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Why You Should Wait for The Motorola Droid Bionic

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A couple of days ago, we touched on the different incarnations of the upcoming 4G LTE smartphone, the Motorola Droid Bionic. The phone that we knew is dead and the new Droid Bionic that is coming our way this summer remains a complete and utter mystery.Many of you out there are debating whether to get a 4G LTE smartphone. You know my feelings on the subject but if you need to get one this summer or even this fall, the Motorola Droid Bionic is the phone that you’re going to want to get and here’s why.

Motorola Droid Bionic?

Is this the Droid Bionic? Maybe. Maybe not.

The Hardware Will Last

I’ve heard a bunch of people talk about how they don’t want or need dual-core in their next smartphone. Well, it’s my belief that you’ll be singing a different tune in two years when your single-core device can’t run some of the fantastic applications that come out and are optimized for processors like the Tegra 2.

If you’re going to invest thousands of dollars (in service fees) and two years of your life into a phone, you need to get something that is going to hold up for two years. The Droid Bionic with its dual-core processor will do just that.

You Can Wait

Verizon

Verizon’s new tiered data plans will likely go into effect on July 7th. However, if you have an upgrade, you’ll be able to sit tight and wait for the Droid Bionic to be released and keep your unlimited data plan, even if you’re currently on a 3G smartphone. That means that it’s in your best interest to wait and see what the Droid Bionic is all about before snagging one of the other three 4G LTE phones that Verizon currently has available.Speaking of those…

Verizon’s Other Three Phones Aren’t Compelling

I have zero interest in Verizon’s current 4G LTE smartphone lineup. These are all smartphones that would have been top of the line a year ago. And as I’ve said before, these are devices that I would not consider buying right now if they didn’t have 4G LTE. HTC’s ThunderBolt, Samsung’s Droid Charge and LG’s Revolution are way too similar and on top of that they lack star power which is something that the Droid Bionic will bring because…

Motorola Needs to Make A Splash

Motorola Xoom

With the delay of the the Motorola Droid Bionic and 4G for the Motorola Xoom, Motorola admitted that it was late to 4G LTE. It’s rivals – HTC, Samsung, and LG – already have phones out and the ball is in Motorola’s court. They are going to want to put out the best possible phone that they can and take advantage of the lack of choices that Verizon currently offers.

They probably had the Xoom’s miserable launch here in the U.S. in mind when they delayed the Droid Bionic. This phone needs come as advertised in order to bring the company back into the 4G LTE game.

Might we see a device with the same pull as the Motorola Droid back in 2009? It’s certainly possible considering Motorola has gone back to drawing board to make this great device even better.

Grand Finale: An Unlocked Bootloader?

This isn’t a certainty but it would make sense. While Motorola has said that it would unlock bootloaders in Q3 or Q4, the Motorola Atrix has been rumored to be getting an unlocked bootloader with its Gingerbread update which should be arriving in July. This might mean that the company might be accelerating its plans which could translate into a Droid Bionic with an unlocked bootloader.

For those that are unclear, Motorola locks the bootloaders on its smartphones which prevents owners from fully customizing the device. Workarounds have been available in the past but they can be tricky. So, as you can see, it would be in Motorola’s best interest to bring this phone out with an unlocked bootloader in tow.

And I mean, what better way to introduce this new and improved policy?

77 Comments

  1. BrianB13

    06/28/2011 at 6:54 pm

    I agree that if you are going to purchase a smartphone this summer or later, it should be a dual-core one.  However, the Bionic probably won’t be the only choice.  I think the Samsung Galaxy SII and the iPhone 5 will enter into the mix as well.  Then it is just a question of which phone is better based upon reviews and how we personally like them.  I’m not going to run out and get the first one of these phones that becomes available and then regret it two months later.

    • Tony

      06/29/2011 at 2:27 am

      However, neither the new iPhone nor the Samsung Galaxy S2 are expected to be LTE capable. So Moto could hit a homeroom if they produce a quality dual core LTE phone.

      • Rex_D

        06/29/2011 at 12:50 pm

        But will it be the Photon or the Bionic that gets released 1st?

      • Ross Binkley

        06/29/2011 at 1:42 pm

        I think the Galaxy S II is at least rumored to be LTE. The iPhone probably won’t be because Apple likes to lag behind where hardware is concerned it seems. I predict iPhone (and iOS as a whole) will eventually go the way of Macintosh in the 90′s. As more and more Android (and possibly also Win Phone) software gets released due to their large customer bases, more and more people will abandon Apple phones. They’re already being outsold by Android in the U.S. now and, in the UK right now, Galaxy S II alone is outselling iPhone. It’s a bad time to be an Apple stockholder.

