Droid Razr HD: Why it's worth watching

These rumored features could make Motorola's next phone stand out.

Motorola's Droid Razr HD has been making some noise in the tech blogosphere lately, even as the company itself stays quiet.

The latest buzz comes from several leaked Droid Razr HD tutorial videos that popped up on YouTube. The videos don't reveal much about the hardware, but show the same Android-based user interface that appeared in Motorola's Atrix HD on AT&T. Previous rumors suggested the Razr will have similar specs to the Atrix HD, including a 1.5 GHz Snapdragon S4 processor, 720p display and 8-megapixel camera.

So what's the big deal about the Droid Razr HD? Here are a few rumored features that could help Moto's next phone stand out:

Big Battery

The Droid Razr HD will have a 2,530 mAh battery, according to reports from Phone Arena and Hot Hardware. That'd fall roughly in between the puny 1,750 mAh battery of Moto's original Razr and the gargantuan 3,300 mAh battery inside the Droid Razr Maxx. If the rumors are right, the Razr HD could strike just the right balance between sleekness and stamina.

Software Buttons

Count me in the camp that loves the built-in software navigation buttons on both Samsung's Galaxy Nexus and Motorola's Atrix HD. They're easier to reach with a finger compared to hardware buttons below the screen, and they can adapt to the needs of the app, for instance by fading from view during video playback or rotating into landscape mode. Like the Atrix HD, the Razr HD will reportedly use software buttons, and its screen may be a tad larger at 4.6 inches.

NFC Goodies

Verizon Wireless hasn't been known to throw near-field communications capabilities onto its phones. The one exception was the Galaxy Nexus, whose Google Wallet capabilities were disallowed by Verizon until very recently. However, an FCC filing for the Droid Razr HD claims that it'll have NFC capabilities, "functioning as both a tag and a reader," so this phone could support tap-based sharing or pairing with other devices.

There are a few things that don't sound so exciting about the Razr HD. It's rumored to run Android 4.04 instead of the more recent Android 4.1, and if the 8-megapixel camera is the same one that appears in the Atrix HD, it could be a disappointment.

With tough competition coming from Apple, Nokia and the usual slew of Android phone makers, Motorola needs more than just a rehashed Razr to make its mark. We'll find out if the Razr HD it's worth the hype in a couple weeks, when the company is expected to make the phone official.

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Jared Newman

PC World (US online)
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