Motorola Razr HD

18th Apr 2013 | 12:05

Motorola Razr HD

Motorola's flagship handset comes with underwhelming specs

TechRadar rating:

4 stars

Battery life is great, but the Razr HD really does seem underpowered for what you're paying, and while the specs might not seem terrible now, the relative weakness of them is going to make it become a lot more dated a lot faster than most similarly priced phones.

Like:

Good battery life; Simple OS; MicroSD slot

Dislike:

Low specs for price; Uncomfortable build; Poor video camera

Introduction

The Motorola Razr HD launched in the US late last year, but in that time all that's changed is the name (it was called the Motorola Droid Razr HD in the US), so it's less of a mouthful now.

Unfortunately the specs haven't changed, leaving it with just a dual-core 1.5GHz processor and 1GB of RAM.

Rounding out the specs, the phone's running Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean, there's a 4.7-inch 720 x 1280 display, 16GB of internal storage - which can be expanded with a microSD card of up to 32GB - and an 8MP camera capable of shooting 1080p video at 30fps.

Motorola Razr HD review

While those specs would be fine on a mid-range phone, for a flagship handset they were looking a little low-end even last year, and now next to the Sony Xperia Z and Samsung Galaxy S4 they seem positively quaint. Being a flagship handset, it's not unreasonable to consider these phones its competitors, despite them rocking at least quad-core processors and 2GB of RAM.

Motorola Razr HD review

Of course specs aren't everything and they don't always equate to real world performance anyway, but it's still a little disappointing. On the other hand the price is a little lower than some top-end handsets, coming in at around £400 (Australian prices TBC) SIM-free, cheaper than an iPhone 5 or Sony Xperia Z.

It's priced at around the same level as the high-end-but-last-year's Samsung Galaxy S3 - but even that substantially outperforms it on paper. Ditto the Google Nexus 4, which can be picked up from Google itself for just £239/AU$349 upwards.

Motorola Razr HD review

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One thing that we will say is that the Motorola Razr HD certainly looks the part. With a rugged yet premium-looking Kevlar back plate, it comes across as both expensive and built to last. It's also a nice change from the plastic found on most phones, or even the glass or shiny metal that a handful sport.

The corners are also a bit different, being less rounded than most of the competition, giving it a striking, almost jagged look. The front of the phone doesn't disappoint either - sure it's basically just a sheet of glass, but it's edge-to-edge, leaving it looking pretty slick.

Motorola Razr HD review

At 146g it's got a pleasing amount of weight to it, which feels particularly appropriate given the slightly rugged design. Size wise it's about what you'd expect for a top-end phone, with a 4.7-inch display and total dimensions of 131.9 x 67.9 x 8.4mm.

If anything it's actually quite a slim handset, though still somewhat thicker than the incredibly slender 7.9mm deep Sony Xperia Z.

Motorola Razr HD review

While it doesn't feel bad in the hand, it doesn't feel great either. The Motorola Razr HD's Kevlar back has quite a pleasant feel but it's also quite slippery, making it slightly harder to get a solid grip on than many other phones. The corners also present a slight problem, since being more jagged than most they can be a little uncomfortable, potentially digging into your hand slightly when the handset is held in certain positions.

Pretty much the only thing on the front of the phone is the 4.7-inch 720 x 1280 screen with a 312ppi pixel density. That's quite sharp, just topping the 306ppi Samsung Galaxy S3 and almost matching the 318ppi Google Nexus 4, though not even coming close to the 441ppi Sony Xperia Z or 468ppi HTC One.

Motorola Razr HD review

The only other things on the front of the phone are small black strips at the top and bottom. The bottom strip is devoid of any features, while the top strip has the earpiece in the centre, with an indicator light above it, which flashes when an email, text or voicemail comes through.

There's a small Motorola logo at the very top, and the 1.3MP front-facing camera lens just to the right of it.

