Highly Recommended February 18, 2011
Reviewer: G. Argov
After my Droid 1 got water damaged nearly two months ago, I was in the market for a new smartphone. After thoroughly researching this phone as well as its competitors, I went with the Droid 2 Global and am very happy with it so far. Its large and vibrant touchscreen, fast processor, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, and extensive Google integration make it very convenient to use, although the phone's size/weight, and Android's steeper learning curve might make this phone less appealing to some prospective buyers.
LOOK AND FEEL
The phone is big and heavy, and you will notice that immediately when picking it up. I personally don't mind this, but think some people, especially women, might find that this phone might not fit in their pockets (since clothing for women usually are designed with smaller pockets). My girlfriend, for example, uses a smaller Android phone since she thought the Droid 2 was heavier and bulkier than she liked.
I notice that the volume of calls is lower than that of my previous Droid, both holding the phone up to my ear as well as putting it on speaker. The phone's speaker is loud enough when I play music, but the in-call volume is noticeably quieter than I'd like. This might be inconvenient for some, but feel this is a small price to pay for an otherwise outstanding phone.
The physical keyboard on this phone is pretty good. It's definitely much better than that of the original Droid since the keys are slightly elevated (whereas the original Droid had very flat keys). My one gripe with the keyboard is the new 'Alt Lock' button. While to lock Alt (to activate the secondary functions of keys, such as inserting numbers) you previously had to press Alt twice, on the Droid 2's keyboard the Alt Lock button is another way to lock Alt (although you can still press Alt twice to lock it). Only problem is that due to its location, I frequently find myself pressing it inadvertently which interferes with composing text. Now that I'm more used to my phone it's not as much of a problem as it used to be, but it still becomes annoying at times. Overall, I am pleased with the physical keyboard and frequently use it to compose texts, emails, and even documents.
There are many smartphone alternatives that are thinner than the Droid 2 because they lack a physical keyboard, but I personally am not a huge fan of touchscreen keyboards. Even with the option of using Swype, which is regarded by many to be superior than a traditional touchscreen keyboard since you can compose words without lifting your finger, I prefer the phone's physical keyboard to its touchscreen one since it allows me to type faster and more accurately.
The Droid 2 has a bright, high-resolution display. This is not only great for watching videos, but for reading since text is very crisp. I use the Google Books and Kindle applications on the phone and read e-books on my commute without a problem, and also frequently play videos that look gorgeous on the screen. Since the display is so good, it draws a lot of power, and you might want to lower the brightness to save battery. Even on a dimmer setting, it still is a very bright and crisp display.
The Droid packs a 5 Megapixel camera, as well as video-recording at roughly DVD-quality. The camera is much faster to auto-focus and snap pictures than my Droid 1 (running Android 2.2) was. Pictures come out pretty good, especially with adequate light. The camera's images come out noisy (grainy) in low light, but that is to be expected with a cell phone camera, which employs a relatively small image sensor. While this won't replace your point and shoot, the pictures are good enough. The Droid 2's video recording is very good, both in terms of the video and the recorded audio.
The battery life of this phone is noticeably shorter than of my Droid 1 - which had quite a dismal battery life itself. This is largely because the phone has a powerful 1.2 GHz processor, a large high-resolution touchscreen, and features multitasking (which allows programs to run in the background). If you want improved battery life you can turn off Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and GPS when they're not in use, dim the display, and run less widgets, but even taking these energy-saving measures can only do so much. I highly recommend you buy a spare battery if you purchase this phone - the relatively cheap price you pay for a spare is worth it!
Unlike the original Droid, the Droid 2 features MotoBlur...Motorola's custom User Interface that really makes the phone shine. It offers a very polished design and unique customization options that make the phone aesthetically pleasing. Unfortunately, a lot of options are buried within menus or sub-menus that take some probing to uncover, making this phone a little less simple to use out of the box than some might like. I recommend if you do ultimately purchase this phone, you take the time to learn its features! Once you do, you can extensively personalize it, place widgets on your homescreens, and do many other neat things.
Due to the speedy 1.2 GHz processor, the phone's performance is generally good - although programs do become unresponsive, or the phone freezes, more often than I'd like. I think this is more of a flaw with the Android OS in general, and not a flaw of this phone in particular. For the most part, I find the phone's day-to-day operation is smooth.
This is highly touted as a strength of Android - and a weakness of Apple - but I don't find this to be all too important in my day-to-day use. I definitely like the option to be able to play Flash movies, but have noticed that Flash loads pretty slowly on a 3G connection (although it's decent on Wi-Fi), and that some Flash sites still won't properly load as they are not optimized for mobile devices. While I rarely play Flash videos for the aforementioned reasons, it is convenient to have the ability to play Flash if and when I do need it.
To my disappointment, this phone comes loaded with bloatware. There isn't an easy way to remove it unless you 'root' (hack) your phone and use a program like Titanium Backup. A simple Google search can provide websites with easy to follow, step-by-step directions on how to go about doing this, but you should not do this unless you understand the process since it entails the potential to mess up important system files. Most people will probably just cope with having bloatware on their system, which is annoying, but doesn't noticeably slow down performance.
COMPARED TO DROID 2 NON-GLOBAL EDITION
The Droid 2 Global has a slightly faster processor (1.2 GHz vs. 1 GHz), but the main advantage is the phone's global capabilities. If you travel internationally, having the option to use your current cell phone abroad is very convenient. While I still haven't firsthand experimented with its global capabilities, I bought this phone over the non-global edition specifically for this ability.
