The HTC Mogul is a smartphone available on the Sprint network, which runs Windows Mobile 6 Professional. It is equipped will a full QWERTY slide-out keyboard, and a QVGA (240×320) touchscreen. The Mogul I’m using for review has the newest ROM upgrade which unlocked the GPS chip, and the EV-DO Rev-A data connection.
To get the new ROM update for your Mogul go here.
Listed are the rest of the phone’s important specs (taken from phonescoop.com)
|Dimensions||4.33″ x 2.32″ x 0.73″
Check out this iPhone vs Mogul size comparison
|Battery||Talk – 5.4 hours max. (324 minutes)
Standby – 340 hours max. (14.2 days)
|Memory||RAM – 64 MB
Storage – 162 MB
|Connectivity||Bluetooth – Supported Profiles: HFP, HSP, OPP, A2DP, AVRC, HID, PAN, SAP version 2.0
Wi-Fi – 802.11 b,g
|Memory Card Slot Type||microSD (TransFlash)|
|Camera Resolution||2+ megapixel|
Like all other WM devices this phone works best with the Microsoft Exchange server. It flawlessly integrates all your information over the air, without needing to connect to any computer, ever. It can receive emails the instant they are in your inbox, add dates and times of accepted calendar invites directly into your calendar app, and sync your contact and task listings. Users who are looking to get these tasks done quickly and effectively are the ones looking into the HTC Mogul. This device is very powerful but it isn’t for everyone, below are my opinions which should help you decide whether this smartphone is right for you.
The Mogul is a very tactile phone. It has 5 programmable hardware buttons, a 5-way directional pad, 2 hardware softkeys, a call and end button, a start button, 2 “OK” buttons, a navigational dial, a full QWERTY slide out keyboard, and a hardware WiFi on/off switch. The device feels like a rather good size for my hand. It couldn’t hurt if it was a little bit thinner, but it doesn’t feel overwhelmingly thick. The phone feels very sturdy, but it is a little on the heavy side. This might be a problem for someone with children that like to use their phone every once in a while. My other concern about the physical hardware is the super flimsily battery cover.
One of the best features of the hardware is its slide out keyboard. It has a spring loaded action, which causes it to snap open and closed, making a solid clicking sound. The keys themselves are spaced out very well and give good feedback when typing. There are also 2 indicator lights, located at the top, that illuminate when the caps or the function locks are activated. This is a cool feature that makes typing on this device, that much easier.
The one down side about having a slide out keyboard and no keypad on the face of the device is that it is extremely difficult to type with one hand. There is an onscreen keyboard that lets a user do so, but the keyboard that comes standard is so small you end up hitting the wrong letter half the time. There are 3rd party onscreen keyboards, but each of them has its own flaws and they don’t seamlessly integrate with every application. For those of you that text and drive, this phone isn’t for you. (disclaimer: don’t text and drive, it is very dangerous to take your eyes of the road for extended periods of time.)
Windows Mobile 6 Professional is overwhelmingly decent right out of the box. It is a multi-tasking OS, meaning more than one application can run at a time. Due to only 64MB of RAM, the OS tends to lag a little between clicks and app changes. When a user is done with an application, they need to be sure they hit the “X”, to close the app, or else it will stay open and drain memory resources. This is a change that was added with the newest ROM update. On some occasions the phone requires a reboot, in order to function at normal speeds again. These lag and speed issues are ones that a user must learn to live with, or else they will find themselves looking to get a different phone, fast.
The user interface for WM6 is out dated; it takes its design cues from Windows XP. While one can accomplish all of the same tasks on its default setting, WM6 doesn’t start to shine until you step into the realm of customizing it and making it your own. Here are some before and after shots of my home screen.
|Mogul Default Home Screen||Mogul Custom Home Screen|
As you can see on the left I have the default home screen with some basic information that a user needs. On the right is my customized home screen with a nice big clock along with email, text message, and missed call buttons. Below that are 3 big tabs that give me access to, this home screen, a weather screen, and a quick launch screen with shortcuts to 9 most used programs. Since the Mogul has 5 programmable hardware buttons, with this home screen plug-in, once my phone is turned on and unlocked, I am no more than 2 click away from 20 different programs. Which makes navigating much faster than the default home screen.
This home screen plug-in was actually taken from the HTC Touch and adapted to work on other HTC WM6 smartphones. A web community called XDA-Developers, made this and other HTC apps conversions possible.
The home screen is only the beginning of the modification I have made to my WM6 Mogul UI. I installed threaded text messaging, an iPhone-like contacts app, a new skin for the phone screen, a new system font, a single click app that changes my phone from ring to vibrate, and an HTC on screen keyboard. The great thing about WM6 on an HTC smartphone, is that with the xda-developers community and other sites like it, there are endless possibilities of the looks and applications you can add to your smartphone.
Must have app-
The absolute best application that every owner needs to add to this phone is Google Maps. Since it has a GPS chip you can use the app to find your current location, which takes about 10-15 sec. Once it has that, you can search your area for whatever business or address you are looking for. If you like, you can then get directions from your current GPS location to the location you just searched for. With this app it’s truly amazing how fast you can find places and get directions from your current location.
-The full QWERTY slide out keyboard, gives users a rather quick and easy way to type on this device. The downfall is the lack of a quality onscreen keyboard for the times that a user would want to use one hand to type.
-Over the air syncing makes this phone a much needed tool for user working at a business with the Microsoft Exchange server.
-This phone begs to be customized, therefore if a user doesn’t have the time or skill to do so, their user experience won’t be at its optimal level.
-The ability to multi-task on this phone lets user accomplish multiple things at a time. The downfall is that its RAM is limited and causes the phone to lag when too many things are running.
-Google Maps with the updated ROM that unlocks the GPS chip, makes this phone a valuable tool for traveling business users.
Overall I think that the HTC Mogul is a great smartphone with tremendous power. This device is perfect for business users that do a decent amount of traveling. The Mogul is also a good fit for users that enjoy tweaking out their phones and spending time to customize them. Casual and beginner smartphone users, might find this phone a little too overwhelming.
Hopefully I have given you enough information for you to decide whether or not this smartphone could be the right smartphone for you. If you still need more information, I recommend, like I do with every smartphone, try it out before you commit to purchasing it. Since every service provider has a 30 day return policy, anyone can sign up for a new phone, return it within the 30 days, and only pay for the service used in that time period. This will help you know for sure you like the phone before you port your phone number and/or get locked into a 2 year agreement.