HTC Wildfire S (MetroPCS) review: HTC Wildfire S (MetroPCS)

The carrier apps include an app store, an IM and social networking app, Loopt's social network, M Studio, Metro Navigator, Metro 411, and MetroPCS Easy Wi-Fi. There are also apps for extras, myMetro, Pocket Express, Rhapsody music, and VC Pay, a virtual payment card.

Performance
I tested the dual-band (CDMA 800/1900) Wildfire S using MetroPCS' network in San Francisco. Call quality was poor in my conversations. Voices sounded garbled to my ears, and also muffled and sputtery, as if audio were being sprayed out in dollops instead of as a stream. On the other end of the line, my friend heard distortion and tinniness, but no background noise.

Wildfire S (MetroPCS) call quality sample Listen now:

Speakerphone was practically inaudible to me when I held the phone at waist-level (my standard), even with the volume cranked up to max and my fingers well out of the way of the speaker. It was so bad, I could barely hear the caller over street noise outside and six floors below. When the caller consciously spoke into the mic on their end, voices sounded tinny. It's a shame, too, because the caller said I sounded loud, clear, and unobstructed by any background noise.

MetroPCS skipped the 3G network to launch the country's first LTE network and phone. However, the carrier has been slower introducing LTE phones. Since the Wildfire S only runs on Metro's 2.5G network, data speeds can be abysmally slow. That's a real road block for data-hungry users.

Conclusion
An ultraportable, attractive, and feature-rich phone on any network, the HTC Wildfire S definitely has an appeal--so long as you have a well-honed appreciation for small screens. Sadly, after my experience with the glacial data speeds and wince-worthy phone calls, I can't recommend it for MetroPCS, at least not in my neighborhood. If you're in a strong MetroPCS area, I urge you to conduct some in-store tests of your own before you buy.

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Where to Buy See all prices

HTC Wildfire S (MetroPCS)

Part Number: CNETWILDFIRESMETRO Released: Nov 21, 2011
MSRP: $179.99 Low Price: $239.98 See all prices

Quick Specifications See All

  • Release date Nov 21, 2011
  • Talk Time Up to 430 min
  • Technology CDMA2000 1X
  • Combined with With digital camera / digital player
  • Service Provider MetroPCS
  • Weight 3.7 oz
  • Diagonal Size 3.2 in
  • Sensor Resolution 5 pixels