T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

The long-rumored T-Mobile Shadow (aka Juno) officially launches now. It hits stores Wednesday for $200 with voice-plan or $150 with $20-per-month unlimited data plan. (Both require two year contracts.) With it, T-Mobile and HTC have done the impossible: they have made Windows Mobile look good. Great even.

Like other WM6 devices including Sprint's recently launched HTC Touch and Verizon's Motorola Q9m, it has an interface skin that shields the user from the immediate effects of the Windows Mobile UI. But unlike those other two, this one goes a little deeper, letting you do quite a bit without ever seeing Windows Mobile.

Best of all, it manages this feat of user-friendliness without a touchscreen, just a comfortable click wheel. I'm a fan of the beautiful 2.6" screen as well, and in this case the BB Pearl-style QWERTY keypad/numpad worked great combined with solid predictive typing software. Check out the physical attributes first:

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

Let's face it, the star of this show is the UI, so have at it:

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

T-Mobile HTC Shadow Finally Emerges Looking Damn Good (Gallery)S

While there's no way for me yet to call it a pure 100% victory for T-Mo and HTC—my previous Windows Mobile wounds run too deep for that—I am willing to say that there's a sea change, better interfaces are being designed for WM6, and this is without a doubt the best one we've seen yet. [T-Mobile]