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The iconic Motorola Razr is back and I want one

The rumours were true and the popular Motorola Razr is back as a foldable smartphone. It retains the sleek clamshell form factor but on the inside, it comes with a flexible pOLED display that can be folded in half.

Compared to the throwback devices that we saw from Nokia, this is a proper remake of the original Razr. It looks familiar. And they even kept the big chin at the bottom which now has a fingerprint sensor in front.

Similar to the original, it has a “Quick View” display on the cover. According to the spec-sheet, it is a 2.7″ gOLED panel that pushes a resolution of 800×600 pixels. What you can do with Quick View is quite limited and you can use it to view notifications, take selfies or to control your music playback. On the inside, you’ll be greeted by a 6.2″ Flex View pOLED display that pushes a HD-ish resolution of 2142×867 pixels with a cinematic aspect ratio of 21:9. Similar to the Fold, there’s a noticeable crease and that’s to be expected with a plastic display.

Although Motorola isn’t the first to release a modern-day foldable device, what’s impressive is the way it handles the in-folding display. It folds completely flat without the unsightly gap that you’ll find on the Galaxy Fold. This is made possible with movable support plates that support the display when it is open flat and it will collapse when the phone is folded.

In its folded state, the Razr is 14mm thick but once you unfold it, it is quite thin at only 6.9mm. At 205g, it is quite heavy for its size but it is definitely lighter than the Galaxy Fold or the Huawei Mate X.

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As speculated, the new Razr runs on an upper mid-range Snapdragon 710 processor with 6GB of RAM and it has 128GB of internal storage. It is a bummer that they didn’t include a flagship-class Snapdragon 855 but the biggest disappointment is probably its battery which is a non-removable 2,510mAh unit. Motorola claims that it can last a whole day and it shouldn’t be surprising since it has a lower resolution HD+ display. If you need to charge, it supports 15W TurboPower charging via USB-C.

For imaging, the Razr comes with two cameras – a 16MP f/1.7 dual-pixel auto-focus shooter at the cover and a 5MP f/2.0 selfie camera that’s placed on a notch on the inside. When it is folded, you can take selfies using the 16MP camera while framing the shot with the cover display. The Razr also comes with some form of water protection and it has splash-proof nanocoating to protect itself from accidental spills.

Out of the box, it runs on Android 9 Pie that has a stock experience. Like most new Moto smartphone, it also supports a variety of gesture controls with Moto Experiences.

In terms of hardware, the Razr is definitely not as powerful and capable as the Galaxy Fold. On top of that, it also appears to be compromised in the camera and battery department. However, as a foldable “phone”, I think Motorola has nailed the design and it is a worthy tribute to the original Razr from 2004. Not only it looks good but it is more practical to use as a phone compared to the Galaxy Fold.

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The Motorola Razr is priced at US$1,499 (about RM6,232) and it is currently exclusive to Verizon in the United States. Pre-order will only begin starting 26th December 2019 and it will be available in stores on 9th January 2020. What’s worth noting is that there’s no physical SIM slot and the Razr only supports eSIM.

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Alexander Wong