Motorola DROID RAZR HD Review
Motorola DROID RAZR, which took the place of the DROID BIONIC as the manufacturer’s top-tier smartphone for Verizon. The DROID RAZR was the first to feature a more rugged construction, with Kevlar backing and water resistant nano coating.
Since then, the Motorola DROID RAZR (and the DROID RAZR MAXX) has remained king of Verizon’s Android line up, until this summer when the Samsung Galaxy S III was released with its stunning 4.8” Super AMOLED HD display and 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor. Not to be outdone, Motorola is ready for round two with their new DROID RAZR HD – the “HD” meaning that the display is now 720x1280 resolution, instead of 540x960 qHD that was on last year’s model. But there have been several other changes under the hood than just the display, including a better processor, higher capacity battery, and user interface, all of which we will take a closer look at.
Included in the retail package is the Motorola DROID RAZR HD XT926 smartphone, wall charger with detachable microUSB cable, push-pin for opening the SIM & memory card slot, and user guides.
The Motorola DROID RAZR HD has an updated appearance from the original DROID RAZR, calling on some of the elements that we saw from its little brother, the DROID RAZR M, though it still stands out on its own.
You can compare the Motorola DROID RAZR HD with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.
The first thing we noticed when looking at the DROID RAZR HD is that it is a bit larger overall than the original model, mostly due to the increases in display size and battery capacity. But it isn’t overwhelming, and still fits quite comfortably in the hand or pocket, although it is not as single-hand friendly as the RAZR M. The fit-and-finish is quite sturdy, as one would imagine, and the phone feels like it could take a beating – unlike the plastic feeling of the Samsung Galaxy S III.
Gone are the dedicated capacitive buttons under the display, as you now have on-screen buttons as part of the user interface (more on that later). Above the display is a 1.3MP front facing camera, and below the Motorola label is the LED notification indicator, which is quite bright and noticeable when activated.
left side on the device is a hidden door that you have to use the included push-pin (or a safety pin) to open up to gain access to the SIM card and microSD memory card slot. We found it a bit awkward to open, and the SIM card is removed with the panel before you can get to the memory card slot. We would have preferred an attached door; similar to what is used on the DROID RAZR M, which could be more easily opened just using your finger nail. Down from it is the microUSB port and microHDMI video port, while up on top is the 3.5mm headset jack. On the right side is the volume rocker and power/lock key; each of which are easy to find by touch alone, as the volume rocker has a raised edge on both ends, while the power/lock button has a distinctive grooved feel to it.
The rear of the DROID RAZR HD is graced with soft-touch Kevlar backing, which actually curves partly around the sides, giving it a nice finished appearance. Almost gone is the “camera hump” with its 8MP autofocus camera, LED flash, noise canceling mic, and external speaker near the top.
Clearly, the main improvement with the DROID RAZR HD is that it is using a 4.7” Super AMOLED HD display with a resolution of 720x1280, which gives it a pixel density of 312 ppi. When compared next to the original DROID RAZR or the DROID RAZR M, which have a qHD display, we found that text and images are much clearer and less jagged on the DROID RAZR HD.
And since it's Super AMOLED HD, colors are fully saturated and have a “pop” to them. We also have good viewing angles when looking at the display from the sides, but there can be a slight color-shift when viewed at extreme angles. Even though the display is plenty bright for most conditions, we still find it a bit hard to view in direct sunlight.
Currently available from Verizon, the Samsung Galaxy S III and LG Intuition have a larger display, coming in at 4.8” and 5” respectfully, though the Galaxy S III has the same resolution and screen type as the DROID RAZR HD. But when looking at both next to each other, we noticed that colors were more on the “cool” side with the Samsung, while the Motorola was more “warm”.