1.5 Years On The "Forgotten Foldable" – Motorola RAZR 5G Long-Term Review
But despite having that catalog of luminaries to choose from my personal sim card has spent a great deal of the past 18 months. Inside a phone, youve, probably forgotten about im michael fisher, and when i said the razer 2020 would be my next phone, i meant it for better or worse. This is one of two razer 5gs ive carried since launch at the first being the review sample i received in the polished, graphite colorway from motorola in september 2020, the second being the liquid mercury version i purchased for myself the following month, only to accidentally spike it Into the sidewalk in december, requiring a repair by forever friend of the channel hugh jeffries in july 2021 because of motorolas, absolutely absent repair options. Point is ive used the graphite and the mercury for about nine months, apiece alternating every other week with samsungs galaxy flip family. That galaxy flip 3 is probably the biggest reason a lot of folks dont. Remember this version of the razer yankee stadium, billboards notwithstanding samsung, came incredibly close to perfecting the new flip phone formula when it debuted the flip 3 for 999 dollars in august of 21 and motorola answered with crickets well and about a hundred mid range. Moto g phones. Alongside a vague reference to supply chain issues and a nebulous proclamation that it was still committed to foldables, razer 3 is still expected sometime in 2022, but still bummertown for the company that introduced folding phones to the mainstream.
In the first place, those stumbles sting twice as hard, because cameras aside, a lot of the razer 5g, has actually aged pretty. Well, i really like products that defy expectations back when the razer was announced. Many critics and commenters declared it doa due to the snapdragon 765g that powered it a mid range chipset that didnt seem to justify a 1400 starting price at the time. I countered that my week, or so with the review unit, rarely if ever betrayed the lack of a top shelf processor, to which some replied that it still wouldnt age as well as a phone with a higher end chip. Well, folks, 18 months and an android platform update later, the razer is still sprightly. Did that platform update come pretty late, yes and im still waiting on the upgrade to android 12? Hopefully it lands does the phone drop, the occasional frame and animations sure, and you know, if thats a deal breaker for you, then you probably never considered this phone in the first place, the point is launching, with a slightly lower end, chipset didnt harm day to day Performance in the slightest, from my perspective, the other big hit, the razer cant seem to shake. Is the memory of those pops and creaks of those first few review samples back in 2019. The pre release razors with the defective hinges that, in all honesty, deserved all the negative coverage they got. Like i always say, review devices should arrive ready to be reviewed, but i never had those problems on either of my two 2019 razors and 18 months after the 5g editions release.
I havent experienced them on those units either and theres actually a benefit to that hinge. Design a display that i think is aging better than its counterparts on most of samsungs foldables motorolas decision to go with plastic instead of ultra thin glass means the razer seems largely immune to the problem of spontaneous screen, cracking reports of which are very easy to find. On the samsung, subreddits and motorolas choice of a wider radius teardrop fold makes for less of a crease as well its still nowhere near as smooth as a slab phone screen. At this point, with foldables youre still choosing which compromise annoys you less and me, i just prefer the razers approach, which has since been emulated by oppo, huawei, xiaomi and others. That engineering decision is echoed by another ive mentioned so many times in this series that ill just touch on it briefly, the razer is still very useful, even when its closed its true that not every android app can run on a canvas. This small, but motorola at least lets you try. This calculator is handy, for example, and even if you never run an app outside the amount of space you have for notifications and media controls and quick toggles just makes it so much easier to get things done. Without opening the flip and that big screen is part of a larger series of design decisions that are inherently subjective but which i cant help but praise, i know some people dont, like the chin and some others complain about the notch.
But folks, each of these is an intentional choice to echo design elements from the first razor to honor a legacy that i think is worth preserving, one that gives this phone so much more character than any other foldable. Now, how much of this is coming from the me who couldnt afford to buy one of the first razors back in 2005, honestly, probably too much, but for a phone like this? That depends a great deal on nostalgia. I just dont think it gets any better than this blend of futuristic tech and throwback design thats about the last of the good news. When it comes to this particular aging process, it will come as no surprise that the camera doesnt hold up compared to the flip 3. The razer is slower to get focus. It doesnt have a wide angle option and its generally just much slower and less forgiving theres. Also, the fact that, unlike most modern foldables, the razer cant serve as its own tripod, because the hinge isnt positionable not that youd want to risk balancing the razor on some precarious surface anyway, because as far as i can determine motorolas service and repair options, arent much Better than they were when i broke mine, all foldables are still rare enough to make service more difficult, but at least samsung has made it a point to offer more options to its customers. Over the past year i reached out to motorola to see if i was wrong on that, and the company gets back to me with something concrete.
I will leave it in the comments below. There are other issues, but you know: ive talked about them a million times the battery life is terrible. The display doesnt get bright enough. I wish there was wireless charging. Bluetooth reception could be better yada yada, but none of those are as important as that seeming disconnect from motorola. The companys focus is just elsewhere right now. A big reason for all those new moto g mid rangers is that motorola saw an opportunity to fill the gap. Left by lgs departure from the mobile space and if the financial reports are to be believed, its doing a damn good job of filling it, but that plus the missed release cycle for the third generation of razer has made me wonder just how committed to the foldable Category the company continues to insist, it is, and when you add, in motorolas historic camera challenges and underwhelming flagship offerings of late, all of it in the shadow of a samsung that clearly wants to dominate foldables. Well, it all makes me just a little less than optimistic about just how impressive a potential razer 3 is likely to be. Fortunately, if you want to dip your toe into foldables well a year and a half has eroded the razors price to the point, where thats a lot less painful, officially its down to 7.99 from motorola. But you can find examples on amazon as low as the mid 600s. If you do pick one of those up or youve carried one for a while.
Please drop your experiences in the comments below id love to hear about them. Folks, i remain quite excited to cover the razer 3 if and when it arrives. In the meantime, i plan to continue carrying the razer 5g alongside the flip 3 and fold 3, and you can stay tuned for long term reviews on those foldables in the near future. This video was made possible by one razer 5g review sample provided by motorola, and one that i purchased for myself. As always, neither motorola nor any other company was given editorial input, copy approval or even an early look at this video. The extent of our interactions was me asking for comment about that repair policy until next time, ive been michael fisher thanks for watching and stay mobile.