Motorola captured the attention of the tech world late last year when it rebooted its iconic Razr flip phone as a foldable smartphone. Motorola banked on nostalgia for the Razr to drive interest in its new foldable, and it definitely worked. However, the Motorola Razr had rather lackluster hardware and was quickly overshadowed by the more powerful Galaxy Z Flip from Samsung. However, Motorola revealed back in December that they were working on a 5G version of the Razr, and recently a representative for Lenovo, the Chinese company that owns Motorola, revealed a possible launch date. To add to this, we can now share a lot of the hardware specifications for the upcoming Motorola Razr revamp.
The Motorola Razr was the first vertically foldable smartphone to hit the market when it went on sale in the U.S. on February 6th. It featured a main 6.20-inch pOLED foldable display made of plastic and a secondary 2.69-inch gOLED glass display on the outside. Besides the ingenuity of the foldable display and hinge mechanism, the Razr was a rather unimpressive mid-range smartphone, packing the Qualcomm Snapdragon 710, 6GB of RAM, 128GB of internal storage, a 16MP rear camera, a 5MP front camera, Android 9 Pie, and a 2,510mAh battery. The Galaxy Z Flip, on the other hand, had an arguably better display in terms of look and feel, a better processor, more RAM, more storage, a larger battery, newer software, faster charging, and better cameras.
The new Motorola Razr, when it launches, should bridge the gap between it and the Galaxy Z Flip in terms of specifications. During the China Industrial Design Exhibition held in Wuhan, China in December, a Lenovo staff member reportedly told attendees at the exhibition that the company plans to launch a 5G version in China in 2020. A few days ago, Lenovo’s South Africa general manager Thibault Dousson told the Reframed Tech podcast (via AndroidAuthority) that there is “a new iteration [of the Razr] coming up. There’s one in September I think.” Later, Mr. Doussan reiterates that there’s a “generation two” foldable in the works.
A September launch (or even just an announcement) would be a quick turnaround from the original Motorola Razr release. The first Razr launched in February, only 8 months prior to September. The original was, however, announced 3 months before it went on sale, so it’s possible we could see a September announcement and a launch closer to the end of the year. Whatever the case may be, the second generation Motorola Razr should pack hardware that’s much more in line with our idea of an upper mid-range smartphone in 2020.
Motorola Razr (Gen. 2) – What we think we know so far
According to our source, the 5G-enabled, second-generation Motorola Razr has the code-name “smith” and model name “XT2071-4.” The foldable is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 765, 8GB of RAM, 256GB of internal storage, and a 2,845mAh battery. The rear camera is also getting an upgrade to Samsung’s 48MP ISOCELL Bright GM1 sensor while the front camera is getting upgraded to a 20MP shooter. The device will run Android 10 out-of-the-box, presumably with Motorola’s many improvements to the Quick View display. The dimensions of the main “Flex View” and closed “Quick View” displays themselves, as far as we know, haven’t changed from the first-generation model, though we hope that Motorola will introduce enhancements like a layer of Ultra Thin Glass.
The second-generation model is being developed for China and North America, though we don’t know if it will also go on sale in other markets like India, Europe, or Latin America. As confirmed by Motorola’s parent company Lenovo, the second-generation Razr will support 5G connectivity, made possible with the inclusion of the Snapdragon 765 with its Snapdragon X52 modem. The device will likely only support sub-6GHz 5G networks as I’m not sure if Motorola will be able to pack mmWave antennas into the body to support mmWave 5G networks like Verizon’s Ultrawide Band network.
As with any leak, things can change before launch. Our leaks of the first-generation Motorola Razr device turned out to be accurate, though notably the battery capacity that we first revealed back in March of 2019 was changed to the lower capacity unit ended up in retail units. We anticipated that change ahead of launch and will, of course, keep an eye out for any such changes in the second-generation Razr.