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Event Coverage

Hands-on with the Motorola Defy

By Seow Tein Hee - 9 Dec 2010

Hands-on with the Motorola Defy

Defying All Odds

A full year has lapsed ever since Motorola made its decision to move onto the Google Android platform. And it has definitely been a fruitful year for the US company, with hits such as the Motorola Milestone that was launched earlier this year. As such, it is fitting for them to end off the year with one final Android device.This likely will be the last Motorola Android device of the year, but given Motorola's focus on the Android platform, expect to find more Motorola Android devices. While mum's the word for the prototype tablet which was revealed by Google's Andy Rubin a few days, ago, we have a feeling that there's something up Motorola's sleeves for CES 2011 with regards to Android 3.0, (Honeycomb).

Back to the present, what you'll be seeing real soon on our shores is the Motorola Defy. This makes it the 22nd Motorola mobile device to be launched globally this year. In Singapore, the Defy is marked as the 8th and final Android device to reach our shores. It is designed as a full touch screen smartphone with a 3.7-inch display and loaded with Google Android 2.1 (unfortunately). However, to somewhat cushion the impact, the Defy will provide wireless tethering even without the Froyo update. This just leaves you without Flash 10.1 support.

Nonetheless, Spiros Nikolakopoulos, Motorola's Vice President and General Manager of Mobile Devices for Asia & International Retail Distribution, did state that there will be a forthcoming Android 2.2 update in early 2011 for the Defy. In fact, both the earlier launched Motorola Milestone and Milestone XT are under evaluation for a Froyo update as confirmed by a Motorola spokesperson.

From what we gathered with its 800MHz processor and a 1530mAh battery, the Defy should fall in between the mid-range and high-end smartphones. The combination of a modest processor, a more manageable screen size at 3.7-inch and a higher battery capacity point towards a longer battery life. But we'll leave that verdict for a later date when we get our hands on a test unit.

The 3.7-inch Gorilla Glass display has become a common sight amongst smartphones, and now it makes its way onto the Motorola Defy.

Placed side-by-side with the HTC Desire with a similar 3.7-inch display, the Defy looks more compact and definitely weighs less at 118g only.

The unique proposition of the Defy is its purported toughness, not just because of its scratch-resistant Gorilla Glass display. The Defy is also designed as a dustproof and waterproof (up to 1m for 30 minutes) phone. While such rugged phones have been in existence, this is the first instance where a mainstream manufacturer has brought these traits to its lineup.

We are very interested to find out how its 1540mAh battery can withstand our tests, and if it'll trounce the competition.

We'll be following up with a full review of the Motorola Defy very soon. In the meantime, if you're planning to pack the Defy as a Christmas present, it will be available by the 18th of December from all StarHub stores and open retail outlets, with a recommended retail price of S$528 without contract.

Motorola Defy

Key highlights of the Motorola Defy

  • Google Android 2.1
  • TI OMAP3610 800MHz processor
  • 512MB RAM
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
  • 3.7-inch capacitive screen / 480 x 854 pixels
  • Gorilla Glass display
  • Noise-canceling dual microphone
  • 5-megapixel camera / Autofocus / LED flash
  • 1540mAh battery
  • 118g
  • 107 x 59 x 13.4mm
  • Availability: 18th Dec 2010
  • Price: S$529