Following a lavish unveiling ceremony in San Francisco last month, Motorola sent me both devices, and I've been putting them through some serious trials ever since. The devices are similar, but the Moto Z Droid is designed to be as slim as possible, while the Z Force Droid has a "shatterproof" display, a larger battery and a higher quality camera (21MP compared to 13MP).
I found a lot to like about both phones, particularly the Moto Z Force. Unfortunately, Moto also missed its mark in many ways with the two new Droids. Here are six Moto Z Droid pros and six cons you should consider before making either device your go-to smartphone.
6 things you'll love about Moto Z Droid, Z Force Droid
1. Motorola 'Mods' are genuinely unique
The most notable thing about the two new Moto Z Droids is their support for Motorola's "Mods," or modular peripherals and accessories that add some style or functionality to the phones. They all attach to the backs of the Droids via a set of 16 gold-colored magnetic pins at the base of the devices' rear panels.
The thin and light $19.99 (and up) Style Shell back covers come in a number of colors and textures, for example. The $79.99 JBL SoundBoost Speaker is a snap-on external speaker with better-than-average audio quality. The $59.99 Incipio offGRID Power Pack battery cover adds up to 22 hours of life, according to Motorola. And the $299.99 Moto Insta-Share Projector is designed to turn any flat surface into a large-screen display, up to 70-inches. And if Motorola has its way, many more innovative Mods will be released in the future, and they'll all be compatible with later generations of Moto phones.
At a time when innovation in the phone world has slowed to a crawl and takes place almost exclusively on the inside of devices, the company deserves a nod for such a bold and innovative idea. Motorola still has a few warts to address when it comes to the Mod concept, but potential exists in the concept, and that's exciting.
2. Moto Z Droids' Android 'flavor' is tasty
Android device makers often try to pack all kinds of cool-sounding but ultimately useless features and bloatware into their phones, in attempts to differentiate them from rival products. More often than not, such features are novelties with little real value, and I quickly try to find ways to hide or disable them.
The "flavor" of Android that runs on the Moto Z Droids is relatively "light," meaning it's not packed with soggy bloatware, and the experience isn't too far off from Google's stock Android software. That's a good thing.
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