  2. Adnaan Zaffer

    06/28/2011 at 6:55 pm

    Actually, there is no ‘maybe, maybe not’. This IS the Droid bionic.

    Look at the first picture:
    http://www.androidpolice.com/2011/06/06/pictures-droid-bionic-will-be-shipping-with-android-2-3-4-has-a-gigantic-4-5-screen/

    • Adam Mills

      06/28/2011 at 7:01 pm

      I direct your attention to this post: http://www.gottabemobile.com/2011/06/22/motorola-droid-bionic-on-track-for-summer-release-with-new-updates/

      It’s possible that that is the device but it’s also very conceivable that it could be something different. Motorola is likely testing several different devices.

    • Adam Mills

      06/28/2011 at 7:01 pm

      I direct your attention to this post: http://www.gottabemobile.com/2011/06/22/motorola-droid-bionic-on-track-for-summer-release-with-new-updates/

      It’s possible that that is the device but it’s also very conceivable that it could be something different. Motorola is likely testing several different devices.

      • whybionic

        06/28/2011 at 8:57 pm

        What scares me is that Motorola says they are performing “Updates.”  This infers that whatever they have created thus far is already out of date and needs newer stuff.  Sounds to me like they’re reacting instead of creating.

    • Theforsakenknight91

      06/29/2011 at 4:22 am

      This is actually the Droid 3. You can clearly see it has an empty bottom just the the Droid and Droid 2, which makes this phone the Droid 3

      • Abuckateer3

        07/08/2011 at 2:17 pm

        I don’t think this is the Droid 3 the Droid 3 has its front camera on the right side this one is on the left and bottom bezzel is different.

        http://www.engadget.com/photos/motorola-droid-3/#4279057

      • jellyhead

        07/23/2011 at 3:18 am

        The picture in box is definitely not the Droid 1,2 or3. the screen goes all of the way to all edges.

        • Brandy

          07/26/2011 at 1:50 am

          I think the one in the box is actually the Xoom (referencing the paragraph below it).

  3. Rickja123

    06/28/2011 at 7:24 pm

    lol tegra 2 will be outclassed by quad core by the end of this year ( Nexus 3 maybe?)

    • Workodactyl

      06/28/2011 at 9:14 pm

      Pft, you’ve forgot about how high they can over clock dual core first.  I wouldn’t think they’d go quad core before they could squeeze every penny out of dual core first.

      • Rickja123

        06/29/2011 at 1:40 am

        touche, thats why i overclock my single core, to get same quad scores dual cores

    • Coolio7831

      07/12/2011 at 4:22 pm

      LOL Always something new coming out Rickja123. Don’t forget we are not going to live forever.

  4. Anonymous

    06/28/2011 at 8:20 pm

    I hope it truly is a 4.5″ screen after al this wait…

    • muzicman61

      06/29/2011 at 12:45 pm

      Because the resolution isn’t changing (still 960×540), the 4.3″ screen will look slightly better.  And it will be a monster to fit in your pocket. :)

    • Anonymous

      06/29/2011 at 3:33 pm

      Dont put my phone in my pocket that is what a case is for, not good for the screen or the components inside.  The resoluition spec is not published yet but even if true I rather do will lower res at the increased screen size..

      • instigator

        08/03/2011 at 3:28 am

        Well if ya want a big screen on your phone, just go grab the Dell Streak with the 5″ display….lol

  5. Karussi

    06/28/2011 at 8:57 pm

    what if I am eligible for an upgrade NOW and they are changing the data plans on July 7th and I currently do not have a smartphone.. then what should I do?  I’m thinking upgrade now to a 4g – thinking the Charge so that I get grandfathered in for the unlimited data.. and then in 2 years.. the pool of phones will be even bigger.  Such a dilema… but the 7th is looming

    • DaFish

      06/28/2011 at 10:01 pm

      Buy an Old Droid 1 for like 30 bucks then use your upgrade on Bionic

      • Karussi

        06/28/2011 at 10:35 pm

        uuuuu very good suggestion DaFish.. didn’t even think of that!!!!!  Craig’s List … here I come.  :-)  Thanks!!!

        • Skuterdude

          06/29/2011 at 12:42 am

          That is a good idea except………Droid originals aren’t selling for $30…………….more like $100-$175…………I’ve bought 4 of them on craigslist since last Thursday………..lowest I’ve paid is $100……doing exactly what you suggest……..

