Motorola RAZR V Android phone
The Motorola RAZR V is good value for money at this price, but offers little to get excited about
- Competitive price
- Kevlar backing
- Slick software and performance
- No real outstanding feature
- A little top heavy
- Only on Optus initially
Motorola doesn't break any new ground with the RAZR V, but it offers good value for money and is better designed than its predecessor. However, the RAZR V ultimately offers little incentive to switch from rival brands.
The Motorola RAZR V is a slight refresh of an already existing handset, the original RAZR Android phone. The RAZR V offers good value for money and is better designed than its predecessor, but it ultimately offers little incentive to switch from rival brands.
Not as RAZR thin, but better designed
Motorola has made the RAZR V more comfortable to hold than the original RAZR.
The Motorola RAZR V has a very a similar design to the flagship RAZR with the main difference being thickness. The RAZR V is 8.4mm thin whereas the RAZR is just 7.1mm thin. At the time of its release late in 2011, the RAZR was classed as the thinnest smartphone in the world.
Thankfully, Motorola has made the RAZR V more comfortable to hold than the original RAZR. Its edges are less sharp and although it's thicker, the RAZR V is a slightly smaller phone on the whole. The edges have been smoothed out, so they no longer dig into your hands when holding the phone.
At the top of the RAZR V is a bump that sticks out at the back and houses the camera lens, LED flash and speaker, as well as the micro-USB and headphone jack on top. This bump makes the RAZR V a little top heavy and does affect one handed use, especially when typing on the on-screen keyboard. However, the weight is less pronounced than it was on the previous RAZR.
The Motorola RAZR V comes with a Kevlar fiber backing that the company says makes it sturdier than most other smartphones. The RAZR V is also coated in a splash-guard treatment that makes it "water repellent", aiming to protect both the outside and the internal components of the phone. The splash-guard treatment works as well as Motorola says — any water drops on the handset simply slide off the surface easily, much like water beads rolling off a car when it's just been polished and waxed. Keep in mind the coating makes the RAZR V water-repellent, but not water-proof.
The Motorola RAZR V has the same size 4.3in screen as the previous RAZR, though it doesn't use Super AMOLED display technology. Instead, the RAZR V has what Motorola calls a "ColorBoost" screen — a TFT LCD panel which it claims offers higher brightness than competitors. The screen offers good viewing angles, vivid colour and good brightness levels, but it's reflective and therefore difficult to see in direct sunlight outdoors.
The qHD resolution of 960x540 displays crisp enough text for reading, but it lacks the super smooth fonts on higher resolution smartphone screens, such as the iPhone 4S' 960x640 resolution and the 1280x720 resolution of the Samsung Galaxy S III and the HTC One X, for example.
A consistent serving of Ice Cream Sandwich
The look and feel of the RAZR V is very similar to Google's stock Ice Cream Sandwich UI.
The Motorola RAZR V is the company's first smartphone to ship with Google's Ice Cream Sandwich operating system out of the box. Motorola has not stated whether the RAZR V will be updated to the latest version, 4.1 Jelly Bean, but we have been assured "it has been discussed". It's likely to happen, but we wouldn't expect to see it until the end of the year at the earliest.
Previous Motorola phones have been criticised for poor UI overlays but the company has clearly listened to consumers in outlining the RAZR V. The user experience and look and feel of this handset very similar to Google's stock ICS UI on the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.
The Motorola RAZR V still comes with its own icons and a few widgets but they generally look attractive and nicely tie into the "holo" ICS theme. Motorola widgets include a "favourite contacts" widget that lets you swipe down on it to show up to 20 contacts with an image, along with a "Drive Smart" widget that uses a specialised car menu when you're driving. Motorola has kept a consistent look and feel across most default applications with the home screen, the app drawer and default apps like people, phone and text messaging receiving subtle but consistent changes.
There's also a number of other handy software features. The lock screen allows you to swipe to the right to unlock the screen, swipe to the left to jump immediately into the camera app, swipe up to access the phone menu and swipe down to jump into text messages. A small switch on the top right corner of the lockscreen also puts the RAZR V into silent mode.
Despite a lower price than the original RAZR, the Motorola RAZR V is fast and responsive straight out of the box. It handled most graphic intensive games with ease and we didn't experience any lag or slowdown during regular, day-to-day use.
