Motorola's first Intel-powered Android phone, the RAZRi, is now available in the UK at fairly aggressive pricing.
The Ice Cream Sandwich-based smartphone is not available directly through any major network operator, but has gone on sale through retailers such as Phones4U, Amazon and Tesco Mobile. Amazon says it will ship on Friday. It is available both SIM-free and on operator plans, though it is launching without explicit carrier support.
The RAZRi is not the first smartphone to go on sale in the UK using an Intel rather than ARM chipset — that honour went to the Orange San Diego — but it is the first to come from a top-tier handset manufacturer.
The chipset is a single-core, 2GHz affair that apparently handles multitasking quite well, although more in-depth reviews will be needed before the RAZRi can be easily compared with high-end Android handsets such as the Samsung Galaxy SIII and HTC One X.
Nonetheless, the RAZRi is notably cheaper than those devices. It costs around £345 SIM-free, compared with £440 for the Galaxy S III and £380 for the One X. This could help Motorola makes inroads into the UK and elsewhere in Europe — territories where it has been performing poorly in recent years. So far, there has been no hint as to whether Motorola will launch the handset in the US.
Online retailers are listing plans for the RAZRi with all the major operators, with free handsets on 24-month tariffs starting at around £20.