The Droid Motorola RAZR MAXX and Droid 4 Were Worth a Look, but They Didn’t Steal the Show

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Motorola stole the show last year at CES 2011. The Moto Xoom and the Atrix with its web top keyboard dock… oh my! They were pretty amazing to see. Francis and I even had a chance to remote log into my iMac in New Jersey using the Atrix smartphone as the “computer” powering the remote access. Sadly, the actual experience of using the Xoom and the Atrix left a good deal to be desired. Judie, Thomas and I all bought one; we all returned them.

Judie and I visited Motorola again this year at CES 2012, and while they didn’t blow us away, the two smartphones we did see were pretty impressive in their own right.

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The Droid RAZR MAXX is a beast. It offers 21 1/2 hours of talk time on a single charge thanks to the 3300mAh battery inside. Yet despite the humongous battery it is actually quite thin. In fact, it is SO think that they reinforced the back with Kevlar and used Gorilla Glass along with a special protective coating. The device was built from the ground up and was actually designed AROUND the battery. Not surprisingly, the battery is not removable.

A dual-core 1.2 ghz processor keeps it zippy. The phone is $299 on contract at Verizon.

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As the Motorola representative made clear, their focus is on “the experience” someone has while using a Motorola phone. In keeping with that, they offer Smart Actions.

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Smart Actions “automate the things you do daily” based on time, location or other variables. It can change the sound profiles, change what aspects of the device are running and more. Best of all, you can set them once and, after that, the device takes care of all the changes automatically.

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We’ve seen this kind of functionality before, in fact such things were available on Windows Mobile back in the day, but if they REALLY work and do so consistently it is a huge convenience that would benefit all of us.

Geardiary ces 2012 motorola 018They are also offering their Motocast service.

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It allows you to access and download content from your home or office without having to store it locally. This is the direction we have seen many companies and devices moving, think iCloud, and is a great convenience… so long as you have connectivity.

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We also saw the Droid 4. It is the thinnest smartphone with a slide out qwerty keyboard. Motorola”took all the feedback from customers and built it into the phone”.

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It has a 1.2 ghz dual processor, Motorcast, Smart actions and is Webtop capable although the keyboard dock from last year WILL NOT work with it. The keyboard is backlit and has a dedicated number row.

Geardiary ces 2012 motorola 008The Droid 4 next to Judie’s Titan

Geardiary ces 2012 motorola 012The Droid 4 next to my iPhone

If you are a fan of Android devices, then these are certainly worthy of consideration!

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About the Author

Dan Cohen
Having a father who was heavily involved in early laser and fiber-optical research, Dan grew up surrounded by technology and gadgets. Dan’s father brought home one of the very first video games when he was young and Dan remembers seeing a “pre-release” touchtone phone. (When he asked his father what the “#” and “*” buttons were his dad said, “Some day, far in the future, we’ll have some use for them.”) Technology seemed to be in Dan’s blood but at some point he took a different path and ended up in the clergy. His passion for technology and gadgets never left him. Dan is married to Raina Goldberg who is also an avid user of Apple products. They live in New Jersey with their golden doodle Nava.

8 Comments on "The Droid Motorola RAZR MAXX and Droid 4 Were Worth a Look, but They Didn’t Steal the Show"

  1. The Droid 4 is definitely the one I am looking at … 

  2. I don’t know, with how bad battery life still is across the board the MAXX is kinda impressive. Now if it ran Windows Phone or iOS… 🙂
    Sent from one iOS or another

  3. I am fortunate that my area is pegged with VZW signal, and apparently we have solid LTE coverage as well.  I just really love the keyboard as well – no way am I moving from a physical keyboard anytime soon … tried it, didn’t like it.

    Now if stuff happens at work soon that allows me to choose my OS to access stuff … THEN it will be interesting!  But until then, Android it is.

  4. I have a droid 3 but I’m getting the maxx.  I swore I would never give up a physical keyboard, but I never use mine any longer because of Swype.  If you spend a month with swype, you won’t go back.

  5. I’m with you but don’t even need swype. If you commit yourself to using a soft keyboard for a month most people do quite well.

    Sent from my Windows Phone

  6. I have tried – and even got my wife to try – and didn’t like it. At all.

    I’d rather use a regular soft keyboard than swype. But every time I have applied serious effort to non-physical keyboards I find that I text less, email less, and so on. In other words, I use my devices less because I. Don’t. Like. Soft keyboards.

    So while I am happy you like Swype – and many like soft keyboards, the reality is that some do not. I love new technology and am generally a fast adopter … but not in this way.

  7. And Elana agrees with you but i think if she REALLY tried it…

    Sent from my Windows Phone

  8. Thomas R. Hall | January 23, 2012 at 7:56 pm |

    True. I prefer the flexibility of having both hardware and software keyboards. I miss that from my T-Mobile G2 now that I’m on the Galaxy Nexus… For example, soft keyboard for entry in other languages or quick one-handed typing, but hardware keyboard for everything else.

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