Motorola announced today through its official community blog that a RAZR "Developer Edition" (evidently based on the original Droid RAZR, not its newer MAXX counterpart) is in the works. The dev-friendly device will carry an unlockable bootloader and is poised to hit European markets relatively soon, with a (yet unspecified) unlockable device bound for the U.S. "in the coming months." Oddly enough, the blog post was pulled (perhaps it was published prematurely; Update: it's live once again), but luckily the text of the post has been retained:
As promised, the ultra-impressive DROID RAZR MAXX went on sale today, but for a premium price of $300 with a new two-year contract at Verizon. Not so, says Wirefly, who is charging just $230 for the thin-yet-juiced phone.
What's so special about the MAXX? It's nearly the same as the DROID RAZR, but with one major difference: it's nearly 2mm thicker (for a total thickness of a still-svelte 9mm) to accommodate a whopping 3,300 mAh battery (versus 1,780 in the non-MAXX version).
Assuming the Google/Motorola merger goes through, Google might want to rethink that whole hands-off approach to managing its new hardware company. According to Motorola's press release, the company saw a net loss of about $80 million, after $3.4 billion in revenue. It's not the worst loss in the world, but shareholders are never happy when they see red.
The tablet sales figures are bad, though. Motorola says in Q4 of 2011, it shipped 200,000 tablets.
A recent Newsweek article has been making the rounds claiming, through an unnamed Apple "insider," that Apple has spent north of $100 million litigating its various grievances against HTC since late 2010. Verifying the accuracy of this number is pretty much impossible. But that doesn't really matter. It may just as well be $80 million, $150 million, or $300 million - the conclusion drawn would remain the same: Apple is spending quite a chunk of income on its growing lawsuit habit.
Motorola recently announced two entry-level Android smartphones for the Chinese, European, and Latin American markets, the Defy Mini and the Motoluxe. Both devices are now available for pre-order on Clove, and they are expected to ship in late February/early March.
The Motoluxe is priced at £215 (£258 inc. VAT).
The Defy Mini is priced at £145.83 (£174.99 inc. VAT).
Additionally, Motorola have teamed up with UK-based construction manufacturer JCB to give the "rugged" Defy+ a makeover.
International Trade Commission Judge Theodore Essex decided in Washington today that Motorola Mobility did not violate three of Apple's Patents, as the Cupertino tech giant had claimed. Two of the patents related to touchscreen features, including multi touch, and a device's ability to recognize various types of manual input, like sliding and pinching gestures. The third, as Bloomberg explains, "is for a way to add components without having to run an installation program or rebooting."
This case comes as one of many in a long saga of attacks on Android for alleged patent infringement, part of an effort by Apple across four continents to prove that Android copies pieces of the iPhone's functionality.
Well, it's official - the "project" Xoom owners have been waiting for is an update to Ice Cream Sandwich, meant as a soak test, expected to last through the weekend. Moto has begun pushing the new software as of 9pm PST. An anonymous tipster has provided us with shots of a private section of Motorola's official XOOM support forum, which confirm that the update is going live to those lucky enough to join the test group.
Late yesterday, we got a chance to spend some time with the Motorola DROID 4 over at the Verizon booth here at CES, and we have to say - It sure seems like Motorola has done it again. The DROID 4 will likely once again set the bar for QWERTY slider phones, and thanks to the addition of 4G LTE and a snappy TI OMAP 4430 dual-core processor (the same one found in the DROID RAZR), it's also going to be the fastest DROID yet.
That's the phrase Larry Page used to describe Google's recent shut down of underperforming products. Stop flooding the market with crap, and focus on fewer, higher quality products. Now it seems Motorola has somehow gotten the exact same idea.
AllThingsD reports that Motorola "plans to release fewer new models this year, in an effort to concentrate its marketing dollars." I hope they are concentrating their design, polish, and update efforts too.
Have you ever used the Webtop feature built into a number of Motorola's newest devices? According to CEO Sanjay Jha, not many users are actively firing up the desktop-in-a-cellphone feature - less than ten percent, to be exact. Makes sense, though, as it's basically a watered-down desktop experience, and no one really wants that.
According to Jha, Moto is aware of the issues with Webtop and wants to make it more useable.