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Review: HTC Desire S smartphone

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HTC’s impressive Desire set the standard for Android smartphones when it was released last year.

And now the eagerly-awaited follow up – the HTC Desire S – has just been released and the good news is it has taken that standard even higher.

The Telstra-exclusive device has a 3.7-inch touchscreen, a 1Ghz processor, 5 megapixel camera capable of capturing 720p high definition video.  


The HTC Desire S is like a slimmed down version of the original – it is thinner and slightly shorter and weighs 130g.

The bottom edge of the device has a slight forward curve to give it a more comfortable feel in your hand.

Gone are the physical buttons and they’ve been replaced with capacitive touch keys positioned right below the screen.

The HTC Desire S

Also introduced by HTC with the Desire S is the unibody design with a single piece of aluminium wrapping around the screen and across the middle of the rear panel.

The Super LCD screen on the HTC Desire S is very impressive and has a resolution of 480 x 800 which means pictures, icons, web pages and apps look great.

There is only 1.1GB internal memory on the device but a microSD slot means users can expand that by up to 32GB.

The HTC Desire S has a unibody design which is formed with a single piece of aluminium


We’ve come to expect a certain speed from smartphones nowadays and the Desire S is up there with its 1Ghz processor.

Apps pop open quick enough and switching between apps happens in a second.

As with any HTC smartphone users can expect the Android operating system along with its very own HTC Sense software layer.

HTC Sense helps make the Desire S more your own and gives users the ability to add their personal touch.

Apps can also be easily downloaded directly to the device from the Android market.

And being a Telstra exclusive handset there are already a few apps built in that link directly to Telstra services like the White Pages, Yellow Pages, Whereis, Foxtel and other Bigpond content.

The HTC Desire S is an improvement over the original Desire

Thanks to the speedy Next G network we experienced fast web browsing on the go as well as fast access to our email and data throughs apps.

The camera on the Desire S is probably the weakest part of the device and which has seen only a slight improvement from the original.

At only 5 megapixels we found pictures, while sharp, had muted colours and lacked the warmth of pictures taken with a dedicated digital camera.

On the plus side video quality was above average and showed definite high definition quality.

There are other smartphones on the market now packing 8 megapixel cameras and capable of shooting full high definition video.

Battery life was on par with other devices and we managed a day and quarter between charges during our testing. And that was with some heavy web browsing and wi-fi access.


If you liked the original Desire and are looking to upgrade then the decision to adopt the Desire S is a no brainer.

HTC’s range of smartphones continues to go from strength and the Desire S keeps the flag flying admirably.

The Desire S offers an excellent all round package for those looking to stay in touch, entertained and informed.

HTC Desire S

Price: $649 or on a Telstra plan

Four stars (out of five)