COMPARED TO IPHONE
When I was deciding on a phone, the Verizon iPhone's release was imminent. While a year ago that might have swayed my decision, this time it didn't, since I was already familiar with the strengths of the Android OS. Yes, there's a steeper learning curve, but it's worth it for the customization and extensive Google integration (great voice search, turn-by-turn navigation, etc). Since the iPhone is now officially available from Verizon, the decision on whether to buy an Android or iOS device is more difficult for some, especially since both operating systems have their strengths and weaknesses.
Some of the biggest reasons people might be drawn to the iPhone now that cell network isn't an issue for VZW customers is its relative ease of use and better media integration. As of the time of this review, there still isn't a media sync option as convenient as iTunes, aside perhaps for DoubleTwist. In my opinion, iTunes is a much easier way to transfer media to the phone than dragging and dropping or using iTunes alternatives, for most people at least. While I don't buy MP3s online, others have also pointed to the iTunes store offering much more selection than Amazon's MP3 store. If rumors of a cloud-based Google music alternative materialize, maybe this will become a moot point, but as of now, an iPhone might be more convenient for a lot of users.
NO SIMULTANEOUS VOICE AND DATA
This is a shortcoming of the Verizon network, not a flaw of this phone in particular. If you're not on a Wi-Fi network, and are using cell phone data, you cannot talk and surf the web at the same time (I believe AT&T recently had a commercial highlighting this flaw). While this is a shortcoming of the Verizon network and not of this phone in particular, it is worth noting that in some situations, this proves to be a major inconvenience.
I love my Droid 2 - even more than my Droid 1 - but honestly think that the steep learning curve for Android phones in general might prove to be a bit of a challenge to first-time smartphone buyers. While the Android 2.2 user interface is more polished and refined than previous versions of the OS, many options and settings are still buried deep within submenus that might be frustrating to figure out or uncover. I think the iPhone is a better alternative for smartphone 'newbies' since it is far more intuitive.
If you are willing to take the time to really explore this phone's features, you will find this phone is a very powerful device that offers a good physical keyboard, increased customization options compared to the iPhone, and extensive Google integration (i.e. turn-by-turn navigation, voice search). I am very impressed by the Droid 2 Global's abilities, and highly recommend it.
I am still loving my Droid 2...it serves me very well, and I'm still recommending it to all of my friends. That being said, there are five things my Droid 2 has done to me in the half-year I've owned it that have given me some grief that I'd like to warn you about. I am running both Lookout Mobile and WaveSecure, so I don't think it's malware, but the phone being buggy at inopportune times. Since these were largely isolated incidents, I still think the phone offers great overall performance, but I would like to bring these to your attention regardless.
(1) Video files got corrupted. I went to two separate performances, one in April, and one in May, where I recorded a handful of videos. The video capture on the Droid is great, and the audio quality really is fantastic which is why I made it a point to record parts of the shows. Unfortunately, out of the roughly 10 videos I captured at the April concert - making sure each clip recorded for 30 seconds or more, according to the display - my phone was unable to play/transfer less than half the videos. Even worse, some of the videos that it did manage to capture were severely truncated. This was not human error - I was watching the phone's display very closely, and it was recording for 30+ seconds in each clip. I thought it was a one-time glitch on the part of my phone, but the fact it happened again just a few weeks later was very upsetting. I have recorded other videos in between those two shows with no problem, so it's not a shortcoming of the phone's overall performance - but in two situations where I carefully tried recording video, and ensured that video was being captured, I was let down. If I have any more problems like that I will update the review to reflect that.
(2) Random resets. I don't know what has happened to cause this, but the phone has at times randomly reset or turned itself off. The battery was charged, and I have several spare batteries which leads me to believe it's not a problem with a particular battery, but with the phone itself. I possibly wouldn't even have noticed if this didn't happen at times that I was waiting for important phone calls. This has happened rarely, but needless to say, it has been a major inconvenience when it has occurred.
(3) Incorrect text messages. I have been both confused and disappointed to receive/send text messages from/to different people than the phone displays. Just this morning, for example, I received a text message from my sister - in the notification bar it showed a new text from my sister, and when I opened the text messaging program it showed as being sent from her (including her number). A few minutes later though, that same text showed as having been sent by my girlfriend. Several times I receive a text from one person, then I exit and re-enter the messaging app only to see a different person then being displayed as having sent the text. What's worse, I have sent messages to people - with completely different names and phone numbers, so really unlikely it was human error on my part - that the phone displays as having been sent to someone else, or actually sent to someone else. My Droid 1 did this occasionally as well, but so rarely that it's not a real shortcoming of the phone pr se, but it still upsets me that it even happened once, let alone several times.
(4) Screen glitch during calls. There have been a handful of times where my phone is ringing and I want to answer, but the screen is completely black. Sometimes I can just slide my phone open and that will wake up the screen, but sometimes no matter what I do or what buttons I press, I can't accept the call because the screen is completely black. I have had this happen when the phone displays the contact info of the incoming call before going black, and also when the screen goes black immediately, and only after the caller hangs up can I see who it was in 'Recent Calls'. I know that many touchscreen phones have a proximity sensor that will turn the screen off when you hold the phone close to your ear (to save battery), but that was not what happened here.
(5) Audio jack interruptions. This has happened with various wired headsets and headphones. While the phone normally operates fine, sometimes it will act up when I have something plugged into the audio jack. I've had both phone calls and music either abruptly stop or start mysteriously, just from what I suspect was a slight nudge on the headphone jack. For example, I am walking in the street listening to music, holding the phone in my hand and looking at the display - so there is no chance that I am accidentally pressing something on the display itself (as if it were, say, in my pocket). I think it gets triggered if there is the slightest nudge on the part of the headphone wire that connects to the phone, because this has never happened without something plugged into the jack. This happens very rarely, and I've listened to music through headphones while the phone was even in my pocket with nothing happening. It happens so rarely that I can't definitively conclude what is causing it, but it has happened more than just a few times. And no, I didn't press a button to receive/end a call on the headset itself - this happens even with earbuds/headphones that have no controls on the wire itself.
