Verizon and Google Droid Phone Take Run At iPhone

Is the Droid the next iPhone-killer to fall by the wayside?

After the debacle called the Blackberry Storm, you have to wonder if Verizon is really ready to take another run at the iPhone. From one viewpoint the Google Android powered Droid phone must a very capable contender, given how the recent Droid video ads pick at iPhone weak points. Hard to say the Droid will dethrone the iPhone, but it certainly has the potential of keeping Verizon customers tempted to switch to AT&T in order to get an iPhone. AT&T's network is still the weakest link in the iPhone and Verizon's got what's arguably the best 3G network when it comes to coverage, reliability and reliability.

Does the Droid stand a chance or will Google and Verizon be sent home to lick their wounds? While I've not gotten my hands on a Droid unit, it seems to have all the bells and whistles the iPhone lacks along with many similar capabilities. I know if I was still with Verizon I'd give it a serious look, though I'd look before I leap after my journey with the Blackberry Storm. Voice activated search, the standard portfolio of email, contacts, calendar, SMS/MMS, music, photos, beefy 480x854-pixel 16:9 touchscreen and 5 megapixel camera, and GPS along with Google powered turn-by-turn navigation. Of course the Droid sports capabilities the iPhone doesn't, including replaceable battery, a real keyboard, multitasking apps, and a much more open development environment. Add in the Google App store sporting "thousands of apps" and you seem to have at least a capable alternative to the iPhone, though whether it takes business away from iPhone sales is hard to say until we see some real Droid units.If Verizon learned anything from the Blackberry Storm experience I hope they don't come out with a buggy, underpowered Smartphone, leaving customers hanging literally for months waiting for bug fixes and performance improvements. The Storm has never truly recovered from its stumbling launch out of the gate, leaving everyone to wonder what could have been if the Storm would have been a solid device when introduced. There's much less chance of that this time out given the Droid's use of the Google Android mobile OS, which has been vetted in T-Mobile and Sprint devices. Google's done a very good job of keeping updates with new functionality and bug fixes coming, and efforts to attract developers to the Android OS seems to be paying off.I hope the Droid and other Android-based phones do well, something I talked about a while ago. Think how good the iPhone would be with a strong competitor in the market.

UPDATE: 5:33PM, 10/28/09

Engadget has a video demo of the Motorola-based Droid. There is also rumor of a $99 HTC Droid Eris Verizon phone.

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