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on 31 May 2015
The Desire Z rocks. I still haven't found a worthy successor. The only phone to replace a Desire Z is another Desire Z, so when I finally killed mine after four years there was only one thing to do.

My new phone arrived promptly, but there was a problem: The keyboard mapping was incorrect. I contacted the seller, MOBILLAND, who worked through the issue with me over several days before we concluded that the phone would need to go back. I sent it off the next day, and again it came back very quickly, with the keyboard mapped correctly.

Unfortunately, a bug in the new firmware left it unable to work with my specific SIM card. Again, MOBILLAND worked with me to resolve the issue. They even offered me a partial refund for all the trouble. Now I have a working Desire Z again, and couldn't be happier.

Any idiot can give decent customer service when it all goes right; the true test is when it goes wrong. MOBILLAND have been nothing short of brilliant. As a software guy, I know that these issues can happen. What sets MOBILLAND apart is the way they handle them. I expected a grudging offer to send the phone back for a refund. Instead, I got fast responses to all my emails (sometimes within the hour), good clear instructions to follow to try and resolve the issue, and a cast-iron guarantee that I could return the phone for a refund when we started on the more exotic fixes. All in all, I would gladly do business with them again.
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on 11 May 2012
This is my second HTC phone. I had the Google G1 Phone previously, which had a keyboard, and the keyboard on the Desire Z was a key factor in my decision to purchase this phone. I must say that the levels of satisfaction have declined with time:

SD Card problem: After about a couple of months I started having problems with my SD card. The Picture Gallery began lagging behind, and pictures I had taken recently would not always show up. Restarting the phone would fix the problem, until it became significantly worse. Some of the downloaded applications that would be stored on the card no longer appeared, or some of them appeared and some of them didn't. I personally am an IT professional and I noticed that apps that shared storage with the phone storage and system calls would show, when others, that were mainly light weight didn't. Again, restart. However some 6 months down the line, I started getting the message "sim card damaged". I formatted the card losing some data, and that fixed it for a short while, then it happened again. Change the card, lasted for a few weeks then happened again, and the format no longer fixes it. After 3 sim cards, I gave up. So now I can't take any pictures because the SD card is damaged. So half the features of a smart phone went out the window - I can't use dropbox either.

Software issues:

1) GMAIL: I had issues receiving emails instantaneously after about 3 months using the phone. I have to physically click refresh in the GMAIL app so it downloads my emails. That is very annoying.

2) Updates: Update All doesn't work. And some of the main apps such as pdf reader, GMAIL , Google Maps and Youtube always say "downloading" but nothing ever happens. You can download other apps but those ones seem to be constantly stuck and you can't cancel the download. It doesn't stop you from using the apps, but if some of the less developed apps like scrabble which don't have buffering/virtualization to allow concurrent use during an update/download are done for, and you can't use them anymore.

3) Music : No SD card, so clearly no music.

In short, the troubles are centred around both the SD card, and the internet connectivity of the OS for getting emails and downloads. I even bought a leather pouch for the phone thinking that its the fragility that may be causing issues with the SD card, but clearly not the case. I've dropped my old G1 HTC hundreds of times and that never caused any issues, and dropping it also doesn't explain why the software clogs up.

I was happy with the Keyboard and but its advantage and convenience no longer outweighs the nuances of the rest of the phone.
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on 23 January 2017
My old HTC Desire Z packed up over Christmas and I got this refurbished replacement. I love having the external slide out keyboard as I can't use the touch screen one, so pleased I was able to still get one of these. Delivery was quick, and the phone itself is in a 'as new' state. Some of the keys on the keyboard are not the same as on my original Desire Z, but that's not too big a problem. All in all, a good purchase. Thank you.
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on 23 December 2010
After two years with the G1 I wanted a newer smartphone and after testing the Desire (faultless, but I'm still not great at typing on a touchscreen) and the Desire HD (amazing phone but too big to be practical day-to-day and a phone being HD isn't my key requirement) I went for the Desire Z. It's a little more unique than the Desire (I like to be special!) and as I get really cold fingers, I love having a physical keyboard so I can type in my gloves (thin ones, but it's doable).

The upgrade to Android 2.2 is noticeable and very welcome and it feels much faster, with general improvements over Market, screen arrangements, etc. A few changes confused me (renaming Contacts to People prevented me finding this for ages) and there is heavy reliance on icons for tabs (e.g. in People) which is annoying if you're not that sort of learner. The bar of five options you can switch on and off doesn't have a key anywhere, so you really learn the icons quickly (does everyone know the symbols for wifi and sync now?).

