Review: Motorola Photon 4G
The Photon 4G runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread with a toned-down version of Motorola's Motoblur skin sitting on top, plus Sprint's Sprint iD theme packs. The behavior of the home screens and menus mostly conforms to the stock Android experience.
There are seven home screen panels that users can adjust at will. Only three of them have content loaded out of the box. There are four permanent icons (phone, browser, Sprint iD, main menu) in a dock at the bottom of the screen, but those icons can be changed up if you wish. There is the usual flotilla of Android and Motorola widgets available to make the home screen more dynamic.
The main app menu can be sorted into groups (alphabetically, frequently used, recently used), as well as sorted by what folder they are stuffed in.
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The Photon 4G has Sprint iD on board, but thankfully it is dormant. My review unit had no preinstalled Sprint iD packs, meaning I had to actively seek them out from Sprint's web portal if I wanted to use them. Trust me, the Photon 4G is just fine without Sprint iD active. The menus are plenty easy to customize, and I find Sprint iD downloads/installs too many junk apps to be useful. However, if you want, you can still configure your own iDs, as well as peruse the growing library of other iDs.
As for performance, the Photon 4G is incredibly fast. It has a dual-core 1Ghz Tegra 2 processor inside. This equates to lightning fast screen transitions, smooth application performance, and no stuttering as the Photon 4G moves from screen to screen and app to app.
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Motorola has indicated that the Android 4.0 update for the Droid Bionic that was scheduled to occur in during the third quarter of this year has been delayed until the fourth quarter. No details were provided as to why, but Motorola VP of product Punit Soni promised that the update will be delivered before the end of the year.
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