The new Motorola Droid
Verizon's only upcoming Android smartphone. In addition to the much-hyped
handset which is set to arrive on Friday, the wireless carrier is also planning
to unleash the Droid Eris this week.
It appears the Droid Eris is a modified HTC
Hero, a handset that is
currently available as an Android 1.5 device from Sprint. HTC has said an
Android 2.0 update is in the works. For this reason, we wouldn't be surprised
if the Droid Eris ships with Android 1.5 with an update to Android
2.0 released at
some point in the future.
From leaked specs, it appears this phone will have a 528MHz
Qualcomm CPU and a 320x480 resolution multi-touch display. It is also said to
have a standard 3.5mm audio jack and possibly come with an 8GB memory card. The
handset is smaller than the Motorola Droid. Because the Droid Eris is not as
feature-filled as the Motorola Droid, you'll also be able to pick it up for a
more affordable price—likely $99 with a 2-year contract.
is trying to maximize its investment in the Droid branding and market recognition
by dubbing the new device the Droid Eris. The possible downside to this is
potential confusion among customers. As Android is continues to establish
itself as a serious contender in the mobile operating system market, we expect
more and more users to be familiar with, and ask about, the operating system.
Verizon has paid LucasArts for rights to use the Droid name for
its line of Android handsets. As a result, you'll have the Droid line as well
as a device called the Droid and another device called the Droid Eris. Given
this, we can see how walking into a store and asking for a Droid could cause
some confusion as to which device you want.
Droid confusion aside, it's good to see that Verizon isn't
putting all of its eggs in one basket, so to say. The Motorola Droid is
definitely positioned to compete against the iPhone
, but let's face it:
getting a dedicated iPhone user to convert is no easy task. Still, the
smartphone market is growing and we definitely appreciate having multiple
options from which to choose.
The HTC Droid Eris set to launch on November 6 alongside the