it's beginning.
— Fan Boy Steve. :)

After all this round robin talk, I fired up my old Windows Mobile phone and within a few hours it crashed. I completely forgot about all that frustration. With that said, I do miss some of the tweaking that can be done.

I said it before and I'll say it again - I have no idea why you had so much trouble with the TF3D "bar". I've never used the Fuze, so it may be the fault of AT&T's hardware/bloatware, but I just never found it hard to use.
I also with you would have addressed some of the comments from the preview thread that gave you suggestions on how to better use TF3D (like mine). Were these tips helpful? Did you even try them? Or is it still not for you?

better than your first video. But after a month of using this phone ive never had a random application generator moment using touchflo. You sure you where holding and dragging? Its not meant to be flicked.

Great review. I have had to support WinMo devices on my network in the past. Like you said, full of features...if you don't mind spending half your life tweaking things to make them work. ActiveSync on an iPhone is much easier to set up than on WinMo. Ironic!

The only thing that I the iphone has that windows mobile has is the "today screen" out of the box, and even tht tou can get on the iPhone with thir party apps. Windows mobile would be so much better if they could reorganize the entire layout of programs, emails, etc... Its too crowded on the screen.

I don't think this phone is pretty or easy to use I have yet to put a htc device I'm my hands that I actually enjoy looking at then put windows mobile behind it.....then I puke..... great review though looking forward to the bold! And like I told you on twitter haha at least it's not windows mobile.

Thanks for the thorough review, Rene. One thing is for certain (and I was previously a WinMo user, so I speak from experience) is this: once you get used to a capacitative touch screen, it's all but impossible to go back to a resistive touch screen. That may be something that WinMo users reading this review might not have a great appreciation for, but it is definitely true.

I'll disagree with WatersWest. I think the difference between capcitive and resistive is the one thing that is most overblown in this review and others. The experience is not that much different with a nice resistive screen like on the Fuze. The implementation of TF3D (is it up or down?) is much more of an issue than the screen. I also wish somebody would point out the great things a resistive screen can do that a capacitive screen cannot.
The rest of the review is fair, and highlights that each device has positive and negative aspects.

Good review, as a loyal WM user (and a tinkerer) I can definitely respect the warts that WM has, and the annoyances it can bring to other smartphone users.

I am not much for the slide-out keyboard. Before I got the iPhone, I almost got the Tilt, but it is designed somewhat like the Fuze. The main problem with it was that the connection between the keyboard and the screen would eventually wear out and break. I wonder if that could be a potential issue for this phone

Touch Flo was not that hard to scroll through. Anyone with a single muscle can scroll through it relatively easily. Stop being such a drama queen. It's nowhere near as good as the Iphones scrolling, but it's also nowhere near as bad as bad as you make it out to be.

@matt: The connection between the screen and keyboard will wear out? What are you talking about?

I have to agree, the resistive touch screen working through TouchFlo was horrible. It felt like it did whatever it wanted. I partly also blame the horrible lag.

Wow! There sure is a lot of bias here. I'm trying to think of the last time I heard of a resistive touch screen getting too hot and frying. I'll pass on the capacitive screen. Yes, the Iphone is sexy. The fuze is a workhorse. I wonder how many people leave any of their smartphones set up just like they were out of the box. I currently use a blackberry and I have tweaked it beyond belief. Just my bias. I like to make my phone unique to the way that I use it. I'm surprised that there was not one mention of mobitv. Live streaming tv on a beautiful screen right out of the box. Oh nevermind, it probably isn't that important. It's no Iphone, but it has merit. And yes AT&T and HTC should have had opera mini set up properly out of the box.

Thanks for the review... I am in the market for an iPhone when my upgrade becomes avail. I originally wanted to go with the Fuze since I have the at&t 8525. But I really want to venture away from the WM... So now all I have to do is wait..........

the phone looks like a tank. although winmo is powerful, i gotta agree that the user experience just isn't very pleasant. this phone with a different os might turn more heads.

Rene, you have expressed all my hatred for WinMob, I'm glad I'm not the only one out there that has these feelings towards it. lol :)

i've tried the fuze myself after having an iphone for a few months. it just feels like going backwards technological-wise.
i think it's mostly due to the os rather than the phone itself however.
the thickness of the phone actually feels great in the hands and the flash for nightpics is a definite plus.
the only problem i have with most wm devices is the need for a stylus. i'd gladly trade any stylus for a good blackberry trackball or apple thumb anyday. stylus(i?) are completely and utterly tacky.

I agree the device is good looking but like u I don't want to have to spend hours tweaking the os. A little tweaking is fine but it seems to me with winmo unless u work at it it would be more of time killer then a time saver.

