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    terpitude71's Avatar
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    Arrow Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Howdy everyone,

    The purpose of this thread, is to hear members thoughts & opinions on how the Motorola Droid 3 stacks up amongst a suggested list of attributes:
    Aesthetics
    Screen
    Hardware
    Phone - including bluetooth & speakerphone usage
    Overall User Interface (including the new Blur)
    Widgets
    Signal quality (Compared to other devices)
    GPS
    Social Networking
    Email/Calendar
    Battery Life
    Performance
    Media (music, movies, DLNA)
    Keyboard's
    Camera (both still & video)
    How the Droid 3 compares to your previous smartphone (if applicable)
    Disappointments (if any)

    Feel free to provide as little or as much detail as possible, while trying to make it as useful as possible. Hopefully this will help others who are considering the Droid 3, but would like to hear some user feedback first. Also, please do not review the Droid 3 prior to having one

    And if you read a review that you found helpful, please use the Thanks button to show them your appreciation!
  2. #2  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    I upgraded my D2 to a D3 and thought I would share my impressions. I've had the phone for about a week now.

    Build Quality: 8/10

    The phone has a very nice feel to it. It has a good weight, and the materials seem have a very good feel to them. The sliding mechanism feels very sturdy. My D2 would sometimes slide part-way open in my pocket, and so far that has not been the case with my D3. I know that it might wear down over time, but it feels the slide feels much sturdier than the D2 did even brand new. The glass that covers the screen is gorilla glass which is awesome, very hard to scratch even without a screen protector on.

    My biggest gripe with the build is that the brushed metal-looking pieces that border the screen part and the keyboard of the phone is made from a very soft material. It is easy to scratch or ding up. I've been very careful with my phone over the past week and have already managed to mark up both the piece around the screen with a ding and the piece around the keyboard with some scratches. It was the same way on my D2. It just seems dumb that they would use such a soft material. But i guess if the phone was impossible to scratch, we wouldn't have to spend $25 on a case and other companies would lose money, right?

    Also, the battery door is a pain in the **** to remove and feels very flimsy. Personally this isn't a problem for me since I rarely remove it, but it could be an issue for some.


    Performance: 8/10

    I had very high hopes for the dual-core, and while the phone has come close to meeting my expectations the performance has not been quite as good as I had hoped. The phone is clearly faster than the D2. Scrolling through home screens is quick and snappy, phone startup and shut down is quite fast. Apps install very fast once downloaded, and most apps open quickly.

    However I still experience lag and shudders more often than I thought I would have thought upgrading to a dual-core. Sometimes there is a few second lag before apps open or close. Sometimes when scrolling through lists or switching between screens the phone feels behind my actions. Overall the phone feels very fast, but the hiccups occur enough for me that I thought they needed to be mentioned. The dual-core just isn't quite the "oh-wow" factor I was anticipating.

    As far as battery life is concerned I think the final verdict is still up in the air. I usually am able to make it to the end of the day with about 20% battery left, and I have been playing with my phone a lot more than normal since it is new and I have been exploring/tweaking settings and apps a lot. Even with the heavy use, the battery does not seem as good as it was on the D2. I think with the newness of the phone, and the upgrade to gingerbread some apps aren't working 100% correct and taking up more juice than they should. My guess is that battery life should increase when some bugs get ironed out. For now however, battery life has been a big issue for some, and a minor issue for myself. As long as you keep an eye on your apps and widgets, you should be able to get about 24 hrs off of a charge.

    Now I know I gave performance an 8/10 and then spent most of my time on the negatives. But even with the couple gripes about the dual core and the questionable battery life (so far), I still feel that the overall performance of the phone is quite good. The performance definitely feels like a solid upgrade over the D2.


    Call Quality: 6-7/10

    This one is a little hard to score because my experience with the call quality has been a mixed bag.

    For the majority of the time, call quality is great. On most of the calls the sound is very clear and sounds very natural.

    However I have experienced a number of calls where the caller sounds very muffled and "tinny", even to the point where I've had to ask them to repeat themselves a few times. I've also experienced some static, and some echo effects. Now I know that many things like signal strength of both phones can change the quality of the call. But there has been once or twice where I've been calling a land-line, have had full bars, and still experience poor call quality.

    Now most of the time (probably about 70%) the calls are great, and I'd go so far as to say that when this phone is sounding good it may be the best sounding cell phone I've used. But so far I have experienced poor call quality maybe 30% of the time. I've been using my phone in the same area that I've used my D2 for over a year, and I never used to have these kind of issues with such frequency. Sure I used to get a bad sounding call on the D2 (or any phone) once in a while, but with my D3 it happens enough where it has become my biggest issue with the phone. If I remember I will try to update this section in a few weeks with further thoughts on the frequency of the poor calls.