          If you do this…………once you have a look at the phone dial 611 from your existing phone and get ahold of a tech operator and ask if the ESN is clean………one phone I looked at was stolen……..

        • Dylan N.

          07/05/2011 at 9:47 am

          problem with that is that you might not be able to upgrade from 3G to 4G. Droid 1 uses 3G which will get grandfathered but your 3G plan might not be upgradable to a 4G plan.

      • Ryan_long117

        06/29/2011 at 1:43 am

        How do you upgrade after buying the droid 1 right now?

        • DaFish

          06/29/2011 at 1:57 am

          Karussi is just trying to get “Grandfathered” into the unlimited Data plan.

        • Skuterdude

          06/30/2011 at 3:48 pm

          Winning bid:US $158.50

    • Spankwagon Ts

      06/29/2011 at 1:17 am

      Get a 4g phone on the 6th. And hope the bionic comes out within two weeks.then you can switch it out. That is if it comes out before the 20th.

    • muzicman61

      06/29/2011 at 12:36 pm

      See if you can get a data plan for your current phone.  Some phones do have internet access that requires data plans, even though they are not “smart” phones.  If not, see if you can’t find someone with an old smart phone, and activate it on your account, then add a data plan.  You will be grandfathered in for unlimited.  Then when a smart phones come available that you really want, you can use your upgrade to get the phone, and will already have your data plan.  This is what I am doing.  My son is giving me a LG Fathom to replace my Samsung Intensity II.  Then on July 6 I will add a data plan.  And my son works for Verizon so he assures me this will work.

      • Karussi

        06/29/2011 at 10:59 pm

        So I currently have an ENV touch which was required to have the 29.99 data plan.. HOWEVER, it is NOT the same data plan that is used for the smartphones.. so you must be certain, you are getting the data plan that would be used on the current smartphones or future phones.  I spoke with Rep at the Costco phone booth last night and he said YEP, July 7th is the date that the “data plans” on Verizon will take effect, and then he said, so get a phone now and you’ll have the unlimited data forever.

  6. Anonymous

    06/28/2011 at 11:45 pm

    Great article Adam

  7. jude7g

    06/29/2011 at 1:20 am

    Hangin’ in and waiting. Still have the original droid. Can hardly wait for the bionic, but i will. Is there really any other choice??

  8. Yacked

    06/29/2011 at 2:29 am

    motorola did this on purpose. Like the seventy’s tv show, The six million dollar man. Rebuilt steve austin, Made him better faster stronger. Same with the droid bionic. it’s going to be ahuge marketing advertising campaign.

  9. Gene

    06/29/2011 at 2:33 am

    If I’m currently using a blackberry and paying 29.99/monthly for unlimited data, will I still be grandfathered in for the bionic if it releases after the 7th?

    • Anonymous

      06/29/2011 at 5:54 am

      Eeew blackberry? And yes

      • Gene

        06/30/2011 at 2:51 am

        lol..the blackberry isn’t mine and I share your thoughts….I just switched over to it so I can be grandfathered into the unlimited data! :)

  10. ExplosiveBJ

    06/29/2011 at 9:16 am

    safe to say its a 2.0 camera in the front, lens is bigger than a 1.3 or vga

    • Guest

      07/06/2011 at 3:02 pm

      Blackberry uses a different data plan than other smart phones.  If you switch to android you will have to pic a new data plan.

      • Ronm

        07/06/2011 at 5:34 pm

        Not true –

  11. Joseph J. Twomey

    06/29/2011 at 10:31 am

    I just gotta comment on this leap about grandfathering.

    This is the second post where you are basically telling users that 3G unlimited data plans will be grandfathered into 4G unlimited data plans, based on a single Verizon Tech person’s ambiguous tweet.  I say “ambiguous” because s/he didn’t repeat the question, so may have just read the original tweet question hastily, and responded. 

    Zero corroboration, sketchy evidence (there is equally sketchy conjecture that the opposite may be true).  You could very well be wrong here.  You should be hedging much more, or not even making posts based on this claim.  Have you noticed that the other large respected sites are not making this claim as truth?  GottaBeMobile is a trusted site, and this is a way to lose some your hard-earned good rep.

    Imprudent journalism.

    • Bart

      06/29/2011 at 12:48 pm

      It’s been posted all over the net, not just here. Grandfathered in is real.

      • Joseph J. Twomey

        06/29/2011 at 5:02 pm

        The doubt I’m bringing up, and is echoed in several places on the web, is not 3G –> 3G, nor 4G –> 4G grandfathering.  That grandfathering is clearly true.

