As a mobile platform, the EVO 4G’s Android foundation is still an infant — well, okay, perhaps it’s a tweener — but in its two-odd years in the public spotlight, the list of truly revolutionary devices to use it has been a significant one: the G1 for being the first to market; the Nexus One for ushering in a new (and subsequently killed) retail model; perhaps the CLIQ for introducing Motorola to the platform or the Droid for bringing the company some desperately needed, long overdue success. For the moment, anyway, a whopping fraction of the world’s most important phones are running Google’s little experiment.
Needless to say, Sprint, HTC, and quite frankly, many of us have come to expect the EVO 4G to join that short list for some obvious reasons. Put simply, its magnificent list of specs reads as though it was scribbled on a napkin after a merry band of gadget nerds got tipsy at the watering hole and started riffing about their idea of the ultimate mobile device: a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 4.3-inch WVGA display, 8 megapixel camera with 720p video recording, HDMI-out, and WiMAX compatibility. Of course, the list of potential deal-breakers for a phone is as long as the EVO 4G’s display is wide; to put it another way, there are countless ways HTC, Sprint, or even Google could’ve screwed this thing up. So does this moderately intimidating black slab of pure engineering and marketing — this high-profile bet on Sprint’s future — deliver the goods? Read on.