Another change from the last-gen devices is that both the myTouch and myTouch Q sport front-facing 0.3-megapixel cameras to the right of the speaker grill. Last time, only the myTouch featured a video chatting camera above the touchscreen. Speaking of touchscreens, these 4-inch TFT LCD displays with WVGA resolutions have four capacitive touch controls along the bottom: Menu, Home, Back and the myTouch's standard Genius button. There's also more of a lip at the base of the non-PenTile screen that keeps with the curvy design Huawei seems to have had in mind.
Moving around to the right side, you'll find a button for controlling the camera, which ends up on the top side of either phone if you're shooting in landscape mode. We'll get into specifics a bit later, but in brief: this control activates the shutter and allows you to access the camera from any screen. Up top on each device, you'll find a standard 3.5mm headphone jack, while the volume rocker sits on the left. Heading around back, a 5-megapixel camera is positioned at the top with an LED flash just below, along with speaker grills.
Under the hood, it packs an unspecified 1.4GHz Qualcomm MSM 8255 processor and 1GB of RAM. In terms of storage, 4GB of internal memory is included while both devices house microSD slots. Additionally, both handsets have Bluetooth 2.1, GPS and 802.11 b/g/n WiFi connectivity and light, proximity, compass and accelerometer sensors. As far as bands are concerned, the duo feature quad-band 4G UMTS/HSPA+ (bands I, II, IV & V) and are both quad-band GSM world phones (850/900/1800/1900 MHz).
Neither is super thin and they're actually thicker than last year's models.
Now let's delve into the differences between the two. Aside from the myTouch Q's thicker silhouette, there are only a few aesthetic disparities. Neither of the two is super thin and they're actually each about a millimeter thicker than last year's models. While the micro-USB socket is located on the bottom edge of the myTouch, the same connector is found on the left side of the myTouch Q, which becomes the bottom of the QWERTY slider once it's in use. The only other glaring difference is the location of the rear speaker. On the Q, it makes its home close to the base, but on the slab, it sits up top near the rear-facing camera. Under the battery cover, things shift around a bit from one device to the other, but either way you'll find SIM and microSD slots there, along with a 1,500mAh battery.
And then, of course, there's the keyboard. While it generally looks and feels much nicer than the one on the previous model, the experience left us a little disappointed. Starting with the good, the keys are so well-spaced that even if you have chubby thumbs you shouldn't find yourself hitting multiple buttons at once. The entire set is slightly recessed, though, with a lip enclosure that ultimately seems like a bit of a hindrance. Individual keys are subtly raised, which provides some feedback when you're pecking out a tweet, but otherwise, the typing experience feels clumsy. The entire keypad is backlit as well, but only when it's first exposed, which makes this feature a bit underwhelming. Another odd feature is that holding down a letter key only brings up symbols and not uppercase versions of each character. In order to properly capitalize sentences, you'll have to regularly employ the Shift key. This took some getting used to, but ended up becoming second nature after maybe three emails.
Both models are larger than their elder statesmen, thanks in part to the larger display size. Again, they're both noticeably thicker -- about 0.05 inches each, to be exact. The myTouch measures 4.8 x 2.46 x 0.41 inches (122 x 63 x 10.5mm) and tips the scale at 4.9 ounces (139g), while the myTouch Q hits the tape at 4.9 x 2.5 x 0.56 inches (124 x 63.5 x 14mm) and weighs 6.5 ounces (184g). While the myTouch still feels quite nice in the hand -- similar to the OG Incredible, actually -- the Q is much more formidable in both size and heft. Of course, this isn't much of a surprise, thanks to the keyboard, and we doubt that professional QWERTY users will mind the added bulk much. Last but not least, there are several color options. In addition to the black handsets seen here, the myTouch will also be available in dark red, while the myTouch Q will be offered in white.
At first glance, the 4-inch, 800 x 480 displays on the myTouch and myTouch Q look quite nice, with surprisingly good color saturation. Don't expect any stellar viewing angles, though: start looking at either device from an off angle, and the displays quickly lose any charm they had head-on. In particular, outdoor viewing is quite challenging, but it's about what you'd expect from a $50 smartphone. On the text input front, the display is quite responsive to finger input, which is a relief for folks who don't want to commit to the Q's physical keyboard.
At first glance, the 4-inch, 800 x 480 displays on the myTouch and myTouch Q look quite nice, with surprisingly good color saturation.
How does the display handle YouTube videos and other multimedia? Certainly, if you're itching to see a link that one of your buddies just posted on Facebook, you'll be fine for a brief viewing session. Color reproduction is pretty average, though, and that's with the "high quality" option enabled. Any prolonged video watching would only make the flaws even more apparent -- not to mention, more annoying. Video playback via Hulu Plus isn't even supported, so you might not even get to the point where you suffer low-quality video for extended periods of time. We gave Netflix a go and found the same color inaccuracies, but the myTouches were at least able to deliver fluid video quality. The stream only hiccupped a handful of times during an episode of "30 Rock."
This is our greatest disappointment with the myTouch and myTouch Q. As we previously mentioned, the two phones run Android 2.3.6, which is beginning to taste quite stale at this point. That said, the software at least runs well. Browsing web pages, sending tweets, snapping pictures and cranking out a few brief emails is a low-hassle affair. Occasionally, we noticed a brief delay when launching apps, but nothing to gripe about too much. As for multitasking, we were able to power up Spotify, respond to emails, monitor TweetDeck and access various websites without a substantial lag in performance.