The phone itself in physical terms is very impressive. It's a lovely size (fits in my G1 case perfectly), without the lip the G1 has. The brushed metal back and grippy bottom of the phone are lovely touches, and all aspects just seem accurately finished and attractive. The Z action to open the keyboard does feel flimsy, but the phone doesn't pop open by itself. The new version of the 'nipple' is now a black square which feels lovely and is just the right sensitivity for moving the cursor accurately.

There are quite a few small things that really make a world of difference (at least from the G1; I'm aware upgrades from newer phones might not be as much of a jump). The plug socket is on the left side not the bottom and has no covering flap, there is a separate headphone socket at the top (with a regular headphone connection so headphones can be shared between devices), the back plate is much easier to remove to change battery/SIM card whilst remaining secure, the USB cable just has an attachment for the end to convert it to a plug cable - two-in-one is a brilliant space saver.

The keyboard itself is different from the G1 layout but works fine for me, despite the numbers being on the top row of letters and requiring pressing FN first. (Although, having the number 0 on the P key catches me out every time as I see the O to the left and end up typing 9 ;-) The camera and camcorder are great quality with a very useful strong flash.

So far, if I disable data syncing, the battery has been lasting two whole days between charges (although the first night it went from 92% to 8% overnight, but it's not recurred so I'm guessing it was updates of some sort). With syncing on and strong use, it will last almost a day, the same as every other smartphone I know but better than my aged G1.

I'd highly recommend this phone.
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on 5 November 2012
After the intitial charge, I was all geared up to get going with my new phone. After considerable messing about (mainly due to my age) I got it working! I used all the battery life doing this, so prepared for second charge, plugged in the charger to the socket and plugged in the phone, 30 seconds later, all the sockets in the room blew, along with the charger and lead. I then took the charger to a Vodafone outlet, he kindly checked the charger and promptly blew all of their sockets, and himself up also!!!
After a week of semi usage, as I couldn't dial (no credit on my sim, and in another country) but playing on the net and downloading apps using my husbands charger, he asked why the slide-out qwerty keyboard wasn't lit, when I compared it with his, he was right, mine was very dim. I contacted the seller, and was told to do a factory reset, did and guess what..........right, no change. The phone has now gone back to the seller and I am waiting for my NEW HTC desire Z with anticipation! Hopefully this one won't go the same way as the first.
So all in all I reserve judgement on this phone, and wait to be impressed by its operating capabilities. Am I asking too much??
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on 15 May 2011
Brilliant mobile phone.The set up is easy, with the on phone guide. looks stylish, easy to use, wen you get used to navigating your way round. There is absolutly mega loads on this handset, from thousands of apps, to customizing different screens, one for work holiday and everyday use whatever you choose. Two qwerty key boards, one flip out and an onscreen, both easy to use, the on screen keyboard is sensative, with very light tap needed, you can read books play games, go streight to your fav, social networking site. there is loads to do, will keep you busy for a while. The only draw back i have come accross is the touch screen, (when not using the qwerty touch), ive found that i have to tap the screen quite a few times, before it responds. The handset is quite large and heavy, not the kind you would put in your pocket. Overall this mobile is well worth the money, its brilliant and easy to use once you get to know it, i would deffinately recommend this phone to anyone,its a must have phone!!!
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on 23 December 2010
I bought this phone mostly because of the hardware keyboard. I was after a fast phone that I could use everywhere to write big emails and browse the web in an efficient way and this phone delivers. It's fast, well built, well thought and it's pretty. I even like the HTC integration with Android. What I don't like are some software bugs that really annoy me and that I wasn't expecting in a phone in this price range. When I'm using the hardware keyboard and I press and hold a key, there's a pop up the other options for that key. If I press the C key, the pop-up will show Ç, etc. It would be smart if I could keep my fingers on the keyboard and use the TAB key to travel between the options in the pop-up and then press ENTER the choose one but instead of that, I have to touch the screen to choose the character I want to display. How dumb is that? This wouldn't be a major issue if I could active predictive typing on the hardware keyboard but actually I can't. In the virtual keyboard I can choose predictive typing in English and Portuguese (my main language) at the same time and it works flawlessly but in the hardware keyboard I can only choose English. Why?? I really hope that HTC develops a patch to fix these issues anytime soon. Still it's a great phone and I would buy it again.
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on 18 February 2011
Had my HTC Desire Z for 3 weeks now and overall very pleased with it. I won't go into all the positives as there are too many to mention and plenty of other reviewers have listed them all in detail. Suffice to say, I'm very happy with all the apps I've downloaded and certainly anything my wife has on her iPhone (which was the only alternative I considered), I can get the same or equivalent on Android.

