The Good The HTC S743 packs in a full QWERTY keyboard while keeping a slim design. The Windows Mobile smartphone also offers Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, and U.S. 3G support.
The Bad The S743 is expensive. Call quality and GPS performance could be better. The microSD expansion slot is located in an inconvenient place.
The Bottom Line The HTC S743 packs a full-featured smartphone into a compact design, but the unlocked handset isn't cheap, which will make it a hard sell when compared with the competition.
HTC S743 (unlocked)
While everyone might be waiting for HTC to release its next Google Android phone, the smartphone manufacturer is plugging on with its commitment to Windows Mobile devices, and the latest model to come to market is the HTC S743. First announced at CES 2009, the S743 is a variant of the HTC S740, which has been available in Europe and Asia for some time now, and it stands out for its design. The S743 boasts a compact size while managing to pack in a full QWERTY keyboard, all the wireless options, and productivity tools to help mobile professionals manage their information on the go. It's a nice compromise between the more consumer-based HTC Touch Diamond and the corporate-centric HTC Touch Pro.
You do lose the touch screen though, and we weren't thrilled with the call quality of the phone. Plus, without a U.S. carrier, you're looking at a $500 price tag for the unlocked phone. However, if you don't want to be locked down to a carrier or contracts and can afford it, the HTC S743 packs a lot into its compact frame and delivers snappy performance. It nicely fills the spot when a regular cell phone isn't enough and the Pocket PC smartphones are too much. The HTC S743 is scheduled to be available from online retailers, including Expansys USA where we got our review unit, around April 5.
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