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back to article Motorola outs Jelly Bean friendly phones

While Nokia was showing off its new Windows Phone 8-based Lumias, the Google-owned Motorola Mobility was unwrapping three Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich smartphones from its Razr line. The Razr M, which is destined for a worldwide release, follows the trend toward bigger screens. It has a 4.3in panel, though the handset is …

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Silver badge
WTF?

Baffling

Why not Jelly Bean from the start? Did they need, err, Google's permission or something?

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404
Bronze badge
Terminator

Re: Baffling

More likely Verizon holding Jelly Bean up - features that are normally freely available within the OS must be Verizoned*. Took them forever (year +/-) to go from Gingerbread to Ice Cream Sandwich on the first gen Droid Razr.

*altered to generate cash flow for Verizon. Go look, they charge for every little thing and you're stuck because they do happen to have the best network coverage in the US.

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Silver badge

Fugly

Enough said.

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Bronze badge
FAIL

Re: Baffling

No...NOT baffling...typical Moto/Google/Verizon. Like a LOT of others, I have a Moto Droid Bionic, and was told IT would have ICS LAST YEAR. Then it was early 2012...then "early Q3" of 2012. Still waiting...

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Coat

Re: Baffling

This is precisely why I ditched VZ and bought a Galaxy Nexus with a T-Mobile SIM. Yes, the coverage isn't as good, but it isn't bad and my bill is now less than half what it was on VZ.

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Silver badge
Meh

Drying my eyes

Another day another Android promise.

Do they actually want to sell phones?

If the OS is there why not use it?

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Anonymous Coward

Do you think

They may have an update for my reliable Startac, the last decent phone they ever made.

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Anonymous Coward

UNBRANDED

Might get the update, branded ant the whim and mercy of the service provider so don't hold you breath.

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Gold badge

Re: Do you think

My first phone was a Microtac, which was a great phone, but not really very micro. Especially if you had the full size battery on it.

But since those days, they also came up with the V3 Razr. Which was the nicest phone I've ever had. If I could get one new now, I'd be highly tempted to dump my smartphone, and just use a MiFi and a tablet, or get a tablet with 3G. It had a few faults, but ergonomically it was lovely to hold and use, and I could just get a weekend out of the battery.

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Meh

Soon...

Since the original (well reborn) Razr only just got the ICS update OTA in the UK last week, I recommend you don't hold your breath on that one...

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Re: Soon...

"Since the original (well reborn) Razr only just got the ICS update OTA in the UK last week, I recommend you don't hold your breath on that one..."

I would agree with you 100% on past record BUT they are (in the US, at least) including a promise of $100 cash back if they fail to deliver Jelly Bean by a certain date. I'm not a Motorola fan but that sounds like a bloody good way of acknowledging past errors and buying back confidence.

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Re: Soon...

Also the upgrade from Gingerbread to Ice Cream Sandwich is much bigger than the upgrade from ICS to Jelly Bean...

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Anonymous Coward

I probably wont buy anything Motorola again after the lagginess of Android updates on my UK 3G Xoom

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Anonymous Coward

Ugly. Look at the joins and screws.

The original Razr phones were really pushing the boundaries with their thin designs, but these are more like pushing a clapped out motor along the road.

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Silver badge

I really liked the styling of the original RAZR flip phones. In a world of very generic looking touch screen phones it's nice to see a company with a consistent design philosiphy*. Although I'll admit it would be nice if the thickness of the RAZR phones was more akin to the of an XPERIA Arc S.

*Somebody will no doubt point to Apple. You might be right, but the iPhone 4's styling has always looked to me as if it was ripped straight from the original Sony PSP.

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FAIL

Having dealt with Motorola's "promises" and "intentions" before of "we'll support new android upgrades on your Motorola phone" I wouldn't trust them. Only when it ships on the phone. (My only solution was cyanogenmod)

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*laughs hysterically at "soon" promise* from Motorola

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"The Razr HD has a 4.7in, 1280 x 720 screen"

Crikey.

That's only slightly lower resolution than most of the LCD monitors in my workplace.

