HTC Flyer Google Android Gingerbread Tablet
This reviewer can barely contain his excitement. Just this morning Fedex delivered the long awaited (Since CES January 2011) HTC Flyer Google Android Gingerbread Tablet. I could barely wait to open the box and get my hands on what is one of the first 1.5Ghz Android Tablets on the market. The first thing you notice when you pick up the tablet is its comfortable weight (14.8 ounces) and the way it fits so nicely in your hand. One could almost call it a larger cousin of the HTC Inspire or the Desire HD. The aesthetics of the design are identical to some of the flagship Smartphones in the HTC lineup. However what is most suprising is how nicely the device fits into your hand. The solid aluminium unibody construction with solid plastic caps on the top and bottom back add an extra grip. This is one fabulous device!!! Considering that we have not even fired up the device yet that is a bold statement but not lost on the millions of satisfied users of HTC products worldwide. These people listen to their customers and its evident in their products. The Tablet is 7.7" high by 4.8" wide and is .52 of an inch thick. Quite a svelte design considering how much power this puppy packs under its hood. From the moment you fire up the gorgeous Super LCD Display (I can't confirm this however its certainly much better than a standard TFT and displays well at all angles and in sunlight). The screen offers great brightness, sharpness and clarity when viewing it from various angles. Colour rendition is on a par with Apple and Motorola's offerings from this reviewers standpoint and it handled itself well under direct sunlight. That is a claim that few Smartphones let alone Tablets can make. It was an absolute pleasure to use any of my work related applications as they sprung to attention at the tap of my finger. Games ran brilliantly and fast which is largely due to the powerhouse Qualcomm Snapdragon 1.5Ghz processor under the hood. The biggest drawing card that the HTC flyer has over any other tablet currently being offered in the world is that it comes with a special pen. Unlike your ordinary stylus which one would have found on their Palm Pilot of old, this one has lots of technology integrated into it as well as into the tablet itself. Dubbed "The Magic Pen" this aluminum housed beauty sits nicely in your hand and allows the user to do amazing drawings and annotate books in the specially included "Notes" application. Currently there are no other applications that exist that support the Magic Pen, however given HTC's steadfast commitment to its customer base we believe that there will be a flurry of applications that will come to market. While there are those that believe that the Magic Pen is the sole differentiator between the Flyer and other tablets that simply is not the case at all. HTC has implemented its Sense User Interface and it really shines on the tablet allowing a variety of views and additional flexibility that is not found on other tablets that of course do not offer HTC Sense. HTC plans to introduce a Honeycomb version for the Tablet so that it can take better advantage of existing applications and automatically scale them to fit the screen. HTC is also launching a new service called HTC Watch which is a Netflix type rental service for movies. Watch out for HTC watch in North America as I am confident that they will be launching it here in the future. Lets take a closer look under the hood. The Flyer houses a Qualcomm Snapdragon Processor that runs at 1.5ghz and a complement of 1gig of onboard ROM and 32gib of user storage. Users can also upgrade the memory by using a Micro SD Card slot located under one of the Plastic panels which are easily accessible. The device also has Wifi, Bluetooth and a 3g Data Radio so that you can use this as a Mobile Internet device. Surprisingly with all that power under the hood I managed to get a good 12 hours of battery life out of the non removable battery. Thats quite impressive considering that we are running a 1.5 GHz processor as well as a 7" Super LCD screen. Great Job HTC!!! HTC also provides a nice white leather slipcover which holds the unit and has a slot for the Magic Pen. This is a nice addition considering that most Tablet cases in the marketplace are being sold for $40 to $50. The HTC flyer we received is the UK version and HTC will be launching the Wifi only equipped flyer at Best Buy U.S. within the coming few weeks. There are rumours that Tmobile will be bringing the 3G version of the Flyer into its already formidable selection of Android devices. IF you are looking for something that is solid, powerful, reliable Android Tablet with future support for Honeycomb then look no further than the HTC Flyer.