10 Things Motorola Must Do to Make the Droid X a Success

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2010-06-19

10 Things Motorola Must Do to Make the Droid X a Success

Verizon Wireless has created a listing on its Droid page for the new Motorola Droid X. The company shows an image of the device on the site, along with some basic feature information, including 720p video recording and HD output.

So far, it has declined to offer any more details on the upcoming smartphone, causing some to speculate that it will formally announce details on the Droid X, including its launch date and price, next week. For its part, Motorola has stayed tight-lipped on the Droid X, being sure to not say anything that might tip its hand.

Exactly what the Droid X will offer remains to be seen. But there are some elements that it must have if Motorola and Verizon want to have success with the device. Luckily, this X model follows a nice line of Android-based Droid smartphones that have won favor with consumers.

But going forward, it will be harder for the Droid X to make as big of an impact as its predecessors. Apple is now offering the most capable phone on the market. And although Android sales are up, there's little chance that the Droid X or any other Android-based phone will be able to catch up.

Regardless, Motorola and Verizon are hoping for a success. In order for that to happen, the phone must have certain features to give it the best chance to be hit with buyers.

1. Features matter

The iPhone might be the world's top smartphone, but it has achieved such success because how well it has implemented its many features. The Motorola Droid X must follow suit. Another Droid from Motorola can't simply offer the same basic features as its predecessor. The company needs to do its part to sell a phone that, when compared to the iPhone, matches quite well. Make no mistake that consumers are now deciding what devices they want to buy based on how they envision using them. If the Droid X comes out on top, it will win. If it doesn't, it will sit on store shelves.

2. Build upon Droid's past success

The second-generation iPhone was only successful because the first version of the smartphone was such a success. Realizing that, Motorola needs to build upon the success of the original Droid, and make it clear to consumers that it's a worthy upgrade. Overall, the Droid is well-liked among its owners. And although it has some limitations, it's good enough for current owners to get excited about its follow-up. Motorola must make it clear that if people liked the Droid, the Droid X will deliver an even better experience. If it can achieve that, it's far ahead of the game.

3. Run Android 2.2 at launch

The last thing Motorola should do is bundle Android 2.1 in the Droid X. No one wants to use an outdated version of the second-best mobile operating system. Android 2.2 looks like the most promising version of the mobile operating system Google has ever released. If the Droid X, arguably the most capable Android phone to come to market, doesn't have the best software, it will be a hobbled alternative to the iPhone 4. Not only does Android 2.2 boast Flash, it has several other features that most consumers want. The Droid X will be nothing without Android 2.2.

4. Steal some hype

Thanks to Apple, the mobile market is on high alert right now. Every customer in the space is wondering how well the iPhone 4 will perform when it's released on June 24. If it's smart, Motorola can capitalize on that. It can market the Droid X as the other device that consumers and maybe even some enterprise customers should get excited about. Admittedly, getting folks excited about a smartphone other than the iPhone is difficult. But it's possible - just look at the HTC Droid Incredible. With any luck at all, Motorola can use some of the iPhone's hype to build up its own device. It just needs to be smart about it.

Showing Droid Xs Features to Best Advantage

5. HD would be nice

According to Verizon's Droid page, the Droid X will support 720p video recording and have HD output. That's a welcome feature that Motorola should be promoting as much as possible until the phone is released. Smartphones are becoming more than just devices that let consumers check e-mail, place calls, and surf the Web. They're now entertainment companions. And a key component in that entertainment is being able to record video and play it back on a television or computer. Thanks to 720p visuals and HD output, that will be possible on the Droid X.

6. The processor matters, too

Although Motorola has yet to say what kind of components will be running in the Droid X, speculation abounds that it will include a 2GHz ARM processor. If so, it should help the phone perform far more effectively than some of its predecessors running less-capable processors. Since the iPhone launched, Apple has made mobile processors a key component in the success or failure of a device. The better the processor, the better the phone operates. A 2GHz chip running the Droid X should help Motorola keep up with Apple and its iPhone.

7. Pricing is everything

Pricing is the major question mark with the Droid X. Apple plans to offer the iPhone 4 to consumers for $199 for the 16GB model and $299 for the 32GB version. If the Droid X is more expensive than $200, Motorola is in for trouble. As many features as the phone might have, and as nice as some consumers might think it will be, it won't matter if it's more expensive than the iPhone. In the tech business, there are price leaders and there are feature leaders. Motorola must be a price leader if it wants the Droid X to be successful.

8. A bigger screen is worth having

When Apple announced the iPhone 4, some were upset to see that it offers a 3.5-inch display. Perhaps that will give Motorola the "in" that it needs to make a 4.3-inch display the desired norm in the smartphone space. Currently, the HTC Evo 4G boasts a 4.3-inch display, and it's arguably one of the best features of the phone. If the Droid X comes with a 4.3-inch display, it could change everything for those that want a larger screen. Not only will they have a device they really want, but they will have a device that can make the iPhone's display look less appealing. That's a major feat.

9. Verizon is important

Verizon can make or break the Droid X. Although the Droid Incredible and Motorola Droid have been performing well for Verizon, there's no guarantee that the company will stay true to the Android brand forever. Rumors keep suggesting that a Verizon iPhone is on the way. If and when that happens, it might be difficult for the Droid X to enjoy the kind of attention it might otherwise get without Apple's smartphone coming to Verizon. That's precisely why Motorola must capitalize on the lack of a Verizon iPhone now. The Droid X is simply Verizon's best chance of matching AT&T and the iPhone. And Motorola can use that to its advantage.

10. The release date is crucial

Exactly when Motorola plans to offer the Droid X is anyone's guess. But the worst thing it could do is release it on the day it announces the device. It should also be careful not to launch it in the same week as the iPhone 4. As compelling as the Droid X might be, the device will get no attention if Motorola releases it too close to the iPhone 4's release date. If it's smart, Motorola will wait for the iPhone craze to die down before it launches the Droid X. In fact, a mid-July launch-date would likely make the most sense. Don't rush it, Motorola. Rushing is never a good idea when an iPhone is around the corner.

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