HTC Sensation XL: the 4.7" Android-powered Titan

If you’re one of those people whose heart isn’t exactly yearning for an iPhone 4S, but you’re still craving a hot new handset, now is certainly a very exciting time, with an incredible array of amazing new hardware available or coming soon, coupled with some equally awesome improvements to the operating systems that power these dazzling new devices.

Windows Phone recently upped its game with the introduction of its ‘Mango’ update, and some of the first new handsets to take advantage of the latest version of that OS are on sale now. Perhaps the most impressive Windows Phone 7.5 handset on sale so far is HTC’s Titan, a phone that certainly lives up to its name, with a vast 4.7” S-LCD display housed in a gorgeous 9.9mm-thick aluminum unibody shell.

Many Android users will have looked on in envy at the Titan’s sleek lines. For those who prefer their OS to be served in Gingerbread flavour rather than Mango, though, HTC is ready to satisfy your tastes, with the launch of the new Sensation XL – and if you’re familiar with the Titan, then you already know plenty about the XL, for the two are remarkably similar.

Like the Titan, the Sensation XL has a single-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon MSM8255 processor. The same 8MP camera with twin-LED flash sits on the back, capable of 720p recording, also with a 1.3MP unit up front, and the same 4.7” display has an identical WVGA (480x800px) resolution. The XL gets 768MB of RAM, compared with 512MB for its Windows Phone cousin, but both share a fixed amount of 16GB of embedded storage. Curiously, for an Android handset, there’s no microSD expansion slot.

But beyond that, the Titan and Sensation XL part ways and do their own thing. The XL runs Android 2.3.5, along with HTC’s latest version (3.5) of its Sense user experience. Where the Titan arrives at the party in a very classy, understated two-tone dark grey, the XL bursts onto the scene looking like it’s ready to dance, in a rather more upbeat white and light grey outfit.

This is a handset clearly geared towards music lovers; it’s packed with Beats Audio enhancements – including profiles and presets to improve audio fidelity, plus a set of either Your Beats in-ear 'phones or special edition Beats Solo over-the-ear headsets (depending on the retail or operator pack that you purchase).

HTC hasn’t yet announced pricing or availability but it’s expected to release the Sensation XL across Europe and Asia in November. Now, the bad news: This is my next reports that HTC has explicitly ruled out selling the XL in the US. Still, if really big screens are your thing, the Titan will be available on AT&T fairly soon. It’s not Gingerbread, but Mango tastes pretty good too.

But then, if you've just got to have an Android phone, the new Google/Samsung Nexus Prime is right around the corner...

Images via This is my next

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