Motorola Droid Pro (finally) Gets Gingerbread Update

Last fall Motorola and Verizon put out a trio of phones including the slider-keyboard based Droid 2, the large screen Droid X and the Blackberry-esque Droid Pro. I reviewed the Droid Pro here, and while I love the form factor and most other things, I did have some criticisms:

The Droid Pro comes with Android OS 2.2 Froyo, and has seen a single ‘quick fix’ since release. It was released alongside the Droid X and Droid 2, both of which have been updated to Gingerbread (2.3), but it is doubtful the Droid Pro will get the update. That is just the way of Android – OS fragmentation is the rule, and you really need to be prepared to deal with whatever features your phone has today since many promised updates have gone undelivered.

Fortunately Froyo is like Windows XP – solid, performs well, offers loads of features and functionality, and is completely supported by pretty much everything. Unfortunately Froyo is like Windows XP in terms of vulnerability and lacking some newer features. Froyo is known to be fraught with security issues and prone to malware attacks, and the OS still contains some real doozies in terms of poor design implementations. As an example, here is a video I made about the abysmal process of managing applications in Froyo:

One of the best things for me about Froyo is that it runs *everything*. It is still installed on more than 50% of Android devices, so it is the common compatibility point for applications. I have yet to have a problem with an app – they all just work.

You can get more info from Verizon Wireless, but the folks over at PhoneDog went ahead and copied out all of the updates from the Verizon documentation:

Enhancements

Download Manager App:
New App to manage all of your downloads from web browsing, email attachments and other apps.
App and Power Management Details:
Under Manage Applications, a new “Running” tab displays a list of active applications and the storage and memory being used by each.
Multi-Touch Key-Chording:
New ability to enter numbers and symbols with keyboard shortcut combos, instead of having to change to the numeric keyboard mode.
Improved Word Selection and Copy Functionality:
New capability to select a word via press-hold. A second press of the selected word copies the selected characters.
New User Interface and Color Scheme:
New widgets, icons and screens with refreshed colors.
Dock Icons:
Static Phone, App Launcher and Contacts icons are replaced within a customizable dock. Three swappable icons and the App Launcher icon are fixed to the dock at the bottom of all home screen panels for easy and instant access.
App Groups:
New App Menu allows creation of custom app groups, in addition to 3 default groups: All Apps, Recent and Downloaded.
Updated Calendar Options:
Display Calendar and event times in your home time zone when traveling.
Dismiss individual reminders, such as dismissing one meeting reminder without dismissing other meeting reminders.
Easy conference dialing – simply dial and automatically enter a conference code directly from your Calendar.
Update Calendar appointments using Exchange ActiveSync without deleting them.
Google Books now comes preloaded.
Geo-tagging features available for camera applications.

Other improvements:

Improved contact syncing from multiple email accounts.
Improved battery life while using Wi-Fi and/or Bluetooth®.
Correct contact name is displayed when receiving SMS messages.
Forward SMS message conversations correctly.
Mobile Hotspot status is displayed accurately.
Clock widget updates time correctly.
GPS apps and programs no longer cause unnecessary device resets.
V CAST Media Manager now comes preloaded.

First impressions: I LOVE it! The ENTIRE phone feels faster – some minor delays and slowdowns are gone, and any complaints about app management are also gone … but I knew that since I have also seen it on the HTC Flyer 7″ tablet.

So – if you have gotten your update – Droid Pro or otherwise – from Froyo to Gingerbread, what are your thoughts?

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About the Author

Michael Anderson
I have loved technology for as long as I can remember - and have been a computer gamer since the PDP-10! Mobile Technology has played a major role in my life - I have used an electronic companion since the HP95LX more than 20 years ago, and have been a 'Laptop First' person since my Compaq LTE Lite 3/20 and Powerbook 170 back in 1991! As an avid gamer and gadget-junkie I was constantly asked for my opinions on new technology, which led to writing small blurbs ... and eventually becoming a reviewer many years ago. My family is my biggest priority in life, and they alternate between loving and tolerating my gaming and gadget hobbies ... but ultimately benefits from the addition of technology to our lives!