The Motorola Droid Turbo 2 has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor with 2GHz octa-core CPUs, and Adreno 430 graphics, along with Motorola’s natural language and contextual computing processors. This is a slight step up from the Snapdragon 808 found on the Moto X Pure Edition, but matches the processor found in early 2015 flagships, like the HTC One M9. Some of the first Snapdragon 810 handsets had problems with overheating, but that seems to have sorted itself out with this Android smartphone. It’s as swift and capable as one would expect of a flagship in 2015.
Like the Moto X, the Droid Turbo 2 has 3GB of RAM. More recent flagships, like the Galaxy Note5 and Galaxy S6 edge+ have 4GB of RAM, though the difference in performance is barely discernible as of this writing. That may change in a few years, with more demanding apps and games.
Looking at the Geekbench 3 benchmark, the Droid Turbo 2 does well. It 1281 in the single-core test, and 4656 on the multi-core test. The Moto X Pure Edition scored 1256 and 3558, respectively, while the Galaxy Note5 scored 1465 and 4610.
The Motorola Droid Turbo 2 ships with Android 5.1.1, though should be due for an upgrade to Android Marshmallow within the near to medium term future. As with any Motorola Android smartphone, it appears as close to stock Android without actually being stock Android. Motorola’s genuinely useful Moto Assist, Moto Actions, and Moto Display are on board, but so too is Verizon’s bloatware.
This is unfortunate. With Google Hangouts and Messaging, we don’t need Verizon’s Message+. Nor do we need Verizon’s Cloud as long as we have Google Drive. Same with VZ Navigator. We have Google Maps for that.
Beyond that, there are other lousy preinstalled apps. Some of which can be uninstalled, like Cookie Jam and Sugar Smash, while others are permanently imbedded. There is just no getting rid of NFL Mobile or Slacker Radio.
This is more than an annoyance. Our 32GB review unit shipped with about 17GB of free space, while our 32GB Moto X Pure Edition with Google apps but without the bloatware, came with 24GB free space. Thankfully, the Droid Turbo 2 has a microSD card slot, and Android Marshmallow can format that as internal storage, so potential buyers worried about space won’t have to spring for the 64GB version.
The Motorola Droid Turbo 2 has a whopping 3760 mAh battery that Motorola claims can last up to 48 hours with mixed usage. It’s not user replaceable, but it’s a beast. In our testing, it lasted two full workdays with moderate use, and 10 hours and 10 minutes streaming Netflix over Wi-Fi with the display brightness maxxed out.
This is a great result. Most Android flagships last about 7 hours, while the battery champs like the original Droid Turbo and can hit 11.
The Droid Turbo 2 also supports fast charging, and we were able to get it from 0 to 50% in a little more than 30 minutes, and at 85% in an hour. It supports both PMA and Qi wireless charging.
After ShatterShield, the battery is the second best thing about the Droid Turbo 2.
As near as we can tell, the Droid Turbo 2 has the same camera as the Moto X Pure Edition: 21-megapixel, f/2.0 front, and 5-megapixel f/2.0 front. It also has the camera app, which scales back features and shooting modes for a simplified approach, with HDR, panorama, night mode, flash, and focus/exposure options.
This is in comparison to other flagships, which have really pushed smartphone camera limits. The latest Samsung’s support RAW image files, and rival high-end point and shoots in terms of image quality and clarity.
You won’t find that here, but we still like it. It offers everything the casual user will need for day-to-day shooting without burdening them with excessive options. We love the quick launch option (two flicks of the wrist opens the camera app). We also like the ability to scan QR codes, barcodes, and business cards, as well as the inclusion of the front-facing flash for the selfie camera. That should be default feature on all cameras.
The video camera shoots 1080p, 720p “SloMo,” and 4K. There is absolutely no need to shoot 4K video footage from a smartphone, but it’s still fun simply because it’s so excessive.
Overall, image quality is decent for a smartphone, but a few steps below flagship output, which are much better at capturing detail. Image colors pop and the Turbo 2 performs well in low-light conditions, but overexposure is common, especially with whites.