Motorola DROID 2 Review
Long ago, in the not too far distant past, there was a handset released which was able to defy the odds and bring the Android platform into stardom – thus being graced with the prestigious title of Time Magazine's gadget of the year. The Motorola DROID was nearly a full head-on gamble for the one time dominant company in the mobile industry, but it appeared that they didn't require luck due to the fact that the DROID was such a big hit among consumers. Not only did it reinvigorate Motorola, but as a whole, it provided the sudden movement needed to showcase the power and depth that Android has to offer to a broad range of consumers. Fast forward to the present and we're now being treated to its eventual successor, the aptly named Motorola DROID 2, which is coming into the market at a time when a myriad of other Android powered smartphones have shown their prowess among the competition. Despite finding a handful of improvements in the hardware and software side over its predecessor, the Motorola DROID 2 is aiming to continue its stance of DROID DOES.
- Motorola DROID 2
- Wall Charger
- microUSB cable
- Quick Reference Guide
- Product Safety & Warranty Brochure
Honestly, there isn't anything majorly different about the Motorola DROID 2's appearance versus the original – it still retains that streamlined industrial design that makes it one of the more compact QWERTY handsets on the market. Instead of relying on the same angular and hard lined looks of its predecessor, the DROID 2 is a bit more curved all around with tad bit larger dimension. The color scheme is different too with its chrome bezel found on the front with the rear relying on this soft touch coating with a dark blue shade to it. Overall, construction is solid as usual since it's once again built like a tank with its metallic like exterior and sizes up at the same weight (5.96 oz) – which easily exudes a high level of workmanship. Since it's a true successor, the decision to follow closely to the original's design makes perfect sense on paper, but unfortunately it doesn't resonate anything groundbreaking to make anyone jump with joy – similar to the experience we had seeing the DROID for the first time.
You can compare the Motorola DROID 2 with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.
After checking out the monster sized display on the Motorola DROID X, the 3.7” TFT capacitive touchscreen on the DROID 2 doesn't feel as compelling, but thankfully there is plenty of detail with its 480x854 pixels resolution and support for 16 million colors. Even the tiniest of text is sharp looking to the naked eye thanks to its pixel density, while on the other hand, it's still able to display a rainbow of lush colors. The glass like material will not only stand up to the elements and harsh abrasives in our pockets, but it's also very accurate in registering a touch. When using it outdoors in direct sunlight, the display is still visible when it's placed on the brightest setting, but an occasional shade will help out as well. Ultimately, there's nothing that exciting about the display, especially when it's the same exact one used on the DROID.
It was nice to see physical hardware buttons on the DROID X, but unfortunately the DROID 2 relies on the same touch sensitive ones employed on the original. Some prefer it since it will allow for a completely flush surface, but there is always the occasional accidental press when using any of the portrait on-screen keyboards. To the left side, you'll find the microUSB port with an LED light that will turn on when it's connected, while on the right edge, the volume rocker and smaller sized 2-level shutter key are in the same exact placement as before. Both the 3.5mm headset jack and smaller sized dedicated power button, which was rather difficult to press and feel out, are located on the top side. Flipping over to the back, we found the placement of the 5-megapixel auto-focus camera and dual-LED flash to be exact to the DROID with the grill for the speakerphone found also in the same location. We're happy to see that the designers improved the rear back cover which requires more force to be removed this time around – so that there are no accidental ejections while in your pocket. Once it's removed, it'll present you access to the 1400 mAh battery and microSD card slot.
Still utilizing the same monotonous movement in getting the QWERTY exposed, we were hoping to see some kind of snapping mechanism, but we'd imagine that it was done to retain its streamlined look. Instead of finding a completely flush QWERTY, buttons are slightly bubbled toward the middle which provides for a subtle distinction between them. However, we're still presented with the same stiff feeling keys at first, but over a period of time using them, they eventually had a better response when pressed. Gone is the large 5-way directional pad which is now replaced with 4 directional buttons and a larger sized enter key. Overall, there isn't too much to say about it since there are few improvements – but we'd suspect that casual DROID owners will take a liking for it still.
