back to article Motorola Razr Android smartphone

Razr, now there's a name for Motorola to conjure with. In its first two years the hugely popular V3 clamshell sold over 50 million units but then Motorola became so dependent on it that when it stopped selling, the company's market share collapsed. Motorola RAZR Android smartphone Bristling with features: Motorola's Razr …

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  1. Richard Jukes

    heh

    Android update? From Motorola? Really? Yeh right.

  2. frank ly Silver badge
    Stop

    ... like warm baby oil off the back of a transgender pole dancer.

    Pics, or it didn't happen.

  3. Dave Gregory
    Meh

    Ice Cream Sandwich?

    From personal experience, NEVER assume that Motorola are going to update everything.

    1. Voland's right hand Silver badge
      Devil

      Not entirely impossible

      Now that MotoBleah is gone (that is the MOST important review item for me) an update may be possible.

      With my Nokia E71 in need of yet another battery I will be looking for a new phone in the next year though probably I will stick with the new Xperia pro. Shiny, shiny and proper keyboard.

    2. TeeCee Gold badge
      Facepalm

      Given who owns Motorola Mobile these days, I rather suspect they'll be one of the sharper OEMs at shipping the updates in future.

    3. Steven Raith
      Go

      I read that and wondered...

      ...why is Troy Queef writing for El Reg?

      With apologies to my good friend Richard Porter:

      "First impressions are as solid as a lead elephant. The motor feels as strong as an ant on amphetamines whilst the gearlever slips through the gate like an eager eel in a bucket of baby oil as the pliant ride mops up ruts and ridges like a steel sprung sponge. That’s the basics taken care of. It’s time to push some more searching questions down the helmpipe.

      When the wheelmanship is notched up to gas mark 10, Toyota’s tiny tiddler responds in kind. Turn in is pointier than a nude Eskimo’s nipples as the steering telegraphs back fat slices of creamy information and the tortured tyres cling on like rubber raptor’s jaws.

      Coming in hot to an especially nuggety switchback, I pile in under power and then slam shut the tide of gas. All at once the tail steps wide, I catch it with a dab of oppo and I’m away.

      Toyota Yaris 1.33 TR is a bitch. And I spanked it."

      http://sniffpetrol.com/author/troy-queef/

      Go, because there's no 'dab of oppo' icon

      Steven R

    4. Charles 9 Silver badge

      But remember.

      Google OWNS Motorola Mobility now. So they'll be keen to put their latest Android OS's onto Motorola handsets as soon as it is safe. The RAZR probably has Gingerbread only because ICS came out too late to perform proper testing and rejigging prior to rollout.

      1. BXL
        Stop

        I'm pretty sure the sale haven't gone through yet

        so don't assume anything.

    5. Anonymous John

      Playmobil reconstruction or it didn't happen.

    6. Z-Eden
      Paris Hilton

      Aye, that's a very specific analogy!

    7. Captain Hogwash Silver badge
      Stop

      Eeeuuuwwww, please, no.

  4. dogged
    Meh

    Clamshell

    I'm fairly certain that one reason why the V3 was so popular was because of the clamshell design. Gorilla glass or not, nothing keeps your screens unscratched like having them firmly covered when not in use.

    This phone does not have that enormous benefit. Therefore, friends of mine in the building, agricultural and military fields will not be interested in it when they otherwise would. Also, careless/clumsy people ;)

    Those are actually pretty big markets.

    1. Fred Flintstone Gold badge

      Yup - the clamshelll was the seller for me.

      Personally, I could even consider using Android if Motorola managed to stick that into the original RAZR clamshell - as long as they changed that useless shiny keyboard. That clamshell body was as close to perfect in dimensions and weight as I've ever seen for a phone, and clamshells are also much more discreet.

      And it's mostly a phone with options instead of a computer that happens to make calls as well..

  5. Nick Roberts
    FAIL

    Moto are certainly abysmal at updates - I'm expecting a Gingerbread update for my Atrix today, as it happens, but they've been very, very slow - maybe that will improve now they're Chocolate-owned, but I'm not holding my breath. And a different lapdock to the Atrix - really, really annoying. They make some excellent kit, but support is poor, to say the least.

