Hardware & Design
Being one of the tiniest smartphones available the HP Veer 4G packs a good amount of features. The screen is a 2.6 inch touch screen display with a gesture are below it. The screen is small and good for reading text and emails but not good for video and pictures. The gesture area is just big enough to use but if you have big hands or fingers you don’t have much room to play with. Pushing the screen up will show the full 4 row QWERTY keyboard. Its tiny and will take some getting used to type on.
On the sides you have a volume button, lock button, sim card slow and proprietary magnetic connection. You will use this to charge the phone, plug into your computer and for using a headset that’s wired. Honestly this port is lame and they should have found a way to get a micro USB on here and a 3.5 mm headphone jack. With the battery built-in you will always need that proprietary cable to charge wherever you are.
On the back there is a 5 megapixel camera with no flash and doesn’t record HD video. The images are good for the phone but product some dull tones and doesn’t seem to get enough light in with such a small lens but the quality will work for most.
Inside the phone runs an 800 Mhz processor with 8 GB of internal storage and 6.5 GB of that available to you. There is no way to expand storage.The Veer 4G does have a solid build but because of its size it lacks certain things that are the norms these days on cell phones.
Software & Usability
The Veer 4G runs WebOS 2.1.2 an older version which we’ve seen on the Palm Pre 2. There isn’t anything new here in terms of software that we haven’t seen on the WebOS 3.0 HP TouchPad Tablet when we review it. It comes with the well received card interface that offers simple multitasking with the ability to stack running applications and because able to just flick and app away to close it. Synergy e-mail and Just Type features work as advertised. I did run into some weird issues with the software. I would get random reboots when opening just a few applications but having close to 12 open would be ok. I couldn’t connect USB to my desktop computer but I was able to connect t my laptop fine and both machines run the same version of Windows 64-Bit.
Battery life is not great. You will need to keep that charger around to charge throughout the day. Call quality was good and didn’t experience a drop called in my are and the quality was clear on both ends. The 4G data speeds are not good. There were moments when it felt like I was on something slower than 3G. Same 4G issues as in our Infuse 4G review
I’m not quite sure where the HP Veer fits in this market. HP aimed to make the small smartphone with the power of a normal size one and for the most part the accomplished this goal. But I can’t pinpoint who the target market for this phone would be. Maybe a die-hard WebOS fan that can’t wait any longer for the Pre3 to come would probably want this. The HP Veer is a good phone It’s just not clear on for who.