On a last note, with recent media coverage regarding cell phones and radiation (the WHO now considers mobile phones 'possibly carcinogenic'), it's a little disappointing to see the Motorola Droid 2 emits one of the highest radiation dosages of popular cell phones. Whether you are or are not scared of the possible link between cell phones and cancer is your choice, but it is still a little surprising to see just how much is emitting - compare, say, the Droid 2's 1.58 W/kg level to Verizon's Samsung Fascinate at 0.57 W/kg. If you are concerned, make sure to use speaker phone, Bluetooth, or a wired headset!
Again, I must repeat that overall, I've been in love with the phone. It is buggy at times - at some very inopportune times, unfortunately - but it has also solidly performed many other times. I am extremely cautious with my phone, and therefore think the problems described above were glitches, and not the result of human error. I've talked with other Android (including Droid 2 Global) users who have also complained of similar glitches, so I think it's safe to say there might be some bugs with the OS in general. The glitches were so rare or infrequent that I still would - and do - recommend this phone because its pros outweigh its cons.
Some Great Capabilities But Temperamental January 28, 2011
Reviewer: Robert I. Hedges
The Motorola Droid 2 with Verizon service has some very strong features, but within a month the negatives overcame the positives and I returned mine. I liked the Droid 2 because of its international capabilities, traits that are hard to come by with most Verizon phones. The deal breaker for me was the physical keyboard that makes texts and emails so much easier to compose that typing on a touchscreen. The keyboard is very nice, although I found it an annoyance to have to use the alternate key to type numbers (one of the few places my old LG phone excels.) The fact that the keyboard has dedicated keys for commonly used symbols (@ and period in particular) was also much appreciated for composing emails. I found the display bright and very sharp, and Internet sites and video look great on it. The removable SD card is great (and can store a lot,) but accessing it involves removing the back cover, taking out the battery, and prying the card out of a fairly inaccessible slot. I found the camera to be quite good, though I never used any video features. I liked the navigation and GPS functionality, and really liked the ability to say a destination and have the navigation program find a list of possibilities for you to choose from. The directions it gave were always spot on, and the moving map worked beautifully, better than many standalone GPS navigation systems I have seen. All in all I thought this was a very promising package that would adequately meet my needs.
Unfortunately the phone also has several detractions. The interface is often quite cumbersome, and a matter as simple as designating a specific ringtone to a specific contact is exceptionally difficult, as are many other functions that we have taken for granted on even the most basic of cellphones for the last ten years. You would have thought something so basic would have been obvious to the geniuses behind the operating system. Another issue concerns battery life, or more specifically the lack thereof. If you carefully manage your battery use you can get a decent work day out of it, but if you do anything remotely processing-intensive (which is probably why you wanted this phone in the first place,) the battery dwindles at an absolutely alarming rate. An extended-life battery is available at an extra charge, but apparently makes an already fairly heavy phone even clunkier (as a disclaimer, I have never personally seen the extended-life battery installed; I am just taking the word of the Verizon salesman.) The phone also has difficulty intuiting whether to display in portrait or landscape mode, which is a mere annoyance but one that should and could be improved in a phone in this price range.
All that pales next to the problems I experienced using this phone for what a phone needs to do best: communicating. I could never get my email program to work correctly on this phone. Sometimes I would get emails, but emails I sent were only rarely (twice in 27 days of use to be specific) able to be found in the sent folder (or anywhere else for that matter.) The interface also makes it fairly easy to inadvertently delete an email when you are reading in landscape format. With these communications gaffes I grew more annoyed, but after about two weeks of service the internal speaker in the earpiece of my first Droid 2 failed making me unable to hear what anyone was saying on the other end. I returned to the Verizon store where I bought it and exchanged it for another identical unit. The email and functionality issues were identical to the first phone, but I was starting to get used to the eccentricities of the phone and I planned on keeping it.
Today my second Droid 2 failed in an identical way to the first one; the internal speaker failed so that conversations could not be heard. For me that was the straw that broke the camel's back. I returned my second Droid 2 in less than a month and told Verizon to take it back, reactivate my old LG phone, and nullify my new two year service agreement, which they did.
If this phone works like it is supposed to there are quite a few things to like about it. (I am giving it two stars solely for its potential.) Unfortunately in my experience it is trouble-prone and not very user-friendly, and for those reasons I can't recommend it. I really wanted to like this phone: I like Verizon's service and have been a longtime customer, but I wasn't prepared to live another 23 months with this phone given the issues experienced in the first month of ownership. I will replace my LG at some point in the future, but for now it reliably does what I need a phone to do most: let me talk and text to people I need to converse with.
Extremely handy gadget January 5, 2011
Reviewer: Keshav Prasad (Boston, MA, USA) -
Pros: Keyboard, Screen, Accepts SIMs when unlocked
Cons: OEM Mail app lasted 2 days, needs reboot to hear call sometimes.
I like this phone. I've had it a month now, bught it the day it came out.
1. Keyboard is just right, actual keys are soft rubber, beautifully spaced. Has dedicated @ , period and comma keys.
2. Lovely large screen, great for movies and youtube.
3. Voice-activated Google navigation is very good.
4. Unlocked the phone and used a borrowed SIM on vacation the last 2 weeks. Works well. Sim wasn't GPRS enabled, but I could access my phone contacts and all the downloaded app games worked.
5. The included 8GB card is a solid accessory, lots of room.
6. Browser is very fast, supports flash. Very cool!
7. Decent camera and camcorder, work well. Well above DVD quality camcorder movies.
8. Music and movie players exceeded expectations.
1. Used judiciously, the battery lasts me 8 hours, as compared to my Blackberry which lasts 3-4 days.
1. The included e-mail and social networking synching application died mysteriously, twice. Has not worked since. Does not synch. Even the yahoo synching application stopped synching on Day 3. Terrible. I now use the browser to pull mail.
2. Portrait-landscape-Portrait is slow. Accelerometer sluggish.
3. Sometimes I cannot hear a call and need to reboot the phone. This has happened twice.
Overall, a very good phone!
Friday the thirteenth my lucky Day - Droid 2 Global May 13, 2011
Reviewer: Steven (Boston, Ma) -
Review: May 13
I have owned the Droid 2 for awhile and am just now getting around to writing a review. So I guess that means I have put the phone through some thouorgh tests and use, get to know your phone! I bought it most for its communications capibilities.
The Droid 2 Global is my first smart phone, maybe it should be called a hand held computer that can make phone calls. These are my views and evaluation of the mentioned smartphone.
I have found this phone to have a excellent operating system and many capabilities not phone related, so this evaluation will first start in the area of phone use: The voice command is excellent, the first thing I do with my new Droid in the morning is talk to it - I say: "check status" it comes back and tells me what: the signal strength is, missed calls, any messages, and time and date, these are a few of the status messages. If there are any missed calls all I need to do is say "check missed calls" and am brought to missed calls list, and have the option to delete any recent calls quite easily and/or call back. To to switch to received/outgoing calls is quite easy, just touch the missed calls bar and change. I have found the dialer very user friendly with the easy option to go to recent calls list, contacts, or favorites. Also on the dialer screen there is a option for voice command connection. What I really like about the contacts (phone book) is it can be used similar to a palm with a area for addresses, and I am able to add as many phone numbers as I care to for any given contact - with the option to customize the phone number name that is recognized by voice command. It just keeps getting better - there is the option of being able to link an email to the contact entry, never had problems checking email(AOL) or sending. For those that like talk to text this phone has that option. I will try and not be a bore with a lot more phone stuff, but there is one thing that is worth mentioning: all calls for that contact can be viewed with just a swipe to the right, the list will tell if a given call was missed, received, outgoing, or text.
The capabilities of the Driod smart phone are to numerous, forgive me if I leave anything out. This evaluation is mostly what I personally use the most; I will try and not be too long winded, so I will just list a few of the other things I like and the overall operation experience. To start I like the option to be able to populate my home screen with icons/widgets that are used the most by me. To list a few: the GPS map, Navigator, browser, voice command, voice mail, email, and the calculator, misic & games. Most of the options listed are self-explanatory, but there are two the need further recognition: I find the map to be very handy, the gps always telling me where I am. The navigator is equally handy with the voice actions of where I want to go, for example; I want to go to the post office the navigator will ask me which one from a give a list, once I select the correct one, a route is mapped out, and the navigator also tells me when to turn. Honorable mention: the browser is quit good, the search engine is run by google.
The battery life for the droid seems to be a issue for the droid so I will give it attention of one paragraph: First it seems the phone uses a lot of juice with all the radios in operation - putting the phone in airport mode will disable all wireless communication - good for: meetings/airport/do not disturb. One of the best options from the "setting" menu is "battery manager" which I use quite often. This piece of electronic equipment is a smart phone and runs appls in the background just like a micro computer; at firt I was just like anyone else and when the battery ran low quicker then expected I got irritated. So where am I going with this? The battery manager shows battery use in % of "voice calls", "display", "Android OS", etc... After checking the "battery manager" a few times a day I changed my thinking on the battery life being a problem. This phone being used as a phone could last more then one day with proper care - I charge my phones at night even if is at 50%? I have found that if the % of battery used for display or other things is double what it is for "phone use" maybe a extended battery needs to be consider. My mind set was changed: if my "hand held computer" (smartphone) only lasts 4 to 6 hours would I grumble? Personally if my laptops battery lasted 4 to 6 hours I would jump up and down for joy.
The last part of evaluation is the overall operation of the Driod 2 Global. It is hard for a person to focus on that it is a phone that does other things. It has a excellent operating system and does act a lot like a microcomputer: when turned on it boots up, can connect to the web, runs applications in the background, games can be played on it, and then there is email, lets not forget it is a phone. At first use, the screen saver blanking out the screen more then I wanted it to, this was a little irritating, but once "settings" was accessed I change the screen saver to two minutes - my personal preference. This is my first smart phone and having a phone sleep is new. A handy option is: that it will automatically put the phone in sleep mode when put in a pocket or its case, when set - a good idea. Most times when I take my droid out of the case it wakes up, and all I have to do is unlock it. Otherwise to wake it up, my personal preference is slide out the keyboard, other folk may have there own preference. Over all this is a great phone with a excellent OS which is updated periodically I have observed. The only thing that it has done unexpectedly: without warning it went into sleep mode and the screen blanked out, all I did was slide the keyboard out and it came right back to what I was doing. I will have to admit that sometimes I have had to swipe a button/icon more than once with my finger, but I can live with that. The Droid 2 has never frozen up on me, but my guess is if it does freeze it can be woke up by just slide out the keyboard and then sliding back in, the buttons should work again.
