HD2 Smartphone Hits UK Shores This Week

Nathan Eddy is a contributor to eWeek and TechWeekEurope, covering cloud and BYOD

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The sleek HD2 handset from HTC is to arrive in the UK this week, but US customers will have to wait until next year

The HD2 smartphone from Taiwanese handset manufacturer HTC will wow UK customers from this week with its ‘cinematic display’, but US customers will have a longer wait.

The HD2 handset will be available on the T-Mobile UK network this week, and with online retailers later in the month. It will also be available in Taiwan and Europe, but the company said it would reach US shores in early 2010, although HTC did not specify an exact date or carrier.

htc_hd2.jpgThe device boasts a 4.3-inch touch screen, Windows Mobile 6.5 OS and Qualcomm’s 1GHz Snapdragon mobile processor. It also includes a variety of sensors including a proximity sensor that is used to prevent false screen touches when the phone is picked up to answer or make a call. A light sensor on the HD2 automatically adjusts the brightness of the display.

It comes with 3G broadband connectivity, and also offers Wi-Fi anywhere for users’ computer or other devices. Also available for the smartphone is an optional car kit that transforms HD2’s user interface into an in-car navigation system.

“The HD2’s amazing customer experience is a testament to the close partnership between HTC and Microsoft and we’re excited to be bringing the HD2 to Taiwan and the United States,” said HTC CEO Peter Chou. “The HD2 is the first Windows phone with HTC SenseT, an HTC user experience focused on making the phone more simple and natural to use and by enabling people to personalise their mobile experience in their own unique way.”

HTC is putting a strong emphasis on the personal with the HD2; among the device’s social networking-oriented features is a Windows-based version of its Twitter application, HTC Peep. HTC notes the pictures users take with the camera’s 5 megapixel camera can also be shared via Facebook or Twitter. The display also provides a single contact view that shows individual communication snapshots of conversations with users contacts regardless of whether a call, text, Facebook status update or email were used.

“Working with HTC, we’ve delivered great phones that help customers connect to the people and information they care about, wherever they are,” said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. “The HTC HD2 shows what’s possible through our close partnership with HTC and it breaks new ground for Windows phones by delivering a beautiful multi-touch screen that people will love.”