Motorola Razr HD review

The Kevlar back is adorned with an arrow-like pattern, with an 'M' in the centre. The main 8MP camera (which can also shoot 1080p video at 30fps) is at the top, while to the left of it there's the flash and to the right there's a speaker.

The edges of the Motorola Razr HD have a brushed metal look to them, with the top edge housing a 3.5mm headphone port on the right.

Motorola Razr HD review

The right edge is home to the only two buttons on the phone - a power button near the top (which is also used to make the handset sleep/wake up), and a volume rocker halfway down.

The positioning of the buttons is fairly standard and works well. Usefully they also feel different, since the power button has little ridges running along it, while the volume rocker is mostly smooth but juts out a little at each end. This makes it easy to differentiate the buttons by touch alone.

Motorola Razr HD review

The left-hand side has a micro HDMI port at the bottom, for connecting the handset to a TV or monitor, a micro USB port above it and a little compartment halfway up, which houses the microSIM card and a microSD card.

Motorola Razr HD review

The back plate can't be removed, so there's no option to swap the battery. However it comes with a 2530mAH battery, which is pretty big for a phone of this size. It promises impressive performance too, with Motorola claiming it can manage up to 24 hours of talk time or 286 hours of standby time.

If the battery lives up to its potential it could be the saving grace in an otherwise slightly underwhelming handset.

Interface

Motorola Razr HD review

The Motorola Razr HD runs Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean, and although it's been slightly skinned and tweaked it's not a million miles away from the stock experience.

Starting with the lock screen, things will look pretty familiar to anyone who's used a phone running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich or above before.

At the very top of the screen there's a little bar with your battery level, signal strength and any active connections listed.

Just below it there's a white digital clock, while to the right of that there's a slider that enables you to turn the sound on or off.

This comes in handy, because although there's a volume rocker you have to actually unlock the phone to make use of it, so if all you want to do is put your phone on silent this enables you to achieve that straight from the lock screen.

Motorola Razr HD review

If you don't have a PIN or any other sort of security set up on your phone, then the focus of the screen will be a key in a white circle right in the centre.

Swiping this to the right will unlock the handset, while swiping upwards will take you to your phonebook, down will take you to your text messages and left will launch the camera. They're handy shortcuts; it's just a shame that you can't customise them.

Things are just as close to stock Android on the home screens. You swipe left or right to switch between screens, each of which can house up to 16 apps, or you can use some of the space for widgets.

Long-pressing the screen enables you to change the wallpaper, while long pressing an app enables you to move or remove it. You can also make folders by dragging apps on top of each other.

If you swipe left from the Motorola Razr HD's first home screen you'll reach a quick settings page, which gives you access to commonly used toggles, such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and contains a shortcut to the main settings screen.

Motorola Razr HD review

Equally, if you swipe right from the last home screen you'll reach a page that enables you to add new home screens.

You can obviously start with a blank one if you like but the phone also gives you the option of starting with a template, where you can then choose between Media, Mobile Office and more - each of them pre-loaded with relevant apps and folders.

There's a dock near the bottom with a shortcut to your app drawer in the centre and two apps to either side of it.

These default to Phone, People, Text Messaging and Camera but can be changed to anything you like.

Below that there are three software buttons - a back button on the left, which cycles back through previous screens and apps that you've used recently, and a multitask button on the right, which brings up an overview of all your open pages and apps, enabling you to tap one to go back to it or swipe it to close it.

Motorola Razr HD review

Then there's a home button in the centre, which takes you back to the main home screen if you're anywhere else.

If you're already on the Motorola Razr HD's main home screen it will bring up a zoomed out display of all your home screens, enabling you to tap on one to go to it or touch and drag a screen to reorder or remove it.

Wherever you are, if you swipe up from the home button it will launch Google Now.

We won't talk too in depth about that because we've covered it plenty of times before - not least in our Android Jelly Bean review, but essentially it's a visual PA, which aims to give you the information that you need when you need it.

So for example in the morning it might check the traffic for you and estimate how long it will take you to get to work, as well as giving you a weather forecast.

