The past month I’ve had the chance to fully test the Motorola Droid RAZR. This phone is big and thin, and it’s very nice looking. I do have to say that it’s a much better phone than the Bionic, so if you have a Bionic, I’m sorry.
The phone itself is a mix of aluminum, Kevlar and Gorilla Glass. However, it may seem tough, but the back of the phone is quite slick, so I was always afraid of dropping it, and it seemed like it was just a tad too big to feel comfortable in the hand.
I recently had a few weeks with the Droid Bionic and some accessories. In the spirit of full disclosure after about 4 days with the first Bionic, the device went dead because of the battery, and after a full night on the charger it wouldn’t wake up, it was totally dead. I browsed all sorts of forums and googled the issue, but no one seems to know what exactly happened. I received my second unit, and it has worked flawlessly ever since.
That being said, let’s get into the review. As usual, I’ll start with the hardware specs of the device. It packs a 1 GHz Dual core Cortex-A9, it’s got 1 GB of memory, 16 GB of storage with an included 16GB microSD card. It’s also got an 8 MP camera with LED flash and full 1080p video recording with a front facing VGA camera. It also has Verizon 4G LTE as well as wifi and the usual suspects of GPS, etc. It also does come with the latest version of Android which is Gingerbread.
One of the biggest gripes I have with this phone, even though it’s got 16GB of internal memory, roughly have of it is loaded with software you cannot delete, such as Citrix GoToMeeting, Quickoffice, VCast Music, Verizon Media Manager and Verizon Back Up Assistant, Blockbuster, MOTOPRINT, Let’s Golf 2, Zumocast and others. I can see how some people might want these, but I truly wish the carriers and manufacturers would let the consumers decide and offer them as an optional download.
I recently had some time to spend with the Motorola Xoom tablet, and before I give you an opinion, I’ll start with the specs. The Xoom has a 2GHz, NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor with 1GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage with a microSD card slot (more on that later). It has a 10.1-inch, 1280 x 800 capacitive display, 3G connectivity (I had the Verizon version), it also has front and rear facing cameras. The list price off contract is $799. The hardware is good, but it’s also running a new version of Android. It’s loaded with Android 3.0 Honeycomb.
One of the newest additions to the Android lineup is the Droid Pro. It’s a candy bar style android phone with the keyboard on the front, so there is no flipping or sliding necessary.
The phone is a nice size, it’s 2.5″ wide, 5″ tall and about 1/2″ thin, so it’s very comparable to most smart phones. It feels ok in the hand, but just a little tall, there are 3 physical buttons on the side of the phone, a volume rocker, the power and a button on the right side that is preset to go to the calendar application, but you can change it to whatever you want, the headphone jack is on the top center, which I didn’t like because when I put it in the newest Griffin car dock, I couldn’t use an aux cable with it. The screen is is a 3.1-inch TFT LCD touchscreen, and it was very usable in all conditions.
Let me preface this by saying that this is the first time with the Palm Pre, I didn’t have the chance to use one of the originals, and my main phone is an iPhone 3GS. I also tried to keep my iPhone in my pocket and use the two Palm phones exclusively during the time that I had them. That said, here is my review.
The Palm Pre Plus is the same old Pre with a few upgrades. They got rid of the home button, but it still has that cheese cutting edge on it, they changed the color of the keyboard. The Pixi on the other hand is a non-slider unit that feels a little bit more sturdy, and the Pre has a cheap plastic cover on the MicroUSB door that has almost come off a few times, but the Pixi has a small flap that feels a lot sturdier and stays in place a lot better. With the inclusion of the word Plus on the phones, Palm has upped the storage in the Pre to 16GB and in the Verizon version they doubled the RAM, the Pixi doesn’t change except they included WiFi.
The folks over at Lifehacker have published a great guide for smartphone users on how to save your battery. The gist of it is:
- Follow the laptop battery rules
- Keep it cool and out of your pocket
- Switch off 3G when unnecessary
- Swith off any unneeded service
- Be frugal with background apps and notifications
- Use a black or dark theme
- Fiddle with screen time-outs and brightness
- Use mobile site versions
I recommend reading the full article over at Lifehacker for more details and information.
The Palm Pre launched on Saturday, here is a roundup of all the pre news.
Palm’s New Pre Takes On iPhone – Walt Mossberg’s review
That’s a lot to go through, so read up. I won’t have a chance to review one until they bring the phone to Verizon or AT&T, or I get lucky and get a review unit, so until then it’s up to you, Leo Laporte liked the phone, so that goes far.