Motorola Razr Maxx - Android on Steroids

Launch SRP: S$749

Performance and Conclusion

Performance

The Motorola Razr Maxx sports the same TI OMAP 4430 dual-core 1.2GHz processor and 1GB RAM as the Razr. As per usual, we will subject the Razr Maxx to the Quadrant benchmark which evaluates the CPU, memory, I/O, and 3D graphics of Android devices. To gauge its performance against the current compeition, we matched the scores of the Razr Maxx with the Razr, Samsung Galaxy S II, HTC One S and ASUS PadFone.

How the Phones Stack Up
Device Motorola Razr Maxx Motorola Razr Samsung Galaxy S II HTC One S ASUS PadFone
CPU TI OMAP 4430 dual-core 1.2GHz TI OMAP 4430 dual-core 1.2GHz  Exynos dual-core 1.2GHz  Qualcomm Snapdragon S3 dual-core 1.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4
dual-core 1.5GHz
GPU PowerVR SGX540 PowerVR SGX540 Mali-400MP  Adreno 220 Adreno 225
RAM 1GB 1GB 1GB 1GB 1GB
OS Google Android 4.0 Google Android 2.3 Google Android 2.3 Google Android 4.0 Google Android 4.0

 

It's not surprising to see the Razr Maxx and the Razr trailing behind the competition. The HTC One S has a higher processor clock speed to its advantage, while the ASUS PadFone sports the mighty Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor that utilizes a newer, more advanced CPU architecture. 

Number crunching aside, the Razr Maxx delivered a smooth experience during our daily usage. Although it runs on an almost stock user interface, the fluidity of the experience is slightly behind that of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus or the ASUS PadFone. Other than that, you could hardly find any fault with the overall performance of the Razr Maxx. So from a day-to-day usage perspective, the Razr Maxx has what it takes to satisfy its target user group.

 

Imaging Performance

The Motorola Razr Maxx is equipped with an 8-megapixel rear autofocus camera that is capable of 1080p video recording. It also has a front-facing 1.2-megapixel camera for peer-to-peer video calling. We check out its camera functionality and imaging quality as depicted below with captions to follow through with the outcome.

 

Battery Mileage

Using the same 480 x 800 pixels resolution video that we use across all our mobile device battery tests, we set the same test parameters which includes having the video looped under the following conditions:

  • Brightness and volume at 100%
     
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity turned on
     
  • Constant data streaming through email and Twitter
Test Phones Compared
Specifications/Device Motorola Razr Maxx Motorola Razr Samsung Galaxy S II HTC One S ASUS PadFone
Processor
  • Dual-core 1.2GHz
  • Dual-core 1.2GHz
  • Dual-core 1.2GHz
  • Dual-core 1.7GHz
  • Dual-core 1.5GHz
Display Size
  • 4.3-inch
  • 4.3-inch
  • 4.27-inch
  • 4.3-inch
  • 4.3-inch
Display Type
  • Super AMOLED Advanced
  • Super AMOLED Advanced
  • Super AMOLED Plus
  • Super AMOLED
  • Super AMOLED
Display Resolution
  • 960 x 540 pixels
  • 960x 540 pixels
  • 800 x 480 pixels
  • 960 x 540 pixels
  • 960 x 540 pixels
Dimensions
  • 130.7 x 68.9 x 8.99mm
  • 131 x 69 x 7.1mm
  • 125.3 x 66.1 x 8.5mm
  • 130.9 x 6.5 x 7.8mm
  • 128 x 65.4 x 9.2mm
Weight
  • 145g
  • 127g
  • 116g
  • 119.5g
  • 129g
Battery
  • 3300mAh
  • 1780mAh
  •  1650mAh
  • 1650mAh
  • 1520mAh

 

The Motorola Razr Maxx performed outstandingly in our battery test! It has the longest battery life among all the smartphones we've reviewed so far by lasting a whopping 14 hours and 24 minutes in our grueling battery test. Needless to say, the amazing battery mileage is attributed to its 3,300mAh battery capacity - nearly twice that of phones in its comparison category. Though average power consumption was slightly higher than average, its extremely lengthy uptime easily outweighs this point. 