"I miss the Treo Pro (and iPhone) mute button."
If you press the Volume Down key, or flip the device it will mute!

Kinder than most reviews done by an iPhone user, however if your going to review a device learn it, use it and then criticize the differences based on proper use.

@Marios:
But to know how to do that, he would have had to read the manual. Apparently he didn't want to do that.

I love my FUZE and think you guys should do your reviews with coded tweaked phones. After adding programs like mobile shell, icontact and many others my FUZE operates way better then my iphone (I have both).

Wasn't the point that he does not want to tweak the phone nor dig into a manual to get it working better? Phones should be good to go out of the box for most functions.

Ouch... WinMob may not be beautiful, but "cold, archaic 1998" is a bit much...
Interesting review though, thanks

I have to agree with the learn your device before you rake it over the coals for not doing what you want. The power button only on change be changed right in the system settings of every WinMO device. Also the lack of a shift indicator is a fairly easy tweak that you can do yourself or find fairly easily a cab to do it for you... I jumped from a WinMo device to a iPhone. I like the big screen, touch, and the browser is great. I hate it being locked to Apple so 1 week after I got it I jailbroke it and am off and running now. My next upgrade from ATT may be back to WinMo. Who knows.. But I have until 2010 to decide!!!!!!

Since tweaking is what you think Windows Mobile is really all about, you can't say that you are really giving it a chance to show what it's best at if you don't tweak.

I agree that I like my devices to work well right out of the box, but it sure is nice to have the option of tweakability, just in case. Sometimes just adjusting one or two things to better suit your personal preferences can make all the difference. I tried the Fuze in the store and it did seem a bit laggy to me, but it sure does seem to do alot of exciting things, like tv out (seems to do more, somehow, than any of the other smartphones being reviewed in the round robin - that's my impression, anyway).

i had an iphone for a month and i returned it after a month. Yes i did jail break it and i used the appstore, cydia and others. even though all the apps are supposed to be in one place, i find that i switched between the app store and cydia alot.
I would say winmobo is more for business, productivity and the like. The iphone is more for games. could u imagine using excel using a capacitive screen, it would be hell. Resistive is more accurate, thats y a stylus was included. Capacitive is more responsive, but not accurate.
Also, i think the comment about the keyboard is not fair, because using an on screen keyboard covers up about half of the entire screen, they u have a tiny section to type the message, whereas a hardware keyboard lets you type with the full screen.

also, did you try holding down on the bar with touchflo 3d, its not supposed to be flicked, but slide instead. its alot easier

@blahblahblah:
We don't know how he used the TouchFlo bar outside of his preview video, even though there were several responses to that thread that gave him tips on how to improve usability. He did not mention any of these tips in the final review, so he either did not read them, or ignored them to promote his original agenda.

Um..."It’s powerful, yes, and configurable,"...seems like it has good stuff you want...I guess there is not accounting for taste.

PhilR8,
The tips did help somewhat, but I think my usage method was just too iPhone-trained to really do a good job with it in only a week. Switching to my nail made it better, but it never did what I intended it to do. I would even try just hitting the icon I want, when it was off to the side, and different things would happen at different times, and no matter what anyone says, if I drag sideways on the music app instead of up and down, no way should that activate the tab bar (which is nowhere near where I pressed) and shoot me into different apps.
Nailing touch is hard. I think we all know that. HTC names their like Touch. That's a really brazen thing to do if you don't nail the experience utterly and completely. I'd argue Apple did with the iPod Touch, and HTC absolutely did not with their line.
Maybe I could have gotten used to it if I spent more time with it, or if I'd spent money on it and knew I couldn't return it, but -- again -- I don't think, in 2008, I should have to.

I'm not a fuze guy, but many of your negative comments are because you just didn't do what 99% of people in this planet do:
.
Read the manual!
.
The other 1% are iPhone guys.

Wow, really disappointed to see personal attacks. Is that really how we want to represent ourselves?
Let's stick to technology, UI, radios, even styluses, and keep the personal stuff for the lesser webs, b'okay?

@pinguino1:
I never read an iPhone or iPod Touch manual, nor the Android G1, nor the Treo Pro, and I shan't be reading the BlackBerry Bold why should the FUZE get, never mind need, special consideration?
And if it does, that sorta makes many of my points. I really don't want a phone I need an instruction manual for, especially after having used PDAs and Smartphones for a decade already...

