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Unboxing: The HTC Inspire 4G

At the AT&T Developers Summit in Las Vegas last month AT&T shocked a lot of people by rolling out a full plan of action for 4G. Until then they didn’t seem very aggressive in the 4G space. Everything changed that day as they rolled out 4 4G devices and announced their 2 phase strategy for 4G.

The HTC Inspire 4G will be the first “4G” branded device on AT&T. It’s available for pre-order now and goes on sale next week at AT&T core stores and their retail partners.

AT&T and Motorola are doing a great job of hyping up the Motorola Atrix 4G. Some people feel that they shot themselves in the foot though by selling the Motorola Atrix 4G’s webtop accessory for $499 ($100 rebate when bundled with the phone on a two year agreement). The HTC Inspire 4G is a really great device so far though and if you bundle it with your own netbook at $249-$399 you may be in a better position.

Out of the box we noticed there is a really good weight and feel to it. The HTC Inspire 4G features an aluminum body and it just “Feels right”. It’s not too heavy but not too light and plasticy feeling. It has the same body style as a Nexus One or Desire but a little bigger at 4.3″.

More including video after the break

The screen size and display are beautiful.  The Qualcomm 1ghz Snapdragon processor makes it a breeze to swipe through screens and toggle between applications.

The HTC Inspire 4G is using the newest version of Sense with access to the HTC Sense online website for storing information in the cloud along with keeping up with your friends using the HTC Sense Footprint appliaction.  A lot of die hard Android enthusiasts are against the use of custom UI’s but out of the bunch of custom UI’s out there HTC Sense is one of our favorites with it’s popping widgets and fluid display.

After using Swype as much as we have with the Samsung phones and some of the other devices we’ve installed it on, the HTC Sense keyboard is a bit of a pain however if you’re new to Android or use the Android stock keyboard, the HTC Sense keyboard is actually pretty good. In my personal opinion it has one of the best suggestive dictionary and interfaces available. We’ll probably do a video for the keyboard separately.

While there is a good deal of pre installed software on the HTC Inspire 4G, it’s really no more than any of the other competing phones in it’s class.  Some of the built in features to HTC sense have their own icons in the icon tray like teeter, Friendstream and the new HTC Hub.  AT&T Live TV is a new pre-installed application which we are itching to try and report on a little later. The standard AT&T Maps, AT&T Family Finder and AT&T Account app are also on board as is a new AT&T barcode scanner.

The 8mp camera with LED flash takes really good pictures. A major let down is the fact that the Inspire 4G doesn’t come with a front facing camera. We thought it might since it does run on AT&T’s 4G (phase one) HSPA+ network. The camera also records video in HD 720p which is ok for now but in 6 months may be a bit outdated.

There is also no kick stand. Although we laughed at the thought of the kickstand when the EVO 4G came out on Sprint, many people are finding it’s extremely useful.  No worries though as their are several after market companies making kick stands.

The Inspire 4G  comes with 768mb of RAM on board and 4Gb internal storage. It also ships with an 8gb microSD card and is expandable to 32gb which gives the HTC Inspire 4G plenty of memory out of the box.

It’s running Android 2.2 Froyo, as are all the already announced 4G phones on other carriers (except the Samsung Epic 4G at the moment). HTC was recently found to be one of the quickest to upgrade phones so hopefully a Gingerbread upgrade is only a few months away.  Android 2.2 does give it plenty of features though.

The HTC Inspire 4G is also the first phone that has wifi hotspot on AT&T. AT&T has been the the last carrier to allow wifi hotspot on their devices.  We hooked up the wifi hotspot and enjoyed shared speeds of 4mb down so far. We are going to test it in a few other cities early next week.

The battery is only 1230mah after a full charge we are going to see how long that lasts.

We’re looking forward to using this phone more and reporting back. Enjoy the video.

And our quick gallery