Hands-on review – HTC Desire, HD2 Mini and Legend

HTC pulled the covers off three new, and might we say rather lovely, handsets just a short while ago, and after the press conference we hot footed it

If you haven't heard (you would've done if you'd been following us on Twitter), HTC has introduced three new handsets - the Desire and the Legend packing Android 2.1 and the Windows Mobile HD Mini.

The Legend follows on where the Hero left off. With an AMOLED HVGA display, the 3.2-inch screen is nice and bright, and although it only runs on a 600MHz processor it's really fast, and runs just as quickly as the 1GHz-packing Desire.

You've got a 5 megapixel camera and flash to play with, the trackball has been replaced with an optical joystick and it's all packed into a unibody, brushed aluminium shell, giving it a really premium finish. The love-it-or-hate-it chin is still there, but it's a little less defined than the Hero's. It's coming to Vodafone in April.

Moving onto the Desire, and there's definitely a feel of the Google Nexus One here. It's got the same specs as its doppelganger, with a 3.7-inch AMOLED screen, 1GHz Snapdragon processor and 5 megapixel camera, and also has the same optical joystick as the HTC Legend.

We've been told that all key retailers and networks have taken on the Desire, so you won't find any kind of crazy exclusivity deals here when it launches  in March.

Finally, there's the HD Mini - a shrunk down version of the HD2. Specs are pretty much the same as its predecessor, all the way down to the HTC Sense UI on top and 5MP camera (although without flash this time), but there is rather nice surprise on the inside - it's all yellow. You'll only see it when you open up the back to put your SIM card in but hey - it's all about the little things.

It's launching in April, meaning it'll be too early for Windows Phone 7 Series and pack WinMo 6.5.3 - a bit of a shame, but fingers crossed for an upgrade when 7 lands.

All three pack the new enhanced HTC Sense (which we were told would be available for existing handsets shortly), which now features a new widget called Friend Stream. This integrates all your social networks including Facebook, Twitter and Flickr into one feed so you can get all your social networking goodness in one place.

It also features a new thumbnail view called Leap that lets you see seven screens at once to save yourself swiping time, and there's smaller improvements too such as a beefed up weather widget with prettier pictures.

So there you have it - what do you think? Which is your favourite? Let us know below.