Limited edition Droid R2-D2 smartphone goes on sale Thursday

Sold throught Verizon, it has the same basics as the Droid 2 slider with physical keyboard

The special edition Droid R2-D2 smartphone goes on sale Thursday. In a galaxy far, far, away, or maybe at your nearest Verizon Wireless store, the Droid R2-D2, a special edition of the Droid 2 smartphone from Motorola, will be for sale Thursday for $249 after rebate.

The price is $49 more than the Droid 2 which went on sale Aug. 11. The R2-D2 has a graphic design to convey the Astromech droid from the Star Wars movie saga. It has a light gray case with R2-D2-related etchings, while the Droid 2 has a dark case. Both are slider devices with Qwerty keyboards and run the Android 2.2 operating system called Froyo. The device will also be for sale online starting Thursday.

The R2-D2 has the same device specifications as the Droid 2, based on a spec sheet on Verizon's Web site . However, the R2-D2 also comes with a custom box, a Stars Wars media dock and wired stereo headset, Verizon said.

Content loaded exclusively on the R2-D2 edition includes special notification sounds and ringtones, four wallpapers, an R2-D2 clock widget, a "Best of R2-D2" video and an exclusive binoculars app which a spokeswoman said shows a 360-degree view of the battle for Hoth , a major battle in the Galactic Civil War from Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.

In addition, Verizon said its Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back app will soon be available on the Android Market for $2.99. It will allow a user to browse, preview and download Star Wars content related to Episode V, including a wallpaper showing Luke Skywalker balancing Yoda.

As with other phones, Verizon won't say how many of the Star Wars devices it expects to sell or has in its supply. "It's a limited edition with some promotions in some stores ... but there aren't that many to go around," a spokeswoman said.

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Matt Hamblen

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