    Display: 8/10

    As I'm sure you know, the D3 uses the PenTile display, and has the typical PenTile drawbacks. Pixels are quite evident if you have bright, solid colors (battery indicator) or fine lines such as small text. There are some ghosting effects that happen when scrolling through text. If you need to see before you buy, go in to the store and check out the live wallpaper called 'Grass' on the D3 and some other phones and compare side by side. I think the drawbacks of the PenTile display are quite evident when you look at the edges and the color of the blades of grass.

    Now with that out of the way, I consider myself a pretty picky person when it comes to my new toys and I am happy with the display. I think it is very bright, and 90% of the time looks very good. It even is pretty easy to see in direct sunlight (given the brightness is high enough). The display doesn't get washed out in sunlight as bad as other phones.

    I know there are some pretty bad stories about the PenTile display (such as the DX2), but I am quite pleased by the display on my droid 3. I'm not sure if they made some tweaks with the D3, and I'm sure the smaller screen size helps, but I do like the display. Just not quite love.

    The touch response of the display is awesome. This really stands out as a big improvement over the D2. The first thing I tested with the touch screen was the game 'Mini-Squadron' since the game requires using two fingers touching the screen, and one of them moving around a lot. On my D2 this game did not work very well. It had a hard time reading the constant multiple touch inputs, and the game was pretty hard to play. However on the D3 it feels as smooth as butter. There is no trouble with the multiple touch inputs, and they are read accurately and it feels very responsive. Things like pinch to zoom also feel much more accurate and smooth. I've even noticed a big improvement to the accuracy of reading very small or precise things such as clicking on webpage links. I'm very happy with the touch screen.

    Keyboard: 10/10

    Last, but certainly not least, this the reason why most of us will be picking up the D3. The keyboard is fantastic. It is very spacious with plenty of room between the keys. Typing feels blazing fast. I wasn't too excited about the extra row for just numbers at first, but after a weeks worth of use I can say that it is very nice to have the dedicated number row. There is plenty of space between the number row and the screen when it is opened, so even with a case on the phone it is very easy to hit the numbers on that top row. The amount of 'travel' with the keys feels very good as well. You really get a nice 'clicking' feeling when typing. There is even a small indicator light next to the shift and alt keys that lights up when the shift-lock or alt-lock is enabled.

    The keyboard is definitely the shining feature of this phone.


    Summary:

    The droid 3 is a great phone. Personally my biggest issue is the call quality, and the poor calls only happen some of the time.

    If you want a keyboard on your phone, this is definitely the one to get. If you don't care about the keyboard then you may want to wait to see if some of the bugs get ironed out, or save yourself a little weight and thickness and look to a different phone.
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  3. #3  
    srv
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    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Quote Originally Posted by terpitude71 View Post
    Howdy everyone,

    The purpose of this thread, is to hear members thoughts & opinions on how the Motorola Droid 3 stacks up amongst a suggested list of attributes:
    Aesthetics
    Screen
    Hardware
    Phone - including bluetooth & speakerphone usage
    Overall User Interface (including the new Blur)
    Widgets
    Signal quality (Compared to other devices)
    GPS
    Social Networking
    Email/Calendar
    Battery Life
    Performance
    Media (music, movies, DLNA)
    Keyboard's
    Camera (both still & video)
    How the Droid 3 compares to your previous smartphone (if applicable)
    Disappointments (if any)

    Feel free to provide as little or as much detail as possible, while trying to make it as useful as possible. Hopefully this will help others who are considering the Droid 3, but would like to hear some user feedback first. Also, please do not review the Droid 3 prior to having one

    And if you read a review that you found helpful, please use the Thanks button to show them your appreciation!
    I've had the thing since Thu, upgrading from the OG Droid. I'm really liking it. I don't understand why some folks don't like the screen. It seems pretty damned good to me, and a couple people who played with my phone were raving about the screen. The keyboard is awesome, battery life seems fine, call quality seems fine. The only issue is the phenomenal amount of bloatware - it's astounding, even for VZW. That, by itself, would be enough reason to root it.
  4. #4  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    I've had mine since Thurs- and very happy with it- although the recessed usb is such that many other Micro cords will only charge and not allow tethering- other than that- I think I'll be happy for the next 2 years while the Network bugs and battery issues get resolved for the LTE network.

