Motorola DROID BIONIC vs HTC ThunderBolt vs Samsung Droid Charge vs LG Revolution


Even though all four of these smartphones are running Android (Gingerbread on the DROID BIONIC and Froyo on the rest), the user interface varies between them. By far the easiest and most customizable is the HTC ThunderBolt with its Sense UI. Not only does it provide a large selection of widgets, it allows for different scenes and skins, which the other devices do not.

The Motorola DROID BONIC is our second favorite with its updated MOTOBLUR interface that has some eye pleasing 3D effects and nice selection of widgets, though we wish that it came with 7 homescreens instead of only 5. The Samsung Droid Charge with its TouchWiz 3.0 interface is close, again with some very nice widgets. Not far behind is the LG Revolution with its Optimus UI 2.0, but its user interface isn’t as polished as the rest, and it doesn’t offer as many widgets.

Internet and Data:

Since the WebKit browser is used by all of these smartphones, they display web pages nearly identical to one another and have similar features, such as pinch-to-zoom and Adobe Flash support. What we were most interested in finding out was if there were any differences in their web page load times and data speeds, as all four of these smartphones are using Verizon’s 4G LTE network, but have different processors and amounts of RAM.

Both the Motorola DROID BIONIC and HTC ThunderBolt were equally fast at loading our web site in 25 seconds on the first attempt and 20 seconds on the reload. The LG Revolution was only slightly behind, taking 27 to load on the first attempt and 20 seconds on the reload, while the Samsung Droid Charge took a little longer at 30 seconds on the first attempt and also 30 seconds on the reload. All of these are faster than a Verizon 3G device, such as the Motorola DROID X, which would take nearly a minute to load the web site.

We also ran the app on each device and had it connect to two local servers. The Motorola DROID BIONIC was the fastest with download speeds of 9-10 Mbps (but did hit as high as 12 Mbps), and uploads speeds were 5-6 Mbps. The HTC ThunderBolt and Samsung Droid Charge were not far behind, as both had download speeds of 7-8 Mbps, but uploads were only 2-3 Mbps. The LG Revolution showed download speeds between 5-6 Mbps, but uploads were an amazing 10 Mbps (which makes us think there might be a bug with the testing app and the Revolution).

We should also point out all four of these smartphones from time-to-time would occasionally drop from 4G to 3G (but we made sure it didn’t happen during our testing). What was interesting is that it would only last for a few minutes (at the most) and would return back to 4G, except that the Samsung Droid Charge would stay fixed on 3G and required us to turn the Airplane mode on and off so that it would go back to 4G.

Based upon our usage, we believe that the Motorola DROID BIONIC is the leader here, as it had the fastest downloads in the SpeedTest app, and was also very quick at loading web pages. Close behind is the HTC ThunderBolt, as it loaded web sites in the same amount of time as the DROID BIONIC, but its SpeedTest results were slightly slower. The LG Revolution comes in next with a slower SpeedTest results and web page loads, leaving the Samsung Droid Charge in last place, as it took the longest at loading our web page, and also seems to get stuck in 3G mode at times.

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