Motorola Droid Maxx vs Droid Ultra
Motorola has been silent for a long time; frankly as so long as some analysts were wondering what was happening to Motorola. This mentality was to be expected after Google acquired Motorola Mobility section last year for Android enthusiasts expected Motorola to do wonders for them. When that wonder, even though not promised by Motorola, was delayed, the expectations from the faithful Droid enthusiasts also started to fade away. Luckily Motorola has surfaced three new smartphones recently in an attempt to restore that faith. Two of these are high end smartphones while one is targeted at the mid-range market. Both high end smartphones have their own differentiating factors making them different from everything else in the market. It seems to us that Motorola’s comeback is well timed as if it took any longer, they might have lost most of their loyal customer base. However, Motorola has become Verizon’s exclusive Droid partner making the smartphones to be released under Verizon rather than unlocked or for different telcos. We are expecting that Motorola will mitigate this in the near future and start to release versions for other telcos as well so as to reach a wider audience with these magnificent devices. Until then, we thought of comparing the high end smartphones against each other to see how much they differ and whether that difference is enough to create a competitive edge over one another to be priced differently.
Motorola Droid Maxx Review
Motorola Droid Maxx immediately caught our attention because of its gigantic battery. Motorola promises that Droid Maxx can last 48 hours with the included 3500mAh battery which is a stellar improvement in comparison to their predecessor Razr Maxx HD that lasted 32 hours. The best thing about the increased battery is that Motorola has also managed to maintain the thickness of the Droid Maxx. Although it’s not the thinnest smartphone in the market, it falls right in the middle of the thickness spectrum of smartphones at 8.5 mm. Motorola Droid Maxx is powered by 1.7GHz dual core Krait processor on top of Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 chipset along with Adreno 320 GPU and 2GB of RAM. This is an eight core X8 mobile computing system that consists a quad core graphics processor, a dual core app processor, a contextual computing processor and a natural language processor. So even if the specs on sheet suggests a 1.7GHz dual core processor, it seems the contextual processing and natural language processing will have dedicated elements in the computing platform. It runs on Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and will be upgraded to v 4.3 soon enough. The overall system sounds like a great rig although we can’t attest to that without running some benchmarks. But the smartphone felt really smooth in hand, and there was no apparent lag.
Motorola Droid Maxx has 5.0 inches Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen display panel featuring a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels at a pixel density of 294 ppi along with Corning Gorilla Glass reinforcement for protection. This display panel is trusted Super AMOLED, so the display is vibrant and looks pleasurable. It doesn’t necessarily fit in to Apple’s retina criterion but, at 294 ppi, there is absolutely no sign of pixelation. However, we would have been happier with a 1080p display panel because that is kind of becoming the norm of high end smartphones. Nonetheless, the 720p display panel will do the trick for now. It comes with 32GB of internal storage without the option to be expanded by using microSD card. However 32GB will be more than enough for an average user, so I have no complaints there. Motorola has included 4G LTE connectivity along with 3G HSDPA for graceful degradation when the signal strength is not enough. Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac ensures continuous connectivity with dual band and DLNA to stream your rich media content wirelessly. One can easily setup a Wi-Fi hotspot to share your superfast internet connectivity, as well. Usually we see either 8MP camera or 13MP camera on new high end smartphones, but in Motorola Droid Maxx, there is 10MP camera with autofocus and LED flash that can capture 1080p HD videos at 30 frames per second. Motorola claims that this uses a new sensor technology that is friendly to low light photography. The 2MP front facing camera can be used for video conferencing. Motorola Droid Maxx comes in Black, and the back plate has soft touch Kevlar coating for protection. This is typical in Motorola Droid line which gives a sense of protection to the rugged user. As we’ve mentioned before, Droid Maxx has 3500mAh battery, which has a standby duration of 600 hours on top of the 48 hours of talk time.
