Motorola compares new Droid Razr to iPhone 4S

The thin 4G LTE Droid Razr smartphone will ship in November for $300 with 2-year contract

The new Motorola Droid Razr will be the world's thinnest 4G LTE smartphone when it ships in November for Verizon Wireless.

The Droid Razr from Motorola.

The carrier is pricing the Droid Razr at $299.99 with a two-year agreement.

Motorola Mobility CEO Sanjay Jha unveiled the Android 2.3.5, or Gingerbread-based smartphone on Tuesday. The device is .279 inches (7.1 mm) at its thinnest point and has a curved rear and a wider bulge near the top.

By comparison, Apple's iPhone 4S is .37 inches (9.3 mm) at its thinnest point.

"Our mission was to create a true object of desire, incredibly thin, that delivers features without compromise," Jha said at the Webcast event.

Jha spent time comparing the new Razr to the new iPhone 4S, which was available last Friday. A record 4 million iPhone 4S devices were sold over the weekend.

Jha noted that the iPhone 4S has a 3.5-in Retina display at 960 x 640-pixel resolution, while the Droid Razr has a bigger 4.3-in. Super Amoled display that is quarter HD, or 960 x 540-pixel resolution.

Despite the larger display, the Droid Razr weighs less, at 4.48ounces (127 grams), than the iPhone 4S, which comes in at 4.9 ounces (140 grams), he added.

Using Verizon's 4G LTE network, now available in nearly half the U.S., the Droid Razr can download the ESPN Website in three seconds, while the iPhone 4S on 3G takes some eight seconds Jha said. (The iPhone 4S does not support 4G LTE.)

He added that a 5MB video would take 12 seconds to download on a Droid Razr, compared to 76 seconds on an iPhone 4S.

Both phones have a rear 8megapixel camera capable of 1080p video recording. Both have front-facing cameras as well, supporting video chat.

The iPhone 4S is priced at $299.99 for 32 GB internal, while theDroid Razr will go for $299.99 for 16 GB internal and a 16GB microSD card pre-installed. The iPhone 4S comes in two other models, a 16 GB for $199.99 and a 64 GB for $399.99.

Jha said the battery performance of the Droid Razr outdoes that of many other phones.

Its 1780 mAh battery provides 12.5 hours of voice performance, and 8.9 hours of video. The iPhone 4S battery, according to Apple, provides up to 8 hours of voice communications on 3G, up to six hours of Internet use and up to 10 hours of video playback.

Some insiders had suggested Motorola would announce Droid Razr with a Near-Field Communication (NFC) chip for mobile purchases as well as Android 4.0, or Ice Cream Sandwich, but neither materialized.

The iPhone 4S also doesn't include NFC technology.

The Ice Cream Sandwich OS is expected to debut on the coming Samsung Galaxy Nexus, which will be sold exclusively by Verizon in the U.S. A Google and Samsung event today in Hong Kong is expected to reveal more about both the Ice Cream Sandwich OS and the Google Nexus device.

Jha also demonstrated the Droid Razr's ability to dock with a Lapdock, available separately, for viewing documents on a full screen and typing documents on a full keyboard. Lapdock is already available for the Droid Bionic from Motorola.

Also, Jha said, the Droid Razr supports a Smart Actions app that can automate tasks and optimize battery life. The app lets users set rules such as dimming the display at certain times or slowing the processor speed to maximize the phone's life when making calls is important.

The free MotoCast app allows streaming or downloading of music, pictures and other files from a PC to the Razr, Motorola said.

Jha said that the Razr is loaded with capabilities for office workers, including Quickoffice for viewing, creating and editing Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents. Businesses will be able to remotely wipe the device, and it offers government grade encryption.

"The enterprise is getting consumerized [with smartphones]," Jha said, noting that two-thirds of smartphones at work are bought by consumers. "The Droid Razr is what every business owner wants and what an employee needs."

Verizon didn't set a date for sales to begin in November, but said that online orders will start on Oct. 27 at http://www.droiddoes.com/#/droidrazr .

Jha also announced that a wearable fitness meter combined with an MP3 player will go on sale Nov. 6, starting at $249 for an 8 GB version. The device, called MotoActv, can be paired with two new models of Bluetooth headsets that permit playing of music, but also act as heart monitors.

A runner can pair the device with a smartphone, such as the Droid Razr to take calls on the headsets during a workout. Data on a workout will be transferred from MotoActv automatically when within range of a home PC over Wi-Fi, Jha said.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen , or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed . His e-mail address is mhamblen@computerworld.com .

Read more about mobile and wireless in Computerworld's Mobile and Wireless Topic Center.

This story, "Motorola compares new Droid Razr to iPhone 4S" was originally published by Computerworld.

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