I’ve had quite a few people ask me if we had to choose a handset for Rs. 28,000 and the choices were either the Arc or the Incredible S what would be the best choice. Well I though t that if people I know asked there might be others who would like to know as well. I know it’s been awhile so here’s an all new Mobile Grudge to help you decide between these powerhouse handsets. You can also read the full reviews on each by simply clicking their names. Let’s get to it.

Please keep in mind prices quoted are Best Buy prices or Market Operating Prices (MOP). They may vary depending on your location or dealer.

Sony Ericsson Arc – Rs. 28,000
The Sony Ericsson Arc is a formidable handset in this price segment. The company has made sure that at least the in looks department the Arc will stand out dramatically in a crowd of peers. The slick, slim curves make it easy to handle ad leave no unruly uncomfortable bulge in your pocket. The word ‘Unisex’ comes to mind as the Arc looks equally good in a male or female hand.

It features all of today’s relevant modes of connectivity with DLNA compliance for wireless steaming to compatible devices and even HMDI out. The camera is equipped with all the goodies you’d expect to find in some of Sony’s CyberShot models and with 720p HD video recording there little want for more functionality in this department. The absence of popular video codec support could seem like a negative point, however that’s a problem easily fixed with freeware off the Android App Market. The music player is top notch and Sony Ericsson’s Infinite button allows you to get connect to YouTube to get watch videos of the particular song or artist you’re currently listening to.

Plenty of goodies to keep you quite satisfied

Plenty of goodies to keep you quite satisfied

Sony Ericsson has also included their TimeScape UI with the Arc that allows you to either view all of your feeds (FB and Twitter), messages, emails, missed calls etc. in a singular, vertical, tile-scrolling method or you can opt to segregate the feeds. The overall UI while functional wasn’t overly impressive.

Sony's Mobile Brivia Engine does bring a new level of viewing clarity and vibrance to the Arc's display. It's easily viewed in all lighting conditions.

HTC Incredible S – Rs. 28,000
The Incredible S comes off as a rather macho looking device with a unique styling and it’s first one that features touch-sensitive keys that change orientation depending on how you’re holding the handset. Unlike the Arc, the Incredible S comes with about 1GB of internal storage and also offers a hot swap micro SD card slot for additional memory.

While the camera is almost equal in terms of functionality to the Arcs, it does have a few extra settings that enhance its “fun” value.  It offers users face detection like the Arc and 720p video recording also like the Arc, however it does add the option of Touch focus on the fly i.e. while recording video, like the iPhone 4. There are also quite a few added features for enhancing your images with simple one touch access points.

It's a got just alittle bit more

It's a got just alittle bit more

On the connection front you won’t miss anything. It’s loaded up with everything from 3G to DLNA and Bluetooth 2.0. What it lacks is an option for video out taking the Arc a step up in this section. It does however come preloaded with DivX and XviD codec support.

In the UI department nothing beats the smooth and well laid out settings of Sense UI that’s only gotten better over time. HTC has also thrown in their HTCSense.com feature that allows to you to track your handset via GPS and also adds quite of bit other functionality like remote locking, wiping and backup.

The Super Clear LCD display is also exteremly clear and well adjusted for coors to really stand out but falls just a tad short of what the Bravia Engine does for the Arc. The black levels are much better on the Arc.


The Specs

The Specs – Click to enlarge

This has been one of the hardest grudge matches I’ve had to conduct. Both handset are quite equally matched as some features that are present in one aren’t in the other and vice versa. They’re both very capable devices with good battery lives and worth the money depending on what meets your fancy.

For ultra sleek and sexy looks, the Arc wins, hands down and having HDMI on board is also an added bonus but the lack of hot swap could be an issue for some.

On the other hand, the Incredible S comes off as a sturdy looking device, easy to grip, has more internal storage and offers quite a bit of camera functionality over the Arc. However the lack of video out could be an issue. The battery life is however, just a little better than the Arc’s.

You see the dilemma, but at the end of it all, the Incredible S comes out ahead and wins by a hair. With just a few more features available as compared to the almost equally enticing Arc. That being said, you will feel no buyers remorse buying either.

If you happen to own either of these devices and would like to share your take, feel free to leave your comments below. Your inputs will also help others make a more calculated decision. You can also vote for your choice and I’ll update the article after a week with the winning handset.

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