Jul 25 AT 4:25 PM Dustin Earley 27 Comments

Motorola Droid Bionic recap: here’s what we know

As the release of the Motorola Droid Bionic draws near, it may be a good time to sit back, relax and take in the journey that has become the pre-release hurricane of one of Verizon’s most anticipated devices. What kind of changes have we seen? Is there a solid spec sheet? Just when exactly will we see this thing? Let’s jump into it.

Delayed, pushed back, redesigned

If there’s one thing the Bionic has come to be known for, it may just be how long it’s taken to come to market. It’s still not for sale. And the most recent rumored release date may be off by a month. (More on this later). But before we get too ahead of ourselves, let’s start from the beginning. The scene:  CES 2011. Our very own Sean Riley has just had his first hands-on experience with the Bionic, not long after Motorola initially announced the device.


Specs then:

  • Tegra 2 dual-core processor
  • 4.3-inch qHD display
  • 512MB RAM
  • 8MP rear camera
  • VGA front-facing camera
  • Android 2.2
  • Compatibility with Verizon’s 4G LTE network
  • The original verdict? “Reasonably impressed.” At the time the Atrix was the hot noise, and everyone was either rumored to show off a dual-core monster or already had. Sure, the 4.3-inch qHD display was nice, but 512MB of RAM and word of Android 2.2 at launch left most wanting more. As time went on, more is what we got.After the initial showing of the Bionic, news seemed to just fade away. It became clear that something odd was going on, and as news finally began to pick back up, rumors surrounding the Bionic proved it. By mid-April, blogs everywhere were reporting that the Motorola Bionic was dead. Thanks to the popularity of this rumor, someone from Motorola spoke up and we listened. On April 19th, a Motorola spokesperson was quoted as saying,

    Based on compelling feedback since the show, we are incorporating several enhancements to make this an even better consumer experienceMotorola SpokespersonMotorola
    It took a minute to catch wind of these “enhancements,” but by late May word was the Bionic wouldn’t be using a Tegra processor as originally shown at CES. Instead, new rumors said the device would come out rocking an OMAP 4 dual-core processor. But the changes didn’t stop there.By early July, a complete redesign was leaked in some photographs of the device, as well as some updated specs and proof of Webtop compatibility.

    Specs now:

  • OMAP 4 dual-core processor
  • 4.5-inch qHD display
  • 8MP rear camera
  • Front-facing camera
  • Android 2.3.4
  • Compatibility with Verizon’s 4G LTE network
  • Webtop support
  • Complete body redesign
  • As far as the redesign of the Bionic goes, that’s where the story ends. For now. We still don’t have all the details, but what we do know is that the Bionic should be ready to keep up with the best Android devices out there. That is if it’s released anytime soon.

    Release date madness

    After all the rumored release dates that have come and gone, one has stood out recently as the real deal. The date is August 4th, and the leaks are there to back it up