    1. Ross K Silver badge
      Happy

      Gingerbread on the Atrix?

      That update came out months ago...

      1. Nick Roberts

        Not in the UK, despite promises of a simultaneous launch here and in the US. And that's after how long it took the Milestone to get Flash...

      2. EyeCU

        Only in the US

        Everybody else has had to wait while they pushed release dates further and further back

  6. canny jock

    You had me until the mentioned the fixed battery.

    Sounded pretty good up until that point, right up with the Galaxy s2 but with some nice additional features. However there are times (not often admittedly) when I'm away from a socket all day and this is the time I need to use the phone the most - so for the last 3 Android phones I've had (and probably a couple of Windows ones before that) I've always carried a spare battery.

    Doesn't really seem worth it to save about 1mm over the Galaxy, especially with the camera then sticking out further.

    Shame, as having HDMI and Webtop make it interesting.

    1. Arctic fox

      RE: "You had me until the mentioned the fixed battery."

      Agreed. In all other respects a *very* fine phone, but a fixed battery is a deal breaker for me. I had the same experience going through the specs to Sammy's new 7.7 incher tab - ticked every flaming box *except* HDMI. I despair sometimes, I really do.

  7. uhuznaa

    To achieve that thinness Moto obviously had to make the thing rather large -- there is a really enormous bezel around the screen. If you want to use that thing with one hand you'll need large hands.

    Integrated battery: Has it a real, hardware reset button? Because if not, what do you do in these situations where you have to pull the battery to reset the thing? This happens occasionally after all.

    Anyway, Motorola should offer this phone with a golden frame and call it BLNG.

    1. BXL

      Hold the power button for 10 secs

      to reset. SOP now I think.

  8. JDX Gold badge

    Motorola ARE owned by Google now

    So you'd hope it would be different this time!

    Looks lovely, but darn expensive.

  9. shifty_powers

    Battery

    I take exception to the assertion that a thin phone cannot have a replaceable battery. The galaxy sii has one and there is only a millimetre or so difference between the two...

    Must admit thought, the phone does look good, and there a couple of very good android phones out atm. Very happy with my sii...

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    nice hardware......

    Shame about the crappy operating system. Bet the reviewer is a freetard. That would explain the 90% score. Ffs it does not even run ics (although it 'might' at 'somepoint')

  11. Dick Head

    Is the case made of real Kevlar?

    ...Which is rather difficult to manufacture in bulk to precise tolerances. Or is it some other material with 'kevlar effect' finishing?

    There's an awful lot of faux-kevlar around in travel bags, watchbands (I need to have a bulletproof wrist), etc. Few of the manufacturers have the machinery to actually deal with it.

    1. tath

      To do what now?

      If you mean "precise tolerances" as a few microns, then yes maybe. But for stuff in the same range as injection moulded plastic, then no. It's just a bit of posh GRP using aramid instead of glass - they're not laying up a monocoque! Mould + cloth + resin + cheap labour = kevlar (ish)

      And according to Motorola's site, it's made with "KEVLAR® fibre" so I'm guessing it is 'real'.

    2. Darryl

      (I need to have a bulletproof wrist)

      If it's good enough for Wonder Woman, it should be good enough for you.

  12. Mick Stranahan
    Thumb Up

    Updates

    I'd be inclined to agree with the author that an ICS update is more than likely now Google owns Motorola. It's also worth pointing out that at this moment in time nothing runs ICS, nor will it until the Prime goes on sale.

  13. Alex Walsh

    Samsung Galaxy SII?

    This is free/£99 on a lot of contracts now and benchmarks pretty identically. Is the Motorola different enough to justify the extra cost?

  14. Andrew Woodvine

    Camera specs

    Was there really any need for Motorola to print the camera specs next to the camera lens? I don't need to be reminded and I find it rather crass.

    1. Afflicted.John
      Facepalm

      Crass? You serious? That's going to offend you? God forbid you go into a Currys and look at the real cameras. You'd need to check into some coping strategy clinic when confronted by a range of Lumixes (Lumi?).