I'm a Blackberry user who recently switched back to Windows Mobile. I heard on a podcast today, that WinMo users don't generally stumble onto HTC devices. We know what we are getting into. We know that WinMo phones requires hours to make it just right. As you've put it in your podcast, we care about the journey as much as the destination. I'll admit, that the iPhone, and the Blackberry work amazingly out of the box. I can't speak about the iPhone, but I can speak about the Blackberry. My Curve worked perfectly, and it did everything I wanted it to do, but I was bored with it in a very short time. I longed for my old WinMo device (the SCH i760). We Pocket PC geeks like the feeling of reading and learning something new, and trying it on our device. It is such a rewarding feeling. But, then again, it isn't for everyone. WinMo devices are for business users, but I think it is more for the tech geeks that like tinkering and customizing. You probably know there is a large community of us that support and share knowledge about Windows Mobile via sites such as ppcgeeks.com. I just love it. I even think Dieter's site WMExperts generates more excitement. Kevin is really passionate, but I find crackberry.com just very newsy. WMexperts has a little more verve. An analogy I would make would be that iPhone users were the popular kids in high school, and WinMo users were the nerdy and geeky kids that read Plato for fun. We're a little misunderstood, and perhaps reviled behind our backs. But, I think we're an interesting group, and we certainly do love Windows Mobile.

honest review. guess I like the tinkering.. or perhaps I like the ability to have mms pictures sent to me without jail breaking. Or video recording.. or copy and paste.. shall I go on? The bottom line is that smartphones are not able to please all the people all the time. Each serves a nich market. The fruit phone is great at fun- multimedia but comes at a price, Apple must agree to whatever you want on your phone. Windows Mobile is great at Business with a splash of fun and you can put whatever your little heart desires on it. And nobody can take it away from you (i.e. the kill switch on the iphone). I love my Fuze, warts and all. I love the journey and the freedom to shape its personality, style and Flare.

I've flashed oh so many ROM's onto my now ancient HTC Hermes and quite simply Windows Mobile is dead, despite the 3D TouchFlo eye candy. The iPhone takes the best of Palm OS simplicity and moved forward in a revolutionary way.

You know, irony can be so ironic.
I think back to that 1984 Super Bowl ad, where the Mac's avatar strides up to the big screen and supposedly, strikes a blow for the everyman against Big Brother.
Now look at you lot, grateful for being able to spend big money on a phone, then set it up AT HOME
Then when you do, you can install only Apple-approved apps. You can't even change your own battery.
It's sad, for people who profess to love freedom.

We should all probably be forced to spend a week on a desert island without any phone at all and see who can survive at this point without one. Then we'll know which OS breeds the hardiest proponents! That way at least we'll know who to root for when the smartphone wars explode out of the blogosphere and into one big cage match fight to the death.

Now it's getting interesting! Yes, too personal at times but at least some of the posts are good reading.
Freedom? There are the iPhone freedom fighters who go their own way. Good for them. Most people just want a smartphone that is intelligent, friendly and fun. Life is hard enough sometimes without fussing over the technical stuff.

I am a WM Fan Boy. Overall you did a fair review. I agree with the tinkering part, for me it's fun to tinker and make my phone different. I have used a Tilt for a year now, there is no keyboard lag. I have TF2D installed, and I love it. I do wish TF in general extended further into Windows, but it's an improvement.

WM as a whole has a lot of possibilities, and the ability to customize the OS and "build" a phone to suit your needs is a great feature. What I don't like is the need for the stylus. When I want to access something quickly I'd like the ability to pull my phone out, tap on something and go. Having to pull a stylus out of the back of the phone feels like an unnecessary added step.

Winmo users angry again :D
The perspective of the reviewer is not a "power user" perspective, so to speak. So he doesn't really have to read the manual. He doesn't have to dig through to find out that special capability. If any of you winmo believers are wondering why people are stupid enough to buy iPhone's, it's becaus they're that easy to use! Most people couldn't care less about flashing (although I own a fuze, and have flashed so many times, it's not even funny).

"It’s sad, for people who profess to love freedom."
I agree. As much as they say "Think Different", every ipod I have seen is exactly alike. Heaven forbid you want to change the skin of the UI, or even choose a different UI..
Mapple users are in the matrix, happy to be-bop along and let the MCP Mapple control everything for them.. I think they are the nerd-wanna-bes who could never figure out programming (or reading a manual) and now think they are really tech-savvy since they have an iphone.. Mapple has cultivated a thriving ever-spending crowd to harvest.

Hopefully this will be your last Windows Mobile phone, I personally do not like them, and it seems like you don't either.

#
PmMann Says:
December 12th, 2008 at 5:18 pm
“It’s sad, for people who profess to love freedom.”
I agree. As much as they say “Think Different”, every ipod I have seen is exactly alike. Heaven forbid you want to change the skin of the UI, or even choose a different UI..
Mapple users are in the matrix, happy to be-bop along and let the MCP Mapple control everything for them.. I think they are the nerd-wanna-bes who could never figure out programming (or reading a manual) and now think they are really tech-savvy since they have an iphone.. Mapple has cultivated a thriving ever-spending crowd to harvest."
Agreed!

