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Droid Ultra deep-dive review: Bigger, but not necessarily better

JR Raphael | Aug. 21, 2013
Motorola's latest smartphone makes a lot of promises -- but does the phone actually deliver? The answer is both yes and no.

Last but not least, the bloatware: The Droid Ultra comes with all the preloaded Verizon favorites you've grown to know and loathe — VZ Navigator, VZ Security and about 10 other programs you probably won't want and can't easily uninstall. You can, at least, disable them and hide them from view.

Bottom line
Motorola's Droid Ultra is a strange phone to wrap your head around. It has a great deal in common with the Moto X but then veers from it in vexing ways.

To be sure, the phone has a lot of positive qualities — mainly those that it shares with the Moto X. The Droid Ultra is a strong performer with a great display, intuitive interface and genuinely compelling features you won't find on competing devices.

But the phone also has an unattractive and uninspired design, along with capacitive buttons that create awkward usage scenarios. Comparatively speaking, those things take a serious toll on the user experience.

If you love the idea of a larger screen or need that extra dollop of battery life, Verizon's new Droid Ultra — or perhaps the Maxx, with its even bigger battery and less chintzy casing — is well worth considering. Otherwise, I'd suggest looking at the Moto X instead, which provides a similar setup in a far more compelling overall package.

 

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