HTC Desire 620 review

The HTC Desire 620 is a well-made smartphone with a good camera, but its poor screen and mediocre battery life hold it back

HTC Desire 620
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
210
inc VAT SIM-free
Buy it now for 

Specifications

Processor: Quad-core 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 410, Screen Size: 5in, Screen resolution: 1,280x720, Rear camera: 8-megapixel, Storage: 8GB, Wireless data: 3G, 4G, Size: 150x73x9.6mm, Weight: 160g, Operating system: Android 4.4

The HTC Desire 620 is a surprisingly large smartphone given its 5in screen. Measuring 150mm high, it's almost a full centimetre taller than Motorola's similarly sized 2nd Gen Moto G, and it's not far off HTC's own Desire Eye, which stands at 152mm and has a larger 5.2in screen. This is partly to make room for HTC's BoomSound speakers at the top and bottom of the handset, but the bezels round the edge of the screen are also quite sizable, adding a lot of empty space to its overall bulk.

This isn't surprising, as last year's Desire 610 used exactly the same design. However, whereas the Desire 610 looked rather cheap and tacky thanks to its copious amounts of glossy plastic, the Desire 620 has a new matt, soft-touch chassis that not only looks much smarter than its predecessor, but also feels much better made.

In this sense, the added height isn't so much of a problem, as the phone is comfortable to hold and the superb build quality is more in keeping with its mid-range roots. Admittedly, our grey and white review model isn't the most attractive colour combination, but there are plenty of other designs available. Not all of these have a matt finish, but at least the additional colours help add some much needed personality.

HTC Desire 620 3/4s

DISPLAY

The larger, higher resolution 5in 1,280x720 display is another welcome improvement over the 610's grainy 4.7in 960x540 display, as text, icons and web pages are now much easier to read. We didn't have to zoom in quite so often when browsing desktop websites and HTC's Sense 6.0 UI looked much sharper and more defined when browsing through Android 4.4's home screens.

It's just a shame that image quality has actually worsened from last year, as our colour calibrator showed it was only displaying a measly 76.5% of the sRGB colour gamut. This is one of the worst colour accuracy scores we've seen in recent months, as the vast majority of handsets tend to hit around 90%.

HTC Desire 620 side

Blues and yellows were admittedly quite strong, but the Desire 620's green and red coverage were both very short, so colours lacked depth and vibrancy and looked very cool overall. Contrast was also a little below average; we measured a contrast ratio of 682:1, so images weren't quite as detailed as we would have liked and viewing angles were slightly narrow.

With a peak brightness of 320.19cd/m2, the screen was reasonably bright, but we had a bit of trouble seeing it clearly when using the phone outside, so you'll definitely need to have the screen on maximum brightness if you want to use it in bright sunshine. However, this had the downside of producing rather grey-looking blacks, which was confirmed by our high black level reading of 0.46cd/m2. This can make web page text look a little pale at times, but it didn't cause too many problems during our tests.

PERFORMANCE

Inside, the Desire 620 is powered by a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 processor running at 1.2GHz, paired with 1GB of RAM. This produced noticeably faster benchmark scores than last year's Snapdragon 400 chipset, scoring 1,073ms in SunSpider JavaScript and an overall score of 3,118 in PCMark. Its video playback score was particularly high, scoring 4,122, putting it just behind last year's top flagship phones. However, in practice, we still noticed the odd judder and delay when swiping up and down web pages, which did get a bit frustrating every time we loaded up a new page.

HTC Desire 620 rear

Graphics performance wasn't quite as good as we were expecting either, as the Desire 620 only produced an average of 21.7fps (or 5,046) in our 3D Mark Ice Storm test and a much more stuttering 15.1fps average (or 2,503) in Ice Storm Extreme. In Epic Citadel, it only managed an average frame rate of 30.2fps on Ultra High Quality settings, which is significantly slower than last year's Desire 610, which scored 49.2fps.

BATTERY LIFE

Battery life suffered as well, as we only managed 9h 42m in our continuous video playback test with the brightness set to 170cd/m2. This should still be enough to get you through the day, but when the Desire 610 lasted just over 11 hours, we were hoping for a little more from its successor.

CAMERA

Fortunately, the Desire 620's 8-megapixel camera redeemed its mediocre performance, as there was plenty of detail on show in our test shots and colours were bright and accurate. It had a small tendency to overexpose the sky and clouds slightly in very bright weather, but overall we were pleased with the quality of our photos.

HTC Desire 620 camera test

^ We were pleased with the quality of our shots from the Desire 620 as colours looked good and there was a high level of detail present

The camera's HDR mode was also impressive, as this brought even more detail into our shots without making colours appear too harsh and grainy. The sky was also exposed much more accurately, so we'd recommend leaving this mode active when shooting outside.

HTC Desire 620 camera test HDR mode

^ Turning on HDR mode improved things even further, but it still couldn't handle very bright patches of sky

CONCLUSION

The HTC Desire 620 may be much better made than last year's model, but sadly it's a clear step down in almost every other category. It has a decent camera, but there are plenty of cheaper phones which are much better value, such as Motorola's 2nd Gen Moto G and even the newly announced 2nd Gen Moto E

See all of the best HTC Desire 620 deals on uSwitch


Hardware
Processor Quad-core 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 410
RAM 1GB
Screen size 5in
Screen resolution 1,280x720
Screen type LCD
Front camera 5-megapixel
Rear camera 8-megapixel
Flash LED
GPS Yes
Compass Yes
Storage 8GB
Memory card slot (supplied) microSD
Wi-Fi 802.11n
Bluetooth Bluetooth 4.0 aptX
NFC No
Wireless data 3G, 4G
Size 150x73x9.6mm
Weight 160g
Features
Operating system Android 4.4
Battery size 2,100mAh
Buying information
Warranty One-year RTB
Price SIM-free (inc VAT) £210
Price on contract (inc VAT) Free on £21-per-month
Prepay price (inc VAT) £199
SIM-free supplier www.expansys.com
Contract/prepay supplier www.o2.co.uk
Details www.htc.com
Part code Desire 620

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