Maybe there is a Zen lesson to be learned here. It is said that: Zen lessons are not about cause and effect. They are about what you knew all along; about learning by forgetting what you thought you had learned. Confused? Ok consider getting a new smart phone and all you have to compare it to is a laptop or a apple ipad, we may think it works just like that other one. Then a person may think their smart phone is rebooting when it is not(sleep mode), or it is freezing up because there lap top froze in a similar manner. There is a saying: "empty your cup" do not bring any of your judgments from other phones/computers here, and learn the capabilities of the droid like it is the first.
Pros: Dialer/contacts, Voice command, settings/battery manager.
Cons: some bluetooth do not work for all phone options, smarter bluetooth needed. A2ADP pairing seem to be a good choice.
Update 13 June: ---
Here it is one month later and am reporting some of the many capabilities of this phone in more detail. First I will discuss the battery: I am now using a appl called battery guard this will kill any applications running in the background, and you are able to decide which should be killed from a long list. Look in market place or widgets for Motorola or android - to get these put your finger on any blank space on any of the 7 home screens. This has given me up to 70% more battery life.
A little bit more about the battery for those folk that are to busy to read between the lines when it comes to battery use. Most people like the idea that a smart phone can multi-task, the droid 2 is no different. I find that it will run yourtube, play music, run the GPS, and I can search; all are running at the same time like. I am like most by just hitting home for a new appl - this does not kill the previous one(s) used, so for me to figure out which are draining the battery the most I do not bother), I just run "battery guard." On the average my battery will be down to 30-40% after 13 to 23 hours use - this depends on the amount of use. One day the battery was down to 15% after 6 hours of use. (I forced this)
I have been using voice command/actions pretty regular and think the this is truly a smart phone: for voice action I can say "send message to Eddie - this is a test" and the phone brings up the text message screen with all the info already for review, all I most times need to do is send. This phone also knows the difference between a voice search vs. a voice email. I am thinking about investing in the new Droid CommandOne blue tooth, and truly use voice hands free for answering and sending text as well as making and sending calls.
I agree with others when they say get to know your phone!!!
--- Update 11 Nov 11 --- Android 2.3 updates - version need some work
In summary the updates to the 2.2 Android now 2.3.3 in some respects hurts more then it helps.
Pros - makes the submenu's easier to get to for those that do not take the time to get to know there phones, and has some good enhancements to the home pages and appl menu.
· Does not freeze up anymore for any use, text camera, phone use, BUT
· For the appl menu enhanced to view only downloads, only recent used, and all appl's.
· For the home menu's icons are enhanced and sharper images.
· Under settings a lot of the submenus are combined for easier access and less levels to go down through.
· In the contacts the names and orgs are slit apart for easier clearity.
Cons - going into cardock mode when unlocked some times, having never used cardock mode is irritating.
· The battery manager used to be very good, now it is combined with data and is next to useless. We can no longer see the percent of power used and to try and read how long it has been since the last charge is very hard to read. suggest that % of battery used put on new same line as minutes since last charge.
· Does not freeze up anymore for any use; BUT it does do a soft reboot a good percent of the time when being unlocked at any given time, for example; once the phone is unlocked from sleep try to access any appl and the phone gets confused and repoots. What can really be iritating is accept a call and the 2.3 gets confused and reboots so you miss the call.
--- Update 30 Nov 11 --- Android 2.3 updates
The new version no longer gets confused and reboots when unlocking from Sleep. It now spines display 360 degrees and bring display where it should be. This is a big improvement and shows google is listening to users.
Great computer, mediocre phone January 8, 2011
Reviewer: AndyW (Colorado Springs, CO) -
I've got no complaints about the "smart" part of this smartphone - very fast, nice screen, really good keyboard, froyo is a nice system. It's a decent size - still pretty much fits in a pocket. Battery life hasn't been a problem, although I'm not doing any streaming or a lot of browsing on it. I did turn off the auto-lock, which was annoying, and that hasn't hurt battery life much, if at all. The camera is pretty good, and the flash works well (and makes for a great flashlight, with the right app).
The bad thing is that this thing is a crappy phone. I miss a lot of calls - in places where I've never had a problem before. Just getting to the dialer and making a call is clunky. Everything requires multiple clicks. The ringer isn't loud enough. Voice quality isn't terrible, but it's not great - it seems better on speakerphone.
I don't quite regret getting it, because it's a very cool computer and I do as much messaging as I do calling, but it makes me nervous that I can't depend on calls getting through.
Love it, love it, love it! May 9, 2011
Reviewer: George Spear "George Spear" (Cullman, Alabama) -
THIS PHONE PERFORMED WONDERFULLY DURING OUR ALABAMA TORNADOES AND 10 DAYS WITHOUT ELECTRICITY. Purchased this phone from Costco a month ago after dumping my Iphone and AT&T. During the tornado outbreak when power lines started breaking, I used it's weather apps to stay aware of super cell locations. The Droid is more complicated but that means it has more potential and I used it following the tragic tornadoes that tore up our county. Used it continuously (with a larger battery purchased on Amazon) and was able to call for help. Ordered both a generator and air conditioner with it by using Amazon's droid application. No problems with compatibility issues like I had with my Iphone. Thanks to 3G access, even with devastation all around, I showed my friend a Birmingham TV station's flash video footage of a flyover of our devastated town. He kept his new Iphone in his pocket and was relegated to sending text messages because he couldn't get a good signal with AT&T. As an Amazon seller, I sell genealogy books and during the storm, sold one. After receiving the "sold, ship now" order from Amazon, I accessed their website and processed the transaction. Try that with an Iphone.
There might be those whose experience with this phone is unpleasant, but from my perspective, it was the silver lining in a very dark, dangerous and deadly cloud.
