HTC Rezound

It's going to be a very busy holiday season for Verizon Wireless. With last week's release of the Droid RAZR, Big Red has made it very clear that it wants to be, at least for a few months, atop the Android heap. Now, with this week's release of the HTC Rezound, Verizon has upped the ante even further with a powerhouse of a device that skimps not on the specs. The Galaxy Nexus will close out the trifecta, leaving consumers with a pretty difficult choice. Of the three new releases, which one is worthy of your money? And which one is worth signing over the next two years of your life for?

I can't help but think of the HTC Rezound as the awkward middle child in Verizon's three-sibling family. If the RAZR is the oldest with a reputation of being able to take care of itself, and the Galaxy Nexus is the youngest who gets all the attention, where does it leave the Rezound? Is it the silent star who'll go on to outshine its siblings, or will it be the brother who lives with its parents till he's 40? I think it'll manage to avoid both extremes, and you should read on to see why. 

 


The Good

Jaw-dropping display. Beats Audio is the real deal and it sets a new bar for music on a smartphone. Verizon's LTE is still unbelievably fast.

The Bad

It's really, really hefty. HTC seems to have overlooked style for function. Battery life could be better. Oh, and did we mention it doesn't have Ice Cream Sandwich?

Conclusion

If the Galaxy Nexus weren't right around the corner, I'd be singing the Rezound's praises from the rooftops. If you are a music junkie and want a beautiful display atop a powerhouse device (with LTE!) right this instant, the Rezound is for you. For the next few weeks, it'll be the best Android device on the market. If you could care less about Beats and are even contemplating the Galaxy Nexus, I'd wait it out.

Inside this review

More info

 


YouTube link for mobile viewing | Read our intial hands-on feature

Hardware

The Rezound is a gorgeous device, in HTC terms. What does that mean? Well, it's certainly not as thin and light as the Droid RAZR, or as thoughtfully styled as the Galaxy Nexus. But in terms of what HTC considers beauty, the Rezound is top notch. Deeply rooted in HTC tradition, the Rezound feels like the natural evolution of the Incredible line, despite it not being a proper successor. The rubberized back with protruding red camera lens is iconic HTC, as is the transparent inner-workings visible underneath the battery cover.

HTC Rezound HTC RezoundHTC Rezound HTC Rezound

 

HTC RezoundHTC Rezound

HTC Rezound HTC Rezound

The most striking physical aspect of the Rezound has got to be that breathtaking screen (duh!). Just, wow. This 4.3-inch slab of super LCD goodness packs a 1280 x 720 pixel density, earning it the title of a true 720p HD display. It will leave you stunned. I'm a very big fan of Samsung's Super AMOLED displays and I'm waiting with bated breath to see what the company does with 720p resolution, but for right now, I can honest say that I think the Rezound's display is the best in the business. It's crisp, clear, bright, and colorful. It doesn't have the oversaturation that makes AMOLED pop; instead, it maintains a realistic quality with pure readablity and unprecedented brightness. Even in the sunlight the Rezound maintains respectable visibility, though glare  is still certainly a factor. And stop searching for individual pixels-- on the Rezound, you'll just be left with a headache. Viewing angles leave a bit to be desired but regardless, for now, this is as good as it gets. 

HTC Rezound HTC Rezound

HTC Rezound


Underneath the screen you've got the four standard navigation buttons that are tinted HTC-brand red, a subtle but lovely touch that I really like. Surrounding it all is a black reflective bezel that is one of the few physical qualities of the Rezound that I dislike. To me is looks cheap and plasticky-- not saying that the rest of the phone isn't plastic, but this just looks subpar. It's not huge though, so that's a saving grace. 

