Motorola Atrix 4G – Hands-on Motorola’s first dual-core Android phone

Motorola Atrix 4G dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 Android superphone with fingerprint scanner
Motorola Atrix 4G dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 Android superphone with fingerprint scanner

Motorola just wrapped their CES 2011 Las Vegas press conference, and it was filled with exciting demos of the company’s new Android smartphones – like the Motorola Atrix 4G for AT&T. With a whopping 4-inch qHD capacitive touchscreen, 1GB of RAM, support for AT&T’s HSPA+ network, and a fingerprint scanner integrated into the power button, the Motorola Atrix 4G is one of the most impressive superphones we’ve come across in quite some time. And, to our pleasant surprise, Motorola topped off their press conference with a hot, steaming serving of hands-on time with the Atrix 4G.

In the hand, the Atrix 4G doesn’t really feel as premium as the Motorola Droid X or the Motorola Droid 2. We use the Droid X as a comparison, because it’s similar in size and shape. Unfortunately, the Atrix uses a lot of lightweight plastics, which tend to feel cheaper in the hand compared to the Droid X’s heavier case design. But, that’s mostly a matter of opinion, and you might very well prefer the lighter weight.

The coolest thing, by far, about the Atrix 4G is that it has a fingerprint scanner built into the power button. The power button lives on the backside of the device, which is strange, but it all makes sense when you realize that you have to swipe your finger across the button in order to unlock the device. Swipe too fast, and the phone tells you as much. Swipe an unauthorized finger, and the phone rejects your attempt to unlock it. We’ve seen this tech in laptops before, but in a smartphone, it’s just really, really cool.

On top of that, the handset sports 1GB of RAM, about twice what other superphones these days offer, and can even be docked into an optional laptop-like device for those times when you want a full desktop web browser and a larger display.

Overall, the Atrix 4G looks like it’ll be more than able to compete with all the dual-core Android smartphones that will flood the market in early 2011. These are fun times we live in!

  • tenioman

    Does it have LED notifications?

  • Sashazur

    With a phone, once performance gets over a certain threshold, improving battery life is probably more desirable than even more speed.

    I can’t help but think that battery life on a dual-core phone will suck… are you sure that laptop-like docking thing isn’t actually the battery this thing will need to run for more than a day without recharging?

  • Sashazur,

    That’s half of the benefit of a dual-core that you’re dismissing. Having 2 cores allows the OS to scale the CPU a lot better to suit whatever level of interaction you’re pushing for. For example it may be that the mail app only requires half of a single core, the other can remain idle, thus saving power.

    In addition to that, they’re manufactured using smaller silicon which by it’s nature uses less voltage to operate.

    Battery life and performance will both increase with the introduction of these smartphones (why are people calling things ‘superphones’ these days??? daft).

  • Finally, how much CPU Speed does it have?

  • Hope to see this nice thing in europe soon….

  • Asits_

    How many price it is ?

  • ROB

    $499 for the phone and dock and 2gb data limit with required tethering makes it WAY TOO EXPENSIVE

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