That emerging tv technology was about to make its way into smartphones and so enter the htc evo 3d, which i’ve been playing with this past week for the first time in 10 years, growing up in the 90s real 3d tv of the non cardboard glasses kind seemed Like science fiction but flash forward to 2011, and it could now fit into a tiny rectangle inside a device that also took 3d photos – obviously things didn’t quite pan out for 3d itself and ultimately also htc’s phone business, but we’re not going to beat a dead horse Too much on why that’s the case instead let’s get stuck into this little slice of android nostalgia. The evo 3d i picked up here is the relatively rare european version, complete with a unique red accent around its dual camera array. Htc didn’t sell a whole lot of evos outside the us and in europe. No major carriers picked up this 3d phone instead opting for the sleeker sensation or the more mainstream desire s. So finding this red accented model in such good condition on ebay after a full decade is pretty rare. Its 4.3 inch screen now feels tiny, of course, but what’s still striking in 2011 is how solid the hardware still is. The rubberized back panel feels more solid than the creakier plastic being used by samsung at the time, and the metal frame has that classic htc. Look being a 2011 android phone, though that back panel is of course, removable to reveal a 17 30 million power battery and your micro, sim and micro microsd slots.
Other hardware oddities include this side mounted charging port something htc kind of flirted, with in a few models around this time, along with a now largely extinct, 3.5 millimeter, headphone jack there’s, also a physical dual stage, camera shutter key and a physical slider to switch between 2d And 3d photography the cameras themselves, typical 5 megapixel sensors for the time are housed in this necessarily giant camera bulge. Around back that, i think, looks kind of like a little robot face. The extra space between these two lenses needs to be there if you’re capturing two shots at sufficient distance apart to create a decent stereoscopic effect, and that 3d effect is actually a little better than i remember it being when i tried this phone for a couple weeks. Back in 2011., there are all the usual 3d caveats around viewing angles and the resolution which gets chopped in half when viewing anything in 3d plus it only works in landscape mode, because the cameras themselves are oriented that way, but it worked and being able to capture Your own 3d memories was and still is fun, even though the cameras themselves still leave a lot to be desired. These weren’t good cameras in 2011 and time has not been kind to them, with the biggest bugbears being non existent, dynamic range and lousy, low light performance, but in the right light with the right amount of depth in the scene, the evo’s, 3d photo and video capabilities Do look pretty cool in 2021 by the way the only 3d content you’re gon na be watching on this phone is your own, given the dearth of 3d content in general and the lack of working video apps like youtube for the ancient software on the evo there’s? Not a whole lot else to see.
Also good luck, sharing any 3d stuff. You capture on this phone. For the same reasons, very few people actually have a 3d display these days, maybe it’s, just as well that you’re mostly limited to looking at the evo’s pictures on its own screen, then, just as it is with the 3d effect itself, when you’re looking at not great 1080P images on a tiny screen at less than a quarter of that resolution, your brain does have to fill in some of the gaps. Looking at these on a high res modern 2d monitor. Well, they score pretty highly on the android central camera potatometer for use. In the 2d world, the evo screen lagged behind other lcds of the time like the one used in htc’s own sensation. It was one of the first qhd panels, that’s quarter hd by the way, but there’s a visible air gap between the glass and the lcd. The aforementioned viewing angle issues also extend to 2d output as well and it’s generally just washed out compared to the best ammo leds of the time. With a lot more screen, reflection than i’d like as well, my evo arrived right up to date with android 4.0.3 ice cream sandwich pre loaded along with htc’s sense, 3.6. Ui. This point release added a handful of ui tweaks to the 2010 era, gingerbread firmware that this phone launched on adding niceties like quick settings for the first time and this recent apps bar it’s this software.
That really dates the evo i think smartphone, visuals and ui paradigms are just so completely different today, compared to the skeuomorphism heavy sense of a decade ago. It is at least consistent nicely animated and pleasant to look at, but it’s clear. The dual core snapdragon inside is buckling under the weight of those weather, animations full screen, widgets and live wallpapers. That sense was well known for at the time as for app compatibility as you’ll know, if you watch my retro review of the galaxy s2 and htc desire, you are largely out of luck in 2021, with even basic apps, like youtube being unable to connect to their Servers web browsing is certainly possible, though, if you’re, okay, with clicking through the occasional https error and responsive mobile sites like android central, were easy enough to browse htc, ultimately dropped 3d and never revisited the technology in its phones, as did lg, who made the evo’s only Real 3d competitor, the optimus 3d. Basically it was a technological dead end and the evo’s us successor, 2012’s, evo 4g. Lte was basically just a rebadged htc one x, even if 3d had lived on in mobile tech, it’s unlikely to become a feature in mainstream flagships. For all the reasons i’ve seen during my time with this phone in recent days, the display can’t match a good oled or lcd in regular 2d mode in 3d mode there’s, a huge sacrifice in terms of resolution and brightness. You need that great big honking gap between the cameras to take decent 3d photos and without 3d displays in other places, sharing your stereoscopic creations would be next to impossible.
3D couldn’t succeed on phones without buying elsewhere and unfortunately for the evo that just didn’t happen. So that’s, our quick look back at the htc evo 3d share your early android memories down in the comments. If you owned one of these or anything like it and be sure to subscribe, so you don’t miss future retro reviews like this one.