Pros Decent version of Android 2.3.4 and all the great things that go with it.
Cons Some infrequent radio/network problems make it frustrating to use requiring use of airplane mode and sometimes power cycling to restore normal functionality.
Summary Had this phone for 5 months now.Just received a major system upgrade over the air 2 days ago. So far, the connectivity problems seem to be fully resolved: WiFi functions 100% reliably now; 4G performs 100% reliably now. I am astonished at how much more reliable this phone is now. It's a shame it took Motorola 6 months to deliver this level of quality; my initial review would been much higher (probably 4 stars). Nevertheless, thank you Verizon and Motorola for this much needed update.
Problems with Droid Bionic:
1. 4G doesn't work right. Sometimes device shows 4G and strong signal but can't surf or use any Internet services. Power cycling resolves it temporarily. I have set phone to use 3G only for increased reliability.
2. Rarely the device won't turn back on. Have to remove the battery and put it back in to get it working again. This happens when the charge is still ok on the battery. This is very inconvenient and time consuming since it requires dismantling the Otter Box protective cover and then opening the very difficult battery cover.
3. WiFi sometimes does not work. Need to toggle airplane mode to get it working (FYI: also WiFi signal strength is much weaker than any other WiFi device and is very limited in range).
4. When syncing with IMAP email account, sent items synced originally when using "push" feature, but do not sync anymore when using scheduled sync.
5. Camera function is so slow it is almost useless. Camera picture clarity is poor. Hard to believe camera is 8 megapixel.
6. Sometimes email sync never stops and nothing comes in. Have to power cycle to resolve.
These problems were present before I loaded apps, so I beleive they are system/firmware problems.
Overall, I feel the problems are all related to poor software quality assurance.
Battery seems to last me the entire day - though I have email set to sync only every 15 minutes and I am using 3G CDMA mode almost exclusively since 4G networking is very unreliable (even with strong signal).
Performance is good. I highly recommend a dual-core design.
I would not recommend this phone. I would not buy another Motorola mobile phone product.
System version 5.5.893.XT875.Verizon.en.US
Android version 2.3.4
Baseband version CDMA_N_03.1C .57R Itedc_u_05.15.01
Webtop version WT-1.3.0-108_DBN-21
Kernel version 188.8.131.52-g68606e6
ERI version 5
PRL version 15098
Updated on Feb 14, 2012
Here are the new versions that appear to give a much better experience:
System version 5.9.902.XT875.Verizon.en.US
Android version 2.3.4
Baseband version CDMA_N_04.07.00R LTEDC_U_07.1F.00
Webtop version WT-1.3.0-108_DBN-24
Kernel version 184.108.40.206-g83f1a47
ERI version 5
PRL version 15098
Updated on Aug 8, 2012BAD NEWS: just got another update a couple months ago. The update decreased reliability noticeably. The phone now is much less reliable. It requires power cycling several times a week to get network connectivity working again. Typically, the network icon shows 4G but does not allow any data transfer (the icon remains white and does not turn blue as it should) and sometimes it does not show any data connectivity icon at all. This is a huge hassle since this phone takes what seems like a full minute to boot up. Also, the battery life is much less now with this latest update. Also, the web browser now has some minor usability problems that were not there previously. Motorola's updates are infrequent and their system software quality is poor. Suffice it to say that I will NEVER buy a Motorola product ever again.
Updated on Oct 25, 20126 days ago I received an over-the-air update from Motorola with the Android 4.0.4 version 6.7.246.XT875.Verizon.en.US I've been surprized by the significant improvement in reliability and usefulness of the phone. Unlike with the prior version, which was a reliability nightmare, I have not had 4G & WiFi connectivity problems of any kind. The WiFi connectivity problems have been mitigated by a new feature which pops up when the phone has not yet connected to a memorized WiFi source. Previously, you had to manually enter the WiFi menu to force this to happen. 4G has also been surprisingly reliable in contrast to the prior unreliable version. The GPS problem has also been fixed. It now finds GPS location within a few seconds. In the prior version, this was broken and it took about two minutes to find GPS location. The camera function has also been improved, slightly. Battery life has been noticeably improved. This release seems to be very stable. 8 months since last bad release
Updated on Nov 12, 2012Thought I'd drop another note about the latest Android 4.0.4 version. So far, it has been VERY RELIABLE for me. TREMENDOUS IMPROVEMENTS were made to various features as noted in last review update resulting in a now satisfactory usability experience. It's really a shame that Motorola couldn't deliver this kind of reliability and stability prior to this release. Had they done so, I would have rated it 4 stars (browser is still a little clunky making it difficult to modify search strings).
