Google just shocked the world by announcing it plans to acquire Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion. What that means for Moto's future handsets remains to be seen but here's a look back at some of the company's more notable Android phones.
Release date: October 2009
The Cliq was Motorola's first Android smartphone. It featured a slide-out QWERTY keyboard and shipped with Android 1.5. The Cliq was also the first device to run the company's custom Motoblur user interface for Android.
Thanks to a clever campaign by Verizon, one could argue that the Motorola Droid really put the Android operating system on the map. The smartphone was the first to run Android 2.0 Eclair (sans Motoblur) and brought such things as native Microsoft Exchange support and an improved browser.
The Motorola Devour was the first device to debut with Android 1.6 Donut and was called the Droid's "little brother." Its feature set wasn't quite as high-end as the Droid, but it also gave Verizon customers a more affordable Android option.
Debuting at CES 2010, the Motorola Backflip featured an interesting design that included a fold-out keyboard and a trackpad on the back of the phone that you could use to navigate through the phone's menus. The Backflip was also AT&T's first Android device.
The keyboard-less version of the Moto Droid really beefed up things in the multimedia department with an 8-megapixel camera with HD video capture and an HDMI port. The smartphone also marked the debut of a revamped Motoblur interface that allowed you to resize widgets among other things.
Announced at CTIA 2010, the Motorola i1 marked the first Android phone with a prepaid carrier (Boost Mobile) and was also the first iDEN Android device. The rugged smartphone met military specifications for resistance to dust, shock, vibration, and so forth, but only shipped running Android 1.5.
The Motorola Charm was the second handset to feature a trackpad on back and also sported a unique square design. It was a very affordable, entry-level Android option for T-Mobile customers, but its small design and display proved to be a bit of a pitfall.
You can't say that Motorola doesn't take some risks with design. This time the company added a swiveling keyboard, which we found to be quite usable. Unfortunately, the rest of the phone's design didn't work and the phone's performance was rather sub-par.
The Motorola Droid Pro took aim at business users and the BlackBerry set with its enhanced security features and touch screen and QWERTY keyboard combo. Running Android 2.2, it was also Verizon's first Android world phone.
The Motorola Atrix 4G really brought a powerful Android phone to AT&T's lineup with its dual-core processor, qHD display, and support for the carrier's HSPA+ network. In addition, the Atrix also has a Webtop app that allows you to connect it to a laptop dock and continue using it in a more PC-like experience.
The follow-up to the popular Droid X featured a faster dual-core processor and higher-resolution display, but stopped short of adding 4G support and a front-facing camera. Still, it offered fast performance and good battery life.
As the third iteration of the smartphone that put Android on the map, the Motorola Droid 3 was a bit of a disappointment. Though it looked like a good upgrade to the Droid 2 on paper, with Android 2.3 Gingerbread, a dual-core processor, and a better camera, it didn't really deliver in real-world performance.
Seeing the need for more higher-end Android phones for prepaid carriers, Motorola released the Triumph for Virgin Mobile. As the flagship device, the Triumph offers a 4.1-inch WVGA display, a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, and a 5-megapixel camera.
Motorola and Sprint announced a renewed partnership this summer to bring more innovative products to the market together. One of the first handsets to come out of it was the Motorola Photon 4G, and it did not disappoint. With its dual-core processor, 4G capabilities, and other advanced features, the Photon 4G is one of Sprint's best smartphones, particularly for business users.