The Status might be small in size, but it's quite the behemoth when it comes to features. It has most of the amenities of any modern smartphone, such as a speakerphone, voice commands, Bluetooth with A2DP stereo support, GPS, Wi-Fi, and portable hot-spot capability for up to five Wi-Fi-enabled devices. Just bear in mind that AT&T requires you to be on the 2GB data plan to have the hot-spot feature, which itself costs $20 extra for another 2GB of usage. On the other hand, you will enjoy unlimited Wi-Fi at all AT&T hot spots across the country. The Status's quad-band GSM bands will also let you update your Facebook status from anywhere in the world.
As you might expect from an Android handset, you get terrific integration with all of Google's apps and services with the HTC Status. Google Search is a no-brainer, as is Gmail, Google Maps, and Google Talk. Google Voice Search is integrated into the phone as well. You also get other Google apps on here like Latitude, Places, and YouTube. You're able to use your own POP or IMAP e-mail accounts if you want an alternative to Gmail, and you can sync with your Microsoft Exchange corporate account, too.
Aside from the default organizer tools like the calculator and the calendar, HTC and AT&T have preloaded the Status with a few apps. They include HTC Hub, HTC Likes, AT&T's own Shop Music app, a Weather app, the Yellow Pages app, a Twitter app, AT&T Code Scanner, AT&T Family Map, AT&T Navigator as a Maps alternative for turn-by-turn directions, AT&T U-Verse Live TV, and, of course, Facebook. The HTC Status also pulls out Facebook Chat as its own separate application, which makes it that much easier to strike up conversations with your friends. HTC also added a Friend Stream app that essentially consolidates your Facebook, Flickr, and Twitter feeds into a single flow of information. You are of course free to download more apps via the Android Market.
The HTC Status ships with the same media player as other HTC smartphones. It has an attractive Cover Flow-like interface, with basic playback functions like repeat, shuffle, playlist creation, and more. The Status has 512MB internal memory plus a 2GB preinstalled microSD card, but it can be expanded to up to 32GB. If you would rather not listen to the music player, the Status does have a built-in FM radio instead.
We quite like the Status' 5-megapixel camera. It has autofocus, and allows for a multitude of different settings, like ISO, white balance, resolution, geotagging, and more. Photo quality was pretty good. Images looked sharp and vibrant, with very little blur, even in low light. Colors did seem a touch muddy, but it's a relatively minor complaint. There's a built-in camcorder as well. Recorded videos were decent, if you don't mind the occasional shake and stutter. You can also use the front-facing camera for self-portraits, but they won't look so good because of the VGA resolution.
We tested the HTC Status in San Francisco using AT&T Wireless. Call quality was quite good on the whole. We thought our callers sounded natural and clear, with very little distortion or background noise.
In turn, callers, too, heard us without issue. They reported a very clean sound, with no discernable interference. They did say our voice was perhaps on the softer side, but it did not sound blown out or digitized. Speakerphone tests went well, too, though callers sounded terribly tinny on the phone's dinky speakers.
HTC Status call quality sample
We enjoyed good 3G speeds in San Francisco. We loaded the CNET mobile page in 10 seconds, and the full CNET page loaded in a little over a minute. Loading YouTube videos was quite quick, as well, without a lot of buffering.
We were mostly satisfied with the HTC Status's 800Mhz Qualcomm processor. There was no lagging when swiping home screens or scrolling through long Web pages. However, there was certainly some sluggishness at times. Launching apps, for example, sometimes took a second longer than we anticipated. The phone's accelerometer can also take a second to kick in.
The HTC Status is a well-built Android smartphone, with good looks and a great QWERTY keyboard. The Facebook button is a little more than just a gimmick if you're a hard-core Facebook fan, as it does provide a far easier and faster way to get your Facebook fix. However, the phone's small landscape-oriented screen provides a less than satisfactory experience, especially for apps that are functional only in portrait mode. Still, if that doesn't prove to be a problem for you, the HTC Status does make for a decent messaging smartphone for the social networking fanatic.