Then during the day if you have any meetings or appointments it will remind you about them and bring up a map to lead you there.

Motorola Razr HD review

You can customise it in various ways to make the information as relevant as possible to your needs, and while we're still left wishing there was more to it, it can be a genuinely useful feature.

Going back to the home screens, the Motorola Razr HD comes with quite a nifty pre-installed widget.

It puts three circles on your home screen, the first of which shows the time, date and any alarms, the second shows the weather and the third shows your battery level.

What makes it so handy, though, is that if you swipe across them you can see different information.

So for example swiping across the clock circle will change it to an analogue clock and swiping across the weather circle will cycle through the weather in any other places you've asked it to show. Of course being a widget you can always just remove it if you don't find it so useful.

Motorola Razr HD review

Near the top of each home screen there's a Google Now search bar, which you can type or speak queries or commands into and it will use both the internet and the contents of your phone to come up with the best answer.

At the very top of the screen there's the same bar as on the lock screen, which tells you your battery level, signal strength and more.

Swiping down from that will reveal the notifications screen, which lists emails, texts, reminders and other events. Tapping on one will open it, while tapping the 'x' at the top of the screen will clear them all. You can also access the main settings screen from here.

The settings screen itself is just standard Android, with all the options you'd expect but nothing that you wouldn't - there are network settings, sound and display options and more, but nothing unusual.

Finally we come to the Motorola Razr HD's app drawer, and that's mostly been left alone too.

Motorola Razr HD review

There are toggles at the top to switch between apps and widgets, and whichever list you're viewing you can simply see a picture and name for everything, while tapping on something will open it and long-pressing it will enable you to place it on a home screen.

The only addition that Motorola has made is adding a Favourites option, which just lists apps that you've added to your favourites, giving you quick access to them.

We're not sure how useful this really is, since presumably any apps that you use a lot you would have put front and centre on your home screens anyway, but it's there if you want it.

Being so close to stock Android it's a very clean, well laid out and mostly very intuitive interface. The only things that maybe aren't quite so intuitive are things that Motorola has added, such as swiping left from your first home screen to access quick settings, but even that is very easy to learn. It will also be immediately familiar to most people who've used Android before.

Performance was solid but not faultless, with occasional judders even when just navigating the home screens. We're inclined to put that down to the dual-core processor, but whatever the reason it's a little disappointing.

Contacts and calling

Motorola Razr HD review

Contacts

Contacts on the Motorola Razr HD are for the most part accessed from the People app.

This is a Google app so it's present on many Android phones, and unlike some manufacturers Motorola hasn't confused things by adding its own contacts app too.

The People app has three tabs along the top - Groups, People and Favourites. You can probably guess what each entails but we'll run through them anyway.

The Groups tab enables you to create groups and add contacts to them...obviously.

So for example you might want one group for family, one for friends and one for business. It enables you to split your contacts up and more easily find people who could otherwise be buried in your phone book.

Motorola Razr HD review

The People tab is likely the one that you'll spend the most time on. It lists all of your contacts in alphabetical order and displays both their name and picture (if you assigned them one).

Tapping their picture or long-pressing their name brings up shortcuts to call, text or email them, view their Facebook profile or view their main contact card, while tapping their name just takes you straight to the contact.

The contact card itself contains any information you've stored on them, so we're talking numbers, email addresses, social network profiles, websites, their postal address and more.

You can add as much or as little information as you want here, and anywhere you see a phone number, email address or the like you can tap on it to contact them.

Motorola Razr HD review

There's also a drop-down menu at the top of each contact card with options to add new information, share their details, delete them, set a custom ringtone for them, place the card on your home screen or send all of their calls to voicemail.

The final tab in the Motorola Razr HD's People app is Favourites, which simply shows large images of anyone you've added to favourites, giving you quick access to them. Tapping on an image will take you to their contact card.

At the bottom of all these screens there are options to search for a specific contact, go to the dial pad, add a new contact or customise which contacts you want to display.

