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Motorola's Droid Ultra is the thinnest Droid yet (hands-on)

Announced today, the superthin Motorola Droid Ultra promises up to 28 hours of battery life. CNET takes a closer look with photos and video.

Lynn La Senior Editor / Reviews - Phones
Lynn La covers mobile reviews and news. She previously wrote for The Sacramento Bee, Macworld and The Global Post.
Brian Bennett Former Senior writer
Brian Bennett is a former senior writer for the home and outdoor section at CNET.
Lynn La
Brian Bennett
2 min read

Motorola's new Droid Maxx is the top dog of today's Verizon Wireless announcement, but close behind is the Motorola Droid Ultra. Though it lacks the promised 48 hours of battery life of its sibling, or the compact size of the Droid Mini, the midrange Ultra is supposed to deliver a very respectable 28 hours of battery life in a trim design.

In fact, its 7.18-millimeter (0.28-inch) profile makes it the thinnest Droid ever. Indeed it's even thinner than theSamsung Galaxy S4 (0.3 inch), HTC One (0.37), and Motorola's previous Droid Razr HD. Oddly enough, you don't really notice the difference in girth between it and the Maxx, but the Ultra does feel lighter. The Ultra has a 5-inch AMOLED 720p display as well, and a 2,130mAh battery. It will come in both black and red.

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The back of the Ultra has a glossy coating that feels slippery to the touch. Frankly, we prefer the backing seen on the Maxx. Its soft-touch matte coating doesn't attract grease or fingerprints like the Ultra's, and it feels easier to grip.

Like the new Droid Mini, which Verizon also announced today, the Ultra will have only 16GB of storage. All Droids, however, have a 1.7GHz dual-core processor with the same X8 system, Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean, 2GB of RAM, a 10-megapixel rear-facing camera with 1080p HD recording, and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera.

The Droid Ultra is very thin. Brian Bennett/CNET

Also standard on the three new devices are a few touchless controls that will make it possible to make phone calls and search for directions without touching the screen -- a useful function when driving. Furthermore, they'll have a "Quick Capture" camera launch feature, wireless charging, and "Droid Zap." With Zap you can send images within 300 feet of you, and you can swipe with your fingers to share media files.

Additional software functions include an Active Display that will light up certain parts of your screen for important notifications, and a Droid Command Center, where you can launch Miracast TV for wireless media streaming.

Both the Droid Ultra and Droid Maxx will go on sale August 20 (preorders begin today). The Droid Ultra is $199.99 with a contract.