Motorola DROID X vs. Apple iPhone 4

In one corner, we have the Apple iPhone 4 which was released not too long ago and was able to muster up some impressive sales figures that make it undeniably one of the hottest handsets for the summer. Not only does it offer one of the most simple and straightforward experiences on any handset out there, its stellar track record in the camera department makes it one irresistible device for media buffs out there. On the other side, we have the Motorola DROID X which is supplanting itself already as the next big thing out of both Motorola's and Verizon's camps. Revamped in many ways from the original Motorola DROID, it has cemented itself as a well rounded premier offering that easily stands tall among the current Android offerings.  Although there are some known points that make the DROID X superior to the iPhone 4 already, such as the excellent backing of Big Red's network over AT&T, we'll look specially at the hardware and performance to see how they manage to stack up against one another.


When we first feasted our eyes on the iPhone 4, we were impressed at how streamline it looked – which claimed to be the thinnest smartphone in the market. Not only does this average sized handset manage to captivate people with its redesigned look, but its choice of premium feeling materials and solid construction make it one compelling device that will easily capture the gaze of consumers. However, we'd like to also commend Motorola on the fantastic looking original Motorola DROID – which happily laid claim to be the thinnest smartphone with a QWERTY keyboard. Following the same design principles, the Motorola DROID X follows similarly with its extremely thin (0.39”) profile which is equally impressive when you consider the hefty display it's packing on. Again, we're treated to one solid handset which is constructed from quality materials and doesn't skimp out on durability as we feel that the DROID X would handle better in extreme occasions when it's dropped. It's not to say that the iPhone 4's glass like outer shell can't take a beating as we were surprised to find it quite intact with only a single scratch after accidentally dropping it onto the hard pavement at the height of 4 feet. The soft touch coating on the DROID X does wonders when it comes to repelling dirt and smudges from fingers, as it also manages to make it feel comfortable to grip, but the oleophobic coating on the iPhone 4 does an equally good job. Finally, there is something deceptively pleasing with the DROID X (5.47 oz) as it doesn't feel too heavy in the hand versus holding the iPhone 4 (4.83 oz) – strangely enough, the iPhone 4 is lighter, but somehow still manages to actually feel heavier when being held than the DROID X.

Visually both handsets offer something substantial with their displays that will cater to the specific desires of individuals, but one thing can be said about both – they are fantastic and perform exceptional in their own regard. The Motorola DROID X employs a larger sized 4.3” TFT display with a 480x854 pixels resolution to provide ample real estate for just about everything you do with the handset. With the roomy size, typing away is quite comfortable for just about anyone.  Conversely, the iPhone 4's 3.5” IPS LCD display might be quaint in comparison, but surely it's one of the  most detailed displays with its 640x960 resolution that makes everything you view just pop. It's evident when you open up a web page and look at text from an overview display – they are clear and sharp on the iPhone 4 versus garbled looking on the Motorola DROID X. Colors are lush and vibrant on both displays, however, the iPhone 4 has a leg up when it comes to luminance as it looks brighter when set to the maximum setting. When taking it outdoors though, both displays are quite viewable in the glaring presence of direct sunlight with perfect viewing angles considerably present.

As for the rest of the handsets, physical hardware buttons are abundant, well sized, and have a good tactile response to fully make you aware that they've been pressed. However, we adore the DROID X tacking on a two-level shutter key to automatically launch the camera app so you can take photos almost instantly. Furthermore, the DROID X does provide for some traditional features such as a microUSB port for charging/data, micro HDMI port for video out, and a microSD card slot to offer you the flexibility of swapping cards at will. On the contrary, it doesn't mean that the iPhone 4 can't accomplish some of the same functions – you can actually get video out by purchasing their proprietary cable. Plus the iPhone 4 also packs on a front-facing camera which can be used for a host of things – like video chat via FaceTime/Fring or basically use it as a mirror. The speaker on the DROID X can be found on its rear while it's located on the bottom edge of the iPhone 4 – we find the placement for the DROID X to be fitting as it's able to disperse tunes a lot better. Finally, the iPhone 4 features a 5-megapixel auto-focus camera with LED flash while the DROID X has a higher 8-megapixel shooter with a dual-LED flash.

