Known as the manufacturer’s first Android-powered device, the HTC Magic features the classic PDA-phone form factor. Featuring a minimalist exterior and basic controls underneath the generously-sized display, the Magic is also my first experience with Google’s mobile OS.
Doing away with the classic five-way navigator, the Magic relies on a small trackball for interface browsing and selection. The virtual keyboard is reminiscent of the iPhone’s, with the device emitting slight vibrations upon keypress as physical feedback.
The Android OS was very responsive, with none of the delays the characterize the interface of—dare I say it—Windows Mobile devices as recent as last year. My unfamiliarity with the OS limited my experimentation, but it was weird how it seemed impossible to select a photo from the gallery, open it, and send it to another device via Bluetooth.
I’ll try to secure a unit for review. So far though I was pretty impressed with the clean and minimalist impression both the HTC Magic and Google Android OS made on me. More so after the HTC Magic or the Android (or both) left an impression of reponsiveness. Perhaps that alone is enough to justify the phone’s decidedly high-end price (see buy links below), but we can only be sure after a few days of use.