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Motorola DEFY Review

Posted: , by John V.

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Motorola DEFY Review
Producing some extremely weak tones through its earpiece, it makes hearing voices very difficult to do without squishing it close to your ear and covering the other. And to make matters worse, voices on our end did sound distorted and crackly, which doesn't make it any better to comprehend words. As for the person on the other end of the line, they said that our voices did sound clear and natural – so making things out wasn't a problem. Luckily, the speakerphone manages to produce some deep and audible voices which makes it especially easy for us to make out words.

Signal strength remained consistent in the same place as we recorded an average of -73 dBm on the DEFY. For the real world performance, we didn't experience any dropped calls or rapid changes in bars during our testing in the greater Philadelphia area.

There's nothing much to say with battery life of the handset seeing that it's average in performance. Specifically, we managed to get through a solid 8 hour work shift with no problems on normal usage, but it easily requires a recharge by the end of the night. Heavy users will definitely want to keep a charger on hand while light users can probably get a solid a day's usage out of it. The manufacturer has it rated for 6.67 hours of talk and 400 hours of standby time.


Conclusion: 

After having a decent amount of time with the Motorola DEFY, it's quite apparent that it almost afflicted with some kind of personality disorder. On one hand it seems to want to be regarded as a high-end model with its detailed display, but then at another, it wants to be known more for its ruggedness. It just doesn't quite find itself in one specific category as it attempts to encompass all of them – while not fully focusing on one aspect. Granted, it might be nice to see it still withstanding under 3 feet (1 meter) of water, but it lacks push-to-talk to make it a striking option for those looking for a rugged phone. However, when you combine its $100 on-contract price and the above average performance it's able to obtain, you can't go wrong with the Motorola DEFY. And when you look at the competition, there really isn't any other Android phone out there than can live to tell the tale after being exposed and drenched in water. Indeed, it's able to defy the odds!

Software version of the reviewed unit: Android 2.1; Build JORDN_U3_6.19.0; System version: Blur_Version.3.6.190.MB525.T-Mobile.en.US


Motorola DEFY Video Review:



Pros

  • Water resistant
  • High-resolution display
  • Good looking photos
  • Well rounded features

Cons

  • Android 2.1 as opposed to Android 2.2
  • Weak earpiece
PhoneArena rating:
8
User rating:
8.6 22 Reviews
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24 Comments
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posted on 08 Nov 2010, 12:40

1. Thump3rDX17 (Posts: 2160; Member since: 10 May 2010)


it's a shame it wasn't graced with 2.2 especially since 2.2 is about to have a bargain bin sale with the news of Gingerbread around the corner.

posted on 08 Nov 2010, 12:41

2. aone (unregistered)


First of all THX for great review! But still something is bugging me- 3D performance of DEFY. Could you make a video of 3D games and post it? Would be nice to see how it handle games like Asphalt5 or NFS Shift. There was a lot of fuzz about DEFY packing PowerVR GPU and still we don't have any proof of that. Again big THX for review.

posted on 08 Nov 2010, 13:46

3. KeepNTouch (unregistered)


I totally disagree with the in call quality of this review. I evaluated the phone in the store and yes I made a call and phone the quality to be very good to excellent.

posted on 08 Nov 2010, 16:27

4. NIteWalker (unregistered)


This is the first review I've read mentioning poor call quality. Maybe the reviewer got a defective phone? I plan to get this though still. I need a rugged phone for workshop use.

posted on 09 Nov 2010, 18:50

5. Sharon (unregistered)


I agree that it would be nice to have 2.2 but to tell the truth I prefer 2.1 layout. I need a smaller sized phone and there aren't a lot of those on the market. The only comparable ones I know of are the HTC Gratia (Aria) and the LG Optimus 1? but the screen resolution on the HTC Gratia is only a little better than that of the HTC Wildfire and that is quite poor for displaying text. Having read most of the reviews on the Defy it seems a pretty all round phone and as long as it makes phone calls without dropping signal then its a thumbs up from me. Thanks for your in depth review it was very precise and clear and certainly answered any questions that I had thought of asking!

posted on 13 Nov 2010, 10:41

6. Andrea (unregistered)


is 480p an hardware "problem" or software "problem" ?

posted on 30 Nov 2010, 21:34

7. ric (unregistered)


I got this phone for two days. The call quality is very good for both. The review is wrong for weak earpiece - very loud if you set maximum volume.

posted on 20 Dec 2010, 05:12

8. Pouj (unregistered)


Thanks a lot Phone Arena for this very good review
I purchased this handset and I LOVE IT

For the update to Android 2.2 on The Motorola Defy, see this link
https://supportforums.motorola.com/community/manager/softwareupgrades

Thanks again Phone Arena

posted on 05 Jan 2011, 01:49

9. jseb (unregistered)