HTC Rezound

I can go on and on about the screen but of course, every rose has its thorns. HTC doesn't appear to be ready to fit such a high-res screen on a thin device, and it shows here. The Rezound is morbidly obese, a big-boned smartphone in a world full of super models. It's wide, but more importantly it's thick. Really thick. A thickness of 13.65 mm (.54 inches) might not seem like a lot on paper, but in the hand it's hard to ignore. Keep in mind, the RAZR is 7.1 mm, which makes the Rezound nearly double the girth. The battery protrudes out of the back of the Rezound, adding another layer of fat that ruins the Rezound's chances of competing with the likes of the RAZR and the Galaxy Nexus. But don't let the size fool you: At 164 grams, the Rezound isn't as heavy as it looks (though it's certainly not the lightest.)

HTC Rezound HTC Rezound

Under the hood is where HTC has really focused, and the Rezound is a product of the company's constant innovation. Pushing the Rezound forward is a next-generation 1.5 GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon and man, does it fly. I was mortified to find a slow, laggy, and nearly unusable device upon initial setup, but after a quick factory reset, the Snapdragon came out of hiding and reared its powerful head. The processor, paired with 1 GB of DDR2 RAM, can handle just about anything you throw at it. It chewed through HD video (which looks ga-ga-gorgeous on that display), opened and closed apps in a breeze, and multitasked like a champ. The UI is smooth and fluid, thanks no doubt to what's pushing it along. Unfortunately I cannot say I was completely lag-free: As with any HTC phone I have ever used, I've noticed that Sense can make the device occasionally stutter. But to be honest, it's rare and can be lived with. If you're looking for heavy-duty computing power, the Rezound's got it.

Memory wise, the Rezound has a whopping 16 GB of internal storage, which is really refreshing to see these days. Coupled with a preinstalled 16 GB microSD card, you've got 32 GB of storage to play around with, which should satisfy even the greediest of media consumers. Internally, the Rezound has top-notch components: you can argue about Qualcomm vs. TI or Super LCD vs. Super AMOLED Plus, but when it comes down to a total user experience, the Rezound has got what it takes to impress.

To be thorough, the actual spec sheet looks a little like this:

  • Processor: Qualcomm MSM8660, 1.5 GHz, Qualcomm MDM9600
  • OS: Android Gingerbread w/HTC Sense
  • Memory: 1 GB DDR2 RAM, 16 GB memory, 16 GB microSD
  • Dimensions: 5.1” x 2.6” x .54” (LxWxT)
  • 4.3” (diagonal) super LCD WVGA (1280x720)
  • Display: HD 720p
  • Battery: 1620mAh LiIon
  • Connectivity: HDMI, Bluetooth 3.0 + Headset, WiFi®: IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n
  • Sensors / Charging: G - sensor, Light sensor, Compass, Proximity sensor, MicroUSB, USIM/CSIM/ISIM, audio jack, Wireless Charging
  • Camera: 8.0 megapixel camera with auto focus, /2.2, 28mm wide angle lens, 2 x LED flash, 2 megapixel front camera, 1080p video recorder

Software

The HTC Rezound ships with Android 2.3.4 , which is not the latest and greatest version of Gingerbread, let alone the latest-and-greatest verison of Android itself. And that's disappointing, but not a deal-breaker. I love Gingerbread, but I've loved it for months now. And during our collective months and months with Gingerbread we've grown quite familiar with it, perhaps to the point of bored. Is there even anything else to say about it that we haven't already covered ad nauseum? With entirely next-generation components, it would have been nice to have a next-generation OS out of the box (cough, ICS, cough.) 

Don't fret, though. HTC promised when it introudced the Rezound that Ice Cream Sandwich is coming ASAP, perhaps even as early as January of 2012. That's good to know, especially if you're hesitant about purchasing a device with Gingerbread. Still, I think it would have been worth the wait to have an exciting new UI to play with out of the box.

