Reminiscent of the original HTC Touch with rounded corners and a neat button design.
The TouchFLO interface is very responsive
The lack of 3G or GPS really hampers this phone, particular as it comes with Google Maps and some strong internet software, such as a YouTube client.
Fast response times and easy to use.
The battery life doesn’t rock our world, but with no 3G there is only the Wi-Fi to really push it.
Review by Sunetra Chakravati,12/12/2011 3:53:49 PM
Look and feel
Ease of use
The Touch Viva has a nice design, and it is responsive and easy to use.
It lacks 3G and GPS.
HTC’s original Touch was a revelation. Arguably it was responsible for the explosion in touch interfaces this year, with handsets like Samsung’s Omnia and Sony Ericsson’s Xperia X1 blurring the divide between the feature phone and Windows Mobile smartphones. And don’t even get us started on LG’s touch-screen handsets or the iPhone.
The Touch Viva is an attempt to bring the Touch concept to those who can’t afford the expensive Touch Diamond or Touch HD. In many respects the Touch Viva is what the original Touch should have been, because its touch interface is slick and responsive, and it feels more integrated.
The Touch Viva has Wi-Fi but no GPS, and it only has EDGE connectivity rather than HSDPA. However, if you are languishing with an original Touch, it would be a very attractive upgrade.
The Touch Viva’s screen is slightly recessed from the fascia, although we didn’t feel this had a negative effect when using the touch-screen. The device is responsive, with the corner icons just as responsive as those that sit more centre stage.
The Touch Viva includes TouchFLO technology, and a retro analogue clock has replaced the digital one, but essentially the interface works in a familiar way. On any screen, you tap at icons in a bar along the bottom of the screen to access a range of features from tunes to camera images, to incoming email and contacts.
By swiping certain screens you can access additional functions. For example, when listening to music or looking at photos a vertical sweep switches albums, and if you tap an image, it brings it up in full screen, and a tap on slideshows shows you through an album.
With neither 3G nor GPS on board the Touch Viva is a little lacking. Google Maps is pre-installed but it uses mast triangulation to pinpoint your location, which is not very accurate. Although you could use Google Maps to find places, but not to get you to them.
There is an RSS feed reader, Opera Browser, and pre-loaded YouTube application, all of which would have benefited from 3G.
Wi-Fi covers some of the cracks, but heavy data users will miss 3G when they are out and about.
The Touch Viva is nicely designed, responsive and has some good software applications. But without 3G or GPS it can’t really be called leading edge. It is more of a mid-range smartphone, and ideal for those still using the original Touch.