Motorola DROID X 360 Degrees View:

Apple iPhone 4 360 Degrees View:



1. baldilocks

Posts: 1537; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

Droid X = Big & Ugly iPhone 4 = Pretty & Fragile Either is a good choice though.

3. vzw fanman

Posts: 1977; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

i don't see why it's ugly...

13. BlackSirius16

Posts: 84; Member since: May 21, 2010

It looks better than the iPhone

36. Mightymack

Posts: 74; Member since: Jul 16, 2010

whats so good about iphone? personally, 3gs looks better anyway! but droid x is better than both :)

2. rtimi26

Posts: 42; Member since: Mar 16, 2009

My problem is I don't see a comparison between galaxy S and others. Is it because you are waiting for US versions, if so then fine, but if not then phonearena is really beginning to get on my nerves

4. RonRex

Posts: 3; Member since: Jun 04, 2010

Maybe the X is coming after the IPad? It may seem large, but it is maybe a way for Att users to see even though Verizon does not have the Iphone, they do have a very viable option on a much better network?

5. Stoli89

Posts: 333; Member since: Jun 28, 2010

You have the audacity to call this a review and not once do you mention the iPhone's purported issues regarding antenna performance. Not once. What you failed to mention are a multitude of reports suggesting the iPhone 4 has a faulty antenna design and how this might relate to the significant drop in signal caused by capacitive interference (human touch) at the junction between the two antennas that comprise its antenna system. Although the external antenna system used in the iPhone 4 may be prone to said interference, it is the particular design whereby this gap or junction is in close proximity to the heaviest part of the left palm during normal use. Some test have shown this to result in a -24dB drop in signal strength ( ). In my opinion, this capacitive interference couples the antenna system thereby detuning the 2G/3G portion. In parallel, energy is also lost into the hand given the proximity of the EXTERNAL antenna system during normal use (gripping by hand) If you happen to live in an area where the signal strength is less than -94dB and you then hold the phone normally in the left hand, the call can be dropped as the signal drops below -113dB. This was reported by Anandtech, which observed a -20dB impact due to hand interference [-24dB when held tightly]. Whether -94dB resides within the fourth bar (currently) or is "programmed" down to the 3rd (or 2nd or even 1st) bar is a moot point. The only likely way around this for the iPhone 4, IMO, is with the rubber case/bumper. This serves to further separate the hand from the phone during normal use. Just my opinion.

7. testman22

Posts: 339; Member since: Nov 03, 2009

not to mention the errors in the signal presentation, yellow spots on the screen, yellow tinted pictures, and melting ports. lol

37. Mightymack

Posts: 74; Member since: Jul 16, 2010

YES! i say the same thing after every iphone comparison!

54. The iPad` unregistered

Not once did you mention that Apple held a conference and showed that only .5% of the users called in or had it reported in. That is probably all the users that had it to. Not once did you mention that the problem can be easily handled by slipping a case on the phone. Not once did you mention you can send the phone back to Apple, get another for free and get a case for free. Not once did you mention that most of the owners of an iPhone 4 don't experience this problem, only the people searching for it and even those that do don't experience most of the time.

6. denmcdon

Posts: 90; Member since: Jun 07, 2009

The Droid x shoots video at 30 fps not 23 fps. Specs at

11. PhoneArena Team

Posts: 258; Member since: Jun 27, 2006 At HD 1280x720 the DROID X records at 24fps. You have to drop it down to 720x480 resolution to record at 30fps.

53. unregistered user unregistered

Blurays also play at 24 fps.... only a fanboy would tell you that 30 fps is "better".

8. narley

Posts: 357; Member since: May 14, 2009

-Funny how you can do flash, swype keyboard, hd recording, hdmi output.. but none of those things are seen as a benefit. -But every review some moron talks about a front facing camera that is probably never used... and needs WIFI. -And as above stated no mention of the fact that iphone has faulty antenna and signal glitches. -Also no benefit in how much larger the screen is on the DROIDX. -No benefit in the double microphone noise cancellation setup that works flawlessly on the DROIDX. *Phone arena, keeping the trendy trendy, and the uneducated making ignorant decisions since the orig iphone.

9. cc16177

Posts: 312; Member since: May 09, 2010

I agree, I was excited for an iPhone4 vs. Droid X review and after reading the review all I can say is I want those five minutes of my life back.

