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HTC HD2 for T-Mobile

The HTC HD2 will be available from T-Mobile starting March 24 for $199.99 with a two-year contract and qualifying data plan. Alternatively, you can get it with an Even More Plus Plan, which doesn't require an annual contract, for $449.99.

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Windows Mobile 6.5

The HD2 is a Windows Mobile 6.5 smartphone with HTC Sense. The latter really improves the user experience, which--coupled with the beautiful 4.3-inch capacitive touch screen and the 1GHz processor--makes it the best Windows Mobile device on the market. However, the question now is whether you should wait for Windows Phone 7 Series.

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Entertainment features

T-Mobile is really playing up the multimedia capabilities of the device, and to sweeten the deal, it is preloading the smartphone with a ton of entertainment apps, including Barnes & Noble's e-book reader app.

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Barnes & Noble's e-book eReader

The Barnes & Noble eReader app will give you access to the eBookstore where you can access more than a million e-books, newspapers, magazines as well as any content you've downloaded as a previous Barnes & Noble account holder. The HD2's 4.3-inch screen made it pretty easy to read text.

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Blockbuster On Demand

The HD2 will be the first handset to support Blockbuster's On Demand video download application, which lets you preview and download movies on the go. Once purchased, you can watch the video on another connected device, such as a TV, a Blu-Ray disc player, or a PC, using Blockbuster software.

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'Transformers': More than meets the eye

T-Mobile is shipping the HD2 with a 16GB memory card preloaded with both the "Transformers" and "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" movies, both of which have been optimized for viewing on the smartphone's display. Playback was smooth and, again, the screen lends itself well to watching video.

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MobiTV

HD2 customers will get 30 days of free MobiTV service, which gives you access to live and on-demand TV from channels such as MTV, NBC, Comedy Central, and ESPN.

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Browser

The smartphone comes with both the Opera Mobile Web browser as well as Internet Explorer Mobile. You get pinch-to-zoom support and the HD2 is 3G-capable and equipped with Wi-Fi.

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Keyboard

In addition to a traditional onboard keyboard, you'll also be able to use Swype, which lets you spell out a word by dragging your finger on the keyboard from letter to letter. Swype's algorithm then does its best to figure out what word you're trying to input; it also automatically enters a space after you complete a word and includes certain tricks, such as circling a key to input a letter twice. We've tried it out on the Samsung Omnia II and the Motorola Cliq XT and it works surprisingly well.

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Camera

The HD2 features a 5-megapixel camera with autofocus, dual LED flash, video-recording capabilities, and the standard editing options. With GPS, you'll also be able to geotag photos.

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Big but thin

To accommodate the 4.3-inch screen, the HD2 carries a bigger footprint than most smartphones. It measures 4.74 inches tall by 2.64 inches wide by 0.43 inch thick and weighs 5.54 ounces. Still, for such a feature-packed phone, we're amazed at its thinness.

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Bottom view

On the bottom, you'll find a 3.5mm headphone jack and a Micro-USB port.

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