HTC Magic review

The second Google Android phone finally lands: with new features and an upgraded interface, it's a belter

HTC Magic
The HTC Magic is a vast improvement on the first Android phone - the T-Mobile G1

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HTC has lumped the phone dialler and contacts all together on the phone, meaning that you can access the application through two icons. There are a range of four tabs at the top for the dialler, contacts, call log and starred favourites, which also houses your 'most regularly called' contacts, which is a real help.

Each contact is listed in fairly large type, which means that each is easy to read and press, with opening each listing taking you through to communication options, ie emailing, phoning and calling, all with one press of the button.

Fiddly scrolling

However, scrolling through these was a little annoying, and the search option could only be activated by pressing the search button and tapping the screen... it might not sound like much but felt a little convoluted time after time, which is why the 'Favourites' section came in very handy.

You're also able to create a 2D barcode which can be read by the Barcode Scanner application if you want to quickly share contact info... it might only be for Android phones and others that can read such things, but it's a very cool little feature.

Call quality itself was pretty good, with maximum volume highly audible and of anything a little too loud. The lip may not help in terms of the call recipient being able to hear you better, but it gave the impression of talking into something on the phone, which was a nice touch.

Good reception

Reception was generally OK too, although there were a couple of instances where 3G was easily lost and with it all reception, which was annoying as you would hope that the phone would automatically work with the best available network.

However, even on minimal coverage the 3G connection for the internet managed to keep plugging away, so that's a pretty big tick in the box for the HTC Magic.

Gareth Beavis
Formerly Global Editor in Chief

Gareth has been part of the consumer technology world in a career spanning three decades. He started life as a staff writer on the fledgling TechRadar, and has grown with the site (primarily as phones, tablets and wearables editor) until becoming Global Editor in Chief in 2018. Gareth has written over 4,000 articles for TechRadar, has contributed expert insight to a number of other publications, chaired panels on zeitgeist technologies, presented at the Gadget Show Live as well as representing the brand on TV and radio for multiple channels including Sky, BBC, ITV and Al-Jazeera. Passionate about fitness, he can bore anyone rigid about stress management, sleep tracking, heart rate variance as well as bemoaning something about the latest iPhone, Galaxy or OLED TV.