T-Mobile’s new Dash 3G made by HTC picks up right where the original Dash left off. I guarantee you’ll fall in love with its slim 0.47-inch body, weighing a mere 4.2 ounces. The width is slightly narrower than the original Dash making it that much more comfortable to hold. It’s got the same 2.4-inch, 320 x240 pixels, and 65K QVGA display running Windows Mobile 6.1. The new trackball (think Sidekick and BlackBerry) is the first major change you’ll notice – it lets you scroll up, down, right or left and press to select. The QWERTY keyboard layout and texture is possibly one of the best if not the best I’ve used. The keyboard and trackball also light up in the dark! And speaking of texture, the Dash 3G’s bottom half is made up of the same-soft suede-like material of the original Dash. The upper/top half is smooth, with the exception of the buttons.
Starting from the left is the Send key, followed by the Left Soft key and Home key. On the right hand side of the trackball is the Previous Screen/Back key, Right Soft key End key. The Charger/Headset Jack resides on the top right hand side and the Volume keys are on the left hand side of the Dash 3G.It has a 2-megapixel camera with digital zoom on the back. Unfortunately, HTC forgot to add a flash of any kind. Positioned immediately above the camera is the speakerphone, and yes voice-activated dialing is possible.
Under the hood is T-Mobile’s high-speed 3G network and Wi-Fi supporting Dual-band UMTS/HSDPA (AWS Band IV and Band I). The Dash 3G is by all means a worldphone thanks to quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE (850/900/1800/1900 MHz). There’s also assisted GPS with location base services by Telenav. Taking off the back cover reveals a 1500 mAh battery, SIM slot and microSD card slot right below it. In fact, the only place you’ll find HTC branding on the Dash 3G is on top of the battery. Battery life is yet to be determined and we’ll report results in the review.
While a full review is forthcoming, my overall initial impression of the Dash 3G is – wow, love at first sight. It feels great, has an exceptionally awesome QWERTY keyboard and as a big bonus, Windows Mobile 6.1 is speedy. Seeing the new Dash 3G brought back oodles of memories I’d shared with the first Dash.
It has been too long since I was this excited about a “smartphone” powered by Windows Mobile.
T-Mobile Dash 3G unboxing and hands-on video: