Droid 4 Revealed – Like a Moto Razr with a Slide-Out QWERTY Keyboard

When it comes to mobile devices I tend to be fairly platform agnostic, owning Android phones, iPod Touches (well, iPods since the original one in 2001), and both iPads and Android Tablets. But there is one place where I have clear bias (well, aside from gaming performance), and that is my preference for physical keyboards. Listing the smartphones I have used over the last few years, there is the original Droid, Palm Pre, Palm Pixi, HTC Touch Pro 2, HTC 7 Pro, and Droid Pro.

What do all of those phones have in common? A physical keyboard. I even stuck with PDAs with keyboards to the end – the Palm Tungsten C and HP iPaq 4355. So … you might easily guess that I was thrilled to hear of the impending release of the Motorola Droid 4 on Verizon.

As you see at the top, the Droid 4 looks remarkably like the new Droid Razr – but it is somewhat thicker (~12mm rather than 7-9mm) and features a slide-out keyboard. It also features an illuminated keyboard with a 5th row for numbers and raised keys as shown above and below.

The specs for the phone are very much in line with the Droid Razr – dual core 1.2GHz processor with 1GB RAM to run apps and games, and 16GB of on-board storage. It also features a Micro-SD card slot for even more space (and with 16GB cards selling for less than $20, why not?), micro-HDMI to output video, and so on.

The screen is slightly smaller at 4″ similar to the Droid 3, but it includes a 8megapixel camera with full 1080p HD video recording capability and an unspecified ‘HD’ front-facing camera. Of course, it is also a 4G LTE phone, and I note that the battery is slightly higher capacity than the Droid Razr, which is certainly a good sign.

Finally, here is a graphic comparing the Droid 4 to the Droid 3 and the Droid Razr, showing just how much the slider has grown since the model released mere months ago.

Droid Life also got info on a number of accessories including a couple of Atrix-like keyboard docks.

The Droid 4 ships with Android Gingerbread (2.3.x), with no clear word on an Ice Cream Sandwich (4.x) update – though it is definitely expected to come early in 2012. The Droid 4 is currently anticipated to ship on December 8th – the same rumored date as the Galaxy Nexus, so I would expect that to shift a bit.

Whatever the release date, this is definitely a phone I am looking forward to checking out when it arrives!

Source: Droid-Life

Categories: Gear Bits

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2 replies

  1. I have a Droid 3 and really love it. I’ve owned keyboard mobile devices in the past – two Psions, a WM Q9 phone – but thought that I was over a physical keyboard with my last, virtual-only phone. I bought the D3 because I wanted a great 3G phone, and figured that I’d rarely use the physical¬†keyboard. I was wrong – I use it a lot. Moto really hit a home-run with this keyboard.

    A few worries about the (rumored) D4, though: 

    non-removable battery. Not that many people swap batteries, but they do tend to wear out over time, particularly for high-drain devices like Android phones that get lots of full charging cycles. I had to replace the battery in my last phone after 16 months because it was only giving me about two-thirds the battery life from when it was new (confirmed when I bought the new battery.)

    LTE. I had a Bionic and had lots of trouble with randomly dropping data in 3G/1X data areas. I understand that the Razr still has similar issues. If you live in an area with great 4G coverage, you should be all set, but I’m still from Missouri on this one: show me that you’ve solved these issues, Verizon, before I decide on an LTE phone.

    Otherwise, it should be a great phone. The Blur-ry interface isn’t great, but it’s not terrible, either. After rooting my last phone after it was clear that the phone just didn’t run right stock, and spending hours constantly updating ROMs and reinstalling apps and data, I decided to see how long I could go with the D3 pure-stock, and seven weeks later, it’s still stock, with the stock launcher. I’m sure that the D4 will be similar, and hopefully an ICS upgrade, with hardware acceleration and native support for the dual-core CPU, will make it even better.

  2. awesome. want one so bad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!