The Evo 4G was based on the Desire or the HD2 platforms, but it was the first 4G phone (yes, not faux G, WiMax was anticipated in 4G spec, like LTE, and the ITU granted dispensation to validly classify it as that as 4G), it was the first large screen Android, it was the first Android with a front facing camera supporting video chatting (before the iPhone, and it didn't require wifi with proprietary software). It formed the basis for the Verizon Thunderbolt and the Desire HD. It wasn't the first phone with HDMI (Samsung Instinct HD), but it was among the first.
The GNex may have had the largest thread in Android history (it did, here, for its pre-release), but the Evo 4G forum here still holds the record for most threads, posts and views. By the time the GNex came out, the Evo 4G alone had sold more than twice the combined worldwide sales of the Nexus One and Nexus S.
It was also the first non-Nexus phone in the world to get Froyo through an official release and get full Flash support.
And while many continue to scoff at WiMax, video chatting and Flash, another of its innovative firsts was the kickstand. Although derided by many, it was and remains a significant feature.
The G1 may have started Android, but the HTC Evo 4G changed the face of what Android and the Android community was about by every objective measure.
That's why when someone says Evo, all you have to say is, qft, quoted for truth.
As for iPhone comparisons, one of greatest viral videos was the iPhone 4 vs the Evo.
We have more geebees.
PS - the only One X with a removable sd card is the Evo 4G LTE, it arrived in the United States and our hands before the SGS3 did. Takes more than Apple to stop an Evo. And we still have a kickstand.
PPS - haven't seen a good rousing fan thread in quite a while, nicely done. Truth is, as long as it's Team Android, it's right. (Evo still wins though, just saying.