- Unique spray-pattern covers
- Good color reproduction
- Excellent headphone audio quality
- microSD card support
- Weak performance
- Below average camera
- Dim screen
- Weak, non-removeable battery
What was once a flagship series for HTC has become their budget-friendly darling. With their latest release, HTC hopes the Desire 530 offers a decent compromise of price and performance. While the phone certainly looks unique, does it stand up to the tests of daily use?
Let’s see what reviewers are saying!
Looking at the phone, there’s an obvious HTC design going on--rounded edges, extended bezels, minimal flair and a bunch of plastic. The big thing HTC is touting with the phone is their specialized rear shell treatments that embed tiny dots of color in the shell. While this means each phone is unique, reviewers were mixed on how they liked the final look. NotebookCheck said, “Overall, the build quality is acceptable, but the handset does not really feel high-quality due to the choice of materials.
Flipping around to the 5-inch 720p Super LCD panel, reviews are equally mixed. Reviewers noted that the screen is both dim and highly reflective. Tom’s Guide elaborated, saying, “The Desire 530 also struggles in sunlight. On a July day with scattered clouds, I had to strain to make out the on-screen controls, even after fumbling my way into Settings and cranking up the display to maximum brightness.” However, if you’re mostly indoors, the screen isn’t bad. Alphr said, “Next to its peers, it’s a bit dimmer, with above average colour performance and good contrast.”
Unfortunately, it seems that HTC’s choice of a quad-core Snapdragon 210 processor didn’t sit well with reviewers. Add in only 1.5GB of RAM and performance reviews were all quite low. Tom’s Guide said, “There's a noticeable lag between when you tap an app's icon and when it launches. The camera app takes 4 seconds to launch, so forget about capturing those spur-of-the-moment images; they could be long gone by the time the Desire 530's camera is fired up and ready to go.”
You’ll find 16GB of internal storage for your apps and games. Should you need more, the microSD slot supports cards up to 200GB.
While the phone’s 2200mAh battery might seem low, the power-sipping processor helps to balance out battery life. PC Advisor UK noted that it “got us through the day, although it did depend on our usage.” The battery is not removable, so if you’re a heavy phone user, you’ll need to keep your charger handy.
The phone’s 8MP rear-facing camera and 5MP front-facing selfie shooter received average reviews. Stuff notes, “Compared to the best of the 13-megapixel budget crowd, images look softer close-up and colour reproduction is pretty ham-fisted. Unsubtle and sometimes undersaturated, it’s a bit like they’ve been coloured-in by a little kid with some low-grade colouring pencils at times.” Much like other aspects of the phone, the camera appears to be a bit of a compromise. Shots are good enough for social media, but don’t expect it to replace a dedicated camera.
While the phone looks nice on the outside, reviews indicate that daily performance simply doesn’t add up. Alphr summed up other reviews well, saying, “The HTC Desire 530 is a disappointment. It looks the part, and the screen is pretty decent for [its price], but things fall apart as soon as you use the thing for any length of time. It’s laggy, sluggish and has a distinctly average camera.”
What the Critics Are Saying...
- Know Your Mobile team, Know Your Mobile
I find it rather difficult to recommend the HTC Desire 530 as compared to key rivals in this price bracket it doesn't offer as good a camera experience, nor is the performance on Android with this low-end CPU up to the same level. The design and build quality is great, and the display is quite impre...
- Ajay Kumar, PC Magazine
The HTC Desire 530 is an affordable MetroPCS phone with a decent camera, but it's held back by slow performance and a dim screen.
- Jason Cipriani, PCWorld
The Desire 530 just doesn’t deliver on performance, whether it’s something as basic as waiting for an email to load or more taxing tasks such as quickly switching between multiple apps. You’re going to find yourself waiting for apps to load, pages to fill in, and eventually it&rsqu...
- Jason Million, G Style Magazine
I’m usually pleased with HTC devices for the most part but the Desire 530 is a disappointing affair. Its display is pretty weak outdoors, its processing power is abysmal and it just seems to take long to upload anything. Its true saving grace is its colorful splash coating and its price point...
- Philip Michaels, Tom's Guide
HTC's Desire 530 tries to attract budget shoppers with a decent camera and good battery life, but its gaudy design, display and performance disappoint.
Prices (Where to Buy)
We've got you covered! Download a free PDF copy of the HTC Desire 530 user manual here.
HTC backs up the Desire 530 with a 1 Year parts & labour warranty.
If your Desire 530 has problems and is still within its warranty period, you could contact HTC support or the retailer you purchased the phone from. You'll find HTC's contact information here. If your phone is off warranty and needs repair for a physical problem such as a broken screen or bad battery, you should visit an authorized service centre or a local phone repair shop. You can also connect with others in The Informr Community Forum to find and share answers to questions.
Manuals / User Guides
- HTC Desire 530 Manual (PDF)
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