I’ve been asked several questions about the Droid so I think its time to post what I know about the device. I have yet to get my hands on the Droid and plan on visiting Verizon this week, so I’ll add more detail if I find something significant to post.
Like many of you, I am on the Verison network and do not have a cool smartphone yet. I’ve been very patiently watching how the iPhone has slowly been taking over the market. Being a big Mac fan, it may be a surprise to some of you that I do not have an iPhone. Well….until Verizon starts carrying the iPone, I will go on being patient, but my contract is due in May 2010, so I am shopping around right now.
There are many rumors about the iPhone coming to Verizon next year, but nothing is concrete as of yet. Regardless, it would be on a different network (hardware speaking) than AT&T and would require some changes internally, so why not look at an Android, which claims to be better. Well….let’s look at some of the features.
First, the Good Stuff: Andorid Operating System – Key to the device. This open source software is very fast and efficient. In tests against the iPhone it handles pretty much the same and developers are making applications for the Droid daily, but one report I read said this fad will wear out due to the overwhelming market share the iPhone currently has. Developers go where the money is and the Droid is just not there yet. It has a 5 Megapixel camera….very cool and better than the iPhone’s 3 MP camera. It has Google Navigation, which is free! This is one of the coolest features on the phone. Real time mapping, traffic, and SATELLITE IMAGERY…just like Google Maps on your computer. The Street view could come in very handy down the road. It has a slide-out keyboard and a touch keyboard (landscape and portrait), larger display, removable battery, and SD card slot. These are all pluses in my book.
Now for the down side: No iTunes compatibility!!! If you have most of your worldly possessions wrapped up in iTunes, this may not be the phone for you! Applications are few compared to the thousands that can be found on the iPhone. It is a bit faster and internet seems to run smoother on the iPhone, but it really depends on the network and wi-fi you happen to be using. The biggest downside to the Droid….it’ll never catch up to the popularity and proliferation of the iPone. It seems many smartphone developers are just going to be playing catch-up. The Droid will cost you more in the end: First….you pay for a minutes plan, then you shell out $30 for data, if you want Microsoft Exchange support it will cost you another $15 a month, tethering will cost you an additional $60 a month and has a 5Gb limit. It seems you keep paying and paying to have a Droid. Why can’t there just be one fee for having a smartphone like Blackberry!
So, if you can live without iTune syncing (you can always add your music through the Droid’s native syncing) and don’t mind shelling out a bit more over the life of the phone, you may want to check out the Droid. It is a beautiful device and I do like the open source Operating System, but I’m willing to be patient and see how if Verizon starts carrying the iPhone. I have the time to wait, so why not let the newness of the Droid wear out a bit and see how this battle unfolds.