Let’s hit this head on. By now you’ve seen HTC’s latest WP7 contender and have had a chance to discuss it. But let’s focus on ‘the’ feature this phone brings. It’s a partial slider concealing a speaker. As Murani notes, this is a multimedia win and he notes that in gaming, watching videos and making calls on speakerphone this is a huge perk. I have to admit when I first saw the design I thought it was really silly to add any bulk for this feature but I think Murani is on to something here. Windows Phone 7 is going to go front and center with media – Zune, Xbox, social connectivity to your videos.  And when I think about the Tilt 2, it’s got a massive speaker but to use it you have to put the phone face down… great for a business call, not great when actually using the device for media. And by concealing it you can keep the face of the phone free of a giant speaker which just eats up real estate.

We’ve been discussing this internally and Daniel had this to say:

I’m not sure i want to take on the extra thickness for a pair of speakers that in all likelihood still suck. would rather they just added a mini sub-woofer in the back in addition to the normal stereo speakers. If the rear speaker is only providing bass, it doesn’t matter much, besides this thing already has a kick-stand so it’s a non-issue. i think a slide-out stereo speaker is pretty useless considering i bet they are slapping in the same old speakers just in a new location with a big grill to make it look like something impressive when it’s not.

So what do you think? Is this genius or stupidity?  Let’s just focus on the design for a second here though and divorce the OS from the device. Is this a killer feature?

Well if you want to throw in some speculation about whether the kickstand is also an antennae (FM radio…why not go big and pretend it’s tv) and if that area on the top of the speaker is a front facing camera then go for it;)

9 COMMENTS

  1. I don’t see why you can’t put a keyboard on that AND better speakers. That’s the part that baffles me the most.

  2. I think the speaker is a nice feature. The kickstand allows it to be propped up at a great listening angle.

    Just imagine it on your desk playing music while zune background is doing its thing.

  3. @ramontrotman: LMAO

    I think HTC is a sweet looking device and sets itself apart from the other crappy looking WP7 devices we are seeing. I persoannly do not like the slide out speaker idea. I think the rear facing speaker on the tilt 2 worked great. This is going to make the device awkward to hold while gaming I would think. My Tilt 2 is awkward unless I am using the keyboard.

  4. I love it, and would use it regularly.

    example –

    Me – “Hey mom and dad, look at this (720p) video i just took of your granddaughter acting silly!”

    Mom and Dad – “Oh that is too funny! And viewing it was more enjoyable thanks to your slide out speaker, kick stand and high resolution screen.”

  5. if it really does have the same crappy speakers they couldve put inside the phone anyways then its really defeats the purpose of this, that said, if they do it right and put some decent speakers in there (who knows maybe they’ll even put somy poly speakers in there) then this would be a killer feature, i tend to play music on the speakerphone alot too so its something that would be utilized on a regular basis (im sick of proping my phone on my pack of cigarettes to get better sound)

  6. I think a slide out speaker system would be a neat idea. Think of it. Stereo speakers with a single sub between them. And if they were to make it so that sliding the screen in the opposite direction revealed a physical keyboard… Well that would make for an Awesome phone!

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