The X2 also appears to be outfitted with a slightly darker grey shell than the original X. Alongside the X which I borrowed, the X2 looks almost black. It’s hard to say whether that’s just because his X has faded considerably, or whether the X2 has been intentionally made darker so people can tell the two apart. It’s probably a subtle thing similar to the way Apple made logos chrome between the 3G and 3GS to differentiate the two. 

The other obvious way to differentiate which one is which is by looking at the back cover. The X2 has its name in red written below the metallic Motorola logo on the battery door. Otherwise even the two battery doors are identical. The trademark thickness bulge where the camera is located also persists on the X2. This is one area that I think could have benefited from some slimming, although it’s physically impossible to reduce the throw (depth) of some camera systems.

Button placement on the X2 is likewise the same as the X. At the top is power, centered and raised slightly. Just offset from it is the headset jack and then a microphone for noise cancellation on calls. 

On the right side is the volume rocker which is identical to the one on the X. It’s a solid piece of plastic with a small detent in the center. The buttons are still sufficiently clicky. Of course, at the very bottom of the right side is where the two-step camera button would have been, should Motorola have decided it was worth keeping. 

The bottom has a small lip with the same physical, backlit Android buttons. Thankfully these are in the same order as they were on the X, so there’s no relearning if you’re upgrading. Dead center below buttons is the primary microphone for calls, just like before. 

The left side of the X2 is still home to microUSB and a microHDMI port. Back when we reviewed the X, I was disappointed with how HDMI was implemented. You could output certain types of media to the TV, but not do full mirroring. Instead, the display turned into a small control panel, and the attached HDMI monitor became the playback canvas. It felt half-baked back then. 

This time, you can do full mirroring with overscan control. What’s odd, however, is that rotation isn’t implemented like it was on the Optimus 2X.

Plug an HDMI monitor in, and the whole interface rotates to landscape and stays there. If you have an application which only has portrait support, it will appear rotated 90 degrees on the TV, instead of rotating properly like the LG Optimus 2X does.

The phone’s display is upscaled to 1080p using what looks like nearest neighbor, so things are blocky, but it works. 

Proximity sensor and the notification LED are still hidden in the black strips up near the earpiece. Again, it wouldn’t surprise me if all of this was exactly the same as it was on the original X just because of how virtually nothing is physically different on the outside of the X2. I guess that actually sums up what there is to say about the exterior - if you liked the angular and masculine aesthetics of the original X, you’ll like the X2 because it’s essentially the same thing. Similarly, if you disliked the way the X looked, you’ll dislike the X2. 

Intro and Hardware Overview Motoblur by any other name is still motoblur
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  • HangFire - Thursday, July 07, 2011 - link

    Will it be dead the second time you drop it, or will the speaker die in volume more every month that it does stay working?

    Just going by the experience on my last 4 Motorola's...
    Reply
  • ImSpartacus - Thursday, July 07, 2011 - link

    I dropped my DX1 this morning. It was under a cheap pseudo-leather case that isn't even sold anymore. It's still chugging.

    http://youtu.be/pJTjDsWnn34
    Reply
  • HangFire - Thursday, July 07, 2011 - link

    First or second drop? Reply
  • ImSpartacus - Friday, July 08, 2011 - link

    Third or fourth, I lost track. Reply
  • strikeback03 - Thursday, July 07, 2011 - link

    I dropped my X hard enough to knock the battery cover off once, no effect. This isn't a POS V710, it can actually take day-to-day life. Reply
  • quadrivial - Thursday, July 07, 2011 - link

    I wonder why there isn't criticism of the overheating problem? Reply
  • Stuka87 - Thursday, July 07, 2011 - link

    I can't speak for a droid, but I had my v3xx for four years, and it took multiple drops and was fine. The battery cover did get pretty loose. And my wife used it for two of those years. We now both have smart phones, but that phone held up extremely well.

    If the Droids hold up like it did, then they are very durable devices.
    Reply
  • freefx - Thursday, July 07, 2011 - link

    I don't know about the X, but my original droid can take a beating. I've dropped it on concrete more times than i can keep track of. I've also dropped it while work on my roof. Tumbled all the way down the roof line and then dropped 9 feet to my concrete walkway. Battery cover came off and a barely noticeable scuff on one of the corners. My screen still has no scratches. My only complaint now is the slow processor and lack of ram.

    Considering my clumsiness, I'm hoping one of these new phones can take the some punishment.
    Reply
  • jmcb - Thursday, July 07, 2011 - link

    Were they those thin RAZR's?

    My Droid 1 and Droid X1 has survived numerous drops with only scratches to show for it. The X face first many times. I dropped my Droid X so much you would think my Droid 1 was the newer phone.

    Going back to the E815, minus the charging port on that phone breaking almost every 6 months...Motorola has made some durable phones.

    Ask me about my Samsung Omnia 1 and drops. It didn't even make it 6 months. My Droid 1 and DX1 lasted a total of 16 months, still going strong.
    Reply
  • TechJunkie69 - Thursday, July 07, 2011 - link

    I don't know about the Droid X case, but my Atrix is near indestructible. I have dropped it, punched it (so I have anger issues, what), even my 2 year old niece has gotten ahold of it a few times (she responsible for 3 destroyed phones already), and it still works as good as it did on launch day.

    And as far as performance, I'm running the SPB Shell 3D launcher with live 3D wallpaper and none of my apps have performance issues, except for angry birds seasons and its full page ads. The only difference between the X2 and the Atrix is the amount of RAM, which could potentially cause a few hiccups. As for battery life, I never have any issues with it. Then again I have it connected to a charger a lot (car dock, notebook, wall charger at night) so I wouldn't notice it as much as others might. Tegra 2 may not be the best on the market anymore, but it is still a solid platform.
    Reply

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