Verizon Launches First Droid-Brand Tablets


Basking Ridge, N.J. --The first two Droid-brand Android tablets, both made by Motorola, will appear sometime this month in Verizon Wireless-owned stores, and the carrier's indirect channel

Both come with embedded 4G LTE/3G cellular and Wi-Fi. Plans by Motorola for a Wi-Fi-only version weren't disclosed.

The two tablets, available with two-year data contract, are the Droid Xyboard 10.1 and 8.2 with 10.1- and 8.2-inch high-definition in-plane switching touchscreens. Both feature processors upgraded to dual-core 1.2GHz from the previous Motorola Xoom tablets' dual-core 1GHz processor, and both are Motorola's first tablets with in-plane switching for a wide viewing angle. Both use the Android 3.2 (Honeycomb) OS but are upgradable to 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich).

The 10.1-inch model will be available in three versions: 16GB at $529, 32GB at $629, and 64GB for $729.99 with new two-year data contract. The 8.2-inch model will be available in two versions: 16GB for $429 and 32 GB for $529 with two-year agreement. The minimum plan needed to buy the tablets is a 2GB plan at $30/month.

The two tablets will also be available at an unsubsidized price with month-to-month prepaid data plans, a spokesman said.

For a limited time, Verizon will offer $100 off one of the tablets and $50 off select Motorola accessories when customers buy a Motorola-made $299 Droid Razr 4G smartphone with new two-year contract.

Besides sporting different screen sizes, each model is also targeted to different users. The 10.1 is optimized for productivity, offering an included stylus for notetaking and markup. The 8.2 is designed for portable entertainment with 2.1 adaptive virtual surround sound. It also accesses Netflix movies in up to HD quality.

Both also come with 1GB of RAM, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, and a Dijit app that turns the tablets into universal remote controls for home electronics products, including TVs. Dijit also displays local programming guides.

Other features common to both include Motorola's MotoCast, which enables remote access to non DRM-protected music, pictures, videos and documents stored on work or home computers. Both also feature scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass and a coating of water-repellent nanoparticles to resist to accidental spills and splashes.

Other features common to both include magnesium-reinforced bodies with aluminum housing and such business features as enterprise-grade security and business apps. The business apps include Quickoffice HD for document editing and creation, Citrix GoToMeeting for collaboration, and Google Talk for video conferencing.

Both also feature mobile hotspot capability to share a 3G/4G connection with up to eight Wi-Fi-enabled devices, 1.3-megapixel HD front-facing cameras for video chatting, and 5-megapixel rear-facing HD camera with digital zoom, autofocus and LED flash.

Accessories include an HD station to connect speakers and a larger display, an HD dock to send content via HDMI to HDTVs, and Bluetooth-enabled keyboard and mouse.

With 700MHz LTE, the tablets download data over cellular at 5 to 12Mbps and upload data at speeds up 2 to 5Mbps in LTE coverage areas.

 Separately, Verizon announced availability this month of a white version of the Motorola-made Razr.


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