        It’s 3G –> 4G unlimited data grandfathering that is being called into doubt, based on how Verizon has done similar grandfathering in the past.  Some say the SKU for 3G and 4G isn’t identifiable, others say they don’t know yet, and that Verizon can know and use this to not allow 3G –> 4G unlimited grandfathering.  This is from Verizon employees.  If anyone can find a real corroboration of 3G –> 4G grandfathering future plans, or a major site that claims it knows this and shows specific wording, please post.

        • Buck

          07/21/2011 at 8:15 pm

          Although we are well into the new data plan phase, as a Verizon employee I feel that I may be able to shed a little light on the subject for those who are still confused. I saw in a previous post by another user that the EnV Touch was required to have an unlimited data plan, which is false. At launch, the phone required a $9.99 data plan, (which isn’t the case anymore) but it still had an unlimited option. However, the unlimited data for a feature phone like the EnV Touch will not grandfather you in to unlimited data for smartphones.

          Now that we have that cleared up, on to 3G and 4G. It is a FACT, that if you have a 3G smartphone before the 7th of July, you will be able to upgrade to a 4G smartphone after the 7th of July, and still keep your unlimited data feature. And it goes without saying that you will be able to go 3G—–>3G and 4G——–>4G. I hope this clears things up a bit, even though it is a little late.

    • Ross Binkley

      06/29/2011 at 1:48 pm

      The marketing material that was leaked from Verizon confirmed this a couple of weeks or so ago.

    • Cindy

      07/25/2011 at 2:37 am

      Well I’m glad that it was true. Verizon just told me that I’m grandfathered in and can keep my unlimited data plan…at least until my contract is up.

  12. Rex_D

    06/29/2011 at 12:50 pm

    Will anyone switch carriers if the Photon get released on Sprint BEFORE the Bionic does on Verizon?

  13. Verizon W.

    06/29/2011 at 4:04 pm

    Will the Bionic have Gingerbread, though? An article on http://www.verizonbionic.com/ says probs!!!! :)

  14. Swamie07

    07/03/2011 at 3:08 am

    I have a usb 720 air card withunlimited data plan, do you think I will be grandfathered in?

  15. Nlopez99

    07/05/2011 at 7:12 pm

    I was told 3 days ago by VZW that 3G customers with unlimited data plans who upgrade to a 4G device after July 7 will have to sign up for a tiered data package, contrary to the tweet in this thread. Anyone able to support/refute this?

    • Golddlocs

      07/20/2011 at 4:05 am

      Thats what I was told. I have an original droid and am due for an upgrade verizon said I would be put in the new plan. she did not make a distinction between 3G & 4g plans even though I am purchasing a 4g compatible phone, maybe it’s because we don’t have 4g where I live. But i did see on the web a comment from VZW tech support that existing unlimited data plans will be grandfathered. So confusing.

      • Cindy

        07/25/2011 at 2:46 am

        I’ve switched from a 3g to a 4g and Verizon kept me on the unlimited data plan until my contract expires. So to answer your question…as long as you HAD an unlimited data plan and a 3G smartphone BEFORE July 7th you CAN get a 4G smartphone and keep your unlimited data plan UNTIL your contract expires. After that you will have to pick one of the new tier plans.

    • Brandy

      07/26/2011 at 2:27 am

      If you currently have Verizon’s $29.99 unlimited data for Smartphones, you will be grandfathered in regardless of whether you get a 3G or 4G, even if you currently have a Blackberry or some other smart phone – as long as it’s on the “data plan FOR SMARTPHONES.”

      I am an existing Verizon customer on an old Blackberry Curve. (The Froyo update bricked my Samsung Fascinate and they were going to give me refurb warranty replacement, so I just switched back to my old BB, and traded in my Fascinate for a $119 VZW credit (I had only paid $99 on a 2-yr), and I will now use the credit toward another phone.However – since I am temporarily on the BB, I was flipping out that once I switch BACK to a Droid in the near future, I’ll have lost my unlimited data plan that would have been grandfathered in had I kept my Fascinate. I was concerned about this… so I went onto their website to poke around, and ended up asking one of the reps via chat – he confirmed that I would be grandfathered in, even w/a Blackberry. I then logged into my online account to look at my current features, and sure enough, it does not say “Blackberry data plan” or anything like that, it just says “$29.99 unlimited data for smartphones.” So I decided to see for myself…Since I was already logged in, I followed the steps to *upgrade* my phone, and any phone I picked (3G, 4G) let me KEEP my existing $29.99 unlimited data plan once I got to the Features step. (The new horrible data plans were available for selection also, but my current data plan was listed, and was selected by default.)

