HTC Rhyme is another Android ‘Royale’ from HTC. We call it royal because of its hefty price tag. By the way, it’s touted as girly phone because of the color schemes. But hey that shouldn’t deter you from buying it. Trust us. HTC never makes devices just to put them against competition. But with features that are so yesteryear Rhyme will have to play tricks to attract customer. We will tell you what is good and what is bad. So stay tuned.
Our review unit came with the standard accessories like charger/data cable combo, a headset and the special accessory for Rhyme, Charm. Charm is the HTC’s way to notify you of incoming calls or messages silently. It’s actually the flashlight which starts flashing as soon as you get any call or message. You just need to insert it into standard audio jack and it works. Good thing is that you can hang it to your shirt or keep it outside the bag so that you get notified. It also flashes if you miss a call and the flashlight is very strong as well.
Design wise rhyme is another proof of HTC’s brilliance. As any other HTC phone, Rhyme also comes with slim profile. Everything has been fit into the compact body. And like many other HTC phones, this one also has traditional unibody design, which in our opinion is just excellent. If you think we’re praising HTC a lot then it’s not so. There are few drawbacks of this design as well which are surely not big but still worth mentioning. We’ll tell you as they come along.
Starting from the dimensions, they are 119 x 60.8 x 10.85 mm. Front is occupied by a not so huge 3.7″. Yes,it’s not big in the era when competition is offering 4″ as a minimum. While the display is big enough for most of the use cases including movie watching the device can still be used with one hand. Resolution is 480×800 which gives pixel density of 251ppi. Above the display you will find large metal grill which accommodates earpiece and a multicolor notification LED. On the left side of the grill there’s an ambient light sensor and a proximity sensor while on the right side there’s front VGA cam mainly used for video calling.
Below the display there’s a usual set of capacitive Android buttons. Top and bottom edges are slightly tapered. The Gorilla Glass protects the display on HTC Rhyme from scratches and some pressure.
What we liked most about HTC Rhyme is its touchscreen. After using so many phones this is the first phone which has such a smooth touchscreen experience. We dare to say but it’s really comparable to the touchscreen on iPhone. It’d register even the slightest of the touch. On the back of phone there’s a 5 MP auto-focus camera along with the LED flash and a loudspeaker, all three on the same line. The big silver strip on the back has HTC logo engraved on it. Under the back cover of there’s a SIM card slot and a microSD card slot.
Thankfully the back cover isn’t hard at all to remove like few HTC phones we reviewed in the past. The 1600 mAh battery isn’t removable or user replaceable. The back of the Rhyme was slippery to our hands, especially the strip part. Maybe it’s just us. On the left edge of the Rhyme there’s just microUSB cum charging port. This port is placed near the bottom of the phone which becomes obstacle in using phone when any cables like charger or data cable are attached. HTC should have put it on the upper side of the phone instead to avoid inconvenience. Thankfully there’s a cap on the microUSB port which should prevent the dust from getting in. On the right edge, there’s a volume rocker which also doubles up as a zoom in camera app. On the top of the phone there’s a 3.5mm audio jack and power cum lock/unlock key. Frankly speaking we feel that on any phone with display bigger than 3.3-3.5” the lock/unlock key should be placed on the either side of the phone. In our experience reaching the top of the phone to unlock the phone frequently become inconvenient. In an attempt to keep number of hardware keys low, HTC has not provided dedicated shutter key on Rhyme which makes it tough to take self portraits using the main camera. Well we’re done with the design part here.
The HTC Rhyme has 1GHz processor ticking at its heart. To be honest 1GHz isn’t the thing to boast about, at least in this price segment where the competition is offering at least dual core processors. And there are few cheap Androids too in sub 20k category which come with dual core processors. Still it does the job of handling the OS and other operations very efficiently. Hardly any lag while using the phone. The HTC Rhyme has the huge amount of RAM to run your applications, 768 MB to be precise. And there’s Adreno 205 GPU to take care of graphical operations.
In our tests, HTC Rhyme returned some commendable figures. Performance is comparable to some better speced phones. If we go all subjective then the device showed no lags in day to day use. It worked perfectly, smoothly and executed everything at right pace. As far as the battery performance is concerned, it was poor in the case of HTC Rhyme. Even though there’s 1600 mAh battery and just single core CPU, Rhyme struggled to live for 12hrs. It’s really poor by any standard.