Online retailer play.com has the new HTC Desire phones, both the HD and the Z, available unlocked and SIM-free for a nice price. The Desire HD can be yours for £469.99, and the Desire Z for £429.99. Both phones will be available on October 11th, and if you pre-order, they should be shipped to you on the eleventh. Both will be loaded with Android OS 2.2 (Froyo), the newest available version out there.
Another option is online retailer eXpansys, which ships to even more countries than play.com, including the United States. Prices a little bit higher from eXpansys, £30 more for the Desire HD, and £20 for the Desire Z. eXpansys has a United States site as well, where the Desire HD is listed as pre-orderable but no price given, and the same is true for the Desire Z.
Remember that while they have similar names the prices differ primarily due to the phones different CPUs (Qualcomm 8250 Snapdragon at 1 GHz for the HD, versus Qualcomm MSM 7230 for the Z, clocking in at 800 MHz).
If you don’t have a need for an unlocked smartphone, you can wait until availability and get one of these HTCs direct from T-Mobile or also from eXpansys on contract. The price them will be £35 for the HTC Desire HD, or £30 for the Desire Z.
eXpansys gives some pros and cons on the two Desires. Here’s what they have to say about each:
- Huge stunning display
- Love built in maps & navigation
- Dolby Digital sound improves music listening
- Its bigger then your average phone
- You’ll either love or hate front touch sensitive buttons
- HD video is good, but not the best in class
What we say:
“The Desire HD is a stunning handset in every way. From the physical design that manages to pack a stunning amount of tech into an impossibly thin body, to the sumptuous feeling of the all metal body. Its the big screen Android phone that everyone wished HTC would make. Its an original HTC Desire on steroids, bigger, better, faster, with more of everything that made the Desire so great.
- Love the keyboard
- Off line maps work great
- prioritised inbox is smart
- Its not as svelte as the original Desire
- Optical track pad feels unnecessary
- No dedicated numeric keys on keyboard
What we say:
“The strangely named Desire Z (named because of the screen slide design) is a sister device to the original HTC Desire. Its for those that send lots of messages or just don’t get on with a virtual keyboards and don’t mind a little thickness for a physical keyboard. But its not just a Desire with a keyboard added on. HTC have used the time to sharpen up the Desire Z lots of little tweaks that elevate it above the original Desire, from HD video to really clever “short cut” keys on the keyboard. It all adds to make the Desire Z one of the best keyboard Android phones available.