I work in a Vodafone store, so I got to have a ten minute play with a Sensation this afternoon. It kills me to say it, because I was hoping to upgrade to one from a Desire, but I wasn't impressed.
Most notably, the screen is nowhere near the standard of the Galaxy SII. By comparison it appears a little dull. This, however, isn't hugely important to me. I'm far more interested in how the phone actually performs...
There's no doubt it's an impressive phone, but there was something jarring about the way the phone runs. It's not smooth, there's too much judder, it felt unpolished and it lacked the intuitive WOW! you felt the first time you handled a Desire. I don't know how to phrase it, but it just didn't feel snappy to the touch the way the Desire does.
First I noticed was when I entered the wallpaper gallery and began to cycle through the pre-loaded ones. It only displays thumbnails for the four that are initially in view (they're stacked and they rotate round) - go past those and you're left with a loading image for 2-4 seconds whilst it generates the thumbnails. Scroll back to the first four, it does the same thing again, even though it had already loaded those previews once. Exactly the same in the gallery. Plus, they whiz round so quickly that it's very irritating trying to pinpoint one.
The keyboard lacks the punch I've come to expect from the HTC range. Both the vibration and visual feedback (popups) seem out of kilter with what you're typing. I couldn't take my eyes off it and type blindly like I can with all the other HTC Android phones.
Bring up your apps home, there's no smooth slide like on the Desire. It leaps up in three noticeably juddery steps. Cycling round the homescreens, the animation isn't smooth. This could just be a case of getting used to the size of the thing though.
Went to the skins section - the ones loaded on the Desire HD and Desire S (the brushed metal etc) are missing. Odd. Maybe they're obtainable from the HTC Hub? The ones currently there are, strangely, the same one with different wallpapers.
OK, I know these things are petty and probably not much of a concern to users here. I didn't have a good chance to really get to grips with the phone and explore, and it's possible that some of the lag could be alleviated by playing with settings. It's just that it was so noticeable that it grated on me and stopped me enjoying exploring the phone for the first time.
The new lock screen is very impressive though. But I think, overall, I'll be holding off to see if my experiences are echoed by early adopters and the professional reviewers.