Battery Life and Keyboard are Poor March 3, 2011
Reviewer: David M. Nidus "OH SMALL DAVE" (New York, NY) -
I bought mine as a replacement for my blackberry curve. While I was favorably impressed with the Android operating system, the device's speed and screen and all the fun and interesting Apps available, there are two very good reasons NOT to buy this phone:
(1) It drinks battery juice like no tomorrow -- I will check some emails, maybe make a total of 45 minutes worth of calls, and spend 10 minutes on an fun app and the battery will fail before the day is out -- seriously, I will remove it from the charger at 8 AM and by 3:45 PM it will be in the red zone and then out. I took it back to Verizon, they gave me a new battery, but there is NO improvement. The tech said battery life is one of the "problems" people have with the phone.
(2) Want a case so that your phone won't break if you drop it? Well then you'd better plan on not typing too much on the pop out keyboard...or at least plan on not typing on the top row of letters. The keyboard is designed poorly with barely enough room on the top row for your fingers. Add a case -- at least the two brands I tried out in the Verizon store and they keyboard is nearly unusable. I am going case-less.
I just ordered an extended battery -- which requires a new back of the phone that makes your phone fatter. I am hoping that with this further investment (46 bucks including shipping and handling for the BP7X battery and the extended back door SJHN0513A) I will have a phone that lasts through the day with reasonable use. I just better not drop it. My wife, who got an I-phone at the same time I got this little number has not suffered battery issues like I have. I probably should have gone over to team Apple, but I wanted the pop out keyboard.
Almost perfect phone, it's like a mini laptop... August 10, 2011
Reviewer: AccioFirebolt (Hogwarts) -
Ok, let me mention the only flaw of this phone: battery life. I know this is an issue for all smart phones, but the battery life on this is horrible. I must admit that I use it mostly for browsing, games, apps, and music, all things that totally consume the battery. If you use it mostly for texting and talking, I'm sure it would be much better.
So other than the battery life, this phone is perfectly amazing. I LOVE it. Love, love, love it. I have had it since 11/10 and even though there are newer version of this, Droid 3 and Droid 3 Global, I am little tempted to buy one of the new ones since this one is so great.
Takes great pics and I have so much fun taking random videos on it, like my mom when she dropped a vase and busted it, and my nephew playing in the yard.
I love the browser. It's not super fast but it is almost like having a mini laptop. I check Amazon on it daily, read horoscopes, Facebook...any website I check on my laptop and Xoom, I look at on my phone, too, on a daily basis.
It has completely eliminated my need for a digital camera and mp3 player. So many tools in one little phone.
My advice to you, my friend, is to get this phone or one of the newer Motorola Droids. Buy a car charger, which you can buy through Amazon for about $6, and buy a couple extra chargers, one for work and one for recreation because you will surely need them. Buy a Otterbox Droid 2 case. It works perfectly with this phone. I bought several cheaper ones that scratched and wore out until I finally bought the Otterbox which I have been using for several months with only minor surface scratches. Buy some cheap screen protectors.
And, my last bit of golden advice is to download the Amazon app store. They offer a free paid app daily and I have probably downloaded about 50 since it launched. No strings. Free games, news, etc. Oh, and also the Amazon MP3 app because it is better than the on phone music player.
I loved this phone so much that I bought a Motorola Xoom. I'm with Motorola for life. And, obviously, I'm with Amazon for life, too.
Not for heavy corporate/business users July 28, 2011
This is a well built and functional phone, apps from marketplace are endless. Good keyboard options and battery life can be significantly improved if you are comfortable hacking the phone.
Biggest con is the significant issues with corporate mail and calendar sync. If you need true corporate push email or need to 100% trust the calendar in the phone is showing all your meetings than this isn't the phone for you. Only phones I've had that work seamlessly are blackberrys and win mobile phones.
On plus side the phone has replaced my gps unit in the car, applications provide lots of entertainment for me and the kids when stuck somewhere, camera takes great pictures and videos.
Stops working after a few months November 24, 2011
Reviewer: D. R. (Ahwatukee, AZ, USA) -
I would love this phone if it were more reliable... the hardware is great. But I upgraded (from the original Droid 1) a year ago & since then went through FOUR handsets. The space key stops working. Then the phone starts sending texts and opening apps on its own. Verizon has never been able to figure out why the OS is failing so they send me a refurb phone as a replacement. Which of course does the same thing. (And yes I have a virus program installed so I don't think the problems are due to a virus).
Finally I went in to talk to Verizon in person when the FOURTH handset started to act up, & they did a hard reset on the phone which took it back to factory mode. Which meant I lost all my apps and their information (a big loss to me). What the snakey Verizon guy didn't mention is that the day I was there was the last day of my 1 yr warranty. So he did a hard reset, which made the problem stop for a few weeks, and now I'm out of warranty. With all the trouble I'd had, I should have gotten another handset but now I can't.
I have spent a small fortune in Motorola specific chargers & accessories, but I am going to switch manufacturers now and will never trust a Motorola product again! I can't tell you the time, money and hassle it has cost me having to have the handset replaced every few months.
Best Phone I've ever owned July 23, 2011
Reviewer: Scott Telle (Upstate NY) -
I switched to Verizon and purchased the D2G from Amazon after I couldn't take the customer service I received from Sprint with my Samsung Moment. I knew that the Moment wasn't a great android phone, but I didn't expect the D2G to be this much better! The phone works and has very little lag. The keyboard is nice and provides great feedback. It's compact enough, so that I don't feel like I have a brick in my pocket, but big enough so that it's very useful!
The phone isn't without glitches, but I've never had a phone that didn't occasionally turn off and on, or act weird. I strongly recommend this phone.