    This phone is plenty fast ! And I'm getting more than 24 hours on a charge-( thank you Juice Defender)
    Launcher Plus too helps the app switching- -Keyboard is great for us fat fingered folks
    Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right
  5. #5  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    wait you cant do USB tethering on the Droid 3?
  6. #6  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Screen Review:

    Bought it for my wife thursday and been tinkering with it and I actually like the screen. I use the Battlefield 3 "Thunder Run" trailer in HQ off of youtube as sort of a benchmark for the video/screen of phones because to be honest it challenges most computers because of the high definition graphics that Dice brought to the table (but this isn't a gaming forum I know LOL) and I have to say I am really impressed. I had a Charge before I found out I could be grandfathered into Unlimited data and I actually think that the video was actually a little better quality and less stutter on the D3 than the Charge. I watched the video under identical settings (Wifi, brightness max, not plugged in) and in the end was very happy with the screen on the D3. I do notice the Battery pixilation if I stare at the icon but in the grand scheme it really doesnt affect much and if I was joe random off the street that doesn't read the AC forums about the Pentile issues wouldn't know it any better.
  7. #7  
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    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Wife got hers on 7/15. It is her first permanent Android phone coming out of an LG Env Touch. (bought here a D2G of Craigslist on 7/1 to use for two weeks to secure unlimited data) Anyways....

    The first phone she bought had a bad LCD panel. When we got home I noticed there were reversed flashing pixels horizontally across the screen about 1/4 way up from the bottom. Exchanged that phone and its display is perfect.

    Build Quality

    It's a Motorola Device. It's solid and creak free. It seems lighter than the OG Droid and D2G. The battery door is made of rubberized plastic. Surprised to see that from Moto. But once its installed you don't realize its plastic. No issue there. The slider started smooth and a bit stiff. But, after a weekend of use, its just smooth. Bezel is a nice gunmetal color. Looks nice. The screen has Gorilla Glass; always a good thing.

    Communications

    Call quality seems very good. No issues. However, in general VZW is very strong out here on Long Island. WiFi worked flawlessly. Speeds were right as expected on our in home WiFi network. The device pairs quickly via Bluetooth with our Nissan. No sync issues with GMail or the Market. All previously installed apps from the D2G were downloaded to her phone by the time we made it home from the 15 minute trip from VZW kiosk at our local BJ's Wholesale Club. Nice.

    Home Launcher

    The new stock launcher looks like it would be very livable. Its very snappy with no lag. The app drawer slides sideways with a neat twist transition and has organization options. Good job by Moto. We installed ADW Launcher EX purely for the ability to scale the home screen icons bigger because my wife has a visual impairment and it allows for her to see the screen better without the need for a magnifying glass. ADW runs flawlessly. Android OS customization FTW! Take that Mr. Jobs.

    OS and Performance

    Gingerbread 2.3.4 runs smooth and the phone feels quite snappy. No GTalk Video baked in though? Surprising. Quadrant scores are in the mid 2200's with about 40 apps on the phone so far. Seen very little to no lag to speak of while setting up the phone for her. In fact side by side comparision with my Droid X was getting me a little sad and wanting of that new Bionic! LOL Lot of VZW bloatware. Need root STAT

    Display

    Well, what can you say, its Pentile, Love it or hate it. I'm in between I suppose. The "Grass" live wallpaper looks horribly pixelated and I do notice the pixels (even at normal arms length) when looking at the phone for long periods such as when I was setting it up. I don't think a casual user will notice anything is amiss. Just don't show them this phone side by with a iPhone 4.

    That being said, color is nice and the screen is bright. I also am very happy to see that "Display" is no longer at the top of the battery usage statistics. Android OS now has that top honor.

    Keyboard

    Well, what can you say. Its pretty fantastic. Compared to the mess of the OG Droid and D2G, this is wonderful. In fact, its pretty wonderful compared to a lot of keyboards out there. Because of its increased size and width, some keys are a bit of a reach, but its comfortable to use. Coming from a portrait keyboard like a BlackBerry, its W_I_D_E. Not a deal breaker in anyway. Just different. My wife has small hands and she has only raved about it. I guess she's used to typing sideways from all those years on the Voyager and EnV Touch.