And about that UI: it's Sense 3.5, HTC's latest iteration of its custom software, and it's fun enough. I'm a very big fan of Sense, and always have been. I hold the personal belief that Sense is is best manufaturer overlay out there. But just like Gingerbread, it's beginning to feel a little long in the tooth. Yes, even version 3.5. I didn't notice enough difference from previous verisons to really get me excited. There are some new graphics, and some revamped widgets, but all in all, Sense 3.5 is a miniscule upgrade from previous versions. It works well, it's smooth, and it's beautiful. But unfortunately, it's just not exciting anymore. Though I am still in love with the lock screen.

But let's be honest. HTC packed an ace in the hole on the Rezound that makes all other software shortcomings seem irrelevant. I'm talking about Beats, which HTC is using to create a niche for itself in the ever-growing Android ecosphere. Just like the Sensation XL and the Bliss before it, the Rezound ships with Beats software as well as Beats headphones, and let me tell you, I am smitten.

I'm by no means a music expert but I do rely heavily on my smartphone for all of my music listening. If I'm not using my headphones I have my device plugged into Bose speakers on my desk to listen to my music collection. I was always happy with output from other smartphones but upon hearing Beats, I'm afraid I've been spoiled. 

Beats is no fad, and it truly lives up to the hype that HTC has built for it. Music sounds incredibly crisp with more detail than I have ever heard elsewhere. I can honestly say that I've never heard richer sound on any device, anywhere, ever. To listen to The Beatles' White Album and be able to hear every single instrument, every note from Paul's bass, every detail in Ringo's drum, is worth price of admission alone.

HTC Rezound HTC Rezound

And even when you're not using the included Beats headphones (they are fantastic), Beats still shines. Plug in an external speaker and Beats enables itself: on my desktop Bose set, sound is noticebly improved from when I plug in my HTC Thunderbolt. I cannot stress enough, and I'm willing to repeat it to the point of annoyance: Beats is amazing. The one and only flaw that I have found is the incompatability with music from sources other than your library. Only HTC's music player enables Beats, which means that if you fire up Spotify or Pandora, you've got just generic playback. Bummer.

Battery Life

The 1620 mAh lilon battery is the culprit behind the Rezound's girth, and unlike on previous HTC devices, the ends justify the means. I'd be lying if I said that battery life on the Rezound is stellar, but it's so much of an improvement from the first generation of Verizon's LTE devices that it's hard to dislike. 

You're not going to have the problems you had with the HTC Thunderbolt. You're probably not going to find yourself frantically scrambling for an outlet halfway through the day. But I cannot suggest leaving your charger (or a spare) at home. Though improved, battery life on Verizon's LTE still have some evolving to do. You'll easily get through most of the day with a single charge, and with light use you'll make it to the nighttime hours, thanks no doubt to improved standby performance. But if you're tinkering all day at work like you shouldn't be, you're going to need to plug in before the day is up. I'm hesistant to count this against the Rezound, as it seems the status quo with LTE devices right now, but oh how I yearn for a day when I can leave my charger at home. 

Camera

HTC has admitted that its previous camera offerings have been hit and miss, and when they miss, they miss hard. But those dark days are behind us, we've been reassured, and the Rezound marks the next generation of optics from HTC. The 8MP rear camera packs a /2.2, 28mm wide angle lens with two LED flash bulbs. HTC says that it has also improved start up and shutter speeds, which is fantastic, since the lag on both made the camera on devices like the Thunderbolt a headache to use.

HTC Rezound HTC Rezound

HTC Rezound HTC Rezound

HTC Rezound HTC Rezound

I found the camera's UI intuitive, easy to use, and quick to start, though shutter speeds aren't nearly as fast as the iPhone 4S or the Galaxy Nexus.  HTC has included some goodies including panorama mode, macro shooting, action burst, and backlight HDR, among others, and when tickled just right, they result in some stunning photos. Unaltered photographs have respectable quality, and to my untrained eye can compete with what Samsung is including on its devices. The Rezound's camera definitely marks a step in the right direction for HTC, and I'm excited to see how the company will continue to evolve its technology.

