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Verizon's iPhone targeting Motorola Droid phone revealed

post #1 of 136
Thread Starter 
After the hardware was teased in a new advertisement over the weekend, purported shots and details of the Android-powered Motorola Droid have surfaced, giving insight into the device Verizon hopes to pit against Apple's iPhone.

The handset runs the new Android 2.0 operating system and was co-developed by Google and Motorola, according to The Boy Genius Report. With a hands-on look at the hardware, the site calls the handset "the most impressive phone we've used since the iPhone."

"It's the Android device to beat, and easily the most impressive," the report said. "From what we've been told, Google had a direct hand in the Motorola Droid. Something to the point of almost dictating every move Motorola made with designing and making the phone."

The hardware is said to be slightly thicker than an iPhone 3GS with a slide-out physical keyboard, and internally the phone sports a reportedly speedy TI OMAP3430 processor. The hardware keyboard has a rubberized finish but allegedly is not finalized.

The handset also comes with a charging cradle that turns the phone into a multimedia station, displaying weather, time and other information.

The forthcoming Android 2.0 mobile operating system reportedly includes a new Maps application, an improved browser, and native support for both Exchange and Facebook. It has not yet been officially announced.



In an advertisement that debuted over the weekend, Verizon and Motorola targeted the iPhone with a TV spot teasing the new hardware. With a style and accompanying song set to parody Apple's own ads, the commercial ran a list of things the iPhone cannot do, with the tag "iDon't."

The advertisement attacks the iPhone's lack of a physical keyboard, inability to multitask with third-party applications, and absence of a camera flash, before teasing the Droid's November debut and directing viewers to the Web site droiddoes.com.



Verizon's marketing has turned its attention toward the iPhone in recent weeks. Another advertisement compares the 3G coverage of their network to AT&T, the exclusive carrier of the iPhone in the U.S. The TV spot lampoons Apple's famous "there's an app for that" advertisements by declaring "there's a map for that," comparing the two companies' service.

Earlier this month, Google and Verizon announced that two Android-powered phones would debut soon on the carrier's network. All Android-powered Verizon handsets will allow the Google Voice service and support open development. It's a change for the nation's largest wireless carrier, which has traditionally kept tight controls on its network.
post #2 of 136
I was actually excited to see the phone. Then they dropped a FUGLY keyboard on it. Poor, poor Verizon. They just haven't got it yet.
Hard-Core.
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Hard-Core.
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post #3 of 136
Before everybody starts to praise the physical keyboard and how this is missing on the iPhone, here a thought.

Every country overseas requires a different keyboard (e.g. Germany has the QWERTZ instead of QWERTY keyboard and the ä, ö and ü), France requires a different keyboard, all Scandinavian countries etc., etc, and not to forget the Asian countries. The Pre, and now the Droid will have to be produced with different keyboards if they want to sell them overseas. Translation: more expensive.

Apple uses software to accommodate all languages. I think that is very smart. Moreover, typing on it with Apple's character recognition system is really easy and fast.

Also, every key is another small little component that can fail.

I prefer Apple's approach.
post #4 of 136
Two and a half years (three if you include the original iPhone announcement) for the industry to catch up (and possibly overtake) the iPhone. That's not bad, but it has taken a dictatorial Apple-esque approach from Google to do this. Maybe they should merge and become MOTOOGLE? GOOROLA!

The hardware keyboard isn't a major win as Apple's soft-keyboard is so good - apart from not taking over the screen that is. C'mon Apple, let us use Bluetooth keyboards, maybe even create a portable keyboard dock...

Background apps is a major win, especially for streaming apps. Apple seems to be coding these in separately, if the Radio rumour is correct. Maybe Apple will eventually come up with a stable background API for certain classes of application, where they have to provide a pop-up UI like the pop-up background iPod UI for music control when you're in Safari, etc.
post #5 of 136
Looks pretty fug, but I care more about what it can do. I wouldn't mind trying one out.
post #6 of 136
"Genesis does. Nintendon't."
post #7 of 136
Looks more like a "PRE-Killer" than an "iPhone-Killer"!