The layout is about as intuitive as it gets, though we do wish that it was quicker to actually call someone. It should be doable with a single tap or swipe, but it's not.

We'd also love to see deeper social network integration - sure, you can add Facebook profiles and the like to contact cards, but it would be great if status updates and IM chat messages were visible from contact cards too.

Calling

Generally the easiest way to call someone on the Motorola Razr HD is just to go into the People app (assuming it's someone that you have in your contacts), but it's not the only way.

There's also a Phone app, which is mostly just a dial pad - but it's a good one because it supports smart dialling, meaning that once you start dialling a number it will bring up matches from your phone book, which you can then tap on to call rather than typing the whole number out. You can also use the letters on the dial pad to type someone's name and it will bring them up that way too.

Motorola Razr HD review

At the bottom of the screen there's a magnifying glass that will take you to your phonebook, along with a microphone that enables you to use voice commands to call or text someone.

It works pretty well in general, though it takes a couple of seconds to actually carry out your command so we'd still say just typing out what you want tends to be preferable.

You can also access call settings from the Motorola Razr HD's dial pad, which enables you to do things such as set up call forwarding.

Aside from the dial pad itself, there are tabs across the top of the screen for Recent and Favourites, with Favourites just listing your favourites and enabling you to call them or access their contact card with a tap, while the Recent tab lists recent calls, telling you how long ago they were made or received and enabling you to call the person back by tapping on them.

When a call comes through the name or number of the caller appears at the top of the screen, with a picture below that (if they're in your phone book with one assigned). There's also a circle in the middle that you can swipe right to answer the phone or left to ignore the call.

Motorola Razr HD review

When on a call a picture of the person you're talking to dominates the screen - or if you don't have one then a non-descript silhouette takes its place. At the top you can see the caller's name or number and the call duration, while near the bottom there's a big red hang-up button.

Below that there are a few options - one that takes you to the dial pad, one to turn speaker phone on or off, one to mute the call, one to add someone to the call and one to put the caller on hold.

You can also just tap the home button to return to your home screens and do anything else on your phone while still on the call, (you can get back to the call screen or hang up from the notifications screen).

Call quality is impressively good, with the phone even providing great clarity in areas where we normally find signal to be pretty poor.

We didn't experience even a single dropped call, either. The speaker phone could be better though - it works but the sound is quite tinny and at times a little distorted.

Messaging

Motorola Razr HD review

Messaging on the Motorola Razr HD is primarily handled by the Text Messaging app.

There doesn't seem to be much variation in how phones handle text messages these days, and this is no exception.

It starts you on a screen with a list of all your ongoing conversations - complete with a snapshot of the last message that was sent or received in each of them.

You can tap on one to open it or long-press to delete it.

There's also a row of icons along the top, there's a magnifying glass that you can tap to search for a specific person or message, a plus button that enables you to type out a new message to someone and a settings option that enables you to turn on delivery reports, notifications and the like.

Motorola Razr HD review

When in a text message thread, it's laid out pretty much exactly like every other phone on the planet - your messages appear in a grey box aligned to the right of the screen, while the person you're talking to gets a blue box and is aligned to the left of the screen.

You can also see the person's contact picture next to each of their messages.

Tapping their picture will bring up a pop-up box with options to call them, email them or go to their contact card, while long-pressing a message enables you to delete it.

At the top of this screen there's a phone icon that enables you to call the person and a paperclip that you can tap to send pictures or videos to them.

At the bottom of the screen there's a text entry box that you can tap to bring up the keyboard.

The keyboard can be used in both landscape and portrait orientation, and it's pretty accurate either way. It's also comfortably large thanks to the 4.7-inch screen on the Motorola Razr HD.

Motorola Razr HD review

The keyboard will bring up suggestions and corrections as you type, which you can tap on to use, and there's also a voice option available, which actually works really well.

Even when we had quite loud music on in the background it still accurately recognised what we were saying and typed it out into a message.

There isn't really any social network or IM integration built in to the Motorola Razr HD, other than being able to access a contact's profiles from their contact card.

But it does come with the Google Plus app pre-installed, and there are apps available from Google Play for pretty much all other such services.

Aside from text messaging, the only other messaging service that's particularly built into the phone is email. This is split into two separate apps - one for Gmail and one for everything else - but they both work in much the same way, the exception being that Gmail will automatically configure itself when you first set the phone up, while other emails will have to be set up manually.

Motorola Razr HD review

Whichever email app you're in you'll get a list of all your emails, which you can tap on to open or long-press to delete.

Some options are in slightly different positions depending on which email app you're in, but they both enable you to search for specific emails from the main screen, as well as having an option to compose a new email.

New emails are straightforward - you put in an address, a subject and a message, add an attachment if you like and then tap send.

When viewing existing emails on the Motorola Razr HD you get a slightly different set of options, enabling you to reply, delete the message, forward it or scroll through to the next email in your inbox.

Unfortunately not all emails are fitted to the page, so while they're generally easy to read you will sometimes need to scroll left and right as well as up and down - although you can now sort this in the settings if you root around enough.

Internet

Motorola Razr HD review

The Motorola Razr HD ships with dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n internet, plus HSDPA at up to 21.1Mbps and HSUPA at up to 5.76Mbps. It can also be used as a Wi-Fi hotspot.

It comes with Google Chrome, which is certainly one of the best mobile browsers with all the options you really need.

Along the top of each page there's an address bar/search box, to the right of that there's a refresh button and to the right of that is a button that enables you to switch between different tabs.

And at the far right is a drop-down menu, which enables you to open new tabs, switch between desktop and mobile versions of sites and access your bookmarks and the browser settings screen.

Tapping the tabs icon will show zoomed out images of all your tabs, enabling you to tap one to switch to it or tap an 'x' in the corner to close it.

The bookmarks screen works similarly - simply enabling you to tap on a page to open it. You can also sync your bookmarks and tabs with the desktop version of Chrome if you sign in.

Motorola Razr HD review

The browser settings screen has options to change the default search engine, auto-fill forms, save passwords and a bunch of privacy and accessibility settings.

Overall the browser is very slick and speedy, with even full desktop pages loading in just a few seconds over Wi-Fi and not much slower when using 3G.

Flash isn't enabled sadly, which is still something of a bugbear. It's not as pivotal as it once was, but the functionality is still nice to have. At least there aren't a million browsers preloaded on here to make things confusing.

Scrolling around is mostly fairly seamless, and you can double-tap or pinch to zoom with almost no delay, though if you stick to mobile sites then the pages will be resized to fit the screen automatically.

The screen is also big enough to make web browsing a fairly pleasant experience, though while text is almost always readable - even when zoomed out - it isn't always quite as sharp as we'd like, and the colours in Chrome seem oddly washed out.

While Chrome is the only browser that comes pre-installed, there are plenty of other options available from Google Play if you'd rather use something else, and most of them are free.

Camera

The Motorola Razr HD has a 1.3 megapixel front-facing camera and an 8 megapixel main camera with flash and autofocus, which was to be expected really, since although a few phones such as the Sony Xperia Z are upping the megapixel count, 8 is still the go-to number for most high-end handsets.

At least there's a bunch of options to play with, from being able to tap to autofocus on certain things to being able to adjust the exposure, add location information and choose from a few different scene modes or effects.

Motorola Razr HD review

It's very easy to use too, with a drop-down menu containing clearly labelled options.

While an 8 megapixel snapper might not be very exciting, it did manage some fairly decent pictures. It's also pretty speedy, meaning you can take a lot of pictures in a short space of time.

