Dear Motorola/Google, Give Me a REAL Droid 2
Remember this guy right there? Back in October of 2009, Android fans were chomping at the bit for Verizon's first Android device, the Motorola Droid (or the Milestone for my friends overseas). And a milestone it was. It was not the first Android device ever, but it was the first one that people really knew about. It was the one you saw on TV as much as you did the iPhone. If anything, it was the first Android device to truly go toe to toe with the iPhone in both overall quality as well as daring advertising. Many before it had been labelled "The iPhone Killer", but none before had stood a chance. Whether it was successful in that regard is irrelevant. What matters is that it was a truly beautiful device, one with thought put into it's hardware, was the first to run Android 2.0, and set the path for future devices in both software and branding. Then, some 10 months later, we get the sequel. The Droid 2. And like so many Hollywood busts, the sequel completely falls flat on the originality and creativity of the original. Funny thing that the Droid 2 had an R2-D2 variant because it reminds me more of another Star Wars character: Yoda. When you first see him, he's real. Strange and different, but loveable, timeless, and completely unforgettable. But when he's brought back (think the prequelogy), he's fake, plastic, emotionless, and resembles Yoda in name alone.
So Motorola, I want a real Droid 2.
Here's a bit of personal background so you know where I'm coming from. I've sold phones for multiple carriers the last few years. I've switched carriers and devices like shoes (which isn't a perfect analogy for me because I've owned more phones the last 3 years than I have shoes). My first internet phone was the Samsung Instinct. I really liked it a lot. It still holds a place in my heart for the best box a phone has come in that I've seen. Since that phone, I haven't been able to imagine life without a web-enabled device in my pocket at all times. I've used BlackBerries (Curves, Tours, Pearls, Storms, and Torches), Androids (from high end Droids and EVOs to low end Intercepts), Windows phones (HD2 and a Samsung Focus), and a small part of me still wishes the Kin Two was viable (saw one at Taco Bell the other day and almost made the guy an offer, even though I don't have Verizon anymore). But for the last year, I've been using an iPhone 4S. Most of my phones get Craigslisted for the next one, but my Droid has stayed safe in my closet, unused but not unloved. It was the first phone I put into my hand and felt a real connection with. It was the first one I looked at and said "This is the future, and the future is amazing". But when it grew dated, I needed to move on and felt optimistic about my future with Google's open sourced goodness. At the time, I was a typical fanboy in one key way: I hated Apple. The future wasn't a walled garden where you did things "their" way. It was customization, it was openness, whatever that meant. Then came along the HTC EVO. I was stoked. It had a kickstand! Who could ask for more? I liked my EVO a lot, but never loved it. It was a rebound phone, really. And as iOS began blatantly ripping off the things I loved about Android (mainly notifications), I started staring at the beast. Temptation set in. "It's better now", I thought. I took the leap with the 4S, and it became the second device I have just loved. The 4S was my mistress though. I begrudgingly loved it, and always hoped that my first love, the bar setter, would return, refreshed and ready to sweep me off my feet. I'm still waiting.
Now that the dramatics are done, here's what I want, MotoGoogle. I want a REAL Droid 2. Every Droid you make gets further and further away from what made the original so special. You've gone the way of Samsung and so many aging Californian socialites: Cheap plastic and a crappy skin. So I'm going to design it for you:
First off, take the original. Put it in your hand. Apple has taken a few pages from your book, so I want you to do the same. For the screen, I want to keep the same width, just increase the height a bit to make a nice 4 inch screen. I really think that is the perfect screen size. Now make it an IPS display so it looks gorgeous.
It's been a while since I've used a phone with a physical keyboard. Most of us have grown out of it. But I never would have dared to even TRY to type this post on just a touchscreen. I'm currently sitting at 830 words. I need buttons for that, so keep the keyboard. But with how small processors and cameras have gotten since last we've met, we can thin up the device a lot. And I know it's scary, but don't you dare call up your plastics guy. We're keeping this thing as a real Droid. Know the Five Guys review guy? He talks about a burger that's got STRENGTH. We're keeping you metal and strong. Mechanical even. No, you won't be the skinny kid on the playground, but you will not be messed with. Klutzes and the delicate alike will love you for it.
Remember your cousin the RAZR? Well, he was a bit older but he finally got his act together and grew up some. Now he's a smartphone like you, but he lacks the finesse, really. But the endurance he has with the MAXX edition? People love it. So we're going to take his battery and put it in you. Battery for days.
In fact, everything inside gets a buff. S4 processor? Check. At least an 8mp camera? Hell yes, but we're going to get rid of Motorola's current camera guy or something, because your successors have really sucked in that department. And I need at least 16GB internal, in addition to the microSD slot, which will support up to 64GB and so help me if you put it under you battery...
This one is big. Remember when you came out, the first with Android 2.0? Eclair? You were pure with it. You didn't put extra frosting on. Didn't try to "fix" the recipe to make yourself different from the other bakeries. You went classic and people ate it up. But then corporate decided to change the recipe anyway. Like New Coke. We're going back to the basics and changing the sweet treat. Stock Jelly Bean. Heavy on the Butter. The way we all really like it.
So please, Motorola/Google. All I want is my Droid back. Better than before. But the same at the same time. Make sense? If you pull it off, I think I'd speak for everyone when I say: