Battery life has been an issue for smartphones from the very beginning. Motorola hopes to stand out from the crowded smartphone market with its newest Droid Razr Maxx, combining an extended battery life with a sleek design for a truly new-age phone. LG’s also debuting a CES treat on Verizon, marking a 4G first for the Android manufacturer, while Inspiration Works delivers an Android tablet just for kids. Here are this week’s top Android devices.
Motorola Droid RAZR MAXX
Just launched on Verizon for about $300, Motorola’s Droid RAZR Maxx has increased battery life over the original RAZR while still maintaining the same sexy and slim figure. Apparently, you’ll get 21 hours of talk time on a single charge, and seven hours of streaming video, even when you take into consideration Verizon’s battery-hogging 4G LTE network. It’s the RAZR MAXX’s 3,300 mAh lithium ion battery that powers extended life, nearly twice the capacity of the original RAZR. There’s also some software perks, such as “Smart Actions,” to automatically monitor GPS, Wi-Fi and other battery-draining settings to keep your phone powered up. Thanks to the massive battery, the RAZR MAXX weighs 0.32 pounds and measures 0.28 inches thick (slightly bigger than the original RAZR). Shipping with Android 2.3.5, expect the RAZR MAXX to be appearing in stores now, with the ability to upgrade to 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich in the future.
LG is upping the ante on 4G with its latest Spectrum, available now through Verizon Wireless. The Spectrum debuted at CES a couple weeks ago, boasting an HD screen at 4.5 inches, with a Qualcomm 1.5 GHz dual-core processor. Running Android 2.3.5 Gingerbread, the LG Spectrum will later be upgraded to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. There’s also an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera with autofocus and LED flash, as well as 1080p video capture. The front-facing camera is 1.3 megapixels, and the Spectrum also comes with SmartMovie HD, an app for creating and editing HD videos on the fly. Expect to pay about $200 for the Spectrum with a new two-year contract.
Inspiration Works Kurio
If you’re tired of your two year-old banging away at your tablet, get them one of their own. Unveiled at the Toy Fair 2012, Inspiration Works has wrapped an Android 4.0-powered tablet in sturdy plastic with a kid-friendly user interface. Dubbed the Kurio, this tablet is for entertainment and education, complete with parental controls to limit web access and control app downloads and purchases. You can add up to eight profiles on the Kurio, each customizable. You can time-lock the tablet as well, keeping kids from downloading apps after bedtime. As far as specs go, the Kurio has three models: a 7-inch version with a capacitive 800x480 display, an 8-inch model with a squarer 800x600 screen and a 9.7-inch version closer to an iPad in size, with a 1024x600 panel. All three models come with USB ports, mini HDMI and 4GB of built-in storage, expandable to 32GB with a microSD card. The larger models have 2-megapixel front- and 0.3-megapixel rear-facing cameras (the smallest Kurio comes only with a rear-facing camera). Look for this toddler-ready Android tablet to hit stores in July, with an initial release in the UK and no details yet on a U.S. release.