144 of 163 people found the following review helpful
Really Nice Android Phone,
This review is from: Motorola Atrix 4G MB861 Unlocked GSM Phone with Android 2.2 OS, Dual Core, 5MP Camera, GPS, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth - Black (Wireless Phone Accessory)
When I first saw the Atrix, I was mesmerized and had to wait a few months to get my hands on the phone. The specs of the Atrix is awesome and I have hope that the phone will live up to the promise that has been made. I have never used an Android phone before this one, but have used the Iphone since it came out and have the Iphone 4. I have used the Palm III, treo, BlackBerry ect... you get the point.
What comes with the phone? You get the phone, USB cord, A wall plug and the HDMI cable, instruction manual and battery. Everything one need to step off into the Atrix Android world.
One thing the iPhone user will notice that the Android software is more difficult to use. It may take a few hours just to get the basics down, but after the few hours a whole new world starts to open up. Unlike the Iphone who's software is easy to operate, the more you learn about Android, the more powerful the phone becomes.
Just a quick comparison Iphone 4 VS Atrix, the Iphone 4 display is way clearer and the screen is a little more responsive. The Artix has a user replaceable battery and the phone can be taken a part and fix for a lot less money than the Iphone. Now, I have never tried to take apart either phone, but the instructions and professional review of the taken down is on line.
One thing I would like to say is that the finger print reader works very well.
The world of Apps...
In Apps, Apple wins. Not much else to say there. The Apps that I use mostly are iHeart Radio (does not work on Atrix), Scrabble (Not found on Android store), Farkle (Android has but quality is lacking), Bloomberg and Fox News.
Android leaves Apple in the dust. The active wall paper cannot be beat by apple, you can have multiple home screens with live wall paper. I love knowing the time, temperature and forcast. If you are like me, the Android system, cannot be beat.
Ease of use...
Apple is a lot simpler to use. Just like pen and paper is easy, but if you are in the computer world, than a pen and paper just won't due, and this is where the Android system comes in. I cannot honestly say which system is best, Android or IOS. If you want simple, but lacking power, Iphone is the way. If you are a person who likes to play, Android is the choice.
The display is bright and colorful, but the diplay is not nearly as nice as the iPhone 4. The lack luster display is noticed especially noticed when reading texts and PDFs.
Camera and Flash:
The camera takes pretty good pictures. The LED flash works really good. I was able to take a picture in a nearly dark room and the subject came out clear and in focus. The LED flash filled the entire room. As a side note, there is a forward facing camera. I have not used and more than likely won't.
Very loud and clear when using to make calls, talk radio and listening to music. It is a small speaker so you will not get a lot (if any) bass from this little speaker.
I have never used Android before, so I have ability to describe between the Android, the Moto Blur, and if ATT messed it up I can't tell. The user of the Atrix must use the one app store that ATT backs, and the icon for the store comes preloaded. It would be nice to have more access to more stores, like Amazon, but if you get this phone, you are going to be stuck. The few apps that I have downloaded all seem to work fine and most of them were free. It would be nice it ATT did not pull the apple store garbage with this phone though.
The Atrix comes loaded with lots of software, commonly known as bloatware, but you get a lot of it. The software that runs on the computer is called "Motorola Media Link", this is kind of like "iTunes" in the sense that the Media Link software is a way for your computer to communicate with the Atrix. This nifty program will take you itunes music (Not DRM protected) and place the music on your new phone. You can also transfer your pod casts too. The Media Link is automatic and does not need to be messed with. I had no problems with the installation or use of the software. The Software is stored on your phone and will try to load on any computer that the Atrix is hooked up to.
Some of the really things about the Atrix that I like is the Micro SD slot (32BG max) for added memory and the user can remove the battery without having to go find apple support. I was also able to keep my unlimited data package, although a lot of AT&T customers have not been so lucky. AT&T also offers their $5.00/ month warranty on the phone as compared to the Iphone, and you do not have to hook the phone up to a computer the first time you use it. You do need to sign up for a MOTO account, nut it only takes a few seconds and you are able to use you new cell phone.
Things I do not like. I do not like the feel of the phone. My Iphone 4 feels better constructed and feels like it will not easily slip out of my hands, unlike the Atrix. I have not yet dropped the phone. The battery seems to take a long while to receive a charge too.
Big minus for the phone is the Lap top that you can purchase with the phone. I cannot see why I should spend 400.00 for the "dock" that is nothing but an empty screen. And then you have to pay ATT and extra ten per month for "tethering" the dock that is nothing but a screen to you phone. The price is too high for the extra ten you have to pay per month. You can can get a netbook that has more power and does more things for the same price.
Why did I give the Atrix only 4 stars? The Atrix is a good phone, but the lack luster construction of the phone and the steep learning curve do not make up for the other great features that the phone has to offer.
With the construction set aside, you cannot just load apps on your new phone. Like Apple, you can only purchase your apps from the included application on the phone. One reason for me gettig rid of my Iphone was the Apple store that you have to use. Well, thanks to AT&T, the owners ofthe Atrix are stuck too. You cannot side load applications eigther. A real star looser for me.
I have now used the Atrix for a few days so it was prudent to give an update.
The battery life is not to great. After getting the battery at 100%, I then took the Atrix to chuch where I used Bible Reader app as my bible. At the end of Sunday school and main service, the phone was down to 60%, after the evening service, the phone was down to 10%. Lack luster battery life is normal. The Iphones have poor battery life, and the Atrix bettery life is even shorter. There is a lot of heat build up during use and when charging. The phone charges slowly when charging from a computer USB with the display off, and does not charge at all it seems with the diplay on. I purchased a Micro USB car charger and it works wonderfully.
