The HTC Desire 620 is a good mid-range smartphone that is well-priced if you find it for £170. That’s around £20 more than the Moto G, but you’ll get front-facing speakers, a better front-facing camera, a slightly speedier processor and 4G LTE for that extra cash. The graphics performance is disappointing, though, and we’d have liked to see HTC slim down the bezels and overall design of the smartphone, but we’d suggest that if you’re looking for a smartphone in the mid-range category, the Desire 620 is well-worth considering.
HTC’s new Desire 620 follows on from its 2014 Desire 610, with a bigger and better screen, a better processor, a new design and improved camera offerings. Readily available for £170, it’s a mid-range smartphone that competes with the likes of the higher priced Nexus 5 but also the just-about-budget Motorola Moto G 2014.
Here in our review, we take a look at the HTC Desire 620’s specs, price and features to determine whether it’s a good buy, and how it compares with its closest rivals.
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HTC Desire 620 review: Price & availability
The HTC Desire 620 is a mid-range smartphone priced at a very reasonable £209.99, but if you shop around you’ll find it for as low as £170.
Its predecessor, the HTC Desire 610, started at £239 when it was launched last year, and we thought that was a reasonably price tag compared with the Google Nexus 5 which costs £299.
That said, the 2014 Motorola Moto G costs just £150, and has many specs that can match the HTC Desire 620, as we’ll demonstrate throughout this review.
The HTC Desire 620 is available to buy from HTC itself now, but also from third-parties and carriers including O2, Three and Carphone Warehouse.
HTC Desire 620 review: Design & build quality
When I first saw the HTC Desire 620 I was impressed. Our review sample is the Tuxedo Gray model and looks gorgeously stylish and sleek, but there are also white models available too, some with coloured accents around in blue or red.
In my Desire 610 review, I mentioned that I’d like the entire back case (which by the way is removable for access to the battery, SIM and MicroSD card slot) of the device to have the matt coating, and it seems my wish has been granted with the 620. Personally, I really like the soft-touch material that’s used for the back, but it’s not to everyone’s taste and some might suggest that it makes the Desire 620 feel cheaper than it is.
Of course, there’s also the downfall that the matt back picks up greasy fingerprints in an instant, so you’ll find yourself regularly cleaning it to keep it looking nice.
Another downfall to the HTC Desire 620’s design is the large bezels, though they don’t surprise us as most of HTC’s other smartphones suffer from the same fate. The screen (which we’ll talk about more later in this article) is 5in, but the overall size of the smartphone is much bigger. This does allow room for the front-facing speakers that we love on HTC phones, though.
To be precise, its dimensions are 72.7×150.1mm, which is significantly bigger than the 69.2×137.8mm of the Nexus 5, for example.
It’s also 9.6mm thick, which is a bit on the chunky side. Rivals including the Nexus 5 are thinner, but the Motorola Moto G is thicker at 11mm. It weighs 160g, so is heavier than both of those smartphones (Nexus 5 weighs 130g while Moto G weighs 150g).
Overall though, it’s a well-built smartphone that looks good and feels comfortable to hold.
HTC Desire 620 review: Display
That aforementioned 5in display on the HTC Desire 620 has a resolution of 720×1280 pixels, which equates to 294ppi. That’s not the best screen we’ve seen, but it’s certainly not the worst either. It’s better than the HTC Desire 610, which had a 4.7in display at 234ppi, but much lower than the 445ppi of the Google Nexus 5, but identical to the 294ppi of the 2014 Motorola Moto G.
We found the colours to be bright and crisp enough to satisfy the eye, but the viewing angles are quite poor.
HTC Desire 620 review: Hardware & performance
Inside the HTC Desire 620 is a Snapdragon 410 Qualcomm processor clocked at 1.2GHz and paired with 1GB RAM. This combination doesn’t make for a particularly speedy or powerful device, but we didn’t find the smartphone to be too sluggish.
Playing graphics-heavy games and running lots of power-hungry apps could get frustrating, but for general use including casual gaming, browsing the web, messaging, emails and social media, it’s plenty fast enough.
To give you a better idea of how the HTC Desire 620 compares with rivals, we ran benchmark tests to determine the processor and graphics performance, as well as a browser speed test.
In processor test GeekBench 3.0, the smartphone scored an average of 1456 in the multi-core test. That’s better than the 1144 scored by the 2014 Motorola Moto G, but significantly less impressive than the 2800 scored by the Google Nexus 5.
The HTC Desire 620 scored poorly in the GFXBench graphics test, managing just 3.9fps (frames per second) in the Manhattan test and 9.3fps in the T-Rex test. The Nexus 5 scored 24fps in the T-Rex test so is much faster, while the Moto G scored 11fps so was still slightly better than HTC’s new offering.
Finally, in the Sunspider test, the HTC Desire 620 managed 1381ms, so is better than the 1526ms scored by the Moto G (lower is better in this case), but the Nexus 5 scored a much better 801ms.
There’s a microSD card slot that allows you to add up to 128GB more storage space to the 8GB that’s built-in to the HTC Desire 620.
Connectivity includes 4G LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 4.0 and WiFi, but not the faster 11ac standard. There are also Dual-SIM models available.
HTC Desire 620 review: Camera
HTC has given the HTC Desire 620 an 8Mp rear-facing camera, which we found can allow you to capture good but sometimes slightly grainy photographs if the conditions are right. It doesn’t have great speed, so taking photos of small children or pets could be a challenge. There is an anti-shake mode that can help, though.
Above is an example of a photo taken with the smartphone’s rear camera, and below is a full crop that demonstrates the lack of sharpness you can expect.
In fact, the camera app itself is quite good, with settings that allow you to alter the ISO for better low-light photos, the white balance, the photo mode (including Macro, HDR, Night Time Portrait, Landscape, and a Panorama mode), and there are filters and effects too. There’s also an LED flash.
For selfie-lovers, the front-facing camera is good too. It’s 5Mp, and there’s a handy timer mode.
Both cameras are capable of capturing 1080p video, which we also found to be satisfactory though not outstanding.
HTC Desire 620 review: Software
When it comes to software, the HTC Desire 620 runs Android 4.4.4 KitKat, with no sign of a 5.0 Lollipop update just yet but one could arrive in the future. That’s overlaid with HTC’s Sense 6 UI, which we’ve grown to really enjoy using.
Features such as BlinkFeed give the phone a modern, youthful vibe, offering an overview of what people are talking about on social media, in the news and more. There’s a Kid Mode, and Zoe, which is a photo- and video-based social app.
It’s easy on the eyes and simple to navigate, too.
HTC Desire 620 review: Battery life
We’re still working on our full battery test of the HTC Desire 620, but during our testing we found that it could last for around two days on one charge with medium usage. There are two power saving modes available, too, so that should prolong that battery life a bit. It’s a removable 2100mAh battery that HTC claims can last for up to 19.2 hours of 3G talk timel.
HTC Desire 620: Specs
- 150.1×72.7×9.6mm 160g 5in HD720 display (720×1280 pixels) Qualcomm Snapdragon 410, 1.2GHz, quad-core, 64-bit 8GB storage + MicroSD for up to 128GB 1GB RAM 4G LTE 8MP rear camera 5MP front camera 1080p video recording Bluetooth 4.0 WiFi 2100mAh removeable battery