Since the release of the Samsung Galaxy S III, I have enjoyed a newer, higher bar with which to compare all other phones. The Motorola Razr Maxx HD does get seriously near that bar and even offers a few bits that might entice IT pros to choose it over other smartphones.
Let's dig into this mobile device to see what's good, bad, and why it's important to IT.
- Carrier: Verizon
- Operating system: Android 4.0
- Networks: CDMA 800/1900, LTE B13, WCDMA 850/900/1900/2100, GSM 850/900/1800/1900 EVDO Rev. A, HSDPA 21.1 Mbps (Cat 14), HSUPA 5.76 Mbps
- Data: CDMA; EV-DO; GSM; HSDPA; HSUPA; LTE; WCDMA
- CPU: 1.5 GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4
- RAM: 1 GB
- ROM: 32 GB
- Internal memory: 32 GB
- Memory expansion: microSD
- Display: 4.7-inch 1280 x 720 Super AMOLED HD (Gorilla glass)
- Camera: 8 MP rear, 1.3 MP front
- Battery: 3,300-mAh with up to 32 hours of mixed usage
What I like
There is a lot to like about the Motorola Razr Maxx HD. The design, the nearly-pure Android 4.0 platform (very little extraneous software), the expandability, and the power. But there are some things that really stand out from most other smartphone devices:
- Battery life
In the realm of battery life, the Android platform has lagged behind the iPhone for a while. That ends with the Razr Maxx HD. This is the first Android device I've used that wasn't in desperate need of a recharge at the end of the day. In fact, you can expect to get a full eight hours even when doing heavy 4G LTE web surfing. And although that 3,300-mAh battery does add some extra heft to the device, the added battery life is easily worth carrying around the extra weight.
The Razr Maxx HD display is brilliant and beautiful. Watching YouTube videos is as close to viewing on a HD television as I've seen on a mobile device. The video quality is sharper than any smartphone I've used. The colors are lush and the refresh is near perfect.
The audio on this device is also one of the best I've ever heard — not so much for clarity of sound (we're not talking studio-quality monitors), but for sheer volume. You won't have any problems hearing what the tiny speakers pump out.
Finally, the durability of this device outshines every phone I've tested to date. The second you hold the Razr Maxx HD in your hand, you know right away that this is a serious piece of hardware. The back of the phone is a Kevlar/carbon mix and the front has Gorilla glass. The phone also boasts a water-repellent coating. Add it all together, and you have one tough smartphone.
What I don't like
There is very little to dislike about the Motorola Razr Maxx HD. But I will say there are two nits I have to pick. The first is the location of the SIM/microSD card. To get to the slot, there's a special tool included that you must use. If you lose that tool, you'll have to find a paperclip or something similar that's thin enough to punch through the hole on the side of the device to gain access.
The second issue is another minor pet peeve, but the Motorola phones do not include a restart button. With the Samsung Galaxy phones, you can hold in the power button and get the choice of either Shut Down or Restart. With the Motorola phones, you only get Shut Down. Sometimes, a simple restart is all you need.
Outside of those minor things, this phone is spot on.
Why the Razr Maxx HD is good for IT
Let's face it, administrators don't need to be concerned with having to charge their phones during the day, nor do they need to be so worried about handling a phone with kid gloves. The Razr Maxx HD solves both of these issues. Anyone in the IT industry will greatly appreciate the battery life and durability of this device. Add to that the incredible networking speeds and raw power, and you have the makings for one ideal phone for any IT admin on the go.
Plus, if you're looking for a new smartphone to deploy to your staff, the Razr MAXX HD will wind up with far fewer issues on your plate — fewer broken screens, fewer dead phones (thanks to moisture), fewer complaints about battery life, and much more.
Given the choice between my current smartphone litmus test (Samsung Galaxy S III) and the Razr Maxx HD, I'd have a hard time choosing. At the moment, the S III wins out; but the way the Razr line is evolving, that smartphone could soon eclipse all other devices.
Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website jackwallen.com.