-A.

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Re: "The Razr HD has a 4.7in, 1280 x 720 screen"

The 1280x720 screen was basically the default for high-end smartphones, by the end of 2011. Motorola was a bit behind on this for the RAZR line... this is them fixing that problem. They did it right, too, maintaining the AMOLED display technology, rather than switching to LCD.

I chose the Galaxy Nexus over the original new RAZR last fall. Both were a bit of a compromise: the Nexus was stock Android, plenty of internal memory but no expansion SD, fast dual-core, dual bus processor, but not so rugged (plain old plastic body, non-Gorilla glass screen), and 720p OLED display. The RAZR was essentially indestructible, fast enough, less memory but supports SD, but that unswappable battery was a problem for me. With these improvements, I might have come down on the RAZR side -- though now these are going up against things like the Galaxy SII and other quad-core chips.

As for the styling, I think Motorola's got a smart niche. Their industrial-looking designs make the perfect anti-iPhone, going back the O.G. Droid/Milestone. Maybe not for everyone, but then again, despite Apple's religious beliefs, no device is for everyone. I have to keep the GN in a silicone sleeve to protect it; my old O.G. Droid was itself pretty rugged. Cases add to the thickness and just otherwise get in the way -- Moto has the right idea here, making them hard from the get-go.

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Gold badge
Happy

Igor! Yethss masthther.

OK, can anyone lend me a chainsaw?

It's obvious from these, the new Samsungs (especially the new Galaxy Note II), the Nokias and the iPhone rumours, that I'm going to need some bigger hands.

Now those I can get by the simple expedient of popping down to the local graveyard, and digging some up. It's worked before. But I don't own a chainsaw. Does anyone have one I could borrow?

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Anonymous Coward

Apple bring out update, eligible phones get it there and then.

Win phones just don't get updates unless you buy a new phone.

Symbian updates.

Android promises and promises and might or might not deliver ever. Every new high end phone sold in the last 3 years on Android has come with the promise of an update. If they are really going to stand by the promise then why not offer new free phone if they fail to deliver?

Because they know they will fail and break their promises.

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Gold badge

Erm, well you're right about Apple. But from what I've read Symbian updates could be a touch difficult, if the carriers objected, or delayed approval. Although there were ways round this.

You're also wrong on WinPho 7, which is already on its 3rd update, with at least one more to come. They were about every 6 months. As the new OS needs dual core chips, for multi-tasking, that's fair enough I suppose - although I'd be annoyed if I'd just spent £400 on a Lumia 900.

Android is a bit of a sad mess, but again, there are ways round it, and Google should do something to sort out the mess.

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Individual Vendors and Networks

Apple negotiated a very unusual deal, at least for the states, with their ability to push out updates directly. I more or less thought Google did the same for their devices, but no, the networks have the ultimate say about when updates are pushed.

So if that's really important, you have to choose a vendor and network that embrace regular updates. It's not as if vendors couldn't keep Android updates coming nearly forever for older devices. But some of this is deeply rooted philosophy at these companies. Apple, as one of the few former computer companies in the game, understood that OS updates are a normal, everyday thing for the PC industry, and did just the same for phones.

CE companies, by and large, think in terms of appliances: they want the device to leave engineering forever the first day it ships. This isn't just smartphones, but most modern devices: cameras, disc players, televisions. Most of these are upgradeable, but the companies behind them are having to "think different" to change their attitude about updates. And they're not proceeding at the same pace.

With that said, I didn't have a problem with the O.G. Droid updates I got. Not early, but they did a full version revision, and the last patch I got was a month of so before I retired the device, just about two years of use. That was good enough, given the whole "retiring" thing.

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Facepalm

Google

Must sort out the PR mess that is not having the flagship OS on newer handsets.

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an update 'soon'

This is Motorola! It will get one (very late) update, then get abandoned:

https://forums.motorola.com/pages/00add97d6c

But, of course, it'll break before it has a chance to get a second upgrade anyway. Really, really do not buy a Motorola. I mean really.

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