Pros Phone felt very solid and has a bit of weight
Very slick UI with impressive speed
Brilliant colors and a beautiful home screen
Battery life is just OK
Messaging is very nice with the conversation mode
Camera and video camera are amazing
Cons The phone is not as customizable
It lacks multitasking
Summary When it was time for a new phone, i did my research and i was looking for an Android phone by HTC. When i went to the store, there were no phones that met my criteria, so the employee suggested the Surround.Update New Link
Out of the box, the phone felt very solid and has a bit of weight to it (which i liked). The screen was more than enough too look at, with brilliant colors and a beautiful home screen.
The interface was extraordinary, i expected nothing less from HTC. The 1 gigahertz processer does its job perfectly, no lag and everything runs smoothly. After having the phone for 2 months, i have never needed to shut down the phone due to freezing.
The battery life is just OK. Probably because of the processor, the battery life suffers. I always need to charge it each night, but that fine with me.
As for the Windows OS 7, it has its pros and cons. First of all, it looks amazing. Whenever i have a friend who takes a look at it, they are always amazed at the look of it. The whole operating system is extremely organized and simple. You have your main screen with the tiles, and 1 flick to the left is all your programs and apps all lined up. Which brings me to the apps. Being that the Windows OS is pretty new, the app marketplace definitely suffers. It has your basics, but some of the super-popular apps on iphone and android are missing on Windows (ie: Angry Birds, Words With Friends) There are equivilants to those, but i have no friends who play "Spell it". I know these things will come with time, but it lacks at the time being.
The other complaint i have is that the phone is not as customizable as i would have expected from Windows. Mainly, you are stuck with the 20 (ish) standard ringtones. Even my old 4 year old slider phone allowed me to transfer ringtones from my computer to phone via bluetooth.
A cool thing Windows did with the contacts is they integrated Facebook and your contacts. This way, you can go to your "People" and see their latest Facebook updates as well as their Facebook picture and their contact info you input. Calling a person requires a little more effort than just scrolling down to their name and pressing call, but i guess that is expected from a smartphone.
Messaging is very nice with the conversation mode, i have no issues with that.
As for the media and entertainment, all i can say is i hate Zune. Maybe im just used to iTunes and my ipod, but it just seems a little complicated in syncing and taking off videos and pictures. Besides, the Zune program screwed up my Windows 7 laptop, so now i have to run it on my XP desktop. In any case, im getting used to it.
The camera and video camera are amazing. It takes beautiful 5mp pictures and decent 720p video. I the slide out speakers work perfectly and have amazing sound. The little stand has come in handy too for showing friends videos. \
Overall, a great phone, just a few improvements that i think Windows will take care of soon enough. The app market will grow with time.
Some suggested free apps: Youtube, Adobe Reader, Chicks and Vixens (Equivilant to angry birds), Bubble Birds, ebay, ScoreMobile (For sports fans), Shazam
*** P.S. If you will buy this Smartphone I suggest at: www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0047T74UY/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=***************&********=as2&camp=217145&creative=399349&************=B0047T74UY
Updated on Oct 12, 2011
I suggest best deal for this HTC Surround at --> http://htc-surround.hot.to/
Pros Build quality, touch-screen response, non-slip back, very fast CPU, good size and nice color display
Cons lacks cut & paste (for now), app count small and repetitive (but growing), camera lacks anti-shake, mail client doesn't open all attachments and syncs Inbox folder only
Summary I had the opportunity to compare the Samsung Focus to the HTC Surround, both being WP7 devices. Aware of the fact that the former was better rated than the latter (even made it to the top 10 CNET choice for 2010), I nevertheless tried to compare the two without any preconceived ideas. I was surprised to find the Surround's touch screen response MUCH more accurate than that of the Focus's. While making lots of typing mistakes using the Focus, I hardly made any while using the Surround. Thus the user's experience with HTC's device is better than with Samsung's! There is also considerable advantage to the Surround in terms of build quality and feeling while holding it, not least thanks to the non-slip back side. I found the screen size difference (4.0" (Focus) vs. 3.8" (Surround)) insignificant and both screens are excellent. I don't find the Focus's AMOLED screen better; deeper colors but not really a better screen. Both have very fast CPUs and (unscientifically) I couldn't tell that one was faster than the other. The Focus seems to have a better camera, including anti-shake capability (which, incredibly, turns itself to its default "off" state when leaving camera mode) but I find the Surround's camera quite decent. Both currently suffer from missing features like cut, copy & paste, a meager Marketplace app count and some mail client hick-ups, but these are supposed to be corrected/improved by early 2011.I forgot to mention: The Surround is much less of a fingerprint magnet than the Focus. I believe it has an oleo-phobic coating which the Focus may or may not have. Smudges are much easier to clean off the Surround's display than from the Focus's.
