The HTC Desire C is a good budget handset, and one of the few to come running Android Ice Cream Sandwich. However, its poor camera and lack of speed may leave some users feeling let down.
Nice design, runs Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, good battery life
600MHz processor can be painfully slow, poor camera
Processor: 600MHz single-core
Display: 3.5in 320x480 TFT LCD
Storage: 4GB, expandable to 32GB
Camera: 5MP rear-facing camera; 0.3MP front-facing
Connectivity: GSM/HSPA+, 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
Ports: Micro USB
Operating system: Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
The Desire C is HTC's latest budget Android smartphone, and is a handset aimed at smartphone newbies and those on a budget. The pint-sized handset sure does look good, but can it carry on the repuation left by the original HTC Desire?
This device is the first Desire-branded smartphone that we've seen for a while, but gone is the design reminiscent of HTC's last-generation handsets, as the Desire C looks more like a shrunken down HTC One X. That's no bad thing, as it gives the phone a premium feel despite its cheap price tag, although we noticed that the white model is prone to picking up fingerprints and dirt.
Another feature we're not so keen on is the faux metal trim around the edge of the handset, which rubbishes the phone's overall high-end feel, and looks like it will easily pick up scratches. On the other hand, we couldn't help but fall in love with the phone's jazzy red internals, which although largely pointless are a nice touch.
In terms of size, the handset is barely larger than a credit card, measuring 107x60x12.3mm. This makes the phone nice and comfortable when held in the hand, and means it's petite enough to squeeze into your pocket. It's plenty light enough too, weighing just 100g.
Mounted in the Desire C's compact chassis sits a 3.5in 480x320 screen. With a pixel density of 165 pixels-per-inch (PPI), the display is nothing to get excited about, because although the interface and images are clear, text can look a little fuzzy around the edges. However, it's perfectly ample enough for the handset's target audience, who also won't mind looking past the screen's poor outdoor visibility and viewing angles.
Despite costing little over £100, the HTC Desire C arrives running the latest and greatest version of Google's mobile operating system, Android 4.0.3 Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS), alongside HTC's Sense 4.0 user interface (UI).
As you'd expect, the interface has been tweaked from the version you'll find on the HTC One X and One S handsets, and gone are the switch animations, transition effects and lock screen widgets. However, elsewhere on the Desire C you'll find an Android experience that's similar to that of its high-end siblings, including multiple customisable home screens and access to Google's Play-branded app store.
Despite the phone's 600MHz single-core processor, the Desire C handles the rest of the Android ICS bells and whistles without any major hiccups.