Hello, I've made a video of my defy underwater, let's see :
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DrnNI9rc4FQ

posted on 15 Jan 2011, 10:51

10. morrison (Posts: 1; Member since: 15 Jan 2011)


i originally wanted the milestone 2 but good old t-mobile send out this phone then say they dont stock the milestone 2, anyway i played about with this phone and came to like it, well that was until 8 weeks after purchase the handset only works with calls on loudspeaker, pain in the ass now ive got to travel 15 miles to the shop to take it back to get fixed and in the mean time i'll have a complimentary brick of a phone from t-mob to use until its fixed

posted on 18 Jan 2011, 08:46

11. sky_hammer (unregistered)


how will this compare with the upcoming casio android device coming out

posted on 22 Jan 2011, 01:08

12. maanojj (unregistered)


Has it released in india..?

posted on 03 Feb 2011, 02:10

13. vineeth (unregistered)


It is released in india.
its price is 18k
I think its battery is very weak and also i dont think it will get a 2.2 update

posted on 05 Feb 2011, 06:32

14. venkat vijay (unregistered)


It is having excellent battery packup according to reviews, and from some sites i came to know that defy is getting 2.2 update by march end 11.

posted on 10 Feb 2011, 03:32

15. sumit (unregistered)


will it be supporting flash 10.1 after upgrading to froyo 2.3??? thnx in advance.

posted on 09 Mar 2011, 13:18

17. Schmao (Posts: 302; Member since: 05 Jul 2009)


There is no such thing as froyo 2.3. 2.3 is gingerbread. But if it gets 2.2 , which is froyo, then flash wil be supported.

posted on 25 Feb 2011, 09:32

16. greygolem (unregistered)


Best handset available in my books. Can hack the real world and still be a real smartphone.

Anyone who dropped or got caught in the rain with a smartphone will know this. Anyone with a scratched to hell screen will know this. It also fits pockets well and gives decent screen real estate.

It is by and far my favourite design of the smartphones. I'd love to see Motorola follow it up with a Dual Core Defy II with gingerbread on absolutely the same physical specs. Identical, Mr Motorola, Identical. Do not deviate, this is a ripper good design. Oh how sweet that would be.

posted on 16 Mar 2011, 16:24

18. roliver (unregistered)


Initial opinion was great as it was a compact phone with heaps of features. Sadly the feature promises did not meet what was advertised.

The phone can only be enabled with a connection to Motoblur. Which means that if you put in a SIM the phone has to have access to the internet to grant access if you get a Motoblur a/c. This means that you are totally dependent on a Motoblur server somewhere to use your phone.

Secondly it claims to be able to sync contacts. What they dont tell you is that you can only sync music, movies and photos directly from your PC. If you want to update contacts you need to save them in .csv form, upload them to a server on the internet then suck them onto your phone. Somehow someone thought this was ok to do.

I took it back to my provider and got an HTC Desire which is brilliant.

posted on 16 Mar 2011, 16:26

19. BobG (unregistered)


Agree with roliver. I too my phone back to the provider and got an HTC.
The provider did not know about these restrictions and will be advising people from now on.

Good luck Motorola.

posted on 17 Mar 2011, 13:09

20. Darshan (unregistered)


I heard that the Defy has problems connecting to the net thro' wifi.Is it correct??I heard that it needs a G router for solving the problem.Please put some light on this issue(if really it is).

posted on 20 Apr 2011, 02:59

21. jdcoke3 (unregistered)


the call quality was acceptable. just make sure to dry the earpiece when touched with water lol

posted on 11 Jun 2011, 05:54

22. iLiketoSuckmyOwndick (unregistered)


I LIEK GRASS :D

posted on 29 Jun 2011, 06:29

23. sparkle (unregistered)


I am disappointed with my Motorola Defy - it is hard to turn on-
also the camera takes at least 3 or 4 presses to come on and stay on - it has a habit of going back to the main screen and so has to be pressed again to open up.

And Google Speak is driving me nuts - it keeps coming up on the screen when I am trying to take a photo or do something else and has to be cancelled.

Battery life is tiny compared to my other phones and coverage is also a disappointment.

posted on 12 Oct 2011, 11:40

24. jwish (unregistered)


had this phone for about 2months and love it but it is extremley alow at times and likes to turn its self on and off at least three times in a row randonly alsi it freezes ALOT. and the keypad for texting is terrible to use specially for big fingers.

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Motorola DEFY

Motorola DEFY

OS: Android 2.2 2.1
view full specs
Display3.7 inches, 480 x 854 pixels (265 ppi)
Camera5 megapixels
Hardware
TI OMAP3630, Single core, 800 MHz, ARM Cortex-A8 processor
512 MB RAM
Size4.21 x 2.32 x 0.53 inches
(107 x 59 x 13.4 mm)
4.16 oz  (118 g)
Battery1540 mAh, 6.66 hours talk time

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