If you're a Verizon subscriber considering a new smart phone and the iPhone 4S was on your radar – well, consider this specification side-by-side between the 4S and the Android-powered Droid RAZR, which Motorola announced earlier today:
Both the iPhone 4S and the Droid RAZR offer 8 MP digital photos and 1080p video, but the RAZR has an HDMI jack to connect and play your video footage on your HDTV.
Just like the entry-level iPhone 4S, RAZR has 16 GB of memory built in and comes with a free 16 GB micro SD card pre-installed, which means you actually get a 32 GB phone for the same price as the 16 GB iPhone 4S ($199 with two-year contract). Of course, you can add up to a 32 GB micro SD card, giving the RAZR a total of 48 GB, for another $40. That's s lot more memory for s lot less money than iPhone 4S.
Droid also has a stainless steel core (which Motorola says is back-pocket tested), a Kevlar rear for additional structural support, a nearly scratch-free Corning Gorilla glass screen, a water resistant splash guard to guard against accidental coffee spillage or toilet dunking.
RAZR or iPhone 4S?
While I wouldn't say the Droid RAZR (available for pre-order on October 27, in stores sometime next month) is as pretty as the iPhone 4S or the original RAZR flip phone, but sometimes aesthetics take a back seat to functionality.
And I'm not suggesting you buy the Motorola Droid rather than the iPhone 4S – iOS is still an easier OS to grok than Android for most folks, and iTunes makes loading up your content on your phone much easier than the iTunes-less Android. And, of course, Android lacks Siri.
I'm just pointing out that, as a geek (and an iPhone 4S owner), Droid RAZR's specs are what I/we wanted and expected from the iPhone 4S (and perhaps we'll get in the iPhone 5 next summer, if the rumor mill is in the predictive ballpark).
iPhone 4S's lack of 4G data connectivity is particularly galling. While wandering about lower Manhattan this past weekend, I found it impossible to get enough AT&T 3G signal to browse the Web, locate our next destination on Maps or chat with Siri. Even after just a day of knowing her, I missed her.
Not only would I have had no problem connecting via Verizon's 4G LTE network, data connections would have been four times faster than on the iPhone 4S. In some preliminary speed tests at the introductory event today, the Droid RAZR downloaded data at an average of 17 megabits per second (Mbps), compared to iPhone 4S's average speed of 4.5 Mbps – assuming you get a clear connection.
Your choice of smart phone, of course, comes down to more than specs. But the Android makers are making it harder and harder to choose iPhone, and the Droid RAZR along with the similarly spec'd Samsung Galaxy II S models from AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint really increase the choosing-iPhone level of difficulty.
(P.S. Thanks to USA Today's Ed Baig for playing hand model.)