      1. notchas

        Lumices

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Lumixen?

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Motorola is not Google's YET

    don't count your chickens before they are hatched

    1. Afflicted.John

      But when they do hatch, will they be coming home to roost?

  16. Lord Elpuss Silver badge

    What a beautiful handset

    ...just a shame it's running Android!

    </duck>

    1. DRendar
      Meh

      What a beautiful handset

      Just a shame it was made by Motorola and will be abandoned as soon as their next shiny shiny comes out.

      Burned Milestone user here. I only hope the bigG kicks them into shape.

  17. Afflicted.John
    Thumb Up

    The AnTuTu Android benchmarking score of 6008 is so high...

    ...the air around it is thin

    Phew. My Phanboi urges werre gettign jittery until I checked my Galaxy Note to confirm. Ahhhh...6425 for the Samsung. I am not only a little bit jealous of the RAZR. It is a damn fine looking bit of kit. Well done Moto.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Where are they

    Where are the non-removable battery haters? 1 out of all the comments? I thought we were now at the stage where everybody considered this a core requirement for serious phones?

    1. Bassey

      Re: Where are the non-removable battery haters?

      They stopped reading the review after the words "non-removable battery", obviously.

  19. uncle sjohie

    The Hulk?

    Around the internet, there are reviewers talking about a green hue on the display, but the screenshots here, look ok?

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Thinness - what is the point?

    What is the point of making the phone thin? In practical terms, will being 7.1mm make the phone any more portable than being 14mm? The width and the height are going to matter more. Give me a thicker phone with twice the battery (or more, considering you would double the internal volume and the electronics take some of that up).

  21. Insane Reindeer
    Unhappy

    Hardware review failings

    Again El Reg seem to have seriously skimped on some details of the review.

    1) Micro USB socket. Is this just for charging? If so then how long does it take to charge with a variety of chargers? Do they still pack a charger with the phone for that matter? What is the power draw like when charging and when the charger is just left plugged in without charging? What are the charging times like with other chargers?

    2) If the micro USB socket supports USB OTG then do they include an adapter? If they do not, do they sell one for this phone and how much will it cost? Will a Nokia one work? How long is the adapter if one is included? How much power can be drawn down the adapter? What storage formats are supported? How does the file manager deal with external storage? What file formats are supported from external storage?

    3) Mini HDMI. Does this come with a mini to full HDMI adapter? If not then will any old such adapter work? What level output is possible? Does the phone have a "big screen" mode that automatically starts when the phone is plugged in to a HDMI TV? Can you control the phone with a bluetooth control device while it is linked up via HDMI? Is it possible to charge the device while it is streaming a HD film via USB OTG and HDMI to a TV?

    4) Music. Bundled headphones? Inline music and telephone controls? Quality of said headphones? Music reproduction qualities? EQ?

    5) Camera. Sample shots? "Flash" throw or lack there of? Focusing in the video? Sample videos?

    This is something that I would like you to test with all your Android phones please from now on, and even go back a few months and retest them the same way. Take the phone out of the box, charge until full, turn it on, and then run that benchmark test in a loop until the battery runs out. Recharge the phone, then set it to play 100 of the highest quality of music files it will handle with the volume set to 50% via the headphones until the battery dies. And then another two tests using a video streaming service with the screen at 50% brightness, one via WiFi and the other via 3G until the battery dies. Of course where possible you should subject iOS and WP devices to the same battery tests as well, and I am sure that this sort of testing regime would be a very good base for testing tablets as well.

    Of course I don't really expect you to enact any of that last one as no one really wants to see just how horrific the battery life is on their "favourite" device/OS before they buy it. And from the look of this review and the recent Nokia Lumia 800 one it looks like the reviewers are not spending that long with the devices or seem to be that bothered about giving them a real hammering.

    1. Fuzzysteve

      1: Charger is included (usb output, with a usb to micro usb cable also included)

      Socket also allows for syncing.

      Charge time seems ok, but I've not timed it.

      2: not a clue about usb otg. no adaptor

      3: no adaptor. No idea about cable, but I suspect they couldn't call it mini hdmi if it's not following the standard.

