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Android 4.1 headed to Droid RAZR M, Motorola launches Test Drive program for future updates

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Motorola Droid RAZR M
Motorola Droid RAZR M

Two months after release, Motorola's Droid RAZR M is set to receive a much-anticipated update to Android 4.1 in the coming weeks. The Jelly Bean rollout was announced by the Google-owned manufacturer via Twitter, with Verizon also posting a support document confirming the release. That's a faster turnaround time than what we've seen from other Android OEMs, no doubt aided by Motorola's relatively streamlined and inoffensive software skin. It's also likely that the company began working on this update even before the RAZR M disappointingly shipped with Android 4.0. But Motorola hasn't been able to maintain such a brisk update schedule for every device in its lineup: the Droid Bionic only recently made the jump to Android 4.0.

The new software also brings Isis functionality to the handset. So if you happen to be in one of two test markets where the mobile payments platform launched last month, you may be able to leave your wallet at home once the update lands. Android 4.1 will be distributed to users "in phases" in the coming days and weeks, according to Motorola.

Update: Motorola has published a blog post announcing the update, and the company is also revealing some interesting tidbits about how it plans to approach software releases in the future. Citing the Android community's passionate demand for timely updates, Motorola is launching a new Test Drive program. Starting with Android 4.2, it will distribute preview versions of updates ahead of their public rollout. Unfortunately it appears not everyone who signs up will have access to these preview builds, with Motorola saying each will be limited to "a few hundred consumers." The full details of Test Drive will be shared soon.