    Conclusion

    The device is being sold at a great price (Got hers for $99 with the upgrade) and it is a nicely made device. Performance is very smooth so far. I suspect the screen will be perfectly acceptable for the general consumer. However, we are scratching our head as to why they included a front camera with no software to use it for video chat. Hoping that will be fixed soon. Overall, I really think this is going to be a real solid 3G phone for VZW. I just don't understand the lack of marketing. Very strange by VZW.
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  8. #8  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Aesthetics = Efficient 9
    Screen = Pentile works better with 4" size 8
    Hardware = Solid build 9
    Phone - including bluetooth & speakerphone usage = Speaker phone works well 9, no BT use yet
    Overall User Interface (including the new Blur) = Like the Blur/Ginger mix (nice surprise) 9
    Widgets = Do not use
    Signal quality (Compared to other devices) = Best of any device used 10
    GPS = Works well 9
    Social Networking = Do not use
    Email/Calendar = Functional 8
    Battery Life = Better than my Incredible and good for what is in the device 8
    Performance = Best I have used so far (G1, D1, Inc, DX2, Revolution) 10
    Media (music, movies, DLNA) = Works great 9
    Keyboard's = Work of art 10
    Camera (both still & video) = Ok unless use the flash (blue tint) 7
    How the Droid 3 compares to your previous smartphone (if applicable) = Both the Incredible and DX2 were laggy messes after a few hours use. I have 215 apps at 1.3gb and still not beed to reboot the device. Surprising for a 512mb ram device (to some at least). 10
    Disappointments (if any) = The power and volume buttons are too thin and small.

    Overall = 9
  9. #9  
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    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    I've had mine a few days. I'm surprised to see everyone seems satisfied with the performance. I find the phone always running with only 14% (60MB) free RAM. I know android is supposed to be able to handle running low on RAM and kill apps as needed. But due to the low ram I've had the phone reboot 4 times, launcher pro crashed too often to keep using, and just random sluggishness with returning from an app to the default launcher. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with the phone, I love it. But really need to get rid of all the bloatware before i'd say the performance is great.
  10. #10  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    For reference, I just received a second Droid3 in the mail today for my other phone line and the slide out is markedly easier to operate now. The phone is charging so I haven't even booted it up yet, hence, I don't know about any other differences, but I wanted to report on this.

    *It appears that my hard case was causing the stiffness.
    Last edited by complexx; 07-27-2011 at 05:27 AM.
  11. #11  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    I received mine last evening at 6:30. I am coming from a fascinate and I can tell it is just a world of difference between the two. Only issue is the Fascinate was rooted from 1 hour after having, and it will be a while until the Dev's figure out the root procedure for the D3. Not a major deal breaker. Just a case of putting on the desktop what I want and no bloat. ADW Launcher EX is very customizable so you can get work done.

  12. #12  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    I've honestly have had no problems with it.

    My phone stayed at 80% all day with light use. So whatever complaints about idle drain battery, its a specific phone issue.
  13. #13  

    Thumbs down Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    After being cockteased with the HTC Merge for the better part of 6 months, I was ready for something with a keyboard. After having this a couple of weeks, my thoughts:

    Pros:

    - Keyboard. It's really good. Keys are well spaced, very clickable, and just have an overall nice feel to them. The keyboard is a joy to use.

    - Camera. Takes very good photos with some work. I shot 1080P footage at a football game, threw it up on a 52" LED TV, and we were all blown away by the quality.

    - Screen size. A lot of real estate here.

    Cons:

    - Slow. Like, really obnoxiously slow most of the time. I press an icon and have to wait 2-3 seconds. I want to go back on a web page, I press back. No response. I go to press it again, and then suddenly it processes the last request, so now I've backed completely out of the browser.

    - Camera. Unacceptably slow to load. For what I pay for the phone, it's completely unacceptable to have the camera app load so ******* slow. It's also 50/50 on taking a good shot. Because the phone is so obnoxiously slow, often times the shot becomes blurred by the time its finally snapped.

    - Bulky. Look, all I wanted in life was a HTC Incredible with a slide out keyboard. This thing is surprisingly heavy. Even though I bought it for the keyboard, I find myself using the front screen because it takes so long for landscape mode when I extend the keyboard. No fun. Think about it, this thing weighs as much as (2) Quarter Pounders from McDonalds. If that's your thing, fattie.

    - Call quality. If it weren't for the slowness to make me return this, the horrid audio quality would do this in. Persistent echo, static, just unpleasant to even have a conversation. I talk to everyone on speaker phone or Bluetooth because of this and the girth of the thing. The speaker is tinny and echoes too. It's not very loud either. I used to rock out to Pandora on my DINC, now I don't even bother.

    - Screen. How many more negative things can I say, right? The screen is bright, but the colors are all ****ed up and weird. Whites seem really off. It hurts my eyes to use the screen.

    - Battery. I'm not some ladyboy who just came from Blackberry and now cry bloody murder because I have to recharge every day. I accept that. I took the phone off of the charger at 8:30. By 1:30, it was at 40% battery life. I did the same exact routine with the DINC. By 1:30, it would be at 70%.

    What an annoying phone. You're going to run slow AND drain the battery in the process to do it?