Motorola Droid Ultra Review
Motorola Droid Ultra was surfaced at the Verizon event and snatched the title for the Thinnest Android smartphone with a thickness of 7.18 mm. Obviously Motorola has tried hard to get the thickness down and in the process reduced the capacity of the battery compared to Droid Maxx. Despite that, the other hardware elements seem to be intact. Motorola Droid Ultra is powered by 1.7GHz dual core Krait processor on top of Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro chipset along with Adreno 320 GPU and 2GB of RAM. Like in Motorola Droid Maxx, Droid Ultra also features an eight core X8 mobile computing system that consists a quad core graphics processor, a dual core app processor, a contextual computing processor and a natural language processor. So even if the specs on sheet suggests a 1.7GHz dual core processor, it seems the contextual processing and natural language processing will have dedicated elements in the computing platform. It runs on Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean which will hopefully be upgraded to v 4.3 by the time the device is released.
Motorola Droid Ultra has 5.0 inches Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen display panel featuring a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels at a pixel density of 294 ppi. This display panel is also reinforced using Corning Gorilla glass for protection. Although the display panel is not full HD, it delivers vibrant colors with a good accuracy inherent to Super AMOLED display. Motorola is shipping Droid Ultra with 4G LTE connectivity with the option to degrade to 3G HSDPA when the signal strength is marginal. Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac ensures continuous connectivity along with the DLNA for wireless streaming and the ability to host your own Wi-Fi hotspot whenever you please. There is a 10MP camera that can capture 1080p HD videos @ 30 frames per second and Motorola announced that the camera is capable of low light photography. The front camera can be used for video conferencing preferably with 720 p quality. The internal storage stagnates at 16GB without the ability to expand using microSD card, which may or may not provide enough storage for you depending on your needs. So make sure you take that in to consideration before making a purchasing decision. At a glance, Droid Ultra doesn’t seem to have a Kevlar coated back plate with the gloss finish, but it, in fact, has Kevlar coating, as well. Ultra comes in Black, Red or White and the back plate is prone to attract fingerprints with the glossy surface. The battery included in Droid Ultra is rated at 2130mAh, which can provide you with a talk time of 28 hours according to Motorola.
A Brief Comparison Between Motorola Droid Maxx and Motorola Droid Ultra
• Both Motorola Droid Maxx and Motorola Droid Ultra are powered by 1.7GHz dual core Krait processor on top of Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro chipset along with Adreno 320 GPU and 2GB of RAM.
• Motorola Droid Maxx and Motorola Droid Ultra run on Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean.
• Motorola Droid Maxx and Motorola Droid Ultra have 5.0 inches Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen display featuring a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels at a pixel density of 294 ppi.
• Motorola Droid Maxx and Motorola Droid Ultra have 10MP cameras that can capture 1080p HD videos @ 30 fps.
• Motorola Droid Maxx is of the same size, but thicker and heftier (137.5 x 71.2 mm / 8.5 mm / 167g) than Motorola Droid Ultra (137.5 x 71.2 mm / 7.2 mm / 137g).
• Motorola Droid Maxx has 3500mAh battery that can provide a talk time up to 48 hours while Motorola Droid Ultra has 2130mAh battery that can provide a talk time up to 28 hours.
If you’ve been keenly following the two reviews we’ve presented as well as the side by side comparison, you can clearly understand that Motorola Droid Maxx and Motorola Droid Ultra are closely woven siblings. They share the same outlook apart from the thickness and the soft touch back plate vs glossy back plate. They share the same hardware elements and the same operating system featuring the same performance level. The major difference is in the battery where Motorola Droid Maxx contains a high volume battery of 3500mAh which is enough to last you for two days. On the contrary, Motorola Droid Ultra has 2130mAh battery which is enough to last you for 28 hours. So the difference is 20 hours of more juice in Droid Maxx, which comes at a price of additional $100 compared to the $199 price point of Droid Ultra. Hence we leave you to make the decision whether to favor the price or the additional 20 hours of talk time at a charge.