Motorola Droid is iPhone killer, or so Verizon hopes

Looks like Android 2.0 is shaping up to be an attractive proposition. And Motorola has new hardware to match. Yes, Motorola: who knew? In IT Blogwatch, bloggers type the words "killer" and "iPhone" (not necessarily in that order).

By Richi Jennings. October 29, 2009.

(VX) (MOT)

Your humble blogwatcher selected these bloggy morsels for your enjoyment. Not to mention pumpkin cannon...

    Sinead Carew unveils the news:

Verizon Wireless and Motorola have unveiled what could be their best shot yet in the battle against Apple Inc’s iPhone. ... Motorola says Droid is the most technically advanced smartphone out there. ... speedy Cortex A8 ARM Processor ... First dibs on Android 2.0 ... A new free navigation service ... A higher resolution screen that’s better than iPhone.

...

Verizon’s Chief Marketing Officer John Stratton promised to spend more money advertising this device than any phone in its history. He said that it could be seen as a ”big risk” for Verizon ... to bet on a handset maker that had been steadily losing ground. But he said his company liked working Motorola so much that it plans to sell more Motorola Android phones in 2010.
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Matt Phillips runs the numbers:

Verizon’s official unveiling of the Motorola Droid phone seems to be giving the telecom giant a lift. It’s currently the biggest positive contributor to a Dow that’s firmly in the red. ... Verizon shares are up 2.5%. Apple is down 1.5%. ... [It] represents a major bid by Verizon to counter the iPhone, which has been eating into its results in recent quarters.

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Droid will start selling in Verizon stores Nov. 6 at $199.
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Ed Burnette cracks the obvious Obi-Wan gag:

Is this the iPhone killer you're looking for? ... Droid boasts a glorious 3.7? FWVGA (480×854) capacitive multi-touch display, which works out to 260 dots per inch and a true 16:9 HD aspect ratio. By contrast, the Apple iPhone is only 3.5? HVGA (320×640), at 160 dots per inch. ... Bottom line: on the Droid you’ll get crisper graphics, smoother letters, high definition movies without letterboxing, and web pages with less scrolling.

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It also features a super-thin QWERTY slide-out keyboard. Yet somehow Motorola managed to squeeze all that in a package that is almost exactly the same size as the iPhone. ... It looks like Motorola and Verizon have a hit on their hands.
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Chris Smith is bewitched:

Believe it or not the Droid has impressed us a lot and we’re not the only one to praise it. Everyone is talking about the phone and many people are really envious to see that only Verizon Wireless customers are going to get it. But what lies behind Motorola’s new found success?

...

There’s only one answer for that. The company has hired Sanjay Jha as co-chief executive in 2008 and he managed to pull off a miracle. ... The engineering team behind the Droid did a remarkable job at assembling a phone capable of fighting the iPhone. ... It looks like all you need is vision and guts to pull a stunt like this.
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But Seth Weintraub is bothered:

You'd think that Google just invented a way to make cars fly from the reaction to its new navigation software today. ... It isn't too much different that what they've already had in the iPhone Maps.app. ... It has the ability to map, get directions, see satelle imagery and find stuff along the way. It helps sometimes, but having maps stored on the device is the only fool-proof way to make sure I'll get where I am going. I've lost the data signal enough to know not to trust it 100%.

...

And the voice input thing? I am sure that is going to work really well. How many people use the iPhone Google search app with voice? ... It isn't that accurate when I speak right into the iPhone. I don't think it is going to be much better at four feet away in a running car. Yet, the stock prices of Garmin and TomTom are tumbling 20% on the news.
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  And Brian Brotalo is bewildered:

I don’t see iPhone aficionados dropping their beloved Jesus phones anytime soon for the Motorola Droid. With that being said, I’m pretty sure though that those who had their doubts about the Android platform will now have change of heart once they get a hold of the Motorola Droid, and this will be as big a hit for Verizon as the iPhone was when it first debuted on AT&T.

How about you guys? What’s your take on the Motorola Droid?
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So what's your take?

Get involved: leave a comment.

    And finally...

Richi Jennings, your humble blogwatcher
  Richi Jennings is an independent analyst/consultant, specializing in blogging, email, and security. A cross-functional IT geek since 1985, he is also an analyst at Ferris Research. You can follow him as @richi on Twitter, or richij on FriendFeed, pretend to be richij's friend on Facebook, or just use good old email: itblogwatch@richij.com.

 
 
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