    Overall: Do not like. The one thing it does very well, for me at least, is the keyboard. I'm very disappointed. It weighs too much, sounds like ****, screen is ****, do not want.
  14. #14  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Well that was quiet the review of the d3. That's the worst one I've ever read about tnis phone. The first thing I will say is you need to do factory reset and that just might make your phone run faster and nelp your battery. I cam from a droid x that I had for 8 months and I would say that that phone was a great phone it was fast and solid. So already coming coming from a fast phone I do think that. The d3 is faster and it should be because of the duel core and I have to say it is. My phone is not slow at all I never wait more then 1 second for anything to open. Yes the camera is slow but its a phone not a camera so im good with it. I've has 0 issues with my call quality. People think im on a land line its that good. The screen is fantastic all around. I've compard to a dx and a samsung vibrant and I think its better then both of them. I just don't see why people don't like it and I've tried to hate but when people that have the iphone 4 say it looks almost as good as the retna screen that's pretty darn good. I like the fact that its heavy it make me think I've gota well made phone with meatal and not all plastic. Its after all a slide out with a keyboard so its gonna be kinda thick. I like that gives my something to hold on to. I love this phone I love moto phones I love the droid line of phones. I think that if anyone is having issues with there phone either take it back or do factory reset wich should fix most of there problems. But then again it might not.
  15. #15  
    Johnly's Avatar

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    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    I like the D3. The screen is gorgeous and the keyboard is so good. I hope they exploit that camera and gain root! Lord knows it is slow ha ha!
  16. #16  
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    anyone else's lock button hard to press as mine? it's like it stuck halfway in
  17. #17  

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by oh ok then View Post
    After being cockteased with the HTC Merge for the better part of 6 months, I was ready for something with a keyboard. After having this a couple of weeks, my thoughts:

    Pros:

    - Keyboard. It's really good. Keys are well spaced, very clickable, and just have an overall nice feel to them. The keyboard is a joy to use.

    - Camera. Takes very good photos with some work. I shot 1080P footage at a football game, threw it up on a 52" LED TV, and we were all blown away by the quality.

    - Screen size. A lot of real estate here.

    Cons:

    - Slow. Like, really obnoxiously slow most of the time. I press an icon and have to wait 2-3 seconds. I want to go back on a web page, I press back. No response. I go to press it again, and then suddenly it processes the last request, so now I've backed completely out of the browser.

    - Camera. Unacceptably slow to load. For what I pay for the phone, it's completely unacceptable to have the camera app load so ******* slow. It's also 50/50 on taking a good shot. Because the phone is so obnoxiously slow, often times the shot becomes blurred by the time its finally snapped.

    - Bulky. Look, all I wanted in life was a HTC Incredible with a slide out keyboard. This thing is surprisingly heavy. Even though I bought it for the keyboard, I find myself using the front screen because it takes so long for landscape mode when I extend the keyboard. No fun. Think about it, this thing weighs as much as (2) Quarter Pounders from McDonalds. If that's your thing, fattie.

    - Call quality. If it weren't for the slowness to make me return this, the horrid audio quality would do this in. Persistent echo, static, just unpleasant to even have a conversation. I talk to everyone on speaker phone or Bluetooth because of this and the girth of the thing. The speaker is tinny and echoes too. It's not very loud either. I used to rock out to Pandora on my DINC, now I don't even bother.

    - Screen. How many more negative things can I say, right? The screen is bright, but the colors are all ****ed up and weird. Whites seem really off. It hurts my eyes to use the screen.

    - Battery. I'm not some ladyboy who just came from Blackberry and now cry bloody murder because I have to recharge every day. I accept that. I took the phone off of the charger at 8:30. By 1:30, it was at 40% battery life. I did the same exact routine with the DINC. By 1:30, it would be at 70%.

    What an annoying phone. You're going to run slow AND drain the battery in the process to do it?

    Overall: Do not like. The one thing it does very well, for me at least, is the keyboard. I'm very disappointed. It weighs too much, sounds like ****, screen is ****, do not want.
    +1 I found the same problems as you. Only thing I liked was the keyboard. Went to a Dinc 2

    Tapatalk on Incredible 2
  18. #18  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Quote Originally Posted by jayarh View Post
    anyone else's lock button hard to press as mine? it's like it stuck halfway in
    Yup, going to get a replacement phone right now. Hopefully it's better!
  19. #19  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Quote Originally Posted by Markster1 View Post
    +1 I found the same problems as you. Only thing I liked was the keyboard. Went to a Dinc 2

    Tapatalk on Incredible 2
    Nice.