A point of special praise: Motorola's music player is the absolute BEST of any that I have seen by anyone else in that it correctly displays MP3 metadata all others I have seen fail.
CORRECTION TO LAST REVIEW: it had been 5 months of pain and suffering with the last 2.3.4 version, not 8 months; although, the phone was previously, at its best, only a fraction as good as it is now.
Pros Dual Core
QVGA HD Screen
Slim for its components
Battery Life is upper middle of the road [for smartphones that means you should see roughly a full day or day and a half [WITHOUT BATTERY MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE]
Cons 2 stars until this phone is fixed and fully operational
First OTA Update BRICKED the phone
It constantly drops the data connection [including mobile data, WiFi and Bluetooth]
Motorola Bloatware and Overlay
Summary Oh and if you need to verify what I am writing below is truthful please just search Google for bionic WiFi problem, Bionic Mobile Data problem, etc. and start counting the threads and offered fixes
Look this phone looks awesome and could be great that I don't debate, but trust me I am a computer tech and have been for a long time [I am also an Android ROM Developer] when I say this thing has some REAL issues. I am flabbergasted to see what has been posted on CNet in regards to this phone, but then I look and the editors review as well as most ALL the front page comments are from fanboys, and folks who JUST got their phone. My reports comes in after 2 weeks of having to help my boss with his new Bionic.
He has gone through 4 FOUR [not kidding] Bionics in a little over 10 days now. The problem all began after he has had it for a bit and all of a sudden he got awoken late at night by some weird noise. He looks over and the phone is stuck on a screen stating OTA update. He waits and several hours later samething so he reboots. Gets to the same point and same thing. He then restarts again, all of a sudden after he sees the bootsplash screen stating Dual Core the whole thing went dark and he could not boot it after that. He comes in and speaks with me and a Verizon tech. As soon as I get online and read up I see reports of Bluetooth Wireless [WiFi] and Mobile Data [3g, 4g] connection issues and figured thats what the OTA was about. I have him call Verizon and as soon as we got a tech on the line and he told them what happened he got 2 sentences in and the tech groans NOT ANOTHER ONE [oh great that really inspires confidence]. So they say no problem we will send you another one. He gets it in 2 days and un-boxes it and sets it up and is happy right? NOPE, he comes to find out a couple hours later that the one he got which is supposedly a "certified" reconditioned phone has no working phone speaker. The Bluetooth and wired headsets work, but come on no ringtones on phone when called, no notifications same way, etc. so he calls in again and gets another phone in a day or 2. This one has a working speaker [YAY!], but after setting it all up the next day it begins dropping his mobile data and WiFi randomly [yes when he has full signal]. I look at it and make sure no apps are getting in the way, no battery managers, etc. Still he now has to reboot his phone roughly 3x an hour to maintain mobile data. We have tried connection re-setters, juice defender etc etc etc trust me this is my boss I have been tearing through information online and all the settings to get this figured out this is NOT due to human error.
I would say this phone COULD be the best phone soo far, BUT YOU SHOULD WAIT UNTIL YOU GET TOTAL CONFIRMATION MOTOROLA HAS FIXED THE MOBILE DATA AND THE CPU AT IDLE BURNING ITSELF OUT BEFORE BUYING THIS DEVICE. DONT TRUST MOTOROLA WHEN THEY SAY AN UPDATE IS PENDING BY THE WAY MY CLIQ XT WAITED 18 MONTHS TO GET OFF DROID 1.5 AND THEN THEY JUST GAVE UP AND IT STILL TECHNICALLY DROID 1.5 [IF I HAD NOT GOTTEN IN TO BUILDING MY OWN ROM AND NOW HAVE ANDROID 2.3.7 FULLY WORKING [THANKS MOTO I COULD DO WHAT YOU COULDN'T I GUESS LoL].
