LAS VEGAS - Motorola Mobility has raised the bar on mobile computing, announcing four new Android-based products during a presentation at the Consumer Electronics Show today. The company showcased three new smartphones - the Atrix 4G for AT&T, the Cliq 2 with MotoBlur for T-Mobile and the Droid Bionic for Verizon Wireless.
Each of the devices is a potential game changer, not necessarily because they're the latest and greatest in smartphones but more because the company seems to have listened to consumers about what the features, the tools and the specs they're looking for these days. "Innovation is the key to differentiating ourselves," he told a standing room only crowd at the company's late afternoon press conference here.
Sure, we still refer to these devices as "phones," but company Chairman and CEO Sanjay Jha repeatedly referred to them as devices for mobile computing.
That's probably a better description, seeing how the key features being played up were the advanced features such as 1080p HD video, HDMI outputs, dual core processors for improved multi-tasking and most importantly, a powerful and secure platform for enterprise applications.
Most impressive was the Atrix, which is compatible with a laptop dock station that turns the phone into an actual laptop computer. During the demo, the phone was attached to the rear of this laptop - which has no on-board processor, memory or hard drive but does include a full keyboard and display - and magically transformed into a full laptop experience. He said:
This is like nothing you've seen before... the integration between smartphone and computing environment is one in the same.
Jha wrapped up his presentation with the introduction of a fourth product - a 4G tablet computer called Xoom, which will run on Google's Android 3.0 operating system, known as Honeycomb. The company was quick to acknowledge that the tablet, as well as Honeycomb, aren't quite ready yet (which means we won't have a hands-on experience at the Motorola booth on the expo floor later this week.)
The company offered a peek at what the Xoom will look like via a nicely produced video. And while it looks promising, it's hard to give a thumbs up or thumbs down to a product we can't touch and tap yet - just like the announced launch of Research in Motion's Playbook tablet. Still, calling it "our most competitive device in the marketplace," he said it will be available as a 3G product in the first quarter and upgradable to 4G in the second quarter.