Motorola Razr HD review

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Motorola Razr HD review

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Motorola Razr HD review

Click here to see the full resolution image

Motorola Razr HD review

Click here to see the full resolution image

Motorola Razr HD review

Click here to see the full resolution image

Motorola Razr HD review

Click here to see the full resolution image

Motorola Razr HD review

Click here to see the full resolution image

Video

The Motorola Razr HD has a Full HD 1080p video camera that can shoot at 30fps, which, as with the 8MP still photo camera, is pretty standard for a flagship phone.

There's a similar, albeit slightly more limited, selection of options and modes to get to grips with as on the stills camera. You can turn the video lamp on or off, adjust the exposure, add an effect or choose from a few audio and visual modes, such as Slow Motion and Wind Reduction. The quality isn't the best we've seen but it's not too bad.

Media

Motorola Razr HD review

The Motorola Razr HD has a few different media apps bundled with it, but they're all standard Google apps that come with most Android smartphones.

For videos there's Play Movies, which houses any videos that you've rented or bought from Google Play along with any videos you've added to your device.

Each video has an image, name and duration, and tapping on one will open it. If it's a movie from Google Play you can also choose whether to download it or stream it. There's also a link to the video store from the player.

When viewing a movie, other than pausing it or jumping ahead your only options are to share it or stream it via DLNA.

That's really all there is to the app, but it plays a wide variety of file types and the screen on the Motorola Razr HD is big enough and high enough resolution to make for a viable video-viewing option, though the angular design of the phone means that it's not as comfortable to hold as some.

Motorola Razr HD review

Aside from Play Movies, the Motorola Razr HD also comes with YouTube pre-installed, so you can get your fill of internet videos.

There's also a video editor, which enables you to cobble together home movies from either clips that you've filmed on the phone or those that you've copied across to it.

There's not much to it - really all you can do is splice clips together and add sound and music, but we baulk at the thought of trying to do any serious video editing on a phone anyway.

Unlike most phones, the Motorola Razr HD has a micro HDMI port on it, meaning that you can hook it up to a TV or monitor and watch things on that.

It's a pretty handy feature and one that helps it stand out, though no cable is included so you'll have to pick one up separately.

Motorola Razr HD review

For music the phone comes with the similarly named Play Music, which can sort music by album, artist, genre, song or recently played.

You can create playlists, and as with the video player there's a link to the store and a decent range of file types are supported (the complete list includes MP3, MP4, AAC+, WAV, WMA, H.263, H.264 and WMV).

That's all pretty standard, but you can also upload up to 20,000 songs to the cloud and stream them on the player - so as long as you've got an internet connection you don't even need to store tracks on the handset, which could free up a lot of space.

Though despite only having 16GB of built-in storage, the microSD card slot should mean storage is never likely to be too much of a problem anyway - we're surprised Google let this through though, what with its penchant for cloud storage over local.

It's also pretty good when it comes to actually playing your music, since the speakers are surprisingly loud and it has a built-in equaliser to further tweak the sound. Plus with music controls on the lock screen it's easy to pause and skip tracks without staying in the player.

There's no built-in radio, but there are plenty of internet radio apps to choose from on Google Play.

Motorola Razr HD review

There are a couple of apps for reading too, specifically Play Books and Play Magazines.

The former is a bog standard e-book reader app, which displays any e-books you've purchased from Google Play. It's quite attractive, with a nice swoopy animation to accompany each page turn, but it doesn't cooperate with books purchased for Kindle and the like, so you'll need to download separate apps for them.

And in any case we tend to think a phone is a bit small to do any serious reading on.

The other reading app - Play Magazines - does the same but for magazines.

The colour screen comes in handy here, because the black and white screens of most dedicated e-readers aren't really suited to glossy magazines, but it's still a bit small - really you want a tablet. The app is competent enough if you do decide to use it though, and Google Play has a reasonable selection of titles to choose from.

Motorola Razr HD review

The only other media aspect on the phone is photos, which you access through the 'Gallery' app.

It can sort photos by album, location or time and as well as viewing photos you can stream them over DLNA, share them via Bluetooth, text or online, crop them or add any of a handful of effects and fixes to them, such as removing red eye or adding film grain.