The front-facer is just fine for what it's intended for. You're not going to submit the results for any awards, but for vanity shots and video chatting, it'll do.

HTC Rezound

Another result of HTC's commitment to optics is the camcorder. It shoots beautiful 1080p video that can compete with the stunning capabilities of the Galaxy S II. Unfortunately, HTC didn't bump up the camcorder to 60 fps like it did with AT&T's Vivid. To many this doesn't mean much, but for those forking over $300 for the best of the best, it's worth noting.

YouTube link for mobile viewing

Call Quality and LTE Speeds

I'd be remiss to end this review without a shout out to Verizon's LTE network. Simply put, it's the best in the biz. As annoying as Verizon can be with all it's bragging, it is still the network to beat. Voice quality is unmatched, in my opinion, and you can tell with the Rezound. Callers sound loud and clear with no interference or static to speak of. And if you manage to drop a call on Verizon's network, you're trying too hard. 

And even with its rapid growth, Verizon's LTE still produces unbelievably fast speeds. On a good day I can get upwards of 20 Mbps down and 5 Mbps up. That blows my Time Warner broadband out of the water. I haven't had a chance to use AT&T's LTE network, but I'm confident in my assertion that Verizon is still tops in the market.

HTC Rezound HTC Rezound

And thanks to those 4G speeds, you'll be able to get your money's worth out of the Rezound's Mobile Hotspot feature. If you're lucky enough to be locked into an unlimited data plan and have the option to purchase the $30/unlimited tethering add-on, I suggest doing so without hesitation. You can replace your home broadband if you truly wanted to. You can connect up to five devices and notice nary a slowdown or stutter. Sure, it zaps your battery and can even cause the Rezound to get quite warm, but if you really want to appreciate what Verizon has done with its LTE network, give the Mobile Hotspot feature a spin. 

Wrap-up

I keep saying time and time again that this is the most exciting time for Android since its birth back in 2008. Manufacturers have gotten used to the competition and are churning out some truly unique and innovative devices. The HTC Rezound is one of them. It's got stunning specs, a gorgeous display, and the coveted Verizon LTE under the hood. In a word, it's a monster. A big, hefty, loveable monster. 

But unfortunately for HTC, the Rezound isn't the only loveable monster heading to Verizon this holiday season. You've got competition from Motorola, who has managed to cut the thickness of the Rezound in half with its RAZR. And let's not forget the Galaxy Nexus, which will be available "soon", and will undoubtedly raise the bar for all Android devices from this point forward.

So where does that leave the Rezound? Simply put, the Rezound cannot escape its awkard middle-child identity. I like it better than the RAZR, as I tend to like HTC much more than Motorola in any matchup. But with the Galaxy Nexus oh so close, it's hard to justify plopping down $300 to last you the next two years. 

The HTC Rezound is big, but like all HTC devices, it has a certain undeniable style. It's fast thanks to its top-notch processor and radio. That screen is really to die for, and don't even get me started on Beats again (I'm in love!). If you need a device right this instant, I do not hesistate to recommend the HTC Rezound. If you can wait, or if you're the type to experience buyer's remorse when the "next big thing" comes down the pike, I'd hold out for the Galaxy Nexus, just to be safe.

 

 
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HTC Rezound review

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If there was a solid timeline for ICS on HTC I would really consider the Rezound, that and we have no clue what HTC plans to do "sense-wise" with ICS.

Nice review. Gets to all of the key points. Tough to walk away from this beauty. With the Nexus will most or all apps be supported by ICS out of the box? In other words if you have the Nexus will your market experience be the same as with a 2.3x deice like this? Or will there be compatibility updates needed from some or all of the apps to work under ICS and that is why they launch a phone like the Nexus?

Good question. No as much reason to be bleeding-edge if it takes a while for everything to catch up to you.

