This is an HTC device, so it should come as no surprise to discover the Inspire 4G is running the company's Sense UI, piled steaming hot right on top of Android.
The device initially ships with (gasp!) Android 2.2 Froyo, but we were immediately offered a 106MB system update 2.47.502.7, which got our handset up to Android 2.3.3 Gingerbread with HTC Sense 2.1. (Sorry, Ice Cream Sandwich fans – you're on deck for an upgrade later in 2012.)
Unlocking the Inspire 4G calls up the usual Sense widget for clock and weather, one of the signature looks for HTC's own user interface.
Should your weather be inclement in your area, wait a moment and you'll be treated to an animated display of what's happening outside – be it snow, rain, fog or simply clouds.
A tap sends the cutesy animation packing and you can get down to business with icons for Tips, People, Market, Mail, Internet and Camera, plus buttons at the bottom of the screen for All Apps, Phone and Personalize. The lock screen itself doesn't do anything until you drag the bar down to unlock.
Below the screen are the usual fixed Android buttons: Home, Menu, Back and Search. Tapping the Home button while on the home screen will give you a wider view of all six main screens; tap and hold to access Recent apps. The others work as expected throughout the handset.
Also familiar are the Sense-flavored Android notifications, which are pulled down with a swipe on the screen from top to bottom. This area is separated into tabs for Notifications and Quick Settings, with the latter feature also being duplicated on one of home screens (swipe right to access it).
While there's nothing earth-shattering about the user interface overall, everything runs quite snappy with the Qualcomm MSM8255 Snapdragon processor clocked at 1GHz, paired with an Adreno 205 GPU and 768MB of onboard RAM.