Motorola Razr review: The flip phone is back, but we have concerns
Still. Music motorola aim for the impossible: a flip phone that’s, also a smart phone, a screen that folds in half and honestly there’s. So much going for the Motorola RAZR, the the small form factor, the nostalgia, the groundbreaking design inside and out – and I absolutely love this little peek display on the front. But is it worth 1500? Okay, I’m gon na answer that I promise. But first I want to answer some of the questions you asked me or the people who see me with this phone asked me all the time and yes, there are a lot so let’s do that. First, Music! Does the razor squeak? Yes, okay! This is my review unit and obviously it squeaks it’s not like our like a rubber shoe sole squeaking on like a tiled floor. This is like a like a crunchy, the sour sound if the sound could be sour, it’s absolutely disheartening. In November, a few of us from CNET got to go to Motorola’s headquarters in Chicago and spend the day with three pre production, Motorola raisers and not a single one of them. Squeak least, I don’t. Remember it all so I kind of they felt a little easier to open as well. Now I was told these pre production ears have been used as a daily driver for about five or six months by some of the executives. So when I hear the squeak, I think of this kind of like a new pair of leather boots, possibly like you got to break them in to get the sound out, but I think this is a 1500 phone.
I don’t want to break anything in with it. I don’t want it to squeak Gary, but here’s a Motorola told me when folding and unfolding razor you may hear a sound which is natural from the mechanical movement of the phone. So let’s just talk about this mechanical movement, but essentially behind the display, or most of it is two steel plates that both support the display, but also keep it taut in the open position. And what Motorola is saying is that the movement of these plates is causing that squeak or creak. How bad is the sound it’s, not records, skip lad, but it makes me sad: does the phone have a crease? No, it does not well not like the Galaxy fold. Does at least you see that whole hinge system I was talking about earlier in those metal plates they’re designed so that when you close the phone it doesn’t create a crease on the screen. So really it’s, you think about it. We got either. You could have the squeak or you can have the crease, the crease or this week, boy that’s a tough decision. There are times when watching a video on this screen and I could make out where the steel plates end and begin and there’s a steel plate behind this part of the screen and this part of the screen, but not in the middle it’s kind of like. If you had a couch, you could cover the seat, cushions with a bed sheet really taut, and you could see the space through the bed sheet between the two cushions and that’s what’s happening here.
Does it ruin my experiences phone? No, a little sour but just remind you how delicate the screen is and how thin – and it gives me a little anxiety Music – is the range of durable. Well, this one’s tricky I’ll, wait y! You laugh okay, so you see let’s start with this video that moto rollout release about how to take care of the phone and in it they say the screen is designed to bend bumps and lumps are normal. So far I have not encountered any bumps or lumps on the screen, but when are bumps and lumps actually normal, if you had any bumps or lumps on your body, you should go see a medical, professional or doctor like now like go. Do it bumps and lumps aside the razor has held up pretty well. All I’ve noticed is some lint and occasional dust on the screen, as well as a ton of smudges on the exterior. The phone I’ve used this phone for seven days and I have not seen any kind of damage to the screen or to the hinge aside from this week, but it is impossible for me to know if long term, this phone is going to handle everyday life and The only way to know is to test it over months and months and months using it everyday. Now a wonderful colleague of mine decided to test the durability of the phone and he used a folding machine to fold the phone hundreds of thousands of times.
Well, that’s was the idea at least he got to about 27000 folds and the phone did not break necessarily. It kept working, however, the hinge mechanism prevented it from being folded further. Now I don’t know how this is sort of scientific or unscientific. This test was it’s not really about that, but when you see that – and you add this other anxiety I’ve already had about the phone, this just causes more anxiety and any nostalgia or excitement. I see about the innovative design. Well, it kind of gets drowned out by that anxiety, Music Applause when I started viewing this phone. The real question for me was: is a flip phone form factor worth 1500 and I’d to say every time I flip it open or close it or put my pocket. It kind of feels like it is: if this phone didn’t fold in half it would basically be a average mid tier Android phone now, if you’re looking for premium specs for 1500 and you’re an early adopter, the razor’s not for you, but I was surprised, actually constantly Surprised by how much I absolutely loved using this phone, all right, probably the biggest thing I’ve noticed in using this everyday – is the razor just begs to be used. One handed everything from like flipping it up closing it, but when you have a really tall screen, it makes it hard to reach at the top of it with just one hand. I find myself often using a second hand, to tap feature or bring a control panel down, but you know I’ve actually like what Samson’s been doing lately with one UI one UI to where they basically re envision, how you interact with a larger screen, a taller screen.
