The DROID Turbo just might be the most remarkable Android smartphone of 2014, demonstrating that long ago written-off Motorola isn’t dead yet after all. Moto was tagged as the one Android vendor who couldn’t manage to make hay of the rising tide of the Android platform, failing in its attempts to compete with the likes of Samsung and HTC, and acquired by Google strictly for patent reasons – only to then be handed off to Lenovo like a hot potato nobody wanted. But if the Moto X was proof of concept that Motorola might be able to find a way to come back to life, the DROID Turbo just might be the real deal.
Whether the new DROID phone sinks or swims will depend at least partly on truth in advertising. Vendors tend to lie through their teeth when it comes to specs like battery life, using every trick in the book to make their claims technically not a lie while being nowhere near accurate. Motorola did little to deter such skepticism with the DROID Turbo when it gave hands-on reviewers such a short window of testing time ahead of launch that several of them complained they were unable to properly test the battery life or the recharging time. But word of mouth will make that clear one way or the other once units ship in large enough quantities. And this could be the first real step in Motorola’s road to recovery.
This is also not the first time in which Lenovo has taken someone else’s unwanted leftovers and breathed new life into it. IBM dumped the ThinkPad in similar fashion to how Google dumped Motorola, and the former has continued to be a relatively strong brand. Motorola’s biggest drawback is that it hasn’t been seen as particularly innovative or relevant since the days of the RAZR flip phone. But if the DROID Turbo is indeed the real deal, Motorola may be back in the game – and Lenovo may have picked up a bargain.