It’s always fun to play with a new gadget – especially when you don’t know much about it and don’t know what to expect. This was the case for me and the Motorola Atrix 2. Before reviewing the device, I hadn’t heard much about it, and this allowed me to go into the review objectively.
Some of the first things I noticed were that the phone is quick to respond and switching between screens is much faster than I had expected. I found it fairly easy to locate the main functions, which could have been due to the fact that I am used to an Android UI. It was a bit of an adjustment getting used to the four bottom buttons on phone, and I didn’t really see the need for a “search” button – I never used it at all. If the search button had to stay, I would probably swap its placement (on the immediate right-hand side) with the ‘back’ button.
The applications area automatically places all apps into alphabetical order, which could either be good for someone who is a little pedantic or annoying if you want to put them in a particular, personalised order. There are also various ways to view the applications list including by groups or by recently used.
Like any active social network user, I was happy to find full integration with Facebook and Twitter (and even MySpace for the old-schoolers). This particular interface also had a ‘universal inbox’ for unread messages, regardless of whether they came from a social network or as a regular text.
Of course, as a gamer, the thing that I was most excited about was the fact that the phone has built in high definition from EA Games. The phone has a dual core (which we all know is mandatory for any device running high-graphic games) and I am happy to report that it definitely dealt well with even the most demanding games. I experienced no major lag time in loading and was able to play multiple games consecutively with no hassle. The ‘maximum minimal’ 4.3” display with 256ppi pixel density is the perfect size for this phone and the battery life is equally impressive, lasting for more than four hours of continuous play.
The camera – available in 8MP (however it had a default setting of 6MP) – had a fast refresh rate and the menu to change features (e.g. black and white) was easily accessible. Most of the other features, such as changing to front facing camera and camcorder, are located on the home screen. The flash also gives clear photos without any of that excessive white light you often see with lower end camera flashes. The phone also has an HDMI port, which could be beneficial to those who want to view their photos on a separate screen.
With its uniquely curved edges, I found the phone ergonomically pleasing, and the textured back allows for better grip. I did, however, question the placement of the power/lock button and the USB and HDMI port locations, as well as the fact that both are unprotected.
• Dual Core Processor - great for games.
• 4.3” screen with 256 ppi pixel display, again good for the high definition games.
• Overall responsiveness very good for switching between screens and various apps.
• Battery life is well suited for continuous play time.
• Four button placement at the bottom of phone is awkward.
• Automatically alphabetised apps may irritate some users.
• Slight overheating during continuous game play.
Overall, I enjoyed my experience with the Motorola Atrix 2. I would recommend this device to average users, who will benefit from its quick responsiveness, and would strongly recommend it to gamers.