I’ve been using my Droid for about three months now, and I like it more and more. I’ve read up on some of the tech stuff, and I thought you’d be interested.
The Droid OS is Android 2.0, while the Motorola network is the Verizon CDMA 1X 800/1900 EVDO (I knew you’d want to know that). Motorola claims up to 270 hours of standby time on a single charge and up to 385 minutes of talk time, but that must be with email, messaging and everything turned off because I’ve never come close to that.
I’ve been using the built-in 5MP camera with its 4x digital zoom and dual LED flash a lot more than any other camera phone I’ve ever had. It’s so easy to use (despite my shooting my 1st video with the camera turned sideways!). The camera sports auto focus and cropping, rotation, and Geo tagging tools. The Droid will play music and video and can record DVD quality video at 720 x 480.
I now have three separate email accounts on my Droid and integration was straightforward. I’ve been a Google slut for some time now—Gmail, Calendar, Contacts, AdSense, AdWords, Google, Google Docs… You name it if it’s Google I probably use it.
It’s a treat to jot down a note in GDocs (the Droid Google docs app) and find it waiting in my Docs folder when I get home. Likewise for calendaring and adding new contacts. I admit to being a bit paranoid about “the cloud” – what if the cloud blows away? – But the convenience is just compelling. I do backup my contacts and email.
If you’re used to the lightweight iPhone, or even a Blackberry (my previous smartphone), the Droid is strange at first. It’s hefty – mine weighs 6.5 ounces – and the bottom edge of the phone overhangs the lower part of the screen about 3/8”. The phone’s mic is located on the bottom edge, so you don’t cover it with your cheek when you talk, and it’s a useful little handle to slide open the QWERTY keyboard.
The Droid is a lot quicker on the draw than the iPhone or other phones. Its accelerometers switch the screen from landscape to portrait almost instantly when you rotate the phone. The soft keyboard also has excellent visual and audio feedback. I make a lot of typing errors, but I can correct them quickly.
I started with the native Droid browser but switched to the Dolphin browser and like it a lot. I provide the gesture enlarge and reduce and allows you to program your gestures. That said, I am eagerly awaiting the first Firefox browser for the Droid.
The screen is bright with great color reproduction and is excellent for video. I am watching YouTube on it with great enjoyment.
The slide out keyboard has a D-pad that lets you scroll and select things when you are surfing the web, which is ideal for correcting my numerous typing errors. The screen resolution makes it easy to see an entire web page without needing to zoom in or out.
Most iPhone users are fiercely loyal, but even they complain about AT&T 3G coverage. 3G with Verizon is so much faster than the AT&T 3G connection, and call quality on the Droid is outstanding.
The Droid keyboard is hard for fat-fingered me to get used to. I am getting better, but it would be much improved with rounded instead of flat-top keys. I wind up using the soft keyboard often, despite the lack of a D-pad. I might feel differently if I had ever owned an iPhone, but I’ve used one often enough to be convinced that the Droid can only get better, and the tight integration with Google apps is just great.
The final grade for the Droid? A-.