Motorola's Droid Razr has impressed critics, but will need to fight its own way in a marketplace crowded with the likes of Apple's iPhone 4S.
Droid Razr offers some powerful hardware for an Android smartphone, but the
ultra-thin device faces some significant competition this holiday season.
Android 2.3.5 (the latest update to the Gingerbread build), paired with a
1.2GHz processor and 1GB of LP DDR2 RAM. The smartphone-which is also speedy,
thanks to support for Verizon Wireless' 4G Long-Term Evolution (LTE) network, and
ultra-thin at 0.28 inches-is a formidable participant in the mobile
is a clear selling point. According to teardown service iFixit
, the Droid Razr is "clearly thinner than
the iPhone 4S" but "sports a much larger footprint that may make operating the
phone difficult" for smaller hands. That larger footprint was a side effect of
Motorola needing to squeeze the smartphone's hardware into the thinner
the Droid Razr qualifies as a pricey device, especially in comparison with the
iPhone 4S at $199. Verizon Wireless and Motorola Mobility are clearly betting
that cutting-edge design and network speed will nonetheless draw customers. (It
scored high marks in eWEEK's review.
customer dollars, the Droid Razr faces the iPhone 4S, Apple's latest upgrade to
its popular smartphone line. In addition to some upgraded hardware, including
Apple's proprietary A5 processor, the latter device boasts the new iOS 5
operating system and Siri, a "personal digital assistant."
In place of
Siri, the Droid Razr relies on "Smart Actions," which allows its users to
create rules that trigger certain actions, such as turning off power-draining
features to preserve a low battery. It will launch a news widget in the morning
or Google Maps in the user's car.
next-best hope must also contend with a Microsoft determined to push its
upgraded Windows Phone devices to both businesses and consumers. That upgrade,
"Mango," gives the Windows Phone platform hundreds of new tweaks and features.
In addition, Nokia and a host of hardware partners are preparing Windows Phone
devices with high-end hardware and sleek design, which could finally draw attention
to a platform whose market share has languished to this point.
Plus the Droid
Razr must compete with the legions of Android smartphones taking up space in
stores, including previous members of the Droid family. The sheer proliferation
of those devices could make it difficult for any new smartphone-much less one
boasting new hardware-to carve out a space for itself.
The Droid Razr
is a massive evolutionary step over the original Droid launched in the fall of
2009. But since that time, the smartphone market has become even more crowded,
and infinitely more advanced. Even a state-of-the-art device faces a battle for
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