ICS shouldn't cause any issues with app support, but the new resolution might. Any app developed with honeycomb tablet support will work really well in ICS, but if resolution is a problem, the rezound would most likely have issues with it too.

My Recommendation?... Get the Rezound or the Rzr today if you want... You have until January 9th to return it with VZW new holiday return policy. Exchange when the Nexus comes out... easy.....PEASY

Probably gonna do just that. And if HTC releases a timeline for ICS I might keep it. Ehh, who am I kidding, I'm getting the nexus and eating the restock fee. It all depends on beats. Gonna take my ibeats up there and check it out.

I had no intentions of getting this phone but how can you mark it down for not having ICS? It has been confirmed over and over again that the Gnex is going to be the first phone rocking ICS. I just fail see the logic behind marking it down for not having an OS that isn't released yet..

Because it is going to be MONTHS before it does get ICS & even then it is going to be a bloated version w/ Sense & all the other junk HTC/Verizon wants to put on it.

I agree, it makes no sense to ding a phone for not having ICS, especially when it has been stated that it will be getting ICS...it would be a little different if the device wasnt getting ICS at all...

" the Rezound is for you. For the next few weeks, it'll be the best Android device on the market" The next few weeks? Do you know something we don't?!!

Have you seen the Samsung Nexus screen? Any comparisons with it?
And what happens to battery life if you shut off LTE (or can you shut off LTE and use 3G speeds?)

Great review, glad to hear great things about the screen and Beats audio. Too many mixed reviews about screen and Beats being a gimick. I played with it yesterday and with RAZR, I would pick HTC over RAZR. I was set on Rezound a few weeks ago but since I've waited this long whats a bit longer for Nexus. My Tbolt is doing just fine.

Hi Anndrew Vacca.... I`m wondering, I had VZW TBOLT and I can`t get better service on than Sprint Evo 3D in my area, so if the VZW network is good where you did this review it`s good everywhere? Please correct me if I`m wrong! Anyone? I live in Canton, MI area where suppose to be 4G Lte VZW network area, I get zero bars inside my house and one bar or zero most the time at my job @ Livonia,MI.
I work inside a clinic, which my other co-worker one has AT&T and the other has Sprint Photon, and both has at lease three bars all the time... How you can explain that,whene you said Verizon's LTE is still unbelievably fast.The best result I got my TBOLT test it was 5.8Mbps download.

mhmmdy123...that may not have anything to do with your phone, and everything to do with the building you are in. I work for a Big Pharmaceutical Generics Manufacturing Plant, and signal in the building is abysmal for most providers. We have booster antennas for ATT and Nextel because these are the providers the company uses. And even with signal boosters inside the building, there are some dead spots. These primarily have to do with the density of the building and configuration.

I have tested at my desk VWZ 3G (no one has LTE around me), Sprint 4g (not nextel, theoretically), and T-Mo (My device), and I can tell you that it varies greatly between devices (even between the same brands) the strength of the signal. Mainly because it has alot to do with radio versions. My old T-Mo G2 could barely hang on to one bar on 2g signal, forget 3g or 4g. But the new (replacement) phone has good reception in 2g, and fights to stay connected to 4g. Same phone, same design, same office space...new radio and GB version.

So in essence, you can't purely blame VWZ for your signal issues....there are far too many factors at play that dictate your signal strength. Actually test the signal in open space, outside you office and see how fast your phone works, if it hits the high teens, then you can see that is not the phone, and more location...

I hope that helps clarify your frustrations....

BTW I don't work for VWZ (as stated above)

How much better is beats than let's say Power amp. I have the levels set up perfectly using Monster turbine in ear monitors, and I couldn't imagine it sounding any better than let's say with a great sounding mp3 player.

The one thing that still bothers me when thinking about ICS on pre GNex phones is the idea of capacitive buttons along with screen buttons...any one knows how that will work? I would really hate to get one of these phones, get and update, and end up with two rows of repeated buttons....

it's quite simple actually, like the screenshots show on the Nexus S the buttons on the screen will be gone, the buttons that came on the bottom of your phone will work just like normal.

