A day with HTC HD2

loocas | hardware,miscellaneous,opinions | Saturday, December 19th, 2009

HTC HD2 (Leo)

After spending the whole day with the most awesome phone on the market (all right, a bit biased here, but I’m really loving it! :D ), tweaking the shit out of it, installing gazillion apps and customizing it exactly to my liking, what has the experience been like?

A lot has been written and said about this gorgeous gadget in the past months. So, I won’t bother you with yet another review, rather I’ll give you a subjective point of view of, perhaps, the most demanding user there is, me! :D No really, I’m very demanding and almost bitchy about what software, hardware or gadgets I use. I want them to do EXACTLY what I want/need them doing. If it’s not done my way, I am, simply put, unsatisfied, if you know what I mean. That’s also been one of the reasons I’ve exchanged about 5 – 6 smart phones (PPCs) in the past 2 years.

HTC HD2 (Leo)

Anyways, for those of you highly demanding as I am, when you pull the beauty out of its box it’s great, gorgeous, fast, massive and generally uber-cool. However, as it always seems to be the case, once you really start using any device, it’ll show its strengths as well as weaknesses. Paradoxically, one of the weaknesses as well as strengths is the gorgeous 4.3 inch screen. It’s purely capacitive, which means you can forget about a stylus, or, sometimes a tablet pen, if you need to type quickly something. Also, it’s overly sensitive. Really, it’s so sensitive you spend more time deleting what you’ve misstyped than actually typing. Even though HTC claims they’ve “fixed” this in the latest ROM version, it’s still overly sensitive. Another little hiccup were the three huge buttons on the home screen. Why only three? If only there were, say, five, these would be much more handy. The whole matrix could contain more smaller buttons. The Start menu “honeycomb” could too utilize a bit more columns. And then there are the functionality quirks and minor annoyances here and there. Such as the WiFi going out when the phone goes to sleep. Or a missing quick Bluetooth toggle button. I also missed the good old HTC task manager in the upper right corner and the option to close a running process by tapping the “X” button. The list could go on and on.

HTC HD2 (Leo)

Thankfully, and this is one of the strong reasons I like sticking around, admittably aging, Windows Mobile OS. There is always a solution to any problem you might ever have. Be it in a form of unintuitive and user unfriendly Registry tweaking or in a form of a freely or even commercially available piece of software. Once again, I’ll only highlight stuff I’ve personally installed and am actually using, so, hopefully you might take advantage of the same modifications and tweaks as I have. Also, to save you some precious time, at the end of this article I’ve put a link to a package of all the plugins, tweaks, patches and programs I’m mentioning here, so you can go through them and choose whichever you like to use yourself.

  • Obviously, I’m using the latest ROM with all the official patches. (Except for the large ROM, the files are included in the archive)
  • Another, obvious one, was the start menu item quantity as well as the number of home buttons extender tweak I applied. (20shcut.cab)
  • A 3G toggle button. (add_3g_commmanager.cab)
  • A Bluetooth toggle button. (bluetooth_toggle.cab)
  • BsB Tweaks app. is a great way to quickly and conveniently tweak very common registry entries to enhance functionality and fix some annoyances. (BsB Tweaks 1.5.cab)
  • Bear in mind that the BsB Tweaks app. requires the latest .NET Compact Framework from Microsoft. (NETCFSetupv35.msi)
  • The latest (beta!) Total Commander for PPCs. (cecmd.arm_b2.cab)
  • The 3D graphics enhancer toggle. (chainfire-hd2-3d-driver-patch_1.1.2-test.cab)
  • A tweak for minimizing accidental link clicks when rolling menus. (disable_accidental_link_clicks.cab)
  • The beloved HTC task manager. (duttys.task.manager.for.leo.v2.1.free.cab)
  • A fix for displaying Flash in Opera. (fixOperaFlash.exe)
  • A tweak for disabling the always present home clock flip effect. This doesn’t disable it completely, only when you’re switching back to the home screen the clock won’t flip. (homescreen_flip_clock_off.cab)
  • A tweak that allows for quick locking of the device by holding the send key for a few seconds. (longpress_sendkey_lockdevice.cab)
  • A tweak to add “Mark All Read” to the menu in the mail app. (markallreadinbox.cab)
  • An enhancement to the audio driver. (srs_wowhd_v1.5.1.0_sector.cab)
  • A tweak that removes the WiFi disabling feature when the device goes to sleep. (starbase64_wlan_suspend.cab)
  • This is a fun one. This tweak allows to use the LED flash as a torch light. (TorchButton_v2.3.cab)
  • This little helper shows the amount of battery in percent on the upper bar. (Touch_X_1_percent_battery_LEO.cab)
  • A tweak to show four rows in the Start menu instead of the default three. (Touch_X_Hexagon_4_row.cab)
  • Should you need to add a quick link for a soft reset of the device and a WiFi toggle, this is it. (Touch_X_reset_and_wifi.cab)
  • An obvious one, Skype. (SkypeMobile.cab)
  • And an alternative soft keyboard called FingerKeyboard, which I got used to using. (FingerKeyb-2.1-WVGA_2_.cab)

That’s it. These are the 3rd party apps and tweaks I used to modify my HTC HD2. I’m very satisfied with the way my phone looks, behaves and works right now, which means something! Considering… ;) So, if you’re like me and love to tweak the hell out of your gadgets and happen to own this fantastic device, go for these. You can, of course, install only those that you personally find interesting or handy, but I though I’d give you those in one, convenient, package.

HTC HD2 (Leo)

I should add a disclaimer here as well. In no way am I responsible for any damage should it occur to your device! Even though I’ve installed all of these packages and have absolutely no problems what so ever with them. Also remember to BACKUP all your data, your contacts, calendar entries, mails, messages and what not, should you need to flash the phone from scratch! Don’t install any of those if you don’t feel comfortable modifying or possibly flashing your phone! And a credit: most of those tweaks come from a great, Czech, site WindowsMobile Mania, so, if you understand Czech, pay them a visit. ;)

And as promised, here’s the full package (57.28 MB) containing all the above mentioned installers. Enjoy your HD2!

4 Comments »

  1. That is one heck of a work. Great features.

    Comment by Chong Chin — January 4, 2010 @ 10:22

  2. Brilliant! I’m working my way through them on my recently acquired HD2. One issue though, how do you get MobiPocket to work? I can’t see any way to navigate through books on the HD2.

    Comment by John Lowery — March 22, 2010 @ 10:06

  3. Hi John,

    unfortunately I don’t use MobiPocket at all so I can’t really help you much in this regard.

    Comment by loocas — March 22, 2010 @ 11:02

  4. Great collection, thank for taking your time to do this for the rest of us :-)

    Comment by Bobby — April 8, 2010 @ 18:53

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