Much like any smartphone in the market, mid-range or otherwise, the HTC Rhyme lasts about a day with general use before it needs to be charged. Sustained use of Wi-Fi will drain the battery in around four hours, with calls and about an hour of video use helping that battery drainage along.
Some apps will hum along in the background if you forget to exit them properly, so be sure to use the task manager app to kill any you're not using at that moment to help sustain life a little longer.
At 1600mAh to the HTC Desire S's 1450mAh and the same single core 1GHz CPU, the HTC Rhyme should by rights last a little longer, but the extra battery power doesn't translate into too many more minutes if you're really hammering the internet. The quoted 8 hours talk time is probably a tad high, we'd say you really only get about 6 hours of strong usage out of this machine.
In addition to the Wi-Fi and 3G, the HTC Rhyme is loaded with Bluetooth, a MicroUSB port, DLNA client and Wi-FI Hotspot capability.
The Wi-Fi Hotspot app makes it laughably easy to hook up your laptop to your 3G connection and the speed is actually not that bad – we managed to stream a five minute YouTube clip without too much hassle.
So in those emergency no-coffee-shop-or-train-Wi-Fi times, this would definitely make a decent substitute, though, needless to say, a ten-minute browse killed a good 15% of the battery, if not more. Charging will be needed (and an understanding data tariff too).
Connecting to a PC or Mac is easily done via the MicroUSB cable, which, when connected, offers several ways of connecting to the PC including 'charge only' and 'mount disk drive', the option that enables drag-and-drop media loading.
The desktop client HTC Sync is available to use, but must be downloaded onto your computer first. For forgetful moments, there's also htcsense.com which will sync to your phone and from which you can call it when you can't find it – as useful for when it's hiding under the duvet as for the thievery-blocking potential.