HTC DNA (Verizon)

HTC DNA (Verizon)There’s something you should know about me.  I have a problem. I’m a smartphone addict.  It’s my cross to bear.  It’s a real disease with doctors and medicine and everything!

Unfortunately, I’m also broke, so I can’t satisfy my insatiable lust for the newest most bestest shiniest smartphone on the market every time one is unveiled.  I am limited to my 2 year contract renewals, and that HURTS.  It hurts waiting that long and that’s mostly RIM’s fault. I’ll give you a brief look at my smartphone history.

It all started in the middle of the night, where I was “working” my overnight shift at Rockwell Collins as a Test Technician.  Luckily, there was literally nothing to do, so I was shopping online for my first smartphone.  Now please understand, this is back when Blackberries were still cool.  I was still rocking my crappy Samsung flip-phone and was eager to try something fancier.

That’s when I saw it.

The Blackberry Storm.

It had a cool name, plus it was the first touch screen Blackberry, so that was neat.  I promptly ignored the customer reviews and impulse bought that sucker.  What followed was the worst 2 years of my life.

I won’t bother going into specifics, just know that if anybody ever says to you “hey, you want my old Blackberry Storm?” your reaction should be something like this. (seriously, click that link)

So when I could FINALLY upgrade my phone, I decided to try this new thing called Android.  I wanted an iPhone but Verizon was taking their sweet time in bringing it in (bullet dodged, thanks Verizon!) so I went with the HTC Droid Incredible.  This phone was awesome.  I miss it.  I ended up breaking it and having to use my Blackberry Storm for like a month while I waited for an upgrade. (Drove me to the brink of doing bad things to myself)  I actually gave it to my friend, who fixed it and still uses it to this day.

Then when I could finally upgrade, I took 300 dollars, threw it at Verizon and went home with the Motorola Droid Bionic.

I will probably never buy a Moto phone again.

It wasn’t nearly as bad as the BB, but I was definitely chomping at the bit to upgrade my phone by the time my 2 years was up.

This brings us to today.  This brings us to….*DUN DUN DUNNNN* the HTC DNA!  Finally right?  I know, I’ll not bore you with my incessant “blogging” anymore, I’ll just get right to it.

As always…SPECS FIRST!!

Dimensions

141 x 70.5 x 9.7 mm (5.55 x 2.78 x 0.38 in)

141.7 g (4.97 oz)

Display

Super LCD3 capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors

1080 x 1920 pixels, 5.0 inches (~441 ppi pixel density)

Memory

NO SD card slot

16GB internal memory.

Camera

8 MP, 3264×2448 pixels, autofocus, LED flash

Simultaneous HD video and image recording, geo-tagging, face and smile detection

Video

1080p@30fps, stereo sound rec., video stabilization

Features

OS – Android OS, v4.1 (Jelly Bean), planned upgrade to v4.2 (Jelly Bean)
Chipset – Qualcomm MDM615m/APQ8064
CPU – Quad-core 1.5 GHz Krait
GPU – Adreno 320
Sensors – Accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass
Messaging – SMS (threaded view), MMS, Email, Push Email
Browser – HTML5
GPS – Yes, with A-GPS support and GLONASS
Java – Yes, via Java MIDP emulator

So, how is it?!?  It’s awesome.  At least compared to my last phone anyways. This phone is FAST.  It actually works.  The camera is a thousand times more awesome than the Bionic.  The pictures look great, and the camera app actually takes less than 2 minutes to load.  I don’t know how many photo ops I missed with the Bionic because the camera app took FOREVER to open.  The phone is sleek, and lightweight.  I have a Ballistic’s case on it which seems to work well and not add much weight.

Pros:

I like the way the phone looks.  Granted you can’t see that on mine with the case, but I’m just sayin.  HTC makes a sweet looking phone.  I really liked the way the Incredible looked too.

Lightweight.  I guess this is a pro.  I kind of miss the weight of my extended battery-Bionic, but I’m getting used to this phone not weighing as much (even with the case on)

FAST!  This phone has a quad-core CPU and it’s using it.  Makes games like Zombie Frontier look and feel awesome.

Google Now.  This feature is pretty sweet.  I never knew what it was and why everybody was so crazy about it.   Shortly before I dumped it, the Bionic actually received a Jellybean update from Verizon (I almost had a heart attack) and I was able to try Google Now.  It sucked.  It sucked because the Bionic was SO SLOW.  With this DNA, Google Now can actually operate and it’s pretty awesome.  I love the helpful cards it displays.  It tells me the weather, it tells me how far away I am from home at any given time and if there are any delays, it tells me when an order I placed on amazon has shipped.  It’s real slick.  Oh, also it’s a pretty decent search engine.

Boots up in seconds.  It’s weird.  Every smartphone I’ve owned has taken forever to boot up.  This one boots up incredibly fast.  Spooky fast.  Jimmy Johns fast.

*UPDATE*

I just remembered another Pro about this phone.  In times past, HTC has developed this stupid connector that only works on HTC devices.  At least they had the decency to make the female end accept micro USB, but all their male ends were stupid.  With this phone, they went back to just using a normal old micro-USB.  Thanks HTC!

Cons:

Not a lot to say here but there’s a couple things to mention.

I am disappointed that they chose to not include an SD card slot AND then only gave us 16GB of internal storage.  This isn’t a huge problem, considering I use Spotify for music, and if I didn’t I would use Google Music so none of my music would need to be stored locally.  I also use Google Drive to store pretty much any other type of file.  But it would be nice to know I had a little more storage.

Battery isn’t removable.  I list this as a con, but I consider it a pro.  It’s a lot easier to engineer an integrated battery than a removable one.  This is why Apple batteries have historically lasted longer than Android batteries.  Plus, there’s no need to remove the battery anymore if the phone is built well (this one is) and doesn’t need to be hard-reset every 5 minutes like the BB Storm.  But, there are people out there who just HAVE to be able to remove the battery, so I guess it’s a con.

That’s about it.  I seriously love this phone.  I think HTC has found a life long fan with this guy.  I’ve now used a BB, a Motorola and 2 HTC’s and have loved the HTCs and hated the others.  I also use an HTC Evo View tablet and it’s pretty nice.

I plan on destroying my BB Storm with my Compound Bow soon, I’ll post a video here with that sweet action. (Video taken with my HTC DNA of course).

About James Welbes

James is a guy who does things. Lots of things. Nothing weird, mostly computer things like blogging, web development, Netflix. He's a total Google fanboy, (despite Allo) and has been recognized as a Google Expert in Google's Chromebook Central product forum.