As we reported this morning, the new Motorola RAZR was launched in the US yesterday, and Mobile Choice was in Berlin for the official European announcement. We've had a quick play with it - here are our first impressions.
Yes, it does seem, as the marketing suggests - "impossibly thin". At 7.1mm thickness, it's the new thinnest phone on the market, and makes the 8.6mm Samsung Galaxy S II look like it's been eating all the pies. That said, it does have a strange looking bump at the top rear, almost like a reverse forehead sticking out.
For a smartphone so large, it does feels supremely light, weighing a feathersome 127g. The blower comes with a 4.3-inch super AMOLED Gorilla glass display and has a pin-sharp 960x540 QHD resolution. The rear is made out of Kevlar – the same material as bulletproof vests – and is five times stronger than steel. That's super strong then. The whole device (including innards) is also laminated with "anti-splash" nanotechnology, so if you spill a pint over the phone it won't end it tears (unless you cry over spilt beer).
Surprisingly, despite Motorola now being in bed with Google and therefore expected to get first dibs on the new Android Ice Cream Sandwich (debuting instead on the Samsung Galaxy Nexus), the RAZR is powered using Gingerbread 2.3.5. At the presentation, Motorola went to great lengths to promise us the RAZR will be getting an upgrade within the first half of 2012. Whether that's January or June they would not say.
It's a powerful phone, with a dual-core 1.2GHz chip beating away with 1GB of RAM – juggling multiple apps was a doddle. It also has 16GB of internal storage, with room for another 32GB if you've a microSD to stick in. And the battery sounds like a monster – Motorola told us you'll get 10 hours talktime from a single charge. We obviously couldn't test this at the presentation, but if it turns out to be the true (or rather, unexaggerated) life, this could set a new benchmark for future manufacturers to reach. The eight-megapixel 1080p camera looked impressive, but we didn't get chance to play around with it.
Motorola has also added some unique software. WebTop gives a desktop-like web browser that uses full Firefox with tabbed browsing, and another cool sounding app is Smart Actions, which lets you dynamically control how the battery is used so you can set it to turn Wi-Fi on and off automatically in certain conditions (like leaving home, arriving at work) and even control the dimness depending on battery level.
Motorola said its tests shown an increase of 30% in battery life when using Smart Actions, which sounds alright to us.
There's also an app called MotoCast, which at first sounded like iCloud – but is a remote accessing tool that lets you stream your media content from your home computer (PC or Mac) direct to your phone. It saves you having to upload your films and tunes to the web, we suppose.
One thing missing from its superphone super-feature lineup is NFC – if that's something that bothers you. It doesn't us, as the infrastructure for contactless payments isn't exactly raring in the UK.
This looks like a serious return to form from Motorola, and though it's a shame it's not launching with Ice Cream Sandwich, the RAZR could bring Motorola back to become a serious contender on the Android battlefield.The Motorola RAZR is going to be available all over Europe from the very start of November.