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post #8 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wil Maneker View Post

"Genesis does. Nintendon't."

IIRC, the Super NES came out shortly after these ads, and it absolutely creamed the Genesis. I wonder if that's foreshadowing near future of the Droid / iPhone.
post #9 of 136
What's so different about this phone and all the other similar phones out there, EPIC FAIL!
post #10 of 136
If this is "The Android device to beat", seems like all other Android phones need to re-focus and not target Apple; they'll have a tough enough time getting a share of their own niche.
post #11 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roos24 View Post

Before everybody starts to praise the physical keyboard and how this is missing on the iPhone, here a thought.

Every country overseas requires a different keyboard (e.g. Germany has the QWERTZ instead of QWERTY keyboard and the ä, ö and ü), France requires a different keyboard, all Scandinavian countries etc., etc, and not to forget the Asian countries. The Pre, and now the Droid will have to be produced with different keyboards if they want to sell them overseas. Translation: more expensive.

Apple uses software to accommodate all languages. I think that is very smart. Moreover, typing on it with Apple's character recognition system is really easy and fast.

Also, every key is another small little component that can fail.

I prefer Apple's approach.

very good point
post #12 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post

Looks more like a "PRE-Killer" than an "iPhone-Killer"!

Agreed. The iPhone is now in a different league compared to these other phones, thanks to the app store. Right now the other phones are just competing with each other to see who emerges as the real competitor to the iPhone. At the end of the day, I have to believe that it will be Microsoft. It might require them to waste billions going down wrong paths, but eventually they will come out with something competitive. They've shown their willingness to stick with something no matter how long it takes to get it right. Look at how long it took them to go from Windows 1.0 to Windows 95. Palm will run out of money and Google will eventually be distracted by some other shiny thing, but MS will keep fighting and fighting -- do not underestimate the borg!
post #13 of 136
That was a major mistake allowing them to name the phone Droid. First of all, they'll be sued by Lucasfilm, second, if the phone is a bust it'll be tied very, very closely to the entire Android moniker. They would have been much wiser to call it the "Transformr" (yes, there's a letter missing on purpose) and license the name if necessary from Hasbro.

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post #14 of 136
THIS is the fabled iPhone killer?? Oh wait .... That was the Pre.

Hardware keyboard=fail, anyway.

At least Motorola's managing to stay relevant. Kind of.
post #15 of 136
iDon't support concurrent web access and voice calls.

iDon't support international network standards (like GSM).

iDon't have over 85,000 APPs (at least not yet).

iDo want complete control of all hardware and Apps on your smart phones.

iWill disable features that do not benefit my bottom line.

iWIll nickel and dime you for everything.

iWill bash the other guys..until my network fails under the same pressure when it is finally tested.
post #16 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wil Maneker View Post

"Genesis does. Nintendon't."

Actually it's "Genesis does what Nintendon't". These days, Sega does nothing really.
post #17 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roos24 View Post

Before everybody starts to praise the physical keyboard and how this is missing on the iPhone, here a thought.

Every country overseas requires a different keyboard (e.g. Germany has the QWERTZ instead of QWERTY keyboard and the ä, ö and ü), France requires a different keyboard, all Scandinavian countries etc., etc, and not to forget the Asian countries. The Pre, and now the Droid will have to be produced with different keyboards if they want to sell them overseas. Translation: more expensive.

Apple uses software to accommodate all languages. I think that is very smart. Moreover, typing on it with Apple's character recognition system is really easy and fast.

Also, every key is another small little component that can fail.

I prefer Apple's approach.

This very true. In some countries like Switzerland, they speak and use 3 or even 4 languages, all with a different alphabet. Some people even have to use multiple languages. They regular keyboards became hard to use if they remapped.

