The Defy runs Google’s Android OS 2.1 on an 800 MHz processor, and has MotoBlur, Motorola’s alternate version of the standard user interface that focuses on social networking.
I have found the Defy to be extremely responsive so far, with no waiting at all no matter what I want to accomplish. Performance overall, after my few brief hours with the phone so far, is extremely good. Almost too good at times, because scrolling through the web browser happens so fast you can easily shoot past the portion of the page you were trying to view.
I had some signal problems inside my office; one call went straight to voice mail without ever ringing the phone, and I didn’t receive any notice of a missed call. I was able to place calls from my office, with acceptable voice quality.
When I went outside, where I had a much stronger signal, the voice quality greatly improved. One of my callers said that I was crystal clear, but very loud — and I assure you that I am not one of those folks who tends to shout into the phone.
All of the Google apps are here, including Gmail, Calendar, and contacts. You’ll also find Quickoffice for all of your Word, Excel, and PowerPoint needs, plus two options for navigation apps: the free Google Maps and Navigation as well as TeleNav.
The Amazon MP3 and Kindle apps are preloaded, but no games are included, not even demos. A music player is included that can handle AAC, MP3, and other formats, and this device also comes with a video player.
One cool application that I’m just beginning to explore is the Family Room, which is designed to help families stay closer together with features such as email blasts and text blasts that go out to every contact pre-identified as a family member.
With access to the Android Market there are plenty of games and apps available; I’ll download several and try them out so that I can share my experiences in the full review.
The Defy includes a 5-megapixel camera with digital zoom and LED flash.
I’ve only taken a few shots so far, and the photos turned out fairly well, but with a few exposure problems — there are blown out areas where the sun is shining through the trees. Further testing is required to determine if this is a true shortcoming with the camera or just a random ocurrence.
One good point about the camera is that it takes photos quickly — some phones seem to take forever, so you can easily miss the shot. The volume buttons are also used as the telephoto/zoom control, which is much faster and easier than trying to tap on the screen while framing the shot.
It isn’t possible to judge how long a smartphone will run without needing to be rechaerged in just one day with the device, so you’ll have to wait for the full review for my conclusions.
The Defy is a really neat smartphone, and I’m excited about it. It has a cool but not-too-funky design, a great display, and it promises to take just about anything I can dish out in the way of dust and splashes.
I haven’t been able to spend a lot of time with the review unit yet, but so far I really like what I see and my first impression is definitely positive.
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