"Niche Phone!"4.5 starson by Jeremiah-Stpierre
Pros: See bottom in summary
Cons: See bottom in summary
Summary: I have had the droid 4 for two months now. My first smartphone was a Blackberry Curve; the phone after that, my last phone was a first-generation Droid Incredible. I have been around iPhones and other smartphones but the Blackberry and Incredible are really my only basis for comparison.
Size- My first impression of the phone is that is was a brick. It felt thick and heavy in my hand. I am very comfortable with the size and weight now.
Keyboard- my first impression was that it was too wide. I felt like my fingers had to stretch to reach the center keys. A week or two into using it I felt comfortable. The individual keys have a really nice feel. I don't know why but I get some weird pleasure out of typing on this thing and then slapping the keyboard shut like I used to get from closing my flip-phones to hang up.
Screen- I saw that a couple of people mentioned "wash out" from looking at it in the sun, for me this phone's screen is an improvement in that aspect (over the Incredible). Maybe my old Incredible was really bad though. The resolution is 20% better but the screen is 20% larger in dimension so it doesn't really look any sharper (I.e same "pixel density"). I recommend researching pixel density if you are looking for a phone that looks sharper than an iPhone. There are very few phones with equal or greater pixel densities to that one.
Battery life- again I see a lot of complaints about this but I see an improvement. This phone holds like 40% more charge (based on mAh) than my Incredible did and it seems to last almost twice as long with similar use. It has a cool battery management program that you can use to "teach" the phone how to shut down functions you don't use under certain conditions (I.e. dim the screen and turn off wifi/gps when battery gets to >25%). I pay for the ability to use the phone as a 4g wifi hotspot and this seems to kill 10-15% more battery per hour, just FYI. Unless I turn on the 4g hotspot the phone has no problem being unplugged in the morning and re-charged at night (for me).
Verizon 4g- this is my first 4g phone and I am never going back. The slowest download speed I have tested so far was 3.5Mbps in the middle of the Atlanta airport. I have seen 27Mbps where I live. I put my wifi-only iPad on the 4g hotspot and it works great. FaceTime is flawless and seems to use about 6-7 megabytes of data per minute or 200Mb for a thirty minute video chat (again, just FYI so you can guess at your data plan needs). I pay for 6Gb/ month and I am burning about 4 up. I use the 4g hotspot in lieu of hotel Internet 3 nights a week (I travel a lot). Oh, and I have been pretty impressed with the 4g coverage too. I was getting 17Mbps down in Davenport, IL the other day. Like an idiot I didn't look up 4g coverage maps before buying the phone. I recommend doing that. I have had a handful of times that I had to re-name the hotspot and turn it off/on for the iPad to detect it.
Miscellaneous- it has a multi-color LED above the screen. I set different colors for different notifications and get a lot of use out of the function when it's on silent (red light for texts, green for emails, etc.) The power button is a little annoying. It seems almost recessed into the phone. I guess the designers wanted to prevent accidental bumping while using the keyboard. I don't bump it much when I am typing but it has happened.
Overall impression- it's a 4g smartphone with a good slide-out keyboard. The network and the keyboard are the only things that stand out for me. I hated typing on a touch screen. This phone is what I was looking for and I am happy with the purchase.
P.S. for best deal of the Motorola Droid 4, if you're will buy it, I suggest you have to check before you decide at: Androidphonedeals.wordpress.com/motorola-droid-4/
Hope this review helpful.