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Review: HTC Desire 520
2.6Overall Score

Price (RRP): $199 (locked to Optus)
Manufacturer: HTC

Whenever we hear the word “cheap” associated with a phone, we hit the deck, preparing ourselves for the onslaught of something awful. Can HTC’s Desire 520 shake us from this feeling?


Budget phones are often in a different league compared to the usual assortment of mid-range and high-end devices out there products out there, but generally these are low-end to match a specific price point.

HTC’s Desire 520 may well match this area, because from the specs, at least on paper, this is a device made to a very specific price point: $199.

As such, you’ll find a Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 quad-core processor in this phone, clocked to 1.1GHz and paired with 1GB RAM, as well as a version of Google’s Android installed on the 8GB storage, with version 5.1 found on this phone also known as “Lollipop”.


Cameras are part and parcel of the smartphone package these days, and that’s no different with the Desire 520, either, providing an 8 megapixel rear camera capable of capturing 720p video and paired with a flash, while the front-facing camera is set to 2 megapixel with 720p HD capture also able to be recorded here, too.

Connections for the phone are more or less par for the course, providing support for 4G LTE on the mobile side of things, while 802.11b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth 4.1 are for your other wireless connections.

Wired support is also here, though only for microUSB charge and data transfer and then a 3.5mm headset jack for audio playback.


Upgrading the storage is also possible via a microSD slot found under the removable back, with a replaceable battery also found there.

The battery found in the model is rated for 2000mAh.



It’s pretty amazing that smartphones have reached the sub $300 price points, and HTC’s Desire 520 hopes to impress with the look and feel of a mid-range HTC Desire plonked down into a smaller body with lower specs to match a $199 price.

Does it succeed?

In terms of looks, HTC’s Desire is about as generic as it gets, borrowing the basic touchscreen design and attacking speakers to both the top and bottom, with a simple blue outline culminating in a grip by the hands.