Motorola and the Xoom – The Empire Strikes Back

From as far back as August 2010, great things were expected of Motorola. The company that started the idea of “trends” long before Apple dipped their hat into the smartphone game in 2007 was the leader in cell phones back in the 80’s when it was still the old analog AMPS. The little company that made the first cell phone, the Dynatac and then later the first flip cell phone, the Startac and relaunched the concept with the successful Motorola Razr phone fell on hard times in 2008.

I shall spare many old enough to remember the bad memories and strange signals coming out of Motorola and instead get straight to the creamy filling in the cupcake. Motorola is back, thanks to Google Android 2.2 OS aka Froyo, which was used extensively on its new line of Star Wars themed smartphones. Motorola also posted a surprise profit of US$69 million in the first Quarter of 2010 based on the back of its healthy surging sales of its challenge to the Apple iPhone.

Drum roll please! Motorola Droid and is siblings the Motorola Droid 2, the Motorola Droid Pro and the Motorola R2-D2. International users were also on their mind as akin to the Stealth bomber in their commercials (thanks Youtube!). Motorola launched the International friendly GSM (Global System Mobile) ready version of the Motorola Droid 2 called the Motorola Droid Global on Verizon’s Network, which according to the Verizon press release at the time, sports, quote: “Quad Band GSM capabilities to make and receive calls, check e-mail, and more from over 200 countries”.

Thus, most likely this dual-network phone was an innovation, as the fact that it worked on both GSM and CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) Network meant that it may have been using a Qualcomm Dual-Network Communication chipset long before rumours of Apple planning to launch their Apple iPad S purportedly with a Dual-Network chipset from Qualcomm. Just goes to show that Apple, those loveable lads from Cupertino are not the only innovation game in town!

Explains, too, why the Motorola Droid Global reappeared as the Motorola Milestone on Digicel’s GSM Network in July of 2010 just in time for Digicel to celebrate their ten (10) year milestone in Jamaica with the first Android smartphone in Jamaica. ALL Droids sporting the same the 4”, AMOLED (Amorphous Light Emitting Diode) capacitive touch screen, 1GHz Processor and other noteworthy differences in processor specs and aesthetics for each family member!

These new additions to the Motorola family are more reminiscent of PSP’s than phones. Throw in the Verizon CDMA connection and it becomes clear why downloader’s love the Droid: geeky sci-fi themed game console lovin’! No wonder their was a shortage of phones in the famous Summer smartphone Shortage of 2010, with customers spoiled for choice between the Apple iPhone on AT&T’s spotty GSM and 3G Network and the Droids on Verizon’s CDMA and still uncapped 3G Network.

Motorola is back after an excellent showing at CES 2011 thanks to a little known OS known as Google Android OS. CES 2011 was possibly a signal to rabid fans of the Apple iPhone that contrary to the popularly held belief, other company’s are a source of creativity. They debut their Motorola Xoom tablet, CNET’s Best of CES Award winner, which among other things, sports a barometer which effectively mean that packing an umbrella in case it rains is now a no brainer. Also making it debut at CES 2011 was the Dual core Droid Bionic and Atrix 4G, and its clever laptop dock that turns the phone into a Laptop. Coming this summer of 2011!

However, the innovative 10.1” Motorola Xoom sports a Tegra 2 Dual Core Processor, with 1GB RAM, Nvidia 3D chipset (a possibly!) with a 1080p with support for 3-D glasses-free AMOLED display. It appears all buttoned up in Google Android OS 2.4 aka Honeycomb and  may be crash landing sooner than you think. Motorola appear to be making a bit of a gaff with the pricing and still no word on a Wi-Fi (IEEE 802.11n) only alternative or even the battery life. Still, I am hopeful……..

Thus expect a Thursday February 10th 2010 launch, the same day as the CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) Apple iPhone for Telecom Provider Verizon and a ninja attack, Naruto style by the Playbook from the stables of RIM of Blackberry fame. Possibly coupled with an International launch with the Motorola Xoom making a splash on Digicel Network (fingers crossed)! Apple’s WWDC (World Wide Developer Conference) invites may be on that same week too………so much to do so little time…….

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Lindsworth is a Radio Frequency and Generator Maintenance Technician who has a knack for writing about his work, which is in the Telecoms Engineering Field. An inspired writer on themes as diverse as Autonomous Ants simulations, Power from Lightning and the current Tablet Wars.


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