I'm only going to mention the negatives, of which there are few.

The first one I've found is that the phone some times SHUTS ITSELF DOWN UNEXPECTEDLY. This has happened on a few occasions now and really is very annoying and this is the reason I've knocked off a star. I suspect this may be a software issue with Android 2.2 so it may be unfair of me to label the phone with this problem but as this phone uses that software I feel this is justified. Hopefully an update will sort out this problem soon.

The hinge... The hinge on the keyboard has been fine for me ... so far i.e. the keyboard only comes out when I want it too. I do think the hinge has become looser since I've first had it and I can imagine in a few months time where the hinge will become so loose that the keyboard may fall out when I don't want it to. As other owners have stated though, if you are holding the phone normally then this is unlikely to happen no matter how loose the hinge is. I've also seen the use of magnetic tape on the phone as a workaround to this problem. I would only consider this option if this issue really started to annoy me. Despite this "potential" problem, I'm glad I opted for a phone with a keyboard as I much prefer real keyboards to virtual ones and this phone has a good keyboard.

Battery life... It's not great although it can vary a lot depending on how you have your phone set up. I would say I've been quite a heavy user of the phone, as it is still a new toy for me, and the battery has managed to last until the end of the day on most occassions. On hardly using the phone at all, I'd say the battery life was at 75% by the end of the day. If you were just to leave the phone on stand by and not have any apps updating in the background then I'm sure near to 100% at the end of the day is attainable.

I sometimes find selecting things on the screen quite difficult especially when browsing the internet. OK, to put this point into context I'm comparing this to an old Nokia N810 I owned which had a bigger screen and a stylus. It was more of an internet browser so unfair of me to compare it to a phone perhaps. It does take longer though on the HTC to zoom into the area/button you are interested in just to select the item you want. Note, I did try using a stylus on this phone but it has a different touch screen technology to my Nokia. An alternative in some cases to zooming in, or using the touchscreen, is the black button at the bottom which is used to navigate around menus, text boxes, buttons, selecting etc. Can be useful sometimes although if you have loads of buttons on the display then you might not actually save any time getting to the item you want. Also, you sweep your finger over the button to navigate rather than pressing on the sides of it which took a bit of getting used to but does the job.
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on 31 July 2012
I bought this phone because I wanted an android phone with a keyboard. The phone itself is a pleasure to use, but my only negative comment is that about 10 months into owning this phone, it was plugged into a laptop and there was a power surge on the USB port. I picked up the phone, burnt my finger, and must've yanked the USB cable. I thought that it would be covered by the warranty, but they don't cover any USB port damage, as they say that it must be the customer's fault. Very disappointed to know own a 10-month-old phone that is inconvenient to charge with a desktop battery charger.
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on 8 December 2010
I've been using this phone for a short period (four days) and as nothing is perfect; it does have a few cons to it. Firstly the battery life...less than one day using it moderately. Secondly the hinge is a little suspect in that you can cause it to open just by how you pick the phone up. Thirdly the touch screen is a whole mess in just a few seconds of using it. Another issue is the loudspeaker volume...A bit low at the highest setting with some of the pre-installed ring tones. I had to get an app to fix that (old phone). Low internal storage as well (1.5 Gb)

HOWEVER.... those few things aside, this is HANDS DOWN the BEST smartphone I have EVER used. I have been a Symbian nut for at least the last six years, but this Android OS and HTC Sense UI is really doing wonders for me. If you want a business tool that can give you a bit of playtime as well; look no further than the Desire Z.

This is a solidly built, professional looking and sexy as HELL phone. Great business tools: PDF viewer and Office editor. All the email you could shake a stick at...and then some! Easy to setup as well. All the messaging is covered msn, yahoo, google talk, icq and on and on. Navigation is good. Contact management is top notch.

I'm not much for apps, but there's a ton of those...Android market, HTC likes etc. Live wallpapers, social integration.

Bottom line.... Yes it does have some issues, but those are so minor as to be forgotten once you get immersed in all the great things this device can do. If you're an average Joe like me and don't care what the ISO count is on your camera or which screen tech is marginally better; BUY this device and you won't regret it.

It's early days, but I am thrilled to the gills by my ultimate choice. Many people talk about what Symbiam and Nokia CAN do if you tinker with them, but I'm now in the camp that knows what DROID DOES!

People buy what they like so if you like what you see; trust me that you'll like what you get. My wife is now jealous and wants one too!
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