Motorola Dials Up iTunes With RAZR V3i

    November 9, 2005
    WebProNews Staff

The second-leading global manufacturer of cellphones has released two new models of its ultraslim RAZR phone; one model will be compatible with Apple’s iTunes Music Store. A couple of color choices will be available soon too.

Motorola will put out a couple of new colors, blue and pink, for its RAZR phones, and has announced the V3i and Ev-DO models should hit the market during the holiday shopping season.

The V3i has been the center of buzz and rumor for some time, but particularly since Motorola debuted the ROKR phone. That long-awaited model arrived with iTunes compatibility, and can store up to 100 songs.

However, chatter about the ROKR has been less than enthusiastic, and Cingular recently dropped the price on it by $100. This negative buzz has contributed in part to more anticipation for a RAZR model to come with iTunes on board.

With expandable memory as one feature announced for the V3i, it appears this model will be able to keep more songs than the ROKR does. Motorola said on its site the V3i will use a hot-swappable TransFlash card for storage. SanDisk makes the tiny (15mm x 11mm x 1mm) TransFlash cards.

Music fans can listen to their stored songs via a stereo headset, and Motorola has included an airplane mode for in-flight use. Downloading will still have to take place when tethered to a PC to get songs from the iTunes software to the V3i.

The storage can be used for images or video as well as music. They have included a 1.23 megapixel camera, with 8x digital zoom along with the use of the full screen as viewfinder.

Motorola has made the V3i a quad-band phone. That’s good news for international travelers; the phone should function wherever the user can find a connection. As Motorola puts it: “Screening calls while lounging in the French Riviera?” Um, sure, we all do that.

Bluetooth is enabled on-board as an additional connectivity option; Motorola said the technology would have printing, imaging, and peer-to-peer gaming profiles.

There is the usual ability to download ringtones, games, and software. The phone runs on a J2ME platform, and that Java support means users can obtain Google Local for mobile and have the maps and satellite images it provides available on the V3i.

The announcement of the Ev-DO compatible CDMA model RAZR V3x likely means Motorola will have its phones available from Verizon, which has been offering the high-speed Ev-DO option for wireless Internet connections.

V3x could bring the promise of two-way video calling to the mainstream. The phone will have a VGA camera to support video calls, combined with a 2 megapixel camera for stills and video capture.

Some image editing will be supported on the V3x, letting users make some tweaks to photos before sending them along via MMS. Like the V3i, the V3x will have Motorola’s Screen3 “zero-touch” technology. The company said this makes news and other content available from the main screen with no buttons to push.

Motorola’s color choices give the image-conscious another reason for begging their doting fathers to pony up $200 and commit to Cingular for two years. Motorola calls the pink and ice blue RAZRs “the first choice for a select group of fashion elite and Hollywood “it” girls.”

Photos and info on the Motorola phones can be found online.

David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.