HTC Droid Incredible

There's a bit of gnashing of teeth apparently going on over the HTC Droid Incredible and its capacitive screen. Chris Tabor -- aka igl007 in just about every forum there is -- has been screaming from the rooftops about the Incredible's screen and how sometimes it won't respond unless you're holding it. And that's a problem, for instance, when you're using certain car docks, which is what started this whole thing.

Anyhoo, Chris did a series of tests, videoed them, and posted his results just about everywhere, and got some really good responses, some of which require an electrical engineering degree to understand. And it looks like some of you have this issue, and others don't. And it bothers some of you way more than others.

Let's face it: There's not going to be a mass recall of the Incredible over in what all likelihood is some sort of technical characteristic of the screen, not unlike what we saw with the Nexus One. Our advice? First, don't be playing with your phone while you're driving, even if it is in a car holder. (And maybe try a different car dock.) And second: If you do have to make a call or something, just touch your thumb to the phone and poke at it with whatever finger feels the most natural.

The sky is not falling. But it might have darkened a little bit. If you're still concerned about this, sound off in the comments or check out the thread here.


Reader comments

Incredible's screen causing consternation for some - how about you?


My Hero won't work when I touch it a lot of times unless I'm holding it. Maybe it's part of the capacitive screen and how it works? Maybe that metal bezel on the side is the ground? Interesting!

I'll add that it really isn't even annoying when it doesn't work, and it happens so seldom that I wouldn't even bother to complain about it. A non-issue.

Strange, I'm not having any problems with my Incredible either, even in its car dock. Only thing that kinda gets me sometimes is the glare, but I'm getting an anti-glare screen for that.

I used to have this problem with my storm 1 all the time. So far, this hasn't happened with my incredible. I love this phone!

Maybe this is an htc problem? when I used my nexus in the car,i had this issue sometimes, at first though, not so much anymore,i honestly can't tell you the last time that happened to me though, it did happen often early! Give it time Incredible owners, maybe it'll resolve itself!

Is there any cause for concern regarding the EVO they share screen manufacturers/types? I know HTC built both phones, but wondering if the screens are exactly the same

A lot of us have a MUCH MORE ANNOYING problem -- home screens that change by themselves and cursors that jump around uncontrollably - making the device basically unusable. This problem has something to do with the optical joystick.

Why isn't THIS front page news?

Verizon keeps pretending they've never heard of the problem, and I'm worried that VZW & HTC will just sweep the issue under the rug.

My HTC Hero had this problem since the day I purchased it. That is, until I installed the lastest leaked 2.1 release candidate ROM on it. Now the problem is completely gone. I can set the phone down on anything, and the slightest touch will be recognized and the phone will instantly respond. Apparently, at least with the HTC Hero, it was a problem that could be fixed via a software update. I wonder if it was an intended fix, or it it just worked out that way in 2.1.

known issue on most phones with a accelerometer. My hero does it all the times and the phone known most for this issue is the Nexus 1.

Have this same issue with the mytouch 3g. It is a none issue because these devices were meant to be held in your hands while using it. Definitely should not be messing with it while in a cardock and driving.

You obviously do not actually own a car dock. Whether your using navigation on your phone, or streaming music on it to your car, there are multiple instances when you would need to touch the phone while it's in the car dock, from dismissing a notification that pops up over your navigation map, to switching to the next music track that's playing. It is ridiculous to have to release the arms from the dock, then remove the phone to hold it in your hand, and then to have to touch it for any of these tasks that ought to be extremely fast and simple. These phones have definitely been expected to be used in automobiles since they started putting GPS navigation systems and internet radio players on them years ago. This is definitely far from a "non-issue."

And you do this without holding the phone in your hand? Because that's what this article is pertaining to - the phone not registering screen touches when you're NOT holding the device in your hand. Did you even read it?

I've had no problem just touching the screen of my INC when driving with it on my lap. I use bluetooth for music and calls and never had a problem changing songs by just taping on the screen. I do agree it would be annoying. I have noticed that once in a while, I'll see that the button registered, but no action took place and I just tap it again This has happened while I'm holding it using speed dial. I really can't say how happy I am with this phone and Android after sticking to BB's for so long.

This is all of a sudden a big deal. My iPhone 3G does this from time to time. My Nexus does this from time to time, and also the incredible. Never understood it but it's not just the incredible that has this going on.

I use my incredible in the car dock with no issues. Not saying people are lying maybe overreacting or not as frequent as a few would lead you to believe. Again my opinion is that you bought a $200 piece of equipment, buy a worthy car dock. Those cheap universal ones are embarrassing.

I have had the Incredible since day #1. This was the first thing I found was a problem. Only a problem in car dock. It is intermittent but fairly reproducible daily. At first I was not sure if pressure on buttons from dock holder was causing it. Then when I touched back of the phone with a finger (thus grounding) & used thumb to touch screen there was no problem. I had Eris prior w/o same issue. Maybe as article contends that it is a grounding issue for capacitive screen with OLED tech.

Weaksauce. There always has to be some guy out there that appoints himself "King Of Finding All Possible Problems On This Awesome New Phone". Do you seriously think HTC/VZW didn't notice this during the testing process? It didn't fall under the category of a defect, simple as that. Stop mashing your grubby hands all over your phone while you have it docked in your car...problem solved. Let the flaming begin.

If you can't handle hearing about the problems of a device along with the good, then get out of these forums. People here care about their devices and want solutions to their problems, not criticism. If you want to be a fanatic, mindless fan that ignores your device's problems as its manufacturer does, go join an iPhone forum.

Just tested it out, my Incredible is sitting in a little bag... I touched it with one finger, and it did what it is supposed to do...

Matter of fact, because I have clear little case AROUND my incredible, I NEVER touch the device except with my finger....

I have a Hero with the same car dock and I was experiencing not being able to input anything while the phone was in the dock.

Simple way around it was to press harder, lol. Seriously. It seemed to have something to do with the 1) sensativity of the touchscreen and 2) the foam that surrounds the dock, to keep the phone secure, absorbs the touch input.

I'm not having any of these issues. I've placed my Incredible on a book, table, blanket, styrofoam, wood, and directly on the ground and using only 1 finger I can navigate the entire phone.

Hello everyone,
I just wanted to thank the entire community for taking a honest look at this. I really appreciate 'most' of the comments on the different forums. A lot of them have led to valid work-arounds. On the flip side it's been interesting seeing the comments that refer to me as a zombie, troll, Apple fan boy and retard. Oh well, I guess I asked for it. However I can honestly say that stirring up trouble was the last thing I wanted to do. For the record, I absolutely LOVE this phone. For some reason people see the video and think I hate the phone or hate android. I did not do these tests because I could or could not "live with the problem". The scale and scope of this problem, and how it might or might not effect each person seemed totally irrelevant. I simply did the tests to point out the flaw and thus find a fix, either through HTC or through the community, hence giving everyone a better phone. I sincerely apologize if this has upset some people. That was not my intention.

This is a shot in the dark, but I wonder if therein anything to the geography here.
Are these flawed Incredibles in any concentrated areas? Could it be a certain batch?
I'm in the Tampa Bay, FL area and bought mine just after the local Verizon store opened on the first day they were available. I haven't experienced this problem yet.
Moderator(s), is there a survey or other way to let forum users indicate where they are and whether they are having these problems not?