They’Ve simplified, where you tap, where you press they’ve, move things to the middle or to the bottom, and they actually make it much easier to use. One handed and I would love to see, Motorola bring some of that to the razor. The display quality is good. Colors pop nicely and the contrast is crisp without looking overly sharp. The 219 aspect ratio is pretty fantastic, especially for films, that’s, watching Blade Runner and The Dark Knight and the original widescreen aspect ratio. The outside display is called the peak display and, as I alluded to before, it’s actually one of my favorite things on the phone. It has a mini control panel for brightness, flashlights, Wi, Fi, Bluetooth and selfies. Also, I should warn you beware of the flashlight shortcut of the front display it will blind you and it’s very hard to turn off, especially in the dark, the tap and hold an icon for a quick peek works really well and is also very discreet, though here’s, Where I wish Motorola went further, it would be great to access more of Google assistance. I know I can do with my voice, but to have just even some subtle google assessing controls on the screen would be awesome. However, some features could actually be a little more helpful. For example, I set a timer while I was cooking the other night for like seven minutes and when I went to checked it on the display. It just said the word timer versus telling me how much time I had left so yeah.
That seems like a miss there’s, a fingerprint reader on the front it’s right below the main screen above the fingerprint reader is an on screen home button that you can use with the moto actions. One of my favorite moto actions is called one but navigation. Basically, what this would do when it first came out on the Moto defy? Is it kind of turned the fingerprint reader and to basically a trackpad for your phone, and I love that feature now on the razor that’s, not the case, instead of using the actual fingerprint reader you have to reach over the fingerprint reader and touch the on screen Home button to trigger the same actions, it just seems a little clunky. I always say buttons are important yeah, I know I’m weird, but honestly they are one of the easiest things to mess up on a phone and now Motorola faced a challenge with the buttons they have on this phone. We have the volume rocker and the home button and they have to work both when the phone is open, as well as when the phone is closed. So the position feels right to me: it’s, really this size, the buttons feel too small and sometimes hard to distinguish. Despite the fact that the wake button has a texture on it, Music, if you have not heard the razor in the United States – is exclusive to Verizon. I don’t really have a problem with that, but I didn’t have a problem with all the bloatware Verizon put on this phone seriously: it’s 2020.
Why is bloatware still a thing I removed most of it, though I have to admit I did like the Game of Thrones experience thing. So call me hypocrite all right, then there’s the battery, so the razor actually has a very small battery 2500 milliamp hours. So I still have a ton of battery testing to do, but I was able to run one of our battery tests and what I did is I played a video on a loop setting in airplane mode at 50 brightness and the razor lasted 13 hours and 3 Minutes which is definitely respectable in everyday use, the battery was pretty good. I got through most of the day. I found myself having a top off around dinnertime versus say, like bedtime, that said, I look forward to using this phone when I’m, not reviewing it to see. If we can actually get through a normal day, the Motorola RAZR basically has one camera that doubles for selfies and the rear camera it’s decent, but isn’t at the level of the pixel for iPhone 11 or galaxy note. 10000 good light are sharp with nice contrast, but as soon as you are in medium to low light, things start to fall apart. There’S lots of image noise or whatever those the razor does a lot is it tries to compensate with a longer shutter speed, leading to blurred motion video well it’s. There it’s fine you’re not going to be making a movie with a razor, but let me tell you about a really fun feature: they use the external display for when it detects a face in the frame, it will throw up the cartoon emoji on the camera.
Now this is great for getting kids attention, or maybe an inebriated adults attention, so you can get them looking at the camera. The right place, it’s really fun, it’s frivolous, but it makes me happy all right before you comment now. Technically, there is a second camera on the moto rollout razor it’s on the inside atop, the display where the knot is it’s purely used for video chat, yeah it’s there hey, but let’s wrap this review up at the beginning of this video I asked the question: is The Moto raiser worth 1500 to me, it’s, not and here’s. Why? Because the amount of anxiety have about the build the durability, the bumps of the lumps, even though I haven’t experienced any problems with this, it just kind of wipes out all the fun I have with the nostalgia and the flip. That being said, I don’t think Motorola’s on the right track. In fact, I think this is a tremendous phone and I can’t wait to see what the next version of it is, if there’s a raise or two or a premium razor with better cameras or even a lower end razor that might have a lower price point.