The Verizon version of the phones will use CDMA/EVDO and it can be used in most of the word. Motoogle will have to keep multiple inventories to keep up with all these permutations/ combinations.
post #18 of 136
They could at least have put some sort of effort into the aesthetics of their iPhone "competitor". Ugly square shape, plain white buttons and a keyboard that looks like it was slapped together....but wait, what a pretty gold mouse thingy....NOT!
post #19 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by noexpectations View Post

idon't support concurrent web access and voice calls.

Idon't support international network standards (like gsm).

Idon't have over 85,000 apps (at least not yet).

Ido want complete control of all hardware and apps on your smart phones.

Iwill disable features that do not benefit my bottom line.

Iwill nickel and dime you for everything.

Iwill bash the other guys..until my network fails under the same pressure when it is finally tested.

nice!
post #20 of 136
That's a nice update on what's going on with Verizon's phone, but "Verizon's iPhone targeting Motorola Droid phone revealed" is a terrible headline. It sounds like Verizon has an iPhone that is going after the Motorola Droid.
post #21 of 136
The thing I like about Android, and even about Apple and their iphone OS, is that updates are always coming down the pipes. With windows mobile, you feel like nothing is happening.
post #22 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

That was a major mistake allowing them to name the phone Droid. First of all, they'll be sued by Lucasfilm

Yep, from wikipedia:

"Droids are robots seen in Star Wars, Doctor Who, and Ben 10 and is a registered trademark of Lucasfilm Ltd"

Good call. I was going to say you're full of sh!t until I looked up the facts before I did so.
post #23 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

THIS is the fabled iPhone killer?? Oh wait .... That was the Pre.

Hardware keyboard=fail, anyway.

At least Motorola's managing to stay relevant. Kind of.

Dude get off it. To some people this would be hands down an iphone killer, to others hands down NOT a killer. It's all opinionated.

It's like telling someone with a size 12 foot that size 9 is the best! It's only the best for the people it fits.

When you see anyone say something is an iphone killer, it's just bullshit plain and simple because there's no real measure of success. You could point to number of units sold, but even that can be viewed at different angles.

Something occurred to me yesterday at the Sprint store while looking at a man trying to figure out the Hero. The customization feature is something a lot of people don't feel like messing with, or find frustrating, which is why the iphone's straight forwardness is better suited for them. It goes the other direction too though where people can't stand being locked into one design. So how do you put that "iDon't customize" line in a commercial and sell it as something better?

It's all opinion.

My opinion is this phone is nothing special.
post #24 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by vassillios View Post

Yep, from wikipedia:

"Droids are robots seen in Star Wars, Doctor Who, and Ben 10 and is a registered trademark of Lucasfilm Ltd"

Good call. I was going to say you're full of sh!t until I looked up the facts before I did so.

And if you did some more research you would know that Verizon has licensed the name Droid from Lucasfilm.
post #25 of 136
This thing looks pretty nasty anyway.
post #26 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

That was a major mistake allowing them to name the phone Droid. First of all, they'll be sued by Lucasfilm, second, if the phone is a bust it'll be tied very, very closely to the entire Android moniker. They would have been much wiser to call it the "Transformr" (yes, there's a letter missing on purpose) and license the name if necessary from Hasbro.

Hey, you may not have seen the commercials or the website for this phone, but both clearly state at the bottom the license info by Lucasfilm. Just FYI.
post #27 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

That was a major mistake allowing them to name the phone Droid. First of all, they'll be sued by Lucasfilm,

They have already licensed the name from LucasFilm. Look in the fine print on the website.
post #28 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by vassillios View Post

Yep, from wikipedia:

"Droids are robots seen in Star Wars, Doctor Who, and Ben 10 and is a registered trademark of Lucasfilm Ltd"

Good call. I was going to say you're full of sh!t until I looked up the facts before I did so.

If you or Spam Sandwich watched any tech news other than Apple Forum rooms you'd know they have a license agreement with Lucasfilms. Which implies that this is a well funded partnership.
post #29 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

That was a major mistake allowing them to name the phone Droid.