Pros and Cons June 15, 2011
Reviewer: M Snyder
The Droid 2 was the first smartphone I ever purchased. I wanted to text so I got the Droid 2 because of the pull out keyboard and I wanted it for internet usage - pretty simple stuff compared to what I have read from other reviewers. When I got it home it was awesome. The internet was very fast and the color screen quality was great. The shape and weight of the phone fit nicely in my hands. I got a call from a friend and it was easy to answer and had clear sound and good reception.
The problem was of course the batterly life (which everyone else has described so I don't need to reiterate).
Here is the big problem that I am concerned about. I just shut the phone completely off during the night to save on the battery life and when I turned on the phone in the morning and was driving to work the screen with the Motorola symbol came on (I think that is what the symbol was since it looked like an M)and it wouldn't go any further. I tried to shut the phone off and it wouldn't do anything. Then it started getting really hot on the back side by the camera part. When I got to work I had to remove the case and remove the battery. When I put the battery back in it worked great and didn't get hot. I even shut it all the way off again and it came back on and worked fine.
I then went on-line and looked at other reviewers and saw that there were other problems with the battery life and my friend's brother had a problem with the back of the phone getting really hot. I was afraid it might start on fire.
I was really torn about weather to take the phone back and get a different brand or to try another Droid 2 hoping it was a glitch in that particular phone. I opted on taking the phone back since I was having this problem after only having the phone 2 days and I got an Iphone. I ended up getting used to the touch keyboard on the Iphone and it is actually easier than the pull out keyboard. However, I still think the Droid 2's internet connection is faster.
I don't think I had the phone long enough to really try all the things it was capable of doing but based on the short time I had the phone I give it 3 1/2 stars based on the pros and cons I mentioned above.
Be mindful however of the phone getting hot on the back - if it does that, taking out the battery worked for me but I didn't want to test the waters again.
phone has bugs so does replacement but i still like it. June 14, 2011
Reviewer: B. Mills (New York City, NY USA) -
I'd like to give it three and a half but cant.
I had to send the original back and get a new one cause of freezing. now my new ones space bar is all freaky. Sometimes it doesn't work and sometimes it does. But the phone itself is awesome! The apps run great. Went to [...] and [...] for mine even though i don't use a thunderbolt.
good features, but significant flaws June 14, 2011
Reviewer: wrappedupinbooks (new york) -
It has good features, but the battery is absolutely terrible (I need to keep a second charger at work just to keep it working during the day) and the reception can be pretty poor. Also, it has an annoying glitch that makes a message appear when it is disconnected from the docking station, and it often stays on the screen (and blocks what's underneath the message) for a long time even after you put it back in the dock. Not a terrible phone, but not the best. I basically just bought it so I'd have the separate keyboard.
Great Phone, Too Bad Verizon Crippled It June 1, 2011
Reviewer: A. Welch (Traveling Around The World) -
The phone is a great one. Easy to use interface, quick, good looking and capable. My problems with it, and the reason it gets two stars are:
1) Even at full price, the phone comes locked. A full price phone should not be locked to a particular carrier.
2) Even unlocked, the phone will not work with US based GSM networks because Verizon has crippled it. "Rooting" the phone will not fix this, it's the radio's firmware that break it. AT&T and T-Mobile SIMs will not work in this phone, period.
Fortunately, this being Amazon, they immediately issued an RMA and offered to refund the phones. Thank god I bought it from Amazon.
On the upside, I discovered that that the "Droid 2" is sold as the "Milestone 2" by Motorola. It doesn't have the CDMA support that the "Global" offers, but it has all the GSM support.
I Expected More.....But It Deliver Much Less..... May 16, 2011
So...almost 2 months I have this phone....take it with me to my Asia trip....have to do a hard reset once....and these are what I have to say...
1> Battery Life SUCKS....I end up have to buy an extend battery from Verizon...coz ONLY Verizon has it stock...even with extend battery...I still running to its 20% at the late afternoon...not that I play with Angry Bird or talking like hours....the battery life just don't last.
2> Slow...and screen can act up...weird things just happen...no reason...
3> Speaker volume is too LOW....you can not heard it unless you put it right next to your ear when you drive.
4> Screen lock bottom on the top of phone does not alway response....so even you have pressed it few times...you cant lock your screen.
5> Once you have it unlock...it works fine in Asia with local SIM card...BUT, don't even bother trying to get internet connection with it....even it claims as GLOBAL PHONE....its really just a GLOBAL PHONE ONLY.....coz Verizon must have Motorola block its internet setting feature...coz all the techs from 3 countries phone companies just can't get it to work...
So...if you are just looking for a global phone...phone only...then there are so many other choice to choose from ....
BTW...did I mention, even you have it unlocked by Verizon...it does NOT work with AT&T & T-Mobile in US.....yes...that totally defeat the meaning of GLOBAL Phone....
First Smartphone February 26, 2012
This is my very first smartphone, and the first Android device I've ever used. It is great, but I do have a few complaints, mostly with regards to the software.
The device is somewhat bulky, not the nicest looking phone I've ever seen. But the screen is fairly nice, especially considering that it isn't HD. My only real complaint here is that it isn't wide enough for my liking. Camcorder quality is good for an SD camera. The still photo quality is OK in good light, but in darker conditions the pictures come out grainy. It's a phone camera, though...something like this is to be expected. As for the Droid's most important feature, the keyboard, it is a little stiff and awkward to use, but not terrible. Definitely good enough for those who need it. Quick note: I'm not one of those people who requires a physical phone keyboard, so this wasn't a huge deal to me. Battery life is OK, just so long as Advanced Task Killer is open.