I'm pretty disappointed in the camera on the Rezound. Looking around at galleries and sample of images from other phones I think the Rezound is definitely soft and noisy compared to the state-of-the-art phone cameras out there. It's good but not excellent. You can guess whose camera I am comparing it to. (Think fruit.) I understand that you're satisfied with it but how do you think it stacks up to the 4S camera?

I went in today to buy a phone from verizon to hold me over until my ice cream sandwich goodness and I saw this phone and the Razr. I got the razr.... To me the Rezound is nothing more than a beefed up Evo. For some this may be enough for you, but I wanted something a bit different. It kind of reminded me of the Iphone 4s because sense looked the same, felt the same, there were just small changes. Not saying that these things are bad, its just I would rather have something game-changing if I plan on paying 300 for a new device that should carry me for the next 2 years. Im not saying that my choice in the razr is it, but Im sure the GN will be. :)

Not everything. Just this lol. But seriously, look at the evo and look at this phone. There are some glaring similarities. Like I said this is not a bad thing but just not my cup of tea

I think Sense blows and I'll never buy another phone with it again unless I know it has a crazy popular dev community..

But given how disgustingly big Samsung keeps making their phones (Check out the infuse on phone-size.com, it's awful) I might have to get HTC again, since this phone is almost identical in size to the EVO 3D and I think that it's quite nice (especially width). Much more so than that crap Samsung is putting out.

Say what? The infuse is old news. My new Sprint GS2 is the same size as the Infuse but the screen is over two tenths of an inch bigger. This HTC phones is also about the same size as my G2S in dimensions but much thicker and bulkier and with a smaller screen as well. Even though you hate Sense, if you like a thick phone this is the one to get. BTW, the Nexus will also be very close in size to the resound but thinner and with a screen even bigger than my G2S

Andrew, with all due respect don't take reviewing lessons from Jonathan Geller (BGR), this review is so full of pure opinion and personal agenda that it's next to worthless to me. BGR likes the iPhone and considers most anything else sub par. You like the GNex even though you haven't touched it yet. Surprisingly though Geller actually liked the GSII, and he seems to have liked the RAZR, and Rezound a lot more than you seem to have.

Yes. We get it. It doesn't have ICS. And yes it is ONE point release behind the most recent Gingerbread build. Big whoop! It's not going to have Gingerbread long enough to matter. You can not penalize a device for not having ICS. ICS was officially "released" yesterday, before that it was proprietary and there is ONE phone that is getting it first the GNex and that isn't out yet. It is a virtual certainty that this will be one of the first handful of devices to get ICS (along with the Nexus S, XOOM, Bionoic, and RAZR). Will it be immediate? No, but it will be sooner than previous PS releases.

+! - Totally agree. You talk about ICS as if it has already been released and I don't know enough about software to know if there are any real differences between Gingerbread 2.3.4 and 2.3.5. You can't keep downgrading phones (Razr and Rezound) for not having an unreleased operating system. At the rate the GNex is going in the USA (remember the Galaxy S II took almost 6 months to be released in the USA) the Razr and Rezound may have ICS before the GNex is released. Also, Verizon has a new return policy for the holiday - any phone purchased after 11/15 can returned as late as 1/9/2012. While no one seems to be talking about it much the Razr is 5.15 inches high (which is no longer pocketable in my opinion) and the GNex is 5.33 inches tall - awfully tall in my opinion. You can't fix hardware (you can always flash a custom rom if you need it) so if the Razr (I got to say the Razr is a beautiful piece of hardware - just too tall and wide for me) or Rezound is right for you hardware wise then get it.

"The battery protrudes out of the back of the Rezound, adding another layer of fat that ruin's the Rezound's chances of competing with the likes of the RAZR and the Galaxy Nexus"

Nooo....did you just write RUIN'S????? I expect this from my friends' status updates on facebook, but on a quality tech blog?