In the Portability Index where each device is assessed on its ability to balance battery mileage with its size and portability, the Razr Maxx reigns supreme despite being the heaviest among the five smartphones. Its superb battery life gave it the extra boost to take the lead. With phones getting every thinner and lighter, it seems that Motorla's choice to boost battery capacity in a manner that hardly affects the phone's physical characteristics seemed to have paid off handsomely. For an extra 20 grams weight, it gives you a whole lot more mobility.

Under normal usage conditions such as web surfing, uploading several images and messaging (though on an intensive side of things), the Razr Maxx could easily last a day and a half on a single charge. This is a very impressive feat when most most smartphones these days are barely able to pull through the end of the day. With the Razr Maxx, you no longer need to worry about keeping your phone charged in office, or connecting to an external power source on-the-go. 

The Razr Maxx is well poised to give the next iPhone a run of its money since it can generally outperform most Android phones in the battery longevity aspect. On a side note, we also found the Razr Maxx to run quite warm under extensive usage such as browsing the Internet for a long period of time, although it is nowhere as hot as the HTC One X.

 

Conclusion

The Motorola Razr Maxx comes across a solid Android smartphone despite the lack of a strong set of specs to fend off competition from the likes of ASUS, HTC and Samsung.

We liked the unique design of the Razr Maxx, especially its Kevlar fibre back cover which should be able to better withstand the wear and tear of daily usage better than most of its competitors which are clad in plastic shells. Its Super AMOLED Advanced display is one of the best in the market, delivering rich and vibrant colors for great multimedia consumption on-the-go. 

On the software side of things, it is to Motorola's benefit that it didn't tweak the user interface as much as HTC and Samsung. This results in an almost "pure Google experience" that will give Android purists a compelling alternative to the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. So while the UI isn't tinkered much, Motorola augments the software suite with SMART ACTIONS app and MotoCast service which are great add-ons that enhance the user experience on the Razr Maxx. To further entice users, it also comes with 10 free EA game titles that can be downloaded when made available.

More importantly, the Razr Maxx offers the best battery life among smartphones right now and it is likely to remain so in the near future. What's even more remarkable is that the phone is still considered thin by today's standards despite packing a 3,300mAh battery - double the capacity of some of its competitors. Although the Razr Maxx puts on some weight and thickness, its form has only altered minimally from the original Razr and is a very acceptable trade-off for the extra long-lasting battery life that you are going to get out of the Razr Maxx.

It could have been better if the Razr Maxx is equipped with a newer and more powerful processor. However, Motorola might have considered the implications on battery life and decided to place its bet on an older generation processor, which still has the chops to deliver what typical smartphone users expect out of their phone. Other areas that could have been better is its imaging performance, which while decent, we've certainly seen much better in some of the latest top tier phones.

Retailing at S$749, the Motorola Razr Maxx finds itself comfortably positioned in a market dominated by Apple iPhones, Samsung Galaxy phones and HTC Ones. By offering the best battery life of any smartphone today and good overall performance at an attractive price, the Motorola Razr Maxx already won more than half the battle against its rivals, the HTC One S (S$948 with Beats Solo headset, S$748 without the headset), the Samsung Galaxy Nexus (S$948) and the ASUS PadFone (S$800). If you are tired of always having to keep your phone charged or close to a power source, the Motorola Razr Maxx is definitely THE phone to get.

9.0
Design
8
Features
8.5
User-Friendliness
8
Performance
9
Value
9
The Good
Superb battery life
Solid build quality
Great handling
Smooth overall performance
The Bad
Processor could have been upgraded
Decent imaging performance but can be better
Awards:
Editor's Choice