I agree. It will appeal to (male) teens and geeks (who are mostly male). I don't see women -- at least 50% of the population -- walking around with a 'Droid' in their purse. And, people can say what they want, but sales to that target segment matter.
post #30 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by aplnub View Post

I was actually excited to see the phone. Then they dropped a FUGLY keyboard on it. Poor, poor Verizon. They just haven't got it yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vassillios View Post

They could at least have put some sort of effort into the aesthetics of their iPhone "competitor". Ugly square shape, plain white buttons and a keyboard that looks like it was slapped together....but wait, what a pretty gold mouse thingy....NOT!

Wow, typical fanboy nonsense arguing form over function. Oh god, a keyboard that looks like a keyboard! The horror!

Really don't see how it looks much different than iPhone's "ugly square shape" and "plain" gray button.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roos24 View Post

Before everybody starts to praise the physical keyboard and how this is missing on the iPhone, here a thought.

Every country overseas requires a different keyboard (e.g. Germany has the QWERTZ instead of QWERTY keyboard and the ä, ö and ü), France requires a different keyboard, all Scandinavian countries etc., etc, and not to forget the Asian countries. The Pre, and now the Droid will have to be produced with different keyboards if they want to sell them overseas. Translation: more expensive.

Apple uses software to accommodate all languages. I think that is very smart. Moreover, typing on it with Apple's character recognition system is really easy and fast.

Also, every key is another small little component that can fail.

I prefer Apple's approach.[/QUOTE]

As an international company, you don't think Motorola has thought of that? Pretty sure they already have keyboard equipped phones all around the globe. This will be no different. How much more expensive is it to print different characters on keys? Shouldn't be any more expensive since it's not like they'll have to change any machining. And it's not like they're going to have 50 different keyboard configurations, just 1 with the keys printed for the particular region it's sold in.

Never used the iPhone's touch keyboard, but the touch keyboard on my phone (an LG) sucks tremendously. Sort of doubt that an iPhone would be much different. If I'm not typing something really short, I'll switch to the internal keyboard where I can type extremely fast.
post #31 of 136
bad headline. at a minimum, you've gotta hyphenate iPhone and targeting: that makes those two words a single adjective modifying the Droid. otherwise you've begun by saying "Verizon's iPhone..." which yeah, got my attention, but also confused me. Also, I'm not sure "phone" was necessary.

how about:

Verizon's iPhone-targeting Moto Droid revealed ???

or even

Verizon's iPhone-targeting Droid revealed ???

you don't have to say everything in the head.
post #32 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by chronster View Post

Dude get off it. To some people this would be hands down an iphone killer, to others hands down NOT a killer. It's all opinionated.

It's like telling someone with a size 12 foot that size 9 is the best! It's only the best for the people it fits.

When you see anyone say something is an iphone killer, it's just bullshit plain and simple because there's no real measure of success. You could point to number of units sold, but even that can be viewed at different angles.

Something occurred to me yesterday at the Sprint store while looking at a man trying to figure out the Hero. The customization feature is something a lot of people don't feel like messing with, or find frustrating, which is why the iphone's straight forwardness is better suited for them. It goes the other direction too though where people can't stand being locked into one design. So how do you put that "iDon't customize" line in a commercial and sell it as something better?

It's all opinion.

My opinion is this phone is nothing special.

if you don't like customization then they probably don't have any style or taste anyways and apples **** enviroment is probably enough for them.

This phone is said to be slightly bigger than an iPhone which is pretty good for a slider unquestionably the highest typing speeds come from physical keyboards (I can easily
ake my iPhone lag when typing, my bold doesn't hiccup at all at the same speeds).

