This is the new HTC Hero, similar to the HTC Magic already available on Vodafone, but enhanced by a number of HTC customisations on top of the base Android OS, in a similar way to the TouchFlo interface that HTC add to their Windows Mobile devices.
The spec includes a 3.2″ 320×480 display, 5 megapixel camera, 512MB ROM, 288MB RAM, HSPA, WiFi, GPS, compass and microSD slot. It features a fairly powerful 1350mAh battery, weighs 135 grams and is 112×56.2×14.4mm, and features a Teflon coating to help keep it clean.
In a similar way to Nokia E-Series devices which feature two theme profiles, the HTC Hero will have a Scenes profile feature to allow you to swap between business and personal modes (although we don’t believe it’s limited to 2 profiles like the Nokia solution). It looks like it will have the ability to integrate some social networking sites such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter into the Contacts, and the phone features a dedicated search button that provides “you with a more natural, contextual search experience that enables you to search through Twitter, locate people in your contact list, find emails in your inbox or search in any other area in Hero”.
Best of all, HTC are talking about a July availability date in Europe, and to back that up, Orange UK have already announced they will be selling the HTC Hero, and T-Mobile have stated this is the phone dubbed the G1Touch.
The G1Touch will be available from mid-July and will be free on T-Mobile on a £40 per month contract (no contract term stated by T-Mobile, so that might be 24 months) on a Flext tariff offering £225 of credit to spend each month, and that tariff will also include “unlimited” internet browsing (likely to be 3GB per month).
Orange have stated the HTC Hero will be free for customers to take out the £39.15 per month (24 month contract), which will offer 1200 cross-network / landline minutes, “unlimited” texts, and “inclusive anytime” internet browsing (which means 500MB); which looks to us to be the Dolphin 40 tariff. It will also be exclusively available in ‘Graphite’ (dark grey) from early July.
It’s nice to see Orange finally starting to offer half-decent internet access deals, and we note that the Dolphin 40 tariff has no “out of bundle” charge for texts, so maybe they actually mean unlimited texts… <later> Oh no, it actually means 3,000 texts, just like the other networks….