Droid R2-D2 Smartphone Strikes Back from Verizon

Attention Star Wars fans: Verizon Wireless will begin selling its Motorola Droid R2-D2 smartphone Sept. 30 for $249.99 after a $100 mail-in rebate. It's the Droid 2, only geekier.

Verizon Wireless will begin selling its Motorola Droid R2-D2 smartphone Sept. 30 for $249.99 after a $100 mail-in rebate.

Available online and in some Verizon Wireless stores this Thursday, the Droid R2-D2 is a Star Wars-themed version of the Motorola Droid 2 handset Verizon launched for $199.99 almost 50 days ago.

That means it's heavy on the geek factor and in limited edition.

The device, which customers can see on a special Droid R2-D2 Web page complete with a nifty introduction, will come in a custom box resembling carbonite, the fictional ionic compound bounty hunter Boba Fett used to encase Han Solo for transport.

The handset will also feature a Star Wars media dock and wired stereo headset.

The Star Wars experience doesn't end there, as users who power on the device will see such preloaded content as R2-D2 notification sounds and ringtones.

There are also four live wallpapers, an R2-D2 Clock Widget, a "The Best of R2-D2" video with the original Star Wars Cantina music and an exclusive Binoculars application.

Beyond these cosmetics, audio and video features, the Droid R2-D2 is straight Droid 2, sporting the Android 2.2 operating system, a virtual keyboard and improved slide-out QWERTY keyboard.

Droid R2-D2 will also feature a 3.7-inch screen, a 5-megapixel camera and a 1GHz OMAP processor.

Other perks include the gesture-typing application Swype and 3G Mobile HotSpot capabilities, allowing users to connect up to five computers and other WiFi-enabled devices in the home.

Soon, Verizon Wireless customers with Android devices running Android 2.1 or higher will be able to download the Empire Strikes Back app from Android Market.

For $2.99, Jedi Masters (otherwise known as Android 2.1+ phone owners) can download Star Wars content related to Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.

The Star Wars mobile app will offer Bounty Hunt Visual ID, Sound and Photo Gallery, Live Wallpapers, and features such as Blast the Probe Droid, Luke Balancing Yoda, Navigating the Asteroid Field, Watch Bespin's Cloud City and an Empire Strikes Back trivia challenge.

Droid R2-D2 is available while supplies last. Neither Motorola nor Verizon responded to eWEEK's question about how many versions of the handset they have to sell.