The HTC STRTrk, aka the Qtek 8500, is a clamshell handset and is a significant departure from the candybar PDA style phone that HTC is famous for (HTC is the manufacturer behind smartphones such as the Orange SPV C600, the T-Mobile MDA Vario and the O2 XDA Mini S). Other than the Qtek 9000, which is a clamshell of sorts, this is the first Razr-like clamshell handset from HTC.
At the time of writing there was no information on pricing, or who is going to sell the phone, but given that HTC has had good relationships with UK networks in the past, operator-specific versions could be in shops soon.
The STRTrk does bear some resemblance to a Star Trek communicator, albeit not a massive one. It looks more like something from Star Trek: The Next Generation than Star Trek: The Original Series, but it does have some old-school influences. The phone is a charcoal black and has a textured feel to it, consisting of washboard- and rubber-like surfaces. It measures 98mm by 51mm by 16mm (when closed) and weighs 99g. The phone opens almost flat giving you lots of space to put it against the side of your head.
The external front section of the phone houses a 31mm (1.2-inch) 65k-colour screen behind a circular piece of plastic, which is similar to the round speaker on an original communicator. The STRTrk's loud speaker is located on the bottom right of the front section, underneath three dedicated music buttons. Opposite the loud speaker and to the bottom left of the front of the phone are two flashing LEDs that indicate power and Bluetooth status. Finally, at the opposite side to the LEDs and speaker, at the top of the front section of the phone above the external screen, is a camera lens.
On the left side of the phone are a dedicated volume button and a dedicated soft key that activates the communication manager, which lets you control the Bluetooth and GSM connectivity of the phone, in addition to letting you put the phone in vibrate mode. On the right side of the phone is a dedicated shutter button, which lets you activate the camera application, and further down there's a charging port that doubles up as a proprietary headphone and USB port.
When you open up the phone you'll notice certain similarities with the Motorola Razr V3. The hinge and keypad are akin to the V3's but not identical and this is, overall, quite a different phone. It's thinner and longer then the V3, measuring 182mm by 51mm when opened, and the screen is smaller at only 34mm by 45mm. It also only displays 56k colours compared with the V3's 262k-colour screen, and the keypad is different.
On the top of the keypad are two soft keys that let you access the start menu and the contacts list. Underneath those keys are the send and end call keys and in between those keys is a navigation button. The navigation button is the same shape and uses the same five-way navigation as the V3's navigation key, but this key is noticeably smaller. Finally, there are two more soft keys at the bottom of the top section that let you go back to the homepage and go back one page, as you would in Internet Explorer. The number keys are larger than on the V3's keypad and there's more space given between them. At the bottom left corner of the keypad there's a light sensor that senses ambient light and will automatically turn the keypad's backlight on in dark environments.
Underneath the battery cover there's a small switch, which automatically turns the phone off if the cover is opened.