Motorola Droid RAZR

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Reviewed by Someguyperson (Previously owned)

Motorola really sells on hardware and it shows. This is an extremely thin phone with a very rigid design. The screen has a fantastic oleophobic and water resistant coating that works wonderfully and feels great. The glossy edges deform on impact, making the edges look bad after some abuse. The metal finishes also wear off quickly, making the handset look cheaper after wear and tear. The dimensions of the phone make the phone feel massive in the hand as well as distract the user from the thickness and focus on the width of the handset instead. The “Motorola hump” is a distinctive, but putting the weight at the top of the device really adds an unnecessary heft to the phone.

The display really isn’t as bad as Nilay makes it out to be. The blacks are terrific and the screen is very bright for an AMOLED screen. The colours are completely off (even by AMOLED standards) and the AMOLED “banding” problem is quite prevalent. The screen is also not big enough for the device. I feel Motorola really skimped on the screen size in order to decrease the thickness, which doesn’t make sense to the end user.

I didn’t use the cameras much, but they did what was required of them. They don’t look that great at all, but they could definitely beat out my grandmother’s point-and-shoot. Think of them as the 128kbps MP3s of pictures, if that makes any sense.

Reception/ Call Quality:
The speeds on LTE are great and CDMA 2000 works as advertised. The issue is that the LTE modem is a category 2 device, meaning its theoretical maximum speed is half that of all non-Motorola handsets in Verizon’s lineup.

Performance was great and is near the top of the charts right now. The time it takes to send a text decreased dramatically from handsets like the OG Droid and Atrix to the RAZR.

Motorola decreased the bloat on this skin compared to the Atrix and HTC devices. I enjoyed the stock keyboard, but the dictionary wiped itself and setting up Google/ Facebook/ Twitter accounts are an extreme pain because of the modifications made.

Battery Life:
Miserable battery life. The charger needed to be kept close by, as the handset would drain completely in ~7-8hrs in idle. There is clearly an issue with the handset requesting data too often and inefficiently that the Galaxy Nexus doesn’t have. It takes 3-4hrs to fully charge with the device on and the lack of extended battery really hampers the phone’s ability.

The Android ecosystem is second only to iOS and is approaching the same level within a year or two.

The RAZR is a engineering feat, but some poor design tradeoffs, miserable battery life, and software that will always come out after the Galaxy Nexus are all reasons that this device places second in Verizon’s lineup next to the Galaxy Nexus.

The Breakdown

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  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • Design 9
  • Display 7
  • Camera(s) 7
  • Reception / call quality 9
  • Performance 9
  • Software 7
  • Battery life 5
  • Ecosystem 9
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