I do not use the AT&T navigation, but the "Navigation" function that comes with the phone. The Android device does a wonderful with the GPS. Apple's GPS function and mapping capabilty always made the Apple Iphone a lst choice in trying to use as a GPS. The Android does a very good job with GPS, it is not on the level with a stand alone Garmen, but I do use a GPS alot to find customer houses and I would not hesitate to use the Atrix as my main GPS device. The GPS also has an option to use voice for the inputing of an address. It does work faily well, but the voice input for a destination (restraunt name)does not work as well.
When traveling to your destination, you can turn the screen of the GPS off and you will still get voice commands. If you are using the media player function through your cars stereo system, the music will mute and the directs will come through your car speakers.
If you are like me, you have tons of videos sitting on your hard drive or network attached storage. The Atrix will find the media and play the media. I was able to stream several videos of differing formats with no problems at all. Honestly, I really do not think you will be uising the device as a 3" television set, but it does work. Apple does the same thing, but you must have iTunes and/or AppleTV.
A nifty little function that I have notice after owning the phone for several weeks, the DLNA service will try and link to your home media server where you are within the range of your "in house" network..
You can use and song or sound loaded on your phone as a ringtone. Easy to use, and it is free.
I tried to get Netflix on the phone and much to my surprise, Netflix does not have an App for the Android devices yet. So as an Atrix user, I am stuck paying an extra ten dollars to AT&T for their TV service. According to sources on the internet, Android will have an App adventually but it will be a marketed to new phones. You will see the phones labeled as "Nextflix compatable". Bummer
Phone is still owrking great. Had to turn the phone off and then back on yesterday. For some reason the phone would not update web based apps like stock market, bloomberg and weather. Turning the phone on and off solved the problem. I also purchased the otterbox defender for the Atrix... sweet phone case.
The Atrix does appear to have better reception when placing calls. i could not make a phone call at my work using the Iphone 4 but no problems with the Atrix.
Took the phone on a trip of several hundred miles to see how the GPS would function, the phone did a great job. The phone did stop responding when trying to accomplish several tasks quickly. I was not able to turn the phone off to reset the phone. I actually had to take the battery out. You can look at that problem as a possitive and negative. The battery had to be removed to reset the phone, but at least the battery is user accessible unlike the iPhone.
The phone was plugged into the 12 volt power in the car, no problems with the phone over heating or even the phone filling warm to the touch.
I am pleased to announce that iHeart radio now works.
I have updated the firm ware in the Atrix to 4.1.57 a couple days ago. The firmware update does help a lot with the battery not lasting. I can now get 1.5 days of use out of a full charge instead of having to monitor the battery constantly, and keeping the Atrix plugged in while at work.
ATT bandwidth problem is still there and the radio inside the Atrix is still disconnected thanks to ATT, but the update coming in April is supposed to fix those issues.
Still waiting for the AT&T update that is coming out this month. Phone is working wonderful. No major problems.
If you read the complete summary above, you may notice that I included that the phone feels like it would easily slip from my hands. The phone has on several occasions slipped from my hands, but i have been able to catch the phone before it plunged to the floor. Good thing I have the AT&T warranty.
I did some side by side tests to see if the Iphone was faster loading/running programs than the Atrix. The Iphone maybe a little faster. I have run into CPU speed issues with the Iphone 4 that I have not seen in the Atrix. So my conclusion on the speed of the phone CPUs with launching and running application is this; while the Iphone does appear to launch programs faster most of the time, but running the programs (apps), the Atrix appears to be a constant and steady winner. When Android 2.3 comes out it should make better use of the dual core processor.
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Showing 1-10 of 19 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 14, 2011 12:43:07 PM PDT
John P. Schlosser says:
Thanks for your detailed review. Question: Does the phone come with the AT&T logo on it? Thanks again.
Posted on May 28, 2011 3:17:44 AM PDT
L. Smiley says:
Your detailed review and periodic updates are invaluable to those of us who are trying to decide between this phone and others. Thanks!
Posted on May 28, 2011 4:06:38 PM PDT
Alex Chu says:
Wow. This is the most helpful review I've read in helping me decide which phone to get. Thank you so much.
Posted on May 29, 2011 2:14:32 AM PDT
S. Alouri says:
Posted on May 31, 2011 8:00:01 AM PDT
There are many apps for the android that does the same and in some cases a better job than the app it is mimicking. As for downloading apps from alternative source, go into your settings, applications, and check the unknown sources box. this way you can in stall from your microsd card, bluetooth, and directly from the browser. The android system is a very able system and if you want more from your device try rooting it. It is safe and with it you can uninstall the bloatware you mention. Search "universal androot"
Posted on Jun 13, 2011 1:00:23 PM PDT
D.B. Spalding says:
If you're using an AT&T branded phone with bloatware installed, that's where your battery life is probably going. Rooting it or using Advanced Task Killer will probably make it last much longer.
Posted on Jul 27, 2011 8:56:01 PM PDT
what is the frecuency for 3G?????
It's 1900Mhz for 3G????
In reply to an earlier post on Aug 2, 2011 7:37:44 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 2, 2011 7:39:30 PM PDT
Yes, 850/1900 MHz; HSPA+/HSDPA/UMTS
In reply to an earlier post on Aug 2, 2011 7:40:22 PM PDT
Yup has the AT&T logo on the back battery case on the Atrix.
Posted on Aug 23, 2011 5:34:59 AM PDT
J. Martin Lim says:
if i purchase this phone,does my t-mobile plan will work on this phone?.my current plan is 49.99 with 2 gb of data.do you think it will work??can i use my 2 gb of data on this phone??pls someone help me.thanks!