    I am canceling my contract and flashing an EVO to Boost.
  20. #20  
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    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    I have had my Droid 3 for 2 weeks. Came from Blackberry Bold. Phone is awesome! Camera takes amazing photos. Screen is big, clear and good touch recognition. Dislike that the camera takes 2-4 seconds to load up. But everything else works great. Battery isn't too bad, probally 60-70% by 5pm
  21. #21  

    Smile Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Aesthetics: The look and feel of this phone are great for me. I was a little concerned due to the size change from my old phone, but honestly I barely notice, except of course when looking at the screen size difference.

    Screen: The resolution is wonderful. The touch sensitivity right out of the box was perfect, coming from my last phone I am very pleased.

    Phone: I have not used bluetooth yet so I can't comment on that. The speakerphone though has been a godsend as I find the call volume to be somewhat quiet. I often have to switch to speakerphone just so I can better or fully hear the person on the other end.

    Overall User Interface: My last phone being a Blackberry I honestly was a bit lost when I first got this device. Since I have had time to dig around and familiarize myself, I am very pleased.

    Widgets: I really do not use any widgets except one for the weather. It works fine.

    Signal quality: As I said before, I came to this device from a Blackberry. The Storm line to be precise. I had both the original Storm and the Storm 2. Signal quality with them was awful at best. Frustratingly inconsistent. Now, finally I have a reliable signal. I have seen others mention signal issues with this device but I suppose I am a lucky one, because I have not had a single problem in this regard.

    GPS: This area is the greatest letdown to me. No matter what combination of GPS services I use, my location apparently is never available. Living just outside of Boston, MA I would expect much better. In fact, Google's own services have "pinpointed" my location to be in Chihuahua Municipality of Mexico. Sorry, but not even close folks. Most of the time, I can get reasonably close to my actual location after about 10 minutes of attempting to update my location. The inconvenience is troublesome.

    Social Networking: I do not use any social networking sites.

    Calendar/Email: The calendar works just fine. I did run into an issue with one of my email addresses suddenly not connecting to my phone any longer. I had the phone for about 2-3 weeks when all of a sudden it said it could not connect to my hotmail account any longer. I tried to re-add it and failed, I tried using manual settings instead of automatic, still failed. So I have resigned myself to using the browser to check that email account.

    Battery Life: Another troublesome area for me. I was shocked at how quickly my battery drains when using the basic features of the phone. Aside from GPS, this is the ONLY area that the Blackberry devices exceeded the Droid 3. I have since started using the extended battery and the issue is less of a bother.

    Performance: Web browsing, email, MMS, and SMS are all lightning fast. I have never had any issues with call clarity or dropped calls.

    Media: The music could honestly be a bit louder than it is. Videos are very nice on the screen.

    Keyboard's: I love having a REAL keyboard again!!! Goodbye and so long to the "innovative" surepress of the Storm line. This was actually one of the biggest draws for me in getting this device. I was waiting and waiting for the Bionic, but finally I decided to go ahead and get this because of the keyboard, also because I did not need the 4G LTE battery drain.

    Camera: I am not liking the bluish haze or how fuzzy pictures turn out on this camera. I am far from a professional photographer, but I would like a photo to look like reality. Not some hazy blue blur. I have not taken any videos with the camera at this time. If I do and can find my post here once again I will edit this portion.

    How the Droid 3 compares to Blackberry 9530 and 9550: Against them both I have to say that overall the Droid 3 is far more advanced. The difference of signal strength and call quality being the biggest performance factors. The real keyboard as opposed to an all touch device is wonderful to me. The only things I can give the RIM products the edge on are the volume of the speaker, the GPS, and the email connectivity. Battery life is about the same for me. All in all I am glad I made the switch.

    Disappointments: Well, the above mentioned email, GPS, and speaker volume would of course top this list. I must admit, I do not care for the pre-installed apps. Most of which I do not see the need for. This is just my opinion, but why force any apps on the consumer? I will never need the Blockbuster, MOTOPRINT, Skype, or Slacker applications. Overall I am quite pleased with the phone and I would give it a 8.5/10 rating.

    Quick Edit: I have found a slight fix for the blue photo issue. When in camera go to the settings, select the full 8mp resolution as opposed to the 6m fit to screen. Also, turning the flash completely off helps. Some pictures may be a tad darker but they won't be blue.
    Last edited by darthakakios; 09-21-2011 at 06:45 PM. Reason: New Info
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  22. #22  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Just got the d3 last week, upgraded from the d2g, and I must say, I am loving it!! I'd had a dx before the d2g and was suffering from the fact that my desire for a physical keyboard meant such a smaller screen (I'd been waiting on the Merge, but...). I admit I'd have gotten the d3 just for the larger screen + physical keyboard combo alone, but I've been pleasantly surprised by the rest of the package.