Just goes to show how much they actually care about customers when they make a mistake and you end up paying for it. I used to be all about Moto for quality and good equipment, but since the "smart"phone revolution they are just as bad a crap shoot as a Chinese black market white box phone
OH AND YOU SHOULD NEVER be forced in to buying docking stations if you have a Bluetooth keyboard, mouse and a Mini HDMI to VGA or PCI-E adapter you can make a computer out of any smartphone without docks or "Webtop" crap and save the money. This guy went totally overboard spending way too much money without proper research [IMHO] Please keep this post in mind when you complete reading his for a balance as I cant just sit here and let other unsuspecting people see this as the number 1 review on the front page when it is wrong.
Sorry for spelling and grammar I am in a hurry at work cant afford to sit here for long.
- 4G LTE + Dual Core OMAP 4430
- Black Chrome Accent
- Thin Bezel - Thinner than RAZR
- Removable/Upgradable Battery
- Bright Screen - Viewable in Daylight
- Battery Manager
- A lot of useful accessories: Lapdock, HD Dock w/Remote, ...
Cons - Delayed about 8 months
- Camera is slow in dim-dark lighting
- Although the Bionic is not a thick phone (equivalent to the Droid X2) it is not as thin as the current crop of ultra high-end smartphones.
Summary Had this phone for over 2 months with zero issues. When I purchased this phone I also bought the Lapdock, HD dock, bluetooth keyboard, HDMI cable and 32GB MicroSD card.
Found the Lapdock to be extremely useful when traveling for work or leisure. Sure makes plane rides and hotel stays a lot more enjoyable. With 16GB internal storage and 32GB external, I can fit over 24 full length HD movies and watch it on the Lapdock, mirror it on my HDMI TVs, or use DLNA to wirelessly stream media to/from any Windows 7 PCs or any DLNA enabled TVs.
The size of the phone is nearly identical to the Droid X2 in width and length. It is slightly thinner (~1mm) at the top and slightly thicker (~1mm) at the bottom than the Droid X2. It is by far thinner than the OG Droid.
Had the chance to upgrade to the Droid RAZR, but after weighing the pros and cons I decided to stay with the Droid Bionic for a few reasons:
- The processor is the same OMAP 4430 with a slightly lower clock rate which equates to better battery life.
- There is no noticeable speed increase on the RAZR.
- The Bionic docking stations looks better.
- The Lapdock is much thinner with a bigger battery.
- The Bionic looks a lot better than the RAZR.
- Other than the processor speed and thinness of the RAZR, the Bionic is equivalent in every other way.
Although it seems that I'm bashing the RAZR, I am only comparing it to the Bionic and stating the reasons why I didn't upgrade. Yes, "upgrade", the Droid RAZR is a superior phone to the Bionic. If I didn't already buy the Bionic and accessories, my first choice would have been the Droid RAZR.
I also had the chance to wait for the Galaxy Nexus, which is probably the best Android phone ever built to date, but it is way to big for me and it does not have anything similar to the Lapdock or HD Station w/Remote. Plus, (IMHO) Motorola's hardware and voice quality is by far the best.
The HTC Rezound was the "other" phone I (briefly) considered; although it is a great phone with media in mind, it too does not have any accessories similar to the Droid Bionic (or RAZR for that matter). Plus the build quality is not even close to Motorola or Samsung.
Overall, the Droid Bionic is a top notch phone that will upgrade to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. The hardware should be good for a couple of years, just in time for the next big thing.
Pros Giant screen size.
Cons Battery doesn't last more than 6 hours with light use.
Summary I would stay away from this phone unless you like your wireless phone being wired to an outlet all day.
Pros Great when it works... Good connection to voice calls, and I love the setup of the interface to switch during calls.
Cons Currently the Bionic has a know data connectivity loss issue. This is a huge problem for someone such as myself that travels and uses the internet connectivity on the phone for work. Another con is that the phone is pretty bulky.
Summary Currently Motorola Droid Bionic has a know issue to drop data connectivity with 3G & 4G LTE service when connected. I have gone through 3 phones with the same issue and am currently working with Verizon on how to resolve this problem, as Motorola is working on releasing the update to fix the issue. Once the update is released, I would probably give this phone a 3.5/5 star rating instead, but until that time, don't waste your time with this phone.