With it's gorgeous screen and now multitouch support along with a good camera decent app store and a nice underground dev community i guess the only thing the iPhone would have it beat at is being a music player using the **** infested iTunes and browsing the web.
post #33 of 136
it has indeed taken almost 3 years (since Jan-07) to put up a seemingly worthy competitor to the iphone. I say "seemingly" since the Droid isn't released yet, so who knows what will happen. Let's just remember that all self-proclaimed iPhone-killers have failed at killing the iPhone, period. The only difference now is more intense marketing.

Back in Jan-07, Steve Jobs said the iPhone was 5 years ahead of the competition, and so far he's been proven correct. The iPhone will eventually multi-task, but then the competition will simply find another "flaw" to harp on. It took many years for a "respectable" iPod competitior to appear (the Zune is, all in all, a decent MP3 player). However by then it was far too little, far too late. I suspect the same thing is happening with smartphones as well.
post #34 of 136
I'm just hoping that the screen isn't set to full brightness in these pics. Otherwise, we'll, its going to be interesting it outdoors... lol
post #35 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

I agree. It will appeal to (male) teens and geeks (who are mostly male). I don't see women -- at least 50% of the population -- walking around with a 'Droid' in their purse. And, people can say what they want, but sales to that target segment matter.

Hence advertising during playoff baseball. They know who their target market is - you don't see them advertising during Movie of the Week on Lifetime.
post #36 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by ifail View Post

if you don't like customization then they probably don't have any style or taste anyways and apples Nazi enviroment is probably enough for them.

This phone is said to be slightly bigger than an iPhone which is pretty good for a slider unquestionably the highest typing speeds come from physical keyboards (I can easily
ake my iPhone lag when typing, my bold doesn't hiccup at all at the same speeds).

With it's gorgeous screen and now multitouch support along with a good camera decent app store and a nice underground dev community i guess the only thing the iPhone would have it beat at is being a music player using the aids infested iTunes and browsing the web.

Nazi? AIDS infested? Grow up. Now.
post #37 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by ifail View Post

if you don't like customization then they probably don't have any style or taste anyways and apples Nazi enviroment is probably enough for them.

This phone is said to be slightly bigger than an iPhone which is pretty good for a slider unquestionably the highest typing speeds come from physical keyboards (I can easily
ake my iPhone lag when typing, my bold doesn't hiccup at all at the same speeds).

With it's gorgeous screen and now multitouch support along with a good camera decent app store and a nice underground dev community i guess the only thing the iPhone would have it beat at is being a music player using the aids infested iTunes and browsing the web.

Wow, you used Nazi and AIDS to describe Apple and it's software in one post. A little pent-up hostility towards Apple maybe?
post #38 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

That was a major mistake allowing them to name the phone Droid. First of all, they'll be sued by Lucasfilm, second, if the phone is a bust it'll be tied very, very closely to the entire Android moniker. They would have been much wiser to call it the "Transformr" (yes, there's a letter missing on purpose) and license the name if necessary from Hasbro.

Hmm... did you look at the website? It says they licensed the name from LucasFilm. They're good.
post #39 of 136
verry moto-esque design
verry 2000.
its really so tired in design that it could be bought as a retro device and considered cool.
post #40 of 136
It's obvious that Verizon's talks with Apple haven't / aren't going well, but given that Apple can provide the iPhone to another company after the exclusivity contract ends with AT&T in June of next year, this is just awful strategy. Sure the talks may not have been going well, and sure Apple would need to make a CDMA version of the iPhone for it to work properly on Verizon's network... but the odds of Apple doing a deal with other cell phone providers for June are very high. Why wouldn't Apple do a deal with T-Mobile or Sprint? You know they will be trying to, if anything just to get AT&T to pay more to re-up the existing deal.

It seems to me that rather than killing all chances of getting the iPhone ever--which they have essentially done at this point knowing Steve's propensity to hold grudges-- they could have saved the money they are putting into the anti-iPhone ads and "iPhone killer" phones and just... done a deal to get the iPhone. As it is Verizon's tired story of "awesome network, crappy phones" will just continue to be true. Or at the very least become "awesome network, better phones than before but not the best/most appealing phone on the market."
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