In conclusion: Unlike the CNET reviews, I find the HTC Surround a better device than the Samsung Focus, mainly in terms of touch-screen response accuracy and overall build quality - and I haven't even mentioned the Surround's Dolby/SRS HiFi speakers and its kick-stand.
Updated on Dec 13, 2010
Pros --Built like a tank, unlike the Samsung Focus, which feels like an empty demo phone.
--ZUNE and XBL integration are 100% perfect. No issues whatsoever.
--Texting/Email with virtual keyboard is better than with tactile keyboard.
Cons --Dolby mobile isn't 'true' surround sound.
--Doesn't have an AMOLED display.
--Would like an 8MP camera instead of 5MP. Oh well.
Summary Straight out of the box, it worked like a charm. Had absolutely zero issues setting anything up. If you have MS Exchange email for work (like me), you will need help from an IT admin, but aside from that, importing ANY other email is absolutely seamless (Hotmail, GMail, Yahoo, any ISP, etc). Hotmail sets up automatically when you sync with your Windows Live ID, as does your XBL and Zune accounts, if they are tied to the same Windows Live ID. Honestly, a trained monkey could set this device up.
Wifi setup is as simple as turning it on and putting in your WEP/WPA/WPA2 security key (unless your network is unsecured).
Browsing in IE is seamless both in portrait and landscape modes.
I never want another tactile QWERTY keyboard (sorry LG Quantum), as typing on the virtual keyboard is a pleasure (hard to have a key stick on you if there's no key).
The slide-out speaker absolutely rocks and doesn't sound tinny at all. Still trying to figure out the 'surround sound' part though (have only had phone for 2 days). Kickstand rocks.
I can type without issue with just my thumb while holding the phone in portrait with little to no typos (buttons are a bit small, but I don't have issues, and I'm a pretty big guy).
Zune integration is 100% perfect. It's like Microsoft took a ZuneHD and added all of the other features to make it a smartphone.
You owe Microsoft another chance. Pick up a WP7!
"Very nice phone."on by cashnsam
Pros Call quality, sound, and Windows phone 7 Features.
Cons Battery life, Windows phone 7 limitation (currently)
Summary I started with a Samsung Focus and as awesome as that phone was it just seemd very fragile. It was too light and the SD card issue was annoying. I figured I would try the Surround out despite the reviews here on CNET.
I love it. The sound is much nicer than I anticipated, and it is plenty loud enough to annoy the people eating around us as my Daughter watches Princess and the Frog for the 1000th time. The slide out speakers and and kickstand are OK but not the highlight. The weight of the phone is nice and seems very sturdy. The camera is very nice and works very well. I traded from the Iphone 4 and as much as I loved my Iphone4 and my apple products, Windows stepped it up and made something worth while. the quality and layout of the OS is great and the phone is a real plus. I am very surprised by the quality and durabilty of the phone and really think its a great phone. It can use a better battery, and I really hope windows comes out with a big update soon. Though I'm not a huge copy and paste user, I do miss it. The little things that the Iphone was able to do that this phone doesnt do, wont deter me from keeping it but it would be nice to have that soon. Overall great phone.
Pros Windows Phone 7, Surround Speaker, HTC Quality
Cons Software Limitations
Summary I work for AT&T in the tech support department and I got my hands on this phone right at release, I gotta say this is one of the best phones I ever held. Now alot of people are complaining about the weight but myself personally I gotta state I like the feeling of it existing in my hand. It does not feel like a platicky piece of junk like most phones you get your hands on anymore, it actually has weight and is solid and I don't feel like I have to have kid gloves to use it. As far as performance goes this phone is off the map, its snappy and very responsive doing everything you want and performing well while doing it. The internet loads quickly on both 3g and 802.11n which I use at home. The hub content and live tiles of Windows Phone 7 make for a enjoyable easy to understand and use update center, I would almost say the layout and user friendly nature of the device rivals iOS in many ways. The sound on the phone is excellent while maintaining battery life, the call quality has been very clean has very little distortion and the signal quality is 10 fold that of the Iphone 4. I have yet to get a single dropped call vs the iphone that I had before this device. I definately recommend this phone to anyone who is looking to break the chains apple has held on the Smartphone market as well as to step up to a unified platform without all the garbage that android allows companies to do to there phones.
In Closing the only thing I disliked about the phone was the landscape vs portrait but thats not HTC's fault as much as it's a current (and hopefully soon fixed) fault of the Windows 7 Phone platform.
4.5 out of 5