      Once I logged out, clicked New Customer, and proceeded w/ buying a 3G phone, or a 4G phone, it forced me to pick a NEW (tiered) data plan when I got to the Features step, starting at $30 for 2GB (pathetic…). The $29.99 unlimited data plan was not listed at all.

      I hope this helps answer the question.

      ———
      On a semi-separate note, I see some comments claiming that we are only grandfathered in until our contract expires… If that’s true, that’s the stupidest possible decision Verizon could make. It’s bad enough that people tend to shop around at other carriers when they’re finally out of contract… but they often stay because they like the service or the features and what have you… so… if Verizon TAKES AWAY our unlimited data plan RIGHT when our contract expires and we are free to go elsewhere, they might as well throw us a going away party. lmfao. (Heck, I was about to switch carriers mid-contract and just pay the $350 early-term fee, when I thought for a moment today that I’d lost my unlimited data plan, so you KNOW I’m gone if they take it away once I’m out of contract. Just sayin…)

  16. Ronm

    07/06/2011 at 6:23 am

    I spoke w/ Verizon reps x3 yesterday – I am off contract and have a current 29.95 unlimited data plan w/ a Blackberry Pearl (No peanut gallery comments please!).  I asked, and was told by the first two, AND, had the 3rd one verify the notation I had put on my acct.saying that I can upgrade to any smart phone (3g, 4g, LTE or whatever you want to call it) anytime I want after 7/7 and, that I will still receive a a final NE2 discount  plus a 50.00 loyalty discount.

    Re; the Blackberry – it has the best reception I have ever had and has worked flawlessly for 3+ yrs. It still is a GREAT PHONE ( remember the “phone” part?) – and, is still on the original battery – Not sure if current Androids have that level of quality/reception yet and/or if they could take the beating the Pearl has.

    Only reason I am considering a change is that the screen & keyboard are to small for the databases I need to access when in the field.

    If I want to watch HD movies I have  a fully networked 65″ calibrated 1080p broadcast reference grade plasma/Blue-Ray combo which – I will be able to control w/ the new phone :-)

     
     

    • Eddieg24

      07/09/2011 at 2:40 am

      I tend to agree with you about the blackberry. I picked up a two year old Curve in excellent condition for 42 bucks. While internet acces is limited it suits all my purposes well. I use the phone primarily for work, task manager, notes, calendar, and it is very intuitive. My only complaint is the size of the keys. The call quality is the best I ever heard on a phone. While I intended to roll this phone over quickly and it was purchased just to beat the data plan change date, I may actually hold onto this for a while. As you say I purchased a 50 inch screen to watch movies not my phone.

  17. TheAlmightyRussell

    07/07/2011 at 5:51 pm

    FTR, the Atrix’s bootloader is unlocked: http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1136261

  18. guest

    07/19/2011 at 10:58 pm

    that picture looks like the droid 3 to me.. not the bionic.

  19. Hidden

    07/23/2011 at 3:56 am

    On the data pkg topic. If you had unlimited data on a smartphone (and only a smartphone) you will be able to keep that same data pkg through multiple device changes, so long as you are never without a smartphone for more than two weeks. If you have to switch to a basic phone for a few days you can get unlimited data back if you already had it. If you had unlimited data on a 3g phone and upgrade to a 4g phone, you’ll be able to keep the unlimited data. If you had a blackberry and switch to an Iphone or Droid, you’ll be able to keep the unlimited data. The only reason you would lose unlimited data is if you had a basic or mid-level phone with unlimited data prior to the change and wanted to upgrade to a smartphone (different coding for packages) or if you went without a smartphone for longer than two weeks. And the second can be possibly negotiated, depending on the situation.

    • Cindy

      07/25/2011 at 2:48 am

      Or if your contract expires.

    • The Instigator

      08/03/2011 at 3:33 am

      Everyone is all up in arms about the new tiered data rates.  I’ve been using a smart phone for over two years now and I’ve never exceeded 1.5 megs in a month.  This is largely due to the fact that I’m always around wifi, but still…..I’ve listened to endless pandora and talk radio through the phone while in the car while using GPS.  Just don’t watch Netflix all day when you are away from wifi and you’ll be OK!!!

  20. Nancy

    08/06/2011 at 10:53 pm

    After my current phone I will never buy another samsung phone.  I am very excited about the bionic and its my choice :)

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