Verizon and Motorola Finally Release the Droid 2– the Next Generation of the Droid
Wow, if your on Verizon and looking for a new phone before school starts this great news for you– today, after countless rumors, leaks and pix over the past few months, Verizon and Motorola have finally come clean to announce and release the Droid 2, the next generation of the insanely popular Droid phone that truly put Android on the map. If you’re replacing such a popular phone like the first Droid was, this new one has to be insane right? Don’t worry dear readers, from what was finally confirmed today, Motorola and Verizon look to have another winner on their hands.
Before we go any further, I just want to clarify that this is the replacement for the initial Droid that launched late last year– the also new (and very popular) Droid X is still going strong and on sale. Anyways, so what is in this new Droid 2?
- Sleek design with 3.7 inch multitouch screen and an improved full slide out QWERTY keyboard– After the great success that was the first Droid, Motorola knows not to mess with a good thing, and the Droid 2 sticks to that same great design. That being said, one of the biggest issues with the initial Droid was it’s “only ok” physical keyboard, which while definitely useable, was not near the awesomeness of keyboards found on other devices like BlackBerrys. The Droid 2 looks to fix that problem, offering a redesigned keyboard with more raised buttons for a better feel and the elimination of big gold directional pad in favor of simpler arrow keys for bigger letters. These should make the typing on the physical keyboard a whole lot better.
The original Droid’s keyboard on left and the new Droid 2′s on right
And if you don’t want to use the physical keyboard, Motorola is throwing in their custom Android keyboard (as seen on the Droid X and a keyboard that looks great to use), as well as the very popular Swype keyboard– meaning that no matter which way you want to text, there is most probably a keyboard here for you.
- Android 2.2 with MOTOBLUR right out of the box, with Flash 10.1 support!– The Droid 2 is also the first phone to run the latest version of Google’s increasingly popular Android OS right out of the box (phones like the original Droid, Nexus One and HTC EVO 4G have all currently received the OS via update, with other phones like the Samsung Galaxy S line and Droid X said to be getting their own updates soon). What’s also great about this is that with support for Flash 10.1, the full web finally comes to your phone. Wanna watch a video on the real ESPN.com and not the mobile site? You can. Wanna play a Flash game on Miniclip? You can. When it comes to the full internet, Android and the Droid 2 finally bring it to a phone (though some sites like Hulu have blocked mobile OS’s like Android from accessing their site, so I guess most of the internet works). And on top of all of this Motorola has put in their latest version of MOTOBLUR, so connecting and updating your social networks are even easier.
- 1 GHZ Snapdragon processor– To make sure that things run speedy and smoothly.
- 5 megapixel camera with auto-focus, flash, face detection, and DVD quality video recording– Sure it’s not an 8 megapixel camera like on the Droid X and EVO 4G, and it doesn’t record HD video like the iPhone 4, but all the above features (particularly face detection) look to make the Droid 2 a pretty decent camera. Honestly, I’m a little surprised and disappointed that this wasn’t at least updated to record HD video considering the first Droid had pretty much the same camera– though again it still isn’t the worst (at least videos are DVD quality, unlike the BlackBerry Torch which doesn’t even reach that high). The Droid 2 also sadly lacks a front facing camera like those on the iPhone 4, EVO 4G, and Epic 4G.
- 3G, WiFi and GPS– With support for WiFi N. Verizon also allows you to use this as a mobile hotspot for up to 5 devices, though that privilege will run you another $20 a month.
- 8 GB of built-in memory with an additional 8 GB on an included microSD card– For a solid total of 16 GB (equivalent to the $200 iPhone 4). You can also swap the microSD card out for one with up to 32 GB of storage to give you a whopping 40 GB of storage.
All in all, not bad and looks to be a very worthy successor to the first Droid. If you’re on Verizon and looking for a powerful, sleek phone that also has a full QWERTY keyboard, this may be the perfect phone for you. Oh, and like AT&T did with the iPhone 4 launch, Verizon is letting anyone who has an upgrade between now and the end of the year (December 31st to be specific) be able to upgrade to any new phone (Droid 2 or otherwise) now with no penalty (usually if you upgrade before your contract is up you need to be a lot more for a new phone– such as instead of paying $200 for a 16 GB iPhone 4 with a standard upgrade, an AT&T user without that upgrade would need to pay $400) . So if you want a new phone but aren’t sure you have an upgrade, now would be the perfect time to check.
The Droid 2 is available now for $199.99 after $100 mail in rebate with a new 2 year contract and $30 a month unlimited data plan from Verizon.
So– anyone looking to make this their new phone, or are you going for a different Droid?