    Things I'm happy about:

    I love the screen, and the interface has been great. Very smooth, none of the lag I had constantly with the d2g, very zippy and pretty. Call quality is fine, nothing to shout about, but not a problem at all. 3G speeds are great for me--I'm not missing 4G (though I never had it, to be fair...).

    And, of course, I'm madly in love with the keyboard; who knew the difference a dedicated number row could make? Just for entering passwords, it's worth it. What a beautiful typing experience.

    And an unexpected surprise: my battery life has been PHENOMENAL! My d2g had to be charged several times a day (and that was with the cpu underclocked, notifications near-nonexistent, and the extended battery); with the d3, I go into the evening with a 70% charge. And that's with moderately high use!


    My only complaints:

    I can't get rid of the "all apps" icon in the dock. I can customize the others, but I'm used to having 4 of my choice. I've already discovered that I can put the "All apps" folder as a home page shortcut, so why am I forced to keep it in the dock? Also, the slider mechanism seems looser than the one on my d2g. I take my phone *everywhere* with me, which means it goes from purse to pocket to clutch to the waistband of my sweats, and I feel like there's a little looseness to the slider, especially at the lower left corner. It seems to "pop" open there quite often and sit at an angle, but maybe that's the case I have on it. I noticed with my d2g that the case made the slider buggy, but I'm not ready to go case-less with the new d3 yet.

    My d2g was rooted, but only to try to assuage battery life issues, so I'm not missing that here. All in all, I can see having this phone a long time!
  23. #23  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    Quote Originally Posted by darthakakios View Post
    GPS: This area is the greatest letdown to me. No matter what combination of GPS services I use, my location apparently is never available. Living just outside of Boston, MA I would expect much better. In fact, Google's own services have "pinpointed" my location to be in Chihuahua Municipality of Mexico. Sorry, but not even close folks. Most of the time, I can get reasonably close to my actual location after about 10 minutes of attempting to update my location. The inconvenience is troublesome.
    I think you have a defective phone. I live in Boston, and I never have any problems with my D2's GPS. It locks on quickly, and the position is always accurate.

    I'd ask for a replacement unit, if I were you.
  24. #24  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    I just picked up a D3 two days ago. I had an Eris for almost two years, upgrade to the Bionic but exchanged it for the D3 just before the 14 day return period was up.

    Aesthetics

    Not bad. The phone is a decent length and width. A little thicker than I would like; a little heavy as well. I'm not sure that I love that extra lip on the bottom, but it's not that terrible. I suppose I should say that I was not really looking for a phone with a keyboard - just a great 3G phone, with the world phone support being a slight plus.

    Screen

    I think it's great. I know that some people love to hate the pentile display, but it's bright, has great resolution, is easy to read. Bright using it outdoors on a sunny day as well - I'll take that in a heartbeat.

    Hardware

    Fantastic. The phone is *fast*. Battery life is better than I expected. As I said, I wasn't looking for a hardware keyboard (though years ago I had a Psion 5mx and Revo, and Moto Q9c as well), and the D3 has the best keyboard I have ever used on a mobile device. The phone doesn't slide open too easily, and neither is it stiff, and remains solid when the phone is open. The fit and finish is great on this phone. The removable back seems flimsy, and is a touch hard to remove when you need to, but it attaches firmly. The battery fits in tight. The phone just looks and feels both well designed and well built.

    The capacitive buttons have great haptics and react perfectly to a touch. The power button is placed a little awkwardly for one-handed use but you get used to it quickly.

    Phone - including bluetooth & speakerphone usage

    One of the major reasons I moved from an HTC phone to a Moto - I wanted a phone with a radio that I could rely on to hold a signal and a call. I haven't used either BT or the speakerphone yet, though I rarely do use them.

    Overall User Interface (including the new Blur)

    I don't love the Blur - it has some weird looking transition between homescreens, and moving icons and widgets onto homescreens is awkward and unreliable. Twice I've had my wallpaper suddenly switched back to the stock wallpaper. I'd prefer at least one extra dock icon. All that said, it's not terrible, either. The phone performs well and I have bot noticed any launcher hangups when going back home from an app.


    Widgets

    A little on the light side. There is no messaging widget. The calendar widget is great - much better than stock Android, and better than HTC's as well. I'd prefer some sort of mobile data widget as well. I don't use a lot of widgets normally, but Sense is much, much better.

    Signal quality (Compared to other devices)

    Again, night and day compared with my Eris. I'm very pleased with it.


