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Motorola introduces $99 Droid Mini: 'compact without compromise'

Motorola introduces $99 Droid Mini: 'compact without compromise'

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Motorola hasn't forgotten about consumers who prefer smaller-sized phones; alongside the Droid Ultra and Droid Maxx, the company today introduced Droid Mini. The successor to last year's Droid Razr M, Motorola describes the Mini as "compact without compromise." Set for release on Verizon Wireless August 29th, Droid Mini will retail for $99 on contract.

The Droid Mini is said to contain all the power and capability of its larger Droid Ultra sibling in a compact form featuring a 4.3-inch display. That means it contains Motorola's just-announced X8 mobile computing system, which the company promises offers a faster CPU, more capable GPU, and increased memory compared to last year's hardware. Unfortunately buyers won't be getting the impressive 48-hour battery life of the new Droid Maxx. But there is one key addition: built-in support for wireless charging.

In terms of design, there's not a drastic difference year over year: the Droid Mini is a black slab with Motorola's customary kevlar rear finish, though the removal of Moto's logo from the front gives the device a nicer appearance overall.

But there's plenty of change on the software front. Motorola has added a bevy of new features to its Droid lineup. Touchless Control lets users make phone calls, request directions, and search Google without ever touching the handset. To conserve battery life, Active Display lights up just a portion of the Droid Mini's display to provide key information and notifications when you need them. Photos can also be quickly shared via a new Droid Zap feature.

Ultra, Mini, and Maxx: hands-on with Verizon's newest, longest-lasting Droids