The Fuze and the iPhone have no reason to be compared. They have nothing in common.They belong two different markets.
There are two kind of people in this planet the ones that watch what's happening and the ones that make things happening.
One kind of people just touch and watch a basic phone is good enough.
Other people are creative and put efforts to produce results a versatile phone is good for them.

Dieter's Touch HD run-through this morning certainly throws a different light on comparisons with the iPhone. It will be interesting to see what exactly HTC brings to the U.S. market (if we still have one in a year).

The hardware on the Fuze is better. You have better resolution 640x480, compared to the 480x320 on the Iphone. That makes a difference in remote desktop, web browsing, etc. Then you have stereo bluetooth ability, the next gen headphones like the motorola S9-HD near wired headphones quality. Then you have video recording, real GPS to take advantage of all the great third party GPS software out there.
With WinMo phones there are a ton of apps out there and no one has to approve them. And of course, non technical people who don't know how to install custom roms and don't want to tweak their phones will prefer the Iphone. Where basically you can just set it and forget it, and wonder what Dear Leader Steve Jobs will allow to be released next? While he finally allow A2DP bluetooth in the next phone or is he 'saving' it for a future Iphone, video recording, better resoultion? This stuff was availabe when the Iphone 3G was released but again he has been holding back tech to make a buck, instead of making the best phone possible.

Good review - I appreciate the candor, which seems so unusual from iPhone users. While I'll admit to preferring WM over the iPhone, I agree with a lot of what you had to say. Of course, I don't mind some of the shortcomings of WM too much. I just wish MS had caught on to the whole visually appealing thing sooner. :)

@ Rene,
I see your point, and I agree with you that actually not reading the manual makes your points relevant.
Also from your iPhone mentality I accept that you don't want/need to read a manual, that's fine because that's exactly the market Apple is targeting. That's the genius of Apple, they know what you want. That's why they are so successful.
But there are other type markets, somenhow I belong to the analytic type of guys, And my personal experience can be summarize with my wife example.
She belongs to the intuitive group of people, she opens every box and start doing things with whatever is inside, and more often than most I have to stop what I'm doing when I hear HONEY!!!
... I know what it was. It was something more complicated than a lipstick.
My wife also has a good sense of humor, she didn't got offended with this post. You also have a good sense of humor, Right?

@pinguino1: I enjoy great discussion and different points of view, give me that and regardless of whether or not we agree, I'm extremely happy. (Not offended at all).
I'm different for different things. Many years ago I preferred Imagine to Lightwave for 3D rendering, because Imagine was more analytical to me. In many things I prefer having to de-construct, learn, and re-construct. Other times, that process annoys me and reduces my enjoyment of life. That's why we're all lucky to have so much choice.

I'm consistently amazed (and impressed) by how true to its original philosophy apple has been since its inception. The brand started with the core values of being intuitive and user-friendly, elegant, and fun, and every iteration of every one of their product lines has stayed true to that vision. So you really have to give them credit for brand consistency. I've never liked the apple stuff myself (I just don't like it when my devices substitute their judgment for my own, doing something a certain way even when I try to tell them to do it a different way), but I respect their singular and well-executed vision.

i know the Iphone is a very good device, i dont think anyone would dispute that fact, but it seems as though it may have been put up on too high a pedestal.
i kind of get the feeling from this review that Rene didnt really take the time to try and learn the device at all.
No its not an Iphone, It does things different than an iphone, and you dont have to stroke steve jobs off to get something as simple as a cut and paste feature

It's too bad the Round Robin didn't use phones customized by current users instead of 'out of the box' phones. I'd be that with more tweaks, you'd find WinMo a bit more usable.

@mike: I missed ctrl too. Check out "AutoHotKey for CE". You can write/run a script to map another button on your keyboard(like that media net button) to ctrl so you can do all those great shortcuts built right into a real mobile OS(Copy/Cut/Paste/Undo/Redo).

I really wanted to like this phone, but this is 2 phones htc has disappointed me with. The touch flow just doesn't work, at ALL. I loved Kevin's experience w/ it. It made me laugh several times. :P

Ok, so i have a question. I have an iPhone now and I LOVE IT!! DO NOT want to part with it, but the company I work for is switching to WM. I have to have a device that has at least WM 6.1. I thought the HTC Fuze would be my best bet. Which PDA do you all think is the best? I prefer the iPhone like I said. But I cant afford to pay 2 data plans just because I want to keep my iPhone. So Basically, if you ABSOLUTLY HAD to go with WM 6.1. Which phone is the best?? thanx in advance.