Android Phones

Motorola Photon: Sprint gets its own Atrix that’s laptop-ready

June 9, 2011 | by Andrew Kameka

Motorola, Sprint


Were you one of the many people intrigued by the Motorola Atrix 4G but less-enthused about the network that carried it? Well, maybe the Motorola Photon, heading to Sprint this summer, is the device for you.

Sprint and Motorola held a joint-press event today to announce two new Android phones, one of which was the Photon. Much like its AT&T-tied Atrix cousin, the Photon stands out because it supports several docking modes for multimedia, car, or the laptop conversion mode known as webtop. There’s also an NVIDIA Tegra 2 dual-core processor, 8 megapixel rear camera, VGA front-facing camera, and the ability to record 720p video. You can also watch up to 1080p video on a 4.3-inch screen with qHD resolution.

The difference between the two Motorola Android phones is that the Photon puts all those features into a diamond-cut shape instead of the curves seen on the Atrix. It also differs – obviously – because it can tap into Sprint’s 4G WiMax network and roam on GSM carriers when traveling outside of the United States. This is the first 4G world-phone from any U.S. carrier, says Sprint.

And the Photon has a kickstand! Finally, someone has decided to follow a trend among mobile device manufacturers. A custom version of the Motoblur Android 2.3 software runs on the Photon. It includes many of the social networking features familiar to Blur, but also has more enterprise-friendly solutions like remote wipe, management, and encryption for your data.

Pricing and exact availability haven’t been announced yet, but that’s a lot of features for one phone: the latest Android version, kickstand, dual-cameras, and dual-core processor. Is this the dream phone that we discussed yesterday?

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Motorola Photon Spes

  • motorola photonDual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor and 1GB of RAM
  • Large 4.3-inch touchscreen with qHD (Quarter High Definition) display
  • Dual cameras – 8 megapixel, dual-LED flash camera with front-facing webcam to store photos and videos directly on the device and VGA front-facing camera for video chat
  • Android Market™ for access to more than 200,000 useful applications, widgets and games available for download to customize the experience
  • Sprint ID for an easy way to personalize the user experience with apps, widgets, ringtones and more, all in a single download
  • 16GB of onboard memory, support for up to 32GB SD Card, for a total of up to 48GB
  • Worldphone capabilities to access emails, calendars and news from locations around the globe
  • 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot capability, supporting up to eight devices on the Sprint 3G or 4G networks and one while roaming internationally on GSM (Mobile Hotspot capability while roaming internationally on GSM will be delivered through an upcoming software update)
  • Ability to utilize the webtop application while connected to a Motorola accessory dock (sold separately) to open, view, edit and send Microsoft Office documents using cloud-based web apps through the full Mozilla Firefox browser
  • Supports critical IT device policies commonly requested by enterprises and government entities, including integration ease, cost-of-management and data security concerns