1. Osukaru (Posts: 68; Member since: 02 Jul 2008)
Unchanged design - Agree, How is that a con? Manual sliding mechanism - Too Lazy To Open it? “Doesn't” 720p video capturing - The wording does not make sense. Maybe "Lacks 720p Video capturing"
3. androlover (unregistered)
I agree, its like we have gotten so picky that minor things are such a big deal. -design is amazing for what is inside -manual sliding mechanism makes it feel solid does no 720p recording...i forgot it was a phone and not a video camera
6. Wildmanfan (Posts: 217; Member since: 15 Jul 2010)
Brother, I agree with you both. Are people so damn lazy that they need everything spoon-fed to them? The part that's annoying about these reviews is that they are supposed to be the source of information for us users and the reality is, there's no satisfying these people? So this is to say that because the design sucks, there's no sliding mechanism, and it doesn't do HD recording, I shouldn't buy it? So maybe I should buy it because of solid construction. Yeah, that's seriously usable. Real good job phonearena.
9. nizziemillz (Posts: 3; Member since: 13 Aug 2010)
I completely agree with you guys, and phonearena whoever is paying you must pay good for these crap reviews. Unchanged design? - You know phonearena the old saying "If it isn't broken don't fix it" comes to mind when you say that. Manual sliding mechanism? - It has no spring so it has mch less of a chance of breaking the slider Does no 720p video capture? - are you ratarded? The pros that you didn't mention were: -New keyboard design? -The classy new look? -1ghz processor maybe?
24. QwertyLover (unregistered)
I agree! For me, I prefer QWERTY keypads and touchscreen so, if ever the touchscreen didn't response, there would be a keypad. hahaha...
2. Sniggly (Posts: 6200; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)
I've honestly never had an issue opening the slider on the original Droid. In fact, I liked how solid it always felt when sliding open and closed. At this point, only ten months after the original, it was smart of Motorola to leave most of the physical design unchanged, as up until this came out stores were still consistently selling out of the original Droid. Only things that ever usually turned people off when deciding what phone to buy were the physical looks (which I never understood, I think it's sexy in its own way) and the keyboard design, which is much improved now due to those slight changes.
4. sgvdude (unregistered)
I sense an initial bias against the phone in the review. I've made roughly 10 calls and unlike the original Droid, callers report that I sound crystal clear. Finally, I can tilt the phone in any direction without distortion, unlike the original Droid. I think too that worthy improvement is in the needs of the user. Android users see little to nothing groundbreaking on the iphone 4 over the 3gs and iphone users see nothing groundbreaking about the Droid 2. Simply put, the droid 2 fixes all of the issues I had with the origianl droid and I'm content with it.
5. Dave456546 (unregistered)
Have to agree with Osakru, this review is rife with poorly worded sentences and odd grammatical errors. Is the author not a native English speaker? At any rate, the biggest knock against the Droid 2 seems to be that is is just a series of improvements over the Droid and not a vastly different model. Going in with expectations of a brand new experience can only lead to disappointment. Seems like a good solid phone to me.
7. ace1122 (Posts: 237; Member since: 23 Mar 2009)
Motorola wasn't trying to make an entirely new phone here. Just take what was wrong with the original and improve it. And they did. Mission Accomplished.
8. RORYREVOLUTION (Posts: 2800; Member since: 12 Jan 2010)
Exactly. Like the original iphone, it had problems it had issues. Year later comes out the 3G. Fixes a lot of the issues but overall little changed about it. Motorola did a great job by making the keyboard better and adding a 1ghz processor with 2.2. So overall i would say they did a great job. If you aren't impressed with d2 then get the dx or wait for the droid pro.
10. ................... (unregistered)
Unchanged design is a con for this phone but not for the first three iphones?
11. etownone (Posts: 40; Member since: 25 Jul 2010)
Went to check out it out today ... still not too crazy about the qwerty keyboard. Maybe cause I'm used to my envy3. But I was REALLY impressed with froyo .... checked out some websites that my iTouch can't handle and it ran everything just perfect. From videos, to songs that play in the background. It just felt like a mini pc in my hand (compared to my iTouch) Anyways .... waiting on Fascinate now. It's between the Droid X and Fascinate for me. Oh, and skype was pretty awesome too.