Ultimately the Motorola Razr HD doesn't wow us with its out-of-the-box media capabilities, since while the apps are easy to use and in some cases quite good, they're also all ones that you're likely to find on other phones anyway.

However, the screen is fairly large and high resolution, making it good for videos, the microSD card slot ensures you should never be low on space and it has decent speakers.

What really helps it stand out, though, is its micro HDMI port, since not many phones have one and it makes the phone viable for home entertainment - rather than just keeping you entertained on the go.

Battery life and connectivity

Motorola Razr HD review

Battery life

With a 2530mAh battery we expected that the Motorola Razr HD might have quite a lot of juice, but if anything it exceeded our expectations. Battery life on this thing really is very good for a smartphone.

Motorola claims that it can deliver up to 286 hours of standby time and up to 24 hours talk time on a single charge, and we have no reason to think otherwise.

In the time that we've been using the phone we've almost been able to forget about checking the battery level altogether, because it keeps on going for such a long time.

With moderate use you should easily get a couple of days out of it.

In order to see exactly how good it was we put it to the test.

Motorola Razr HD review

With the phone fully charged, the screen set to maximum brightness, Wi-Fi on and emails and social networks set to push notifications, we ran a 90 minute video then checked the battery level at the end and it still had 86% left.

In other words that's just under a 10% drop for every hour of video - and that's with a very bright screen and emails and messages being synced in the background.

There isn't much in the way of built-in battery saving options, just a Display Power Saver option that dims bright screens.

You also can't remove or change the battery, but with such good performance none of that seems like a problem.

It's still not quite in the territory of those old, not-at-all-smart phones that would just keep on going for a week or so, but the Motorola Razr HD can outlast pretty much all of its current smartphone competition.

Connectivity

Motorola Razr HD review

The Motorola Razr HD is a pretty well connected phone, with dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, HSDPA at 21.1Mbps, HSUPA at 5.76Mbps, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS, NFC, a DLNA client and Wi-Fi hotspot support.

It's also got 4G connectivity on board, which is something we're currently giving a new test at the moment - so if you're after the Motorola Razr HD for use on EE now, or Vodafone, O2 or Three later in the year when they come on board too.

It's generally pretty easy to use all of the above connectivity options, with most of the options being available from the main settings screen and some even having toggles in the Quick Settings screen that you get to by swiping left from the first home screen.

The exception to all this is DLNA, which as well as having some media sharing options in the settings screen, can also be activated through the Play Movies app to stream videos or through the gallery to view a slideshow on a big screen.

Connecting to a PC is pretty much just a case of plug-and-play. It does spend a few minutes installing software the first time you plug it in, but after that it should connect instantly and enable you to easily drag and drop files on to the phone through your standard file explorer.

Maps and apps

Maps

Motorola Razr HD review

As you'd expect, the Motorola Razr HD comes with Google Maps out of the box.

It's a staple of every Android phone and with good reason, because aside from being created by the company that made Android it's also really rather handy and one of the best mobile mapping options available.

As well as giving you maps, routes and directions, there are a bunch of other options built in, such as Street View, traffic information, public transport lines and nearby shops and businesses.

We also found that it could lock onto our location very quickly on the Motorola Razr HD - almost instantly in fact.

Along with Google Maps, the handset also comes with Google Navigation, which is a solid free sat nav service that uses GPS and Google Maps data to navigate for you.

Apps

Motorola Razr HD review

Like most other Android phones, Google Play will be your main destination for apps.

There's almost a bewildering selection to choose from, both free and paid for, covering everything from games, to productivity apps, to cook books.

Thankfully it's all divided into categories so it's fairly easy to navigate.

Once you've downloaded an app it integrates itself into the phone as much as it needs to, with many supporting push notifications and widgets.

You'll find that the Motorola Razr HD also comes with a few apps pre-installed. Most of these fall into the category of calendars and calculators, which are useful but would only really be notable if they were absent.

