Verizon refreshes aging RAZR lineup with new Android smartphones from Google's Motorola division.
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Verizon Wireless introduced three new smartphones Tuesday, all of which are made by Google's Motorola unit. The Droid Ultra, Droid Mini and Droid MAXX take the place of three outgoing Motorola handsets and modernize Verizon's Droid lineup.
Specifically, the three new models replace the RAZR HD, RAZR M and RAZR MAXX. Each of the three new handsets carries forward design language and features common to Motorola's Android smartphones from the past few years, including extended battery life and toughened exteriors due to the use of Kevlar.
The Droid Ultra is extraordinarily thin at 7.18 mm. That makes it one of the thinnest smartphones available on the market. The Ultra boasts significant battery life of more than 32 hours, despite its thin profile. This surpasses the 24-hour life from last year's model. The MAXX is only slightly thicker, yet offers a compelling 48 hours of battery life. That's enough for mobile professionals to get through two solid work days on a single charge. Motorola has taken pains to extend the battery life of its smartphones the last 18 months, and these two handsets, in particular, show that its efforts have paid off.
Motorola is using an interesting processor setup with all three handsets to minimize power requirements. For example, it will allow features such as voice activation and other sensors to continue operating even when the device is inactive. These keep features in the forefront while also making sure the devices don't unnecessarily drain their batteries.
The Droid Mini is the smallest of the three handsets and it takes the place of the RAZR M. Where the Ultra and MAXX share 5-inch AMOLED displays, the Mini has a 4.3-inch TFT LCD display. The two larger screens are full HD, while the smaller display rates 720p HD.
All three devices have a 10-megapixel camera sensor. The cameras come with a bevy of features, including autofocus, flash and 1080p HD video capture. Software is nearly identical across all three phones, which run Android 4.2 Jelly Bean.
All three devices are exclusive to Verizon Wireless, which has been the case with Motorola's Droid-branded handsets over the last few years. The Mini will sell for $99 on contract. The Ultra and Maxx, which share most features except for battery life, will sell for $199 and $299, respectively. All three devices are available for preorder and will reach Verizon Wireless stores on August 20.
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