12. russellw10 (Posts: 13; Member since: 15 Feb 2010)
Wasn't there something about the benchmark test on the droid 2 being pretty dang good, i think that's a definite pro.
13. AM0795 (unregistered)
Really i think people are fussing too much...Verizon has and will now always have the best lineup.... IIINNN MY OPINON! Negative me if you want but this is my opinion....The droid 2 doesn't really lag, 720p isn't really a big deal for me or i dont think for anyone really because come on there are hacks to get it, maybe it will come with a firmware update, and really are you a photographer? The design is fine and nice, i perfer my droid x's big screen but software to me is great and yes the clock app is simple because you have an awesome dock.....Relax on some things, they have like 4-5 droids to chose from, though 1 is non existent anymore--eris...They will have a new blackberry and the iphone soon.. THIS PHONE AT LEAST DESERVES A 9.
15. GW (unregistered)
HOLD THE DAMN PHONE STILL; I felt like I was having a seizure watching this video
16. Joshing4fun (Posts: 965; Member since: 13 Aug 2010)
At least this dude didn't sound like a freaking robot like in many other PA videos
17. Shah.Legno (unregistered)
I'm using the original motorola Droid...it's all fine & feel very solid.. Droid 2 have improve in many parts compare to original Droid...but the real complain here with my Original Droid is it's 5 Mp Camera that is Very Noisy,haze & not sharp....in Droid 2...Motorola Should Fix this problem & upgrade the camera resolution to 8 MP at least...but they didn't do it with Droid 2...i'm quiet dissapointed with this problem that Motorola still not fix it with Droid 2.
18. Atlantaguy (unregistered)
Folks should do a search about the signal issues with this phone that are just hitting the press. I got my Droid 2 this weekend, and noticed I was only getting 0-1 bars of reception in my house, which is in a very strong Verizon cell area (my old phone got 2-3 bars all the time). I also got dropped calls. Turns out the reports are saying this is not just me. Quite a few people are reporting reception issues with this first batch of Droid 2 units. Google it. Added (a design flaw): If you get the moto case with the kick-stand Verizon sells with this phone, the case semi-blocks the top rows of keys on the keyboard when you slide the phone open. The phone should have been designed to slide open just a bit more, but now if you use a case on the top portion, it covers the top edge of the top row of keys making it much harder to type on. Since they (Motorola) didn't put a wrist strap loop in the corner of the phone body, you can't use a wrist strap, so you pretty much need to good case to ensure you get a good grip on it and don't drop it. Duh - do all the manufacturers just smoke weed all day and just not test their phones for stuff like this before shipping them anymore?? ARGH. I'll swap mine for a Droid X (if they ever get them in stock again).
22. iHateApple (unregistered)
No jacket required...
19. DF334 (Posts: 36; Member since: 23 Feb 2009)
I loved the Droid 1 and I love the Droid 2 even more!! Froyo is a beast by the way!
20. droid 2 or incredible????? (unregistered)
I have an env2 right now and really need an upgrade but I’m torn between the droid 2 and the incredible. From what I learned the droid 2 has- better battery life and better txt/swype battery life is important to me, whats the point of a phone if you cant make it through the day on a charge? The incredible seems to have about everything else... any opinons would be great!
21. somewhere in europeus (unregistered)
you guys are all wrong ... even motorola says it , this phone has only HD PLAYBACK , means, you can watch HD Videos, but the Cam is NOT HD ...
23. thedivabree (unregistered)
i agree. this is madness! it's a great phone...yet professional reviews act like someone shoved a stick up their ass. wow no HD video recording.....damn. who cares? has ANYONE forgot the main purpose of a phone....calls? texts? the internet is fab, the scrolling is great, the phone is amazing....yet those little things get these people down.
i LOOOVE how it looks. it's sexy! and who is seriously lazyass enough to say "oh well its not spring loaded". thats like complaining the stairs in your house aren't escalators. pshh.
get the droid2. it rocks.