Droid X takes the gloves off
For the last few years, the question with each launch of a new smart phone was: Is this the iPhone
That no longer seems to be the right query. The competitive landscape of the mobile phone industry has
produced not a single device capable of felling Apple's star gadget; rather, it is an operating system --
Google's Android platform -- that is challenging the iPhone's standing among smart phones.
"There's no one phone that will be an iPhone 'killer,' " said Shahid Khan, chairman and chief strategist at
MediaMorph, who also noted that "kill" is too strong of a word. "It will be Android-based phones, all of
them together ... (that Apple) will see a formidable competitor."
The latest entrant in the Android lineup was introduced Wednesday by Verizon Wireless, Motorola Inc.
and Google, a day ahead of the highly anticipated iPhone 4 launch. The Droid X, which goes on sale at
Verizon on July 15, has a 4.3-inch screen and a bevy of multimedia features, including an 8-megapixel
camera and the ability to capture and play videos in high definition. Motorola's first Droid phone, released
at Verizon late last year, had a 3.7-inch screen and a 5-megapixel camera.
The multimedia features in the Droid X speak to the growth in mobile video, whose spread is being
enabled by faster networks, more powerful processors and bigger displays.
"The big differentiating feature (versus the original Droid) is the display and the capabilities that come
along with that," Mark Shockley, Motorola's senior vice president who oversees global mobile phone sales,
told the Chicago Tribune. "The whole notion of the home theater in your pocket is a big deal."
Verizon uses the Droid label for its line of premier Android-based smart phones. In addition to Motorola,
Taiwanese handset manufacturer HTC also has two Droids at the carrier. And Verizon's Droid line is just a
sampling of the Android devices on the market. Sprint, T-Mobile and AT&T all have Android products.
Sprint's flagship device is the Evo, an Android