The smallest in the new Droid family, the Droid Razr M comes with a quality screen and slimline dimensions.
It would have been easy to lose the smallest member of the Droid line-up amind the fanfare for the Droid Razr HD and the Droid Razr Maxx HD, what with their HD screens and long battery life.
But Motorola has been clever here, but pushing the screen size of the phone to 4.3-inches, while still keeping the dimensions to almost smaller than an iPhone 4S.
It’s all the more impressive given one of the really annoying things about the first Droid Razr was the fact so much of the frame was taken up by bezel, so clearly Moto’s design team has listened here.
The phone itself is well-stocked with specs to take on the heavier-weights in the smartphone game: a qHD screen, 8GB of internal memory with microSD expansion, 8MP camera and running on Verizon’s superfast 4G LTE network.
In the hand the Motorola Droid Razr M will certainly divide opinion, as it plastic and Kevlar design is lightweight indeed. It’s almost cheap-feeling, which is a line Samsung balances on with the likes of the Galaxy S3. However, this 126g weight makes it sit nicely in the pocket.
The layout it is more rugged than sleek though, as there are a number of buttons and rivets all over the Razr M to give it a more industrial feel. It’s not a bad thing again, but may put off those that love simplicity in design.
On the inside the Motorola Droid Razr M has clearly got some influence from Google, as the interface has been shorn somewhat of the Moto skins we’ve seen in the past.
This doesn’t mean it’s vanilla Android 4.0 (Jelly Bean is on its way soon though, folks) as there are some cool elements, like spinning widgets to show weather, time and missed calls.
It’s also got the likes of Smart Actions on board, which allows you to tell the phone to do things at certain times or when you plug in a pair of headphones/register an NFC tag.
We’ve been fans of this for a while, and it’s good to see it pervading.
When it comes to day to day use, we can say we’re pretty impressed with the Motorola Droid Razr M. It’s slick and unerring in operation, with the notification bar and home screens all leaping to attention under the finger.
The web browser is also as fast as the Wi-Fi or 4G LTE networks will allow – and here’s some even better news: it’s Chrome as standard. This means more fancy tabbed browsing and the ability to connect with whatever you’d been looking at on the PC as well.
It worked very well in practice, and it’s really handy to see your history divided up in such a way.
Even things like texting were impressive on Droid Razr M – and curiously better than we found on the Droid Razr HD, which surprised us somewhat. Swype is onboard too for those that like to slip around a keyboard.
The Motorola Droid Razr M stands to be a very popular phone indeed if the final sample is anything like our early hands on. At $99 on a two year deal, it’s cost effective to say the least, and the specs more than stand up to others in that price range.
It’s not without fault: the design may feel a little cheap to some, and the screen size, while bigger, does still feel cramped at times. However, given that’s probably because we’re used to the 4.8-inch efforts at the top of the smartphone tree, those that come from an iPhone will be impressed with the level of display on offer.
Definitely a phone to watch in the coming months, the Droid Razr M passes our early look with aplomb.