      4: bundled headphones. no inline. sounds ok.

      5: Camera's ok. not as good as a proper one, but ok for quick snaps.

  22. zyborski
    Stop

    *****DON'T FALL INTO THE SAME TRAP AS THE UK ATRIX OWNERS******

    Before anybody rushed to buy this phone with the "promise" of Ice Cream Sandwich can I remind you of the WAIT that UK ATRIX owners have had trying to get GINGERBREAD!!!

    https://supportforums.motorola.com/thread/54635?start=1455&tstart=0

    109,504 Views 1,469 Replies - 98 Pages and STILL NO GINGERBREAD!!!

    Buyer Beware!

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      *** A POLITE REMINDER ***

      That all the complaints about Motorola NOT updating their Android handsets come with two important caveats:

      1) All Motorola Android handsets prior to this carried the Motoblur overlay. The Droid RAZR is the first to drop it.

      2) All this occurred PRIOR to Google's acquisition of Motorola Mobility. Since it would be in Google's best interest to get Ice Cream Sandwich out as quickly as possible, expect Motorola handsets to get ICS updates as soon as they're able.

      1. DRendar
        Alert

        Negative

        Milestone did not have MotoBlur, and was their flagship phone. They still screwed us over on updates. I don't believe that that Motoblur is an acceptable excuse anyway... HTC have sense for example and they don't have such issues.

        I really do hope that Google DO give Moto a big kick in the nuts for dragging their feet, because some of the more rtecent Moto Hardware has been very interesting, however for the moment, until some proof of this is seen, I won't throw Moto a single penny more of my money - frankly, they are lying cheating weasels.

  23. Keep Refrigerated
    Alien

    I want to believe

    Another burned Milestone owner here. The non-removable battery is a deal-breaker for me. Since getting the long-awaited (almost canned) upgrade to Froyo my phone became buggy as hell and I had to constantly pull the battery.

    Installing CyanogenMod reduced the need for battery pulls by about 90% but it still needs the ocassional bounce.

    Motorola have only made Android phones to last for 6-12 months on the current release. I think they were rather taken aback by the demand of 12+ month owners demanding upgrades and creating negative publicity.

    After having sworn off Moto forever, on news of the Google aqcuisition I intend to give them another chance - but I'm waiting for after the approval and to see if Google actually take control of the unholy beast that is Moto upgrades.

  24. Simon_E
    Coat

    A battery of complaints...

    According to the iFixit teardown I looked at the other day, the battery is merely *not user replaceable* - it's 'fixed' in the sense of having to disconnect a ribbon cable and pull the blue 'battery removal' tag (after removing the back with a spudger or pallete knife), not soldered in place...

    (Now for a suitable icon... Facepalm? Nuke? Sod it - Coat.)

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    handsome handset - a bit of me too thing.

    Yes it's nice and impressive and all that. But it does not have much distinctiveness.

    It's nowhere near Razr recognizable.

    But looks like a fine device, and another higher-end option.

  26. Trixr Bronze badge
    Mushroom

    A note to subhead writers

    You'll find that OCCASIONALLY women actually buy some of these modernz technolojeez as well. How else do we do our 987 texts a day? Or maybe this phone isn't right for us because there are no pretty Swarovski crystals embedded in it.

    1. Michael Ross

      I think you'll find the sub-head is a typical El Reg pun(?) referencing the sales tag-line for a famous range of electric shavers, Razr, geddit? from the 1980s

  27. Furbian

    One on Gingerbread, always on gingerbread...

    Beware.. of Motorola's idea of 'future' updates, Razr Android appears to come with gingerbread, and they claim you'll be able to get ice cream sandwich on it. Don't hold your breath.

    I have a Motorola Atrix (on Orange), which was, for US users, upgraded to gingerbread around May this year. UK owners have been promised that they'll get an update, which has been continually pushed back. Over 6 months on, still no sign.

    Once the 'discussion' board about the update on Motorola's website had reached 90+ pages, they claimed it had gone off topic, locked it down and locked all the other message boards where one could ask about when they were going to release Gingerbread for non-US Atirx phone.

    An extraordinarily arrogant Google company.

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