    Battery Life

    So far it's been reasonable and better than I expected. I used the phone a lot yesterday, taking it off power at about 9 am and it was at 48% when I went to bed at 11:30 pm. Today I took it off power after a brief charge at 1 pm that brought the phone up to 92% and at 10:45 pm it is now at 72% (I didn't use it quite so much today.)

    With the Eris I had a 1750 mAh extended battery and typically had about 30% to 50% when I went to recharge at bedtime. It was never over 60%. And I was using the Eris far less, both because it was too slow and also to try to conserve battery.

    Performance

    Again, it's fast. I have noticed no lag at all.


    Camera (both still & video)

    I've only used the still camera. I don't love the camera app, but replacement apps are fine. It's good enough. Not the iPhone 4/4S, but few phones are that good.

    How the Droid 3 compares to your previous smartphone (if applicable)

    I think I've already covered it. It's a little bigger than my old phone, but it doesn't feel too big, like the Bionic felt.


    Disappointments

    Not many. It's a bit strange that the phone comes with a micro SD card slot but no card.
  25. #25  

    Default Re: Droid 3 First Impressions/Reviews

    - Droid 3 on order today. I'll review it after ~24hours with it. Friday?

    I'm new to A|C coming from P|C and a 1.4 yo pre plus. Have only had Palm and webOS, and BB. BB sucked [tour]. webOS hardware woes are frustrating. one bad thing is no autofocus camera. even on the 2. The pre3 would have, but seems like vaporware now. C'ya in 3 days...

    OK - I won't tell you the story of how much trouble it was to GET the D3. I'll leave that for another forum.

    I have had it since Sat and it's Wed.

    FORM FACTOR: It's HUGE compared to my pre 2. The weight is not bad, but it's a little challenge to reach the whole screen, but I'm already getting used to that.

    SCREEN: big and bright. I like having more of it.

    TOUCH: It seems to respond well to my touch and is fairly acurate.

    KEYBOARD:
    -OnScreen: Too small for my fingers. I find that I hit the wrong key too often. NO # row. The H/W kb and my touchpad and ASUS tablet both have a # row. I miss it.
    -HardWare: I really like the hardware keyboard. It is big and easy to use and I find myself favoring it over the OnScreen.

    MultiTasking: Ugh! where are my cards????? I hate not being able to easily close apps. I have d/l d one app manager, but can't seem to find it in the app list. Some apps like WAZE show notifications that help with that.

    NOTIFICATIONS: Good, don't get in the way... almost too unobstructive. also too persistent. I mean, do I really need a notification for every app install?
    OTOH, it does give me information.

    APPS:
    -YES, there are many many more apps. and new apps all of the time. Big third party apps like waze and shopsavvy are great.

    -FORCECLOSE: This bears mentioning because of the shear number of times it happens. Apps are constantly needing to FC. Even legacy apps like the MARKET and the mail/gmail apps.

    -APPBRAIN and FAST WEB INSTALL: Also worth a mention [thanks to my BRO] use it for apps instead of the MARKET. Hasn't FCd yet.

    -WAZE: saw this on my iPad but it's Wifi and dosn't work well due to no wifi on the road. ASUS xfrmr does work while tethered to my pre2, iPad doesn't. D3? well Now I don't need a GPS for navigation. I have a mount and the D3 sits in it, powered and using WAZE to get around. LOVE IT!!!

    CAMERA: 8MP AutoFocus is very nice! Finally I can use QR scan. and the pics are better.

    WHAT I MISS: WEBOS: Cards, preware, WOSQI, Just type [which brings up app search too], small FF., swipe to delete in email, cal, etc.
    WHAT I DON'T MISS: no focusing on cam, buggy interface, slow response to fingers., no OSKB,

    BATTERY LIFE: The jury is still out on whether it's worse or better. It seems to be much worse with Wifi on... but too soon to tell. EDIT: I can see that there are more options with the camera app than I'm used to on a phone. I am looking forward to being in a situation to take some good snapshots.


    ECOSYSTEM: The whole problem with webOS is that it is currently EOL, or at least one foot in the grave. What this means is that the HW is behind the times. If the camera on the pre2 had focusing, I would not be so willing to switch. If the pre3 which has focusing had released, I would have bought it. Android is not going away any time soon and is IMHO on par with iPhone's mindshare. Or at least close. webOS is almost not known, with many people never even using it. the Firesale of TouchPads helped that. But big apps and commercial ventures don't have apps for webOS but do for Android. That's one of the reasons I switched.

    OVERALL: I would say that I am mostly happy that I switched/upgraded. This phone lets me do things that I could not with the pre 2 and I can't stand not having the best toys in the place...

    I think I'll keep it!
    Last edited by egadgetguy; 11-10-2011 at 10:57 AM. Reason: finally got my D3
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