However there are a few things that you don't see on every phone. There's a file browser that enables you to navigate the phones file system and create new folders.

Motorola Razr HD review

You also get some office software in the form of Quickoffice, which can open, edit and create text documents and spreadsheets.

It's not all that in-depth, but it's plenty good enough for a phone and it's got a few handy features such as the ability to create things in various Microsoft Word formats.

Most interestingly the Motorola Razr HD comes with SmartAction. This is a powerful tool enabling you to automate certain actions in certain situations.

For example you could set it to automatically turn GPS on and open your sat nav whenever you activate car mode, or launch a music player when you connect a pair of headphones.

If you take the time to set it up to your liking it can prove very useful, and while there are similar apps available on Google Play it's great to see one included from the start.

Finally there's also an app called Guide Me, which is basically just a manual/FAQ for the phone, with a handful of tutorials. There's not much to it but it could potentially come in handy if you can't work out how to do something, and if you're new to Android it's well worth a look.

Hands on gallery

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

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Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Motorola Razr HD review

Verdict

We didn't have hugely high hopes for the Motorola Razr HD. With a price tag of around £400 SIM-free it's competing with the Samsung Galaxy S3, Google Nexus 4 and other high-end phones, but it just didn't seem to have the specs to justify that sort of outlay.

It only has a dual-core processor when much of the competition are running quad cores, and 1GB of RAM where 2GB has become standard. This is especially strange since it's the company's highest end handset, making it for all intents and purposes its flagship phone, so you'd really think it would want to go all out.

But while the specs aren't desperately impressive it did impress us in other ways - the battery life is head and shoulders above most of the competition, call quality is great, it's got a premium build and its micro HDMI port gives it a selling point that not many other phones have.

We liked

The battery life is by far the most impressive thing about the Motorola Razr HD. It's almost become accepted (and acceptable) that a phone will need charging pretty much daily, but this handset bucks that trend. You're still not likely to get more than two or three days out of a single charge, but that's very impressive compared to a lot of phones.

Call quality seems great too. Your choice of network will of course have an impact, but it seemed to receive a stronger signal than many other phones, and even when the signal strength was low, quality didn't suffer as much as it could have.

A microSD slot is really welcome, as it allows you to expand the memory massively - and given that this is from a company owned by Google, which doesn't like local storage, it's a nice addition.

Then there's the micro HDMI port, which makes it easy to hook it up to a TV or monitor. You don't often think of phones as devices for home entertainment but a micro HDMI port goes some way to changing that perception, as well as coming in handy for hooking it up to TVs in hotel rooms when you're away - although a number of others use the microUSB port instead.

This obviously has the issue of meaning you can't charge the phone at the same time (unless you have a fancy cable) so two ports is always better than one.

We disliked

The core specs are its main downfall. They're not bad by any stretch of the imagination, but they're also not really good enough to justify such a high price tag.

The video camera also isn't the best we've seen and the angular design of the phone can make it uncomfortable to hold - and the juddery action of use throughout can, at times, really grate on what could be a much better phone.

Final verdict

Buying GuideBest Android phone - which should you buy?Best Android phone

In the end we couldn't find all that much wrong with the Motorola Razr HD, while there was a lot that we were quite impressed with.

We've talked about it already but the battery life really is the biggest selling point of the phone, since it's mighty impressive. The call quality is good and having a micro HDMI port is nice.

The build of the phone is not only good but also a little more unique than most handsets, since the back is made of Kevlar. The speakers are impressively loud (if tinny) and having a microSD card slot is always appreciated, if not unusual.

But while we haven't found much to complain about, the specs are a pretty big deal. It just really does seem underpowered for what you're paying, and while the specs might not seem terrible now, the relative weakness of them is going to make it become a lot more dated a lot faster than most similarly priced phones.

That's not to say you shouldn't buy it - the battery life is reason enough to at least consider it and there's plenty more to like about it too, but the specs definitely hold it back.

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