Motorola DROID 4 Review – Is It the Right Smartphone for You?
March 9, 2012 by John
The Motorola DROID used to be a trailblazing phone that revitalized Google’s Android efforts and it really pushed the market for smart phones. However, the last few versions of this phone have been B-listed due to minor upgrades and falling behind the competition it fostered. This has left many people wondering if the Motorola DROID 4 can pull off what the others haven’t: making a suitable phone for all users that is comfortable, powerful and cutting-edge. Has the DROID 4 accomplished this? And is it the right smart phone for you? Read on and find out.
While the DROID 4 still has the slide-out keyboard, the design has been largely changed for the Motorola DROID 4. The lip between the phone and the keyboard, along with the metal along the sides has been completely removed.
The new DROID 4 design is now completely plastic and flush. Looking directly at the phone, you would never know there was a slide-out keyboard. The plastic on the bottom is also textured, which feels good and keeps the phone from slipping.
The design really isn’t anything special, and unfortunately it is easy to dismiss. However, you will find that when it comes to using the DROID 4, the changes have made it easier to hold on to, and slightly more ergonomic. Love or hate the change, it is beneficial when it comes to functionality.
The keyboard is also redesigned to improve the user experience. Former DROID keyboards were flat and somewhat hard to use. The new keyboard has slightly raised keys that are much easier to type with. However, much like earlier models, the keyboard slider is stiff and doesn’t click when locked. If you don’t like the physical keyboard, you can also use a digital touch-based keyboard on the screen.
Though the MOTOROLA DROID 4 comes pre-installed with the Gingerbread OS, the software remains largely the same. While there are some useful programs like Citrix Receiver, the applications and the desktop are largely the same as with the DROID 3. You also cannot reduce or enlarge programs as needed when opening apps, which can be a little bothering if you want to run a few programs simultaneously.
When it comes to spec increases, the DROID 4 doesn’t have much over the DROID 3. You get a 1.2GHz CPU, a 1GB RAM chip and an 8 MP camera. While these bumps aren’t much, they are better than the previous model and the hardware does work fairly well with all the apps in the DROID 4.
The DROID 4 comes packed with the 1,785mAh battery, which affords it a rather good longevity for light users. According to most tests, this battery tends to last about seven hours with moderate usage. Most tests have the DROID 4 run a video continuously with Twitter chiming in every 15 minutes.
However, when it comes to calling and heavily using the phone, you might only get a few hours out of it. If you just need the phone for moderate use, then it should last most of the day.
For many smartphone customers, power and performance is the biggest factor when buying a new phone. According to many statistics, the two phones closest to the DROID 4 are the DROID RAZR and the Galaxy S II.
Between the MOTOROLA DROID 4 and the RAZR, the performance is almost equal. The RAZR is slightly better in some categories, and tends to have faster loading times because it doesn’t have the longer animations that the DROID 4 does. They are really pretty similar. If you are choosing between the two, look at the pre-installed programs and the design when making your choice.
The Galaxy S II, however, blows the DROID 4 away. The performance is much better, and there really isn’t a contest between them. If you just want performance, then the DROID 4 doesn’t quite stand up.
However, there is one facet where the DROID 4 shines: battery life. The RAZR only lasts about five hours, while the Galaxy S II lasts about six hours. If you need a phone to last the day, then the DROID 4 is the better choice.
Is the DROID 4 good for consumers and businesspeople? If you are a consumer looking for a trendy phone, then the DROID brand has really lost its touch. But, if you are a consumer looking for a good and reliable phone with a lot of power, then the DROID 4 really does its job.
Business users will also fit in with the second group of consumers. The extended battery life and the wealth of available apps and power really makes the DROID 4 a dependable phone that you should get a lot of use from.