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Hands-On With The Droid Razr M: The Reversal Of ‘Big Phone Syndrome’ Feels Wonderful

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We’re here at the Motorola event in New York, and I just got my hands on the Droid Razr M, the “little big secret” that Motorola’s been amping up for. As you’d expect for a phone of this size, it feels excellent in the hand, with a 4.3-inch qHD display. As I’ve said over and over again, this screen size is the sweet spot.

The most impressive thing about the Razr M is the way they managed to fit a relatively large display in such a small frame. Because of this, the M ends up having some of the thinnest bezels I’ve ever seen on a smartphone. In terms of viewing video, web pages, and gaming, this is pretty sweet. However, during normal use, even for just a few seconds, I found myself accidentally touching the screen and launching apps when I didn’t mean to.

For $99, this bothers me less, but I’d probably feel differently if I was a full-time owner of the device. Perhaps more interesting than any of this is that well-spec’d, 4.3-inch phones are now selling for mid-range prices.

Moving on: The Razr M was just as snappy as you’d expect, powered by that 1.5GHz dual-core processor. On the other hand, I’m seriously bummed about Motorola’s custom overlay. ICS runs like “butter,” ironically, but you can’t enjoy its aesthetic prowess with Moto’s skin laid over top.

The 8-megapixel rear-facing camera shoots 1080p video, which is fine, but it isn’t quick like lightning by any means. The shutter takes a hot second to capture the picture, but that may also be blamed on the relatively slow autofocus.

In other news, I love the design of this phone. I already mentioned it’s comfortable in the hand, and much of that has to do with its tapered design. The phone gets increasingly thinner towards the bottom. It sports the same Kevlar fiber casing as every other Razr, but the actual Kevlar fiber bit takes up a smaller part of the phone’s backside than it does on bigger, flatter Razrs.

All in all, this is an excellent device, especially at its price point. We’ll hit you with a full review ASAP, as we’re all getting a device today. You can, too, if you’d like, as pre-orders begin today.











Hands-On With The Droid Razr M: The Reversal Of ‘Big Phone Syndrome’ Feels Wonderful

PayDragon May Be The Easiest Way To Order Food On Your Phone

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A new iPhone and Android app called PayDragon is trying to bring the one-click shopping experience to buying meals on your phone.

The app was created by Paperlinks, a Y Combinator-backed startup that helps businesses create QR code-enabled materials. CEO Hamilton Chan demonstrated PayDragon for me last week, and it sounds like a great fit for anyone who’s trying to grab lunch or dinner while they’re busy — say if they’re frantically trying to finish a blog post, as is so often the case during my meals. Each restaurant has only four to six items on its PayDragon menu, usually its most popular dishes in combo meal form. You tap on the item you want, hit pay, and the order is complete. Then you just wait for the alert saying that your food is ready and head to the restaurant to pick it up.

The idea of ordering food on your phone isn’t new, but Chan says he wanted to create an entirely new experience for the phone, rather than just porting over a Web-based like GrubHub. Hence the stripped-down menus and the lack of customization — it’s all about creating as few barriers as possible to submitting an order. It might not be the best fit for picky eaters, but if you just want that sandwich ASAP, and you don’t want to think too hard about it, it’s perfect. It’s also good for restaurants, especially during the busy periods, because it helps them serve customers much more quickly. (And as a vegetarian, I was relieved to hear that most restaurants are trying to include at least one vegetarian option in their slimmed-down menus.)

Other features include a Discover tab to see nearby participating restaurants and Facebook integration so you can tell your friends about the meal you’ve eaten. There’s one feature that comes out of the app’s connection to Paperlinks — restaurants can also create QR-enabled menus. Customers can scan the item they want and pay with one tap. (That’s something Paperlinks was trying out pre-PayDragon.)

Chan says he tested the concept out at South by Southwest, and is now launching it with Los Angeles food trucks, including The Bun Truck, CambalaCHE’s, Auntie’s Fry Bread, Chunk n Chip, The Grill Sergeant, The Wien, and Rounds Premium Burger.

You can download the iPhone app here, and you can download the Android app here.


PayDragon May Be The Easiest Way To Order Food On Your Phone