Nice review but just wanted to add a tip about size. You state the phone is very wide but don't justify that with a dimension or even a comparison. On the other hand the thickness is there with a number and even a comparison to the Razor's size.

FYI, the phone is actually narrow or average width:

HTC Rezound...5.08 x 2.58 x 0.54 inches
Droid Razr........5.15 x 2.71 x 0.28 inches
Galaxy Nexus...5.33 x 2.67 x 0.35 inches

So it's actually shorter, narrower and thicker than the Razr, which many have criticized (including AC) for being too wide. So it's actually more of a rounded out feel in your hand.

More time on internet answered my question. Does anybody know if the GNex is gonna have a Wolfson DAC as well? That seems to be the key to the Beats. I'm still suspicious about the gushing reviews of this audio "software" that is only accessed by the stock music player. The DAC is the important thing. Any EQ should be able to make use of it...

Why is your video of a locked down Rezound? Do you actually have a review unit that you used? If not, this is very disappointing - I expect better from the Android Central staff. One thing I have always appreciated about Android Central is your staff actually uses the devices before writing an actual review. What's up?

The video was taken from our initial hands-on. Android Central only reviews devices once we have been able to put them through their paces. 

I purchased the extended battery (basically the same one as the T-Bolt) and I have been hammering this phone for 13 hours and I am at 40%. Screen is on auto, and everything else is stock. The screen is very good and the sharpness is on par with my iPhone 4 (my second phone now, since I am required to have 2 for work stuff). This one becomes number 1.

The sound quality thru both the included headset and especially thru a set of Dre full-size headphones is great.The phone is a bit bulky with the extra battery, but it still feels good in my hand (I am 6 feet and over 200 lbs, so I do have an above average size hand) -- I picked up a RAZR in the store and was scared I would break it due to it being so thin. The RAZR looks nice but this phone seems more "solid" to me.

VZW has a fairly lightweight case that covers the extended battery too.

I am very impressed with this phone and am extremely happy with my purchase -- no buyers remorse at all. I will admit that I do like Sense more than many users, and in many ways more than stock Android, so I simply am not worried about the Nexus.

Oh, and got 22mb/sec down while sitting in a Chili's at dinner tonite, and 27mb/sec down yesterday -- impressive --- and I do not live in a big city (Stillwater, OK, we get LTE with OKC).

I was totally determined to get hands-on time with the Razr, Rezound and Nexus before I made my buying decision...liked EVERYTHING (man - that case design!) about the Razr except the screen and the sealed battery, liked EVERYTHING (man- the screen!) on the Rezound except the thickness and the back cover design...on paper liked EVERYTHING (man - sweet ICS!) about the Nexus except the case and the camera specs...and was still waiting until Costco dropped the $50 deal in my lap today. Being quite cost-conscious, and liking all three, I just could not see paying a $250 premium for one of the others when I could get a $300 top-line smartphone with a $99 pair of earphones thrown in...for $50! My Rezound is on the way and I can't wait for it to show up.

Give me a break on the "thick" thing! This fits the hand far better than that flat square Razr. People better get insurance for the Moto Razr because a lot of them will be broken/cracked in no time.

The camera on this will blow away the Nexus, IMO. They're not known for having very good cameras.

As far as ICS, meh. It'll be here if ya want it.

I've had the Rezound for 5 days now, and have no problems with its weight or thickness. I like the texture on the back cover, it helps with grip. The battery drains faster than any phone I've had in the past (OG Droid, Droid X, Fascinate), but that's a given, it's a 4g phone so it's going to happen. The display is great, the audio is impressive, and Sense is the nicest skin I've used yet. Sure, I'll go look at a GN, but for what I appreciate most about a phone (great display/great audio/solid hardware) I can see myself happy with this phone for at least 7 months lol.