HTC Aria

on 8:27 AM

HTC Hero and the US version of the Legend, the HTC Aria ($130 with a two-year contract from AT&T; price as of 6/14/10) is the second Android phone to land on AT&T. While it doesn't have the beefy specs of the HTC Droid Incredible (on Verizon) or the HTC EVO 4G (on Sprint), the Aria should satisfy AT&T customers holding out for a full-featured Android device.

Solid, Yet Elegant Design

From the moment you first pick it up, you can tell that the Aria is a solidly designed phone. While the phone looks more or less like your typical HTC-designed phone, there are a few subtle, unique design elements. There are four holes in each corner of the soft rubberdized back, exposing the alloy-finished fasteners that hold the Aria together. Like the Droid Incredible's fire engine red innards, both the Aria's battery and plastic internal structure are brightly unicolored--this time in mustard yellow. Hardware-wise, it is practically identical to the Legend with the same display, battery, processor and camera. The only difference is the lack of a camera flash.

Like RIM, with its most recent BlackBerry models, HTC made the switch to an optical trackpad rather than a physical trackball. This is a welcome update as trackballs tend to get dirty or fall out. I found the trackpad nicely responsive as I quickly scrolled through the Aria's menus. I don't usually rely on trackpads/trackballs for navigation, but it is a useful alternative.


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