The Motorola Atrix 4G is quite the oddest phone announced at CES, as well as the most powerful. It actually docks into its own laptop shell accessory, giving you big screen Android on the go. We got to test it out in the aftermath of Motorola’s press conference: read on for video, photos and our first impressions.
The Motorola Atrix 4G phone itself is impressive enough. It’s curved, matte and slightly thick, like a Motorola Defy, but then that’s hardly surprising when it has a dual core processor inside, a huge 1GB of memory and the biggest battery on a smartphone possibly ever. It feels incredibly sturdy, and the screen on the prototypes we saw looked vibrant enough.
The Motorola Atrix 4G is running Motoblur, so Motorola’s social networking widgets and homescreen layout were present, looking just like they do on the Defy or the Milestone 2. We’d argue that Motoblur isn’t really a selling point – what might be however, is the Motorola Atrix 4G’s docking abilities.
You see, not only can you pick up a HDMI dock for it, so you can plonk its screen onto any HDTV or monitor, but it comes with one that’s built into a laptop shell too, with a proper physical keyboard – the dock hides just behind the lid, next to the hinge, so you can’t see the phone when it’s on and open.
Moreover, it’s not simply screen mirroring that takes place when you pop the Motorola Atrix 4G into either dock (keyboard aside, both work exactly the same way). A custom homescreen appears on the screen, and windows of apps can actually be opened from within that, resized, and flipped round in orientation. In the video below, you can see several browser windows being moved around seamlessly.
It’s actually incredibly well thought out, and based on what we saw, makes for a much more enjoyable laptop Android experience than any Android smart-book or netbook we’ve tried before. And when you’re done, you simply pop the phone out and carry on as you were.
The Motorola Atrix 4G itself is incredibly powerful, and will have no problems picking up stellar reviews on launch in the UK, we’re sure. Whether this impressive but bizarre docking feature will help sell it is another question however: would you willingly type away on a netbook that hides your phone out of your sight, for any passer by to lift? We’re not sure, and we don’t even know how much these accessories will cost.
One thing is for sure though, the Motorola Atrix 4G is one to watch. Do so in our hands on gallery right here.