Android is, undoubtedly, a nice OS, much more flexible than iOS in terms of features (widgets, flash support, screen customization...none of that is on iOS. I have an iPod touch, so I know.). And the Google Play Store has grown so much, I can find just as many good apps there as I can in the Apple App Store. As of 10/31/12, the number of Android apps is now equal to the number of Apple apps - about 700,000. But with the latest update, connecting to Wi-Fi takes a much longer time than I would like. Also, my phone can be sluggish and the battery life is so bad now that I had to order an extended battery.
Call quality is fantastic and reliable. I am a former T-Mobile customer who switched to Verizon last year, so of course I was in for a pleasant surprise in terms of coverage. My family has a vacation house located in an area that is covered by no carriers other than Verizon, making my family's switch especially beneficial. Only downside is that Verizon is ridiculously expensive and the 3G network can be quite slow.
All in all, a good phone at first, mediocre now. Be aware that it might freeze occasionally, especially in the midst of running an app like Google Maps. Luckily the battery is removable.
Good at everything but actually being a PHONE November 15, 2011
This was my first smartphone and I absolutely love the non-phone features - especially now that the whole thing updated about a month ago and fixed some texting glitches.
However, the phone part is terrible. I had it replaced with another one (same model) and it had the same problem so I'm concluding it's a problem with the model and not the actual units. I'm constantly getting "What? Say that again? Your phone sucks - I can't understand you". They tell me it sounds like I'm shouting under water, kinda like the adults in the Peanuts feature cartoons. A techie friend described it as "the mic sounds overdriven". I tried doing a call through Skype and the sound quality didn't improve. I got a Jabra bluetooth but that was even worse; I found that I'm more understandable through a wired headset but I can't be toting that everywhere. I'm annoyed that I'm essentially stuck with a barely usable phone for another 20 months on this contract unless I want to cough up hundreds of $$. Glad I have a VOIP landline.
When it does what its meant to do, it works great! September 18, 2011
Reviewer: Areesa (Wenatchee WA) -
I like the features of this phone, and I like it when it is working correctly, however, it had issues that are extremely annoying. So annoying in fact, the thought crosses my mind to smash it into little pieces. Sometimes it freezes up, won't work, or do anything including shut down. I start to pry the hard plastic case off, and by the time I almost have it off, the phone shuts down on its own. Then I reboot and it takes forever to load back up. Its like working with an old 486 processor on a 15 year old computer.
I bought this phone specifically because of the slide out Qwerty keyboard. I had an LG and I LOVED that phone, but I wanted to come to the modern century and get a phone with internet access. So, the guy at Verizon sold me this little gem. Now, don't get me wrong, I love this phone when it works. I'm uncoordinated when it comes to using the touch screen to text or search. The screen is small and I hit the wrong keys and I have small fingers. The Qwerty keyboard works great! It is easy to use, and the keys are pretty flat. I do sometimes hit double letters, like the keys stick. This could just be me, or it could be the phone, I can't tell. I like the ease of finding the aps, and the contacts. You can slide through several different screens by sliding your finger over. There are 5 different screens. I use all of them. The contacts are easy to use, and you can set favorites so you can find the ones you call more quickly. You can assign different ringtones to different contacts. The camera has ok pics, but really its pretty mediocre.
Contacts----are not that easy to update at times. When you download the Facebook ap, it will load ALL and I mean ALL of your contacts into your contact list. This is inconvenient because I don't want all those people in my list. You can't get rid of them either, unless you delete them as a friend. My Facebook ap downloads once, and the contact pics stay the same. The only way I have figured out how to update them is by using an ap that updates the current pics. This is very, very annoying. I have looked online, and lots of other people also have the same gripe.
Music library---My phone uploads music easily from Itunes by plugging into my computer and syncing it. However, after several days my music says its not supported and won't play. I have to shut down my phone and restart it in order for it to play a song it has played just fine many times before. This really makes saving a song as a ringtone useless. I tried saving the song, and it works, but then a couple days later my phone will ring and its back to the default ring tone because the song won't play. I don't use this phone to listen to music, I use my Ipod. My Ipod is more reliable.
The above are my biggest gripes. I did an system update a couple weeks ago where it updated my phone to the newest look. Since I have done that update, my phone hasn't frozen up on me at all. Which is a HUGE bonus! However, my music still has issues. Its too early to tell if the update has fixed the freezing up problem or not. If you have this phone and its freezing up, look for the update and try that. I can't remember where I found it, as it was by accident when I was trying to find something else, however, a Verizon Representative should have the knowledge and expertise to guide you to where to find it. You might be able to Google it, as that is where I found the info once before.
I would give this phone a 5 based on the great features, usability and Qwerty keyboard. The camera quality, music problems and freezing up problems are what take it down to a 4. If this phone worked perfectly, it would be my favorite phone, which is saying a lot because I LOVED my LG.
If you need a good cell phone, look at something else!! November 23, 2011
This is the first time I've ever reviewed a product, which is so random but had to be done to help anyone! Do not get this phone unless you're cool with having lots of problems and replacements. As an owner of this product for the past year (unfortunately), I can tell you first hand that this has been, by far, the worst smartphone I've ever had and I'll explain why. The first month was okay, just because the phone was new and had (like all android smartphones do) crazy-cool applications and features, etc etc...but as time went on, I began experiencing malfunctions like the phone turning off on its own at random times, screen-freezing, and even the camera not saving a picture after being taken!!! It's now at the point where when I put the charger into my phone which has died, within 2 minutes, the phone will have "full battery" and stop charging. So obviously, after 20 mins to an hour, the phone is about to die again. I understand, yeah maybe I should get a new battery, but I already have!! Multiple times! I can't wait to get an iphone, beware this product if you are about to get a new phone.