Yesterday morning, being the first person at the Verizon store at 9AM, I purchased my first smartphone. I had weighed a lot of options; should I switch to AT&T and join the millions of people who have the iPhone or should I stick with trusty Verizon and get the Droid? Well Obviously I am writing a review of the Droid and that's what I got! Right away after the purchase, I sat down on the Verizon store's couch and started playing. I was thrilled at just how responsive the Droid was and started downloading every app that I wanted. Apps like eBuddy for IM's, Pandora for their awesomely free internet radio service, mobile banking from Bank of America and OpenTable for all of those fancy restaurant reservations I need to make. Oh, and don't forget about the cracktastic addicting Air Control game, a tribute to the best iPhone game there is. Leaving the store, I realized one thing, the Motorola Droid was just as good as the iPhone!
The Droid itself as you can see is pretty shiny and weighs a little more than the iPhone. With an all black finish and some gold to define the machine, the Droid will make you feel pretty powerful when it is in your hand. The front screen has four touch buttons, back, menu, home and search. I was really pleased with how responsive they were. When texting or writing an e-mail, you have the choice between an on-screen keyboard and the slide out keyboard pictured below. My one and only issue with the Droid is its QWERTY keyboard. Like most other reviewers of the phone, I am of the same opinion that this is not the best keyboard in the world. While I am already partially used to this kind of keyboard having owned the LG Env2, It's still a little clumsy in your hand. The keyboard is flat instead of raised unlike most other QWERTY keyboards, leaving users ample opportunity to hit the wrong keys. In the one day I have owned the phone, I've basically stuck with the on-screen keyboard and been happier for it. When it comes to the touch screen, it is ultra responsive and extremely fast like the iPhone and I can't say that one is better than the other.
Obviously the biggest feature on the Droid is its Android 2.0 operating system powered by Google. Virtually every Google app either comes with the phone or is easily downloaded from the Droid's app store. It's funny how much you don't realize how nice it is to have e-mail in your pocket until you do and the Droid runs Gmail and other e-mails with ease and finesse. Google Maps is super fun to play with and with Google Latitude, you can stalk your friends no matter where they are in the world. The Droid's web browser virtually works exactly the same as Safari does on the iPhone and is really easy to use. I was actually able to make some review comments well on the train into the city yesterday! Droid also offers two calendar options, a regular calendar and a corporate calendar. I personally don't have much use for a the latter, but the regular option is really easy to use and extremely handy. Contacts/phonebook is relatively similar to that of the iPhone, allowing to scroll through them. My other complaint is that in order to fully quit running some apps, you need to download an app that kills them (free). Since the Droid can also be used as an MP3 and video player, the device comes with the Amazon.com music store pre-installed. You can also sync it with your PC or Mac and put your own tunes on the phone.
CALLS and MESSAGING:
Making calls and receiving them is really easy and there really isn't that much to talk about. One thing I have to point out is that in a lot of other reviews of the phone, people pointed out that there was no specific end call button. That is simply not the case. The minute you take the phone away from your ear, it's like the Droid knows that your going to end the call because a big red end call button shows up. Also, the AT&T commercials that say you can't talk and surf the web is a complete lie, you totally can. As far as texts and messaging goes, it is basically the same format as the iPhone.
Let's not fool ourselves, as of right now the iPhone has the superior app store. Having said that, the Android Market has a fair share of awesome apps itself. I talked about them a little up top, but the ones I have on my phone right now are great. The app store has a fine selection of awesome games, some of them nearly identical to those in the iPhone app store like Air Control. Facebook is great to have on your phone as is the ability to do all of your banking. There is an Amazon.com app as well as a mobile version of OpenTable which is great if you need to make a restaurant reservation on the fly. Of course there are the little fun apps like the Star Wars Lightsaber or the Droid flashlight which uses the Droid's LCD camera flash. One big complaint for the app store: no good ESPN app. Previous Verizon phones had something called ESPN MVP which was simply awesome. The Droid needs to get this fast cause I ned my sports news!
The Droid may not be the iPhone Killer, but it sure is just as good! With only three minor complaints, it's not enough to stop me from giving the phone a 5/5! Sure while the 5.0 megapixel camera is not great, but who really needs it if you have a really good camera? The app store is getting better and better and I'm sure my ESPN app will be on there any day now. While iPhone users may not jump ship to Verizon to get the droid, it's something to think about. I know how many dropped calls you guys get. Two good friends of mine both have iPhones and if it wasn't for the device itself, they would leave AT&T...just saying. If you are currently a Verizon customer though and have been on the fence about what smartphone to buy, I strongly urge you to buy the Droid, it won't let you down. BIG 5/5!
Hi, my name is Julian Brown. I currently write for The Brotherly Game, a local Philadelphia soccer website where I cover the US Women's National Team and the local WPS Philadelphia Independence. I … more
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Check it out. DROID by Motorola is fast. Like scary fast. You can blaze across the Web with a massive processor andVerizon’s powerful 3G network. You don’t even need to type! With Google Search™ by Voice, you just tell it what you want and DROID searches the Web to find it. You can switch between up to six apps at once! Choose a few (or a few hundred) from Android Market™ and try it yourself. DROID won’t bother you while you’re running those apps. It keeps disruptive alerts at bay in a handy expandable notification panel. It’s a pint–sized power plant. It’s location–aware. Voice–recognizing. App–mashing and multi–tasking. It can see through walls. And connect you to anyone or anything at break–neck speed. At some point, power and intelligence mean something more than a phone. At some point, you have yourself a DROID by Motorola.