Both the Ice Cream Sandwich operating system and Sense 4.0 user interface combine to give you a user experience that feels fast and very responsive, and the phone never felt laggy or slow. Switching applications on the fly and multitasking was easy, and the phone seemed to be able to handle anything we threw at it, thanks to the dual-core processor.
We must have changed the look and feel of the phone more than a dozen times while we had it, trying out live wallpapers, different themes, changing the home screen panels and launch bar items multiple times. There is a deep amount of customization here, from configuring what your lock screen does, to adding widgets for the programs you need in the arrangement you want.
Despite it's four-inch size, the Super LCD screen impressed with it's crisp colors and clarity, and if you don't own a tablet, you won't mind pulling this out of your pocket to keep you entertained for a five-hour flight. Once you arrive, you can use the very effective Maps or VZ Navigator apps to get where you're going.
The plastic housing contributes to keeping the cost down somewhat, but it still felt very flimsy in our hands. For a phone that has some features hidden under the back panel, we'd like a more solid experience. It would be a shame to damage your phone while you're slipping in a microSD card, which feels like a possibility.
The screen itself works well inside a media experience like an e-book or watching a movie, but with a portion of the top of the screen dedicated to the notification and system bar, and the three, permanent buttons at the bottom of the phone on the bezel, it feels like there could be more screen real estate offered to the user. Especially during those claustrophobic moments when that top bar is full an you're using the onscreen keyboard in portrait mode.
The price is meant to attract mid-range phone buyers, but it's still too high. With a $149.99 cost on a two-year contract, the phone is only $50 less than a Samsung Galaxy S III, which offers more onboard storage and a 4.8" 1280x720 HD Super AMOLED display. That's a huge screen difference for that much money.
Although the HTC Droid Incredible 4G LTE is zippy with decent features, it feels like a sub-$100 price would have been the sweet spot here. Particularly given the cost of the Samsung Galaxy S III, and rumors of a quickly approaching iPhone 5.
This phone proves that you can still pack a lot of punch into a smaller form factor and still deliver a true smartphone experience. While we were initially skeptical of the smaller screen, it delivered well. Combine the Beats Audio experience with that screen, and an empty room or seatmates who don't mind noise, and you have a pocket-sized entertainment package.
It was also nice to have one gadget be able to replace a camera, navigation system, and e-book reader, which frees you slightly from the electro-tether. We do wish the battery had a bit more oomph to it, but it looks like you can pick up additional batteries for under $20, so you can extend your powered life as much as you need to.
While the HTC Droid Incredible 4G LTE admirably continues HTC's Incredible line, we still feel stung by the sticker price, especially when compared with what you can get for a few dollars more. But if you're looking for a smaller phone packed with impressive features, this will make your pocket extremely happy.