Review: Droid Razr Maxx has impressive power
BY ROBERT EVATT World Staff Writer
Saturday, March 24, 2012
5/16/12 at 8:39 AM
Yes, the Motorola Droid Razr Maxx is another in a seemingly perpetual flood of Droid smartphones from Verizon. And yes, we got the Droid Razr just two months before the Maxx hit.
Yet the Droid Razr Maxx comes with a jaw-dropping promised feature - up to 21 hours of talk time, thanks to an incredibly beefy battery.
That's a pretty big thing to boast about, especially since smartphones have struggled when it comes to power. All those new features like faster processing speed, cloud music streaming and 4G capabilities don't come without a price, and it seems like battery life has been gradually getting shorter.
Figuring out how to test the battery's longevity was a challenge, but I eventually found a way. At the start of my day, I dialed up the phone of a co-worker who was out, answered it and let the two phones stay connected for eight hours.
The Maxx started out at a 100 percent charge. After the test, the battery was at 10 percent.
While that sounds like a far cry from the promised 21 hours, the figure assumes a 3G connection, while I was on more battery-draining 4G. Plus, I get a weak Verizon connection in the downtown Tulsa World office, and I tried it out during a heavy storm. When a cellphone has to struggle to find or keep a connection, it drains more battery power.
All things considered, holding onto a phone call for eight hours with juice to spare is darned impressive.
Less impressive is the body of the phone itself. Unlike the amazingly thin and sleek Droid Razr, the Droid Razr Maxx is a fairly uninspired slab with a slight bulge on one end. It's roughly as thin as an iPhone, though a full ounce heavier. True, they needed room for a battery and the result is well within the range of normal, but I'm not sure the shape lives up to the expectations the Razr name gives it.
My other gripe is that it's running Android 2.3, aka Gingerbread, instead of the latest version, Ice Cream Sandwich. To be fair, there have been depressingly few new devices running Ice Cream Sandwich after the system was launched in October, and Gingerbread still runs fine, but I think it's time to expect a little more from the phone manufacturers.
Other than that, the Droid Razr Maxx works quite well. Motorola's adaptation of Android is smooth and clean, and nearly everything I tried ran without a hitch. Only the most complex websites made things operate a little less smoothly.
The camera was a mixed bag. The 8-megapixel lens took pictures almost instantly after I pressed the shutter button, though it was a little too easy to take blurry shots, and colors weren't quite as vivid as they should be.
The entire experience felt much like my time spent with the original Droid Razr. I think it's safe to say that while the gigantic battery caused the phone to get a little thicker, it didn't slow down operations at all.
Factoring the battery out of my impressions, the Droid Razr Maxx is a solid but otherwise unremarkable Android smartphone. But the battery makes it special. If you're a power user and don't mind an above-average price tag, the Maxx is definitely worth a close look.
Motorola Droid Razr Maxx
Pros: Ridiculously great battery;
Cons: Not as thin as other Razrs;
Original Print Headline: Razr Maxx boasts strong battery
Robert Evatt 918-581-8447
Droid Razr Maxx from Motorola. CHRISTOPHER SMITH/ Tulsa World