The Motorola RAZR V includes a number of extra apps over what Google provides by default, but the most notable is the Smart Actions app. This automation app allows you to preconfigure tasks so you don't have to do the same things over and over again. As an example, Smart Actions allows you to set up an action that will automatically begin playing music when you plug in your headphones, automatically set your phone to silent when you nominate a location as a "quiet location" and even turn on Wi-Fi and turn off Bluetooth (or adjust a wealth of other settings) when you get to the office, or arrive home. The app uses a combination of location based and user nominated settings to automate tasks and you can create and activate as many as you like.
8-megapixel camera, good battery life
The Motorola RAZR V has an 8-megapixel camera with single LED flash. The camera app itself is both slick and fast, with minimal time between photos if you are quick on the shutter button. We love the fact you can use the external volume keys as zoom buttons, but there is no physical shutter key.
Images captured with the RAZR V's camera produce good detail but do suffer from some image noise and can often appear washed out. The camera doubles as a full HD 1080p video recorder and the quality is decent for a smartphone, though autofocus can be a little erratic at times. Interestingly, the RAZR V also offers 1080p video playback, whereas the RAZR only played back video in 720p.
The Motorola RAZR V has just 4GB of internal memory, but there's a microSD card slot for extra storage. The slot is concealed by a plastic flap on the left side of the phone, next to a full sized SIM card slot.
The Motorola RAZR V should last you a full day if you're not a heavy user.
Battery life is about what you'd expect from an Android phone. The Motorola RAZR V should last you a full day if you're not a heavy user, though excessive use may drain the battery before the end of the day. We consider ourselves relatively heavy users and managed to push the RAZR V to around 13 hours in most instances.
The Motorola RAZR V is available through Optus for $4 per month on the $35 Optus plan over 24 months, but this offer ends on Friday 31 August.
The Motorola RAZR V isn't exclusive to Optus and will be sold through various Australian retail outlets.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Google Daydream VR headset
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Huawei Mate 9
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Lexar® Portable SSD
Acer Swift 7
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Surface Pro 4
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 2 Kogan curved 4K UHD 55-inch LED LCD TV review
- 3 Panasonic Blu-ray recorder PVR set-top box review
- 4 Garmin Fenix Chronos fitness tracker smartwatch review
- 5 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
Latest News Articles
- Samsung unveils Bixby voice assistant for upcoming Galaxy S8
- BlackBerry readies a more secure version of the Samsung Galaxy S7
- Android device updates: Nougat rollout begins for the Moto Z Play
- Android device updates: Nougat is coming to the Moto G4, G4 Plus
- Beyond smartphones, Samsung wants its Exynos 9 chip in VR headsets
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- LG G6: unboxing, hands on review and detail shots
- Samsung Galaxy A5 2017: unboxing, hands on review and detail shots
- Behind the scenes with Team Walkinshaw at V8 Supercars Melbourne 2017
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTSocial Media ExecutiveNSW
- CCSAP FICO ConsultantWA
- TPSenior Communications EngineerWA
- FTEAM Delivery Manager - SAPNSW
- TPEngineer Desktop DevelopmentVIC
- FTKey Account ManagerVIC
- FTProject Manager - Finance BackgroundQLD
- TPFront End DeveloperNSW
- CCInfrastructure Test Lead - Contract 6-8 wks initially - IT Services - North RydeNSW
- TPLead TesterNSW
- FTManager Portfolio PlanningQLD
- CC3 x UX Designers - 3 month contract initially - IT Services company - SydneyNSW
- CCWintel Engineers - NV1ACT
- FTSenior Functional Consultant - Data Analytics - TelcoVIC
- CCProject AdministratorNSW
- CCDomino SpecialistVIC
- FTRACF Mainframe Security Analysts / Engineers - Multiple Roles - SydneyNSW
- CCSenior Technology SpecialistVIC
- CCFirewall EngineerNSW
- FTSenior IT Test AnalystNSW
- CCWeb Data Entry PublisherACT
- FTTechnical Consultant - ApplicationsSA
- FTBusiness Analyst - SalesforceVIC
- FTOracle eBusiness Functional Consultant. (Procurement)NSW
- FTSecurity EngineerACT