27. applesr4eating

Posts: 32; Member since: Jul 01, 2010

Just like most other phone bloggers PA is afraid to go against "common wisdom" and report the truth.

33. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

You guys are babies. Flash is not available until 2.2 and swype is not going to be a dealbreaker for anyone. HD recording is better on iPhone, and HDMI was mentioned in the review. Maybe it's just me but I didn't know that the iphone could do hdmi with proprietary cable. And in the end, I still don't care about HDMI. -FaceTime is only available on wifi but fring can be used on 3G. -they did mention many benefits of having a larger screen (did you even read the review or watch the video?) -the iphone has noise cancellation also -How many times do you guys have to read about the issues. It's been on every phone website, on the front page of websites like Yahoo/MSN, newspapers, TV, etc. On the HTC Evo review I don't remember there being talks about the light leakage issue. You guys just cry and cry and cry. If you look in other websites, I'm pretty sure the review is going to be almost the same. I guess every phone website just freaking hates the Droid X, right? Haha

34. BlackSirius16

Posts: 84; Member since: May 21, 2010

really? thats funny, I found much better reviews on youtube, and as for the light leakage issue on the evo, are your fucking seriously comparing that the the grip of death on the iPhone 4? holy shit omg I'm sure that when people got their brand new evo they started screaming, "Oh god jesus in heaven, theirs a small amount of light from the buttons leaking onto the bottom of my screen, its really a fucking deal breaker" holy smokey cinimon shit I;ve never heard something more stupid in my entire life christ your stupid. and as for flash, whens your iPhone gunna get it? yeah thought so retard. And I'd say that the hd recording on the iPhone has slightly better color capture but thats it, while the audio is so superior that its unbelievable. go fuck yourself fanboy troll bitch

38. Mightymack

Posts: 74; Member since: Jul 16, 2010

i dont think that i can agree any more strongly! front facing camera is not all that! and if it is, then the evo can definatly beat the iphone!

39. Mightymack

Posts: 74; Member since: Jul 16, 2010

i sense jelousy!

45. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

I sense confusion!

10. adilly

Posts: 1; Member since: Jul 12, 2010

Wow why do people visit this site if they hate it so much? I think the real question is rather or not the iphone is worth leaving Verizon for. At&t is just such a juxtaposition to apples core philosophy. Apple strives to be innovative and proactive in solving customer issues and relations, where as At&t is exactly the opposite. If you've ever had to deal with an at&t customer service rep you know that most of them are incompetent morons. The iphone is a great device, but it is limited by a sub par carrier who is only interested in making money and not furthering their customers experience.

12. cc16177

Posts: 312; Member since: May 09, 2010

"Apple strives to be innovative and proactive in solving customer issues and relations, where as At&t is exactly the opposite." SJ - "There is no reception issue. Hold your phone correctly." Need I say more? Both Apple and At&t apparently do not do a very good job when it comes to CS.

19. narley

Posts: 357; Member since: May 14, 2009

umm... how do you say.....???? BURN?

14. BlackSirius16

Posts: 84; Member since: May 21, 2010

I mean yeah, its a totally matter of opinion. Some people like phones that work well, and some people like phones that don't work at all but look real shiny.

40. Mightymack

Posts: 74; Member since: Jul 16, 2010


15. cellstudent

Posts: 10; Member since: Feb 21, 2009

I must say I'm disappointed with the analysis of the on screen keyboard. Why is the image of the iPhone keyboard LARGER than the image of the DROID X keyboard when the iPhone clearly has a much smaller display. You're making it look like screen real estate is less of a differentiator. Take a few side-by-side photographs of the keyboard and post them rather then the doctored up screen captures you're misleading everyone with!

18. PhoneArena Team

Posts: 258; Member since: Jun 27, 2006

The size of the screenshots depends on the screen resolution, not the physical dimensions of the display. Motorola DROID X = 4.3" but 480x800 pixels resolution; Apple iPhone 4 = 3.5" but 640x960 pixels resolution, thus the image comes out larger once you view it on a computer.

20. narley

Posts: 357; Member since: May 14, 2009

so back up a foot and take a picture of both phones physically as well as the QWERTY... because of you couldnt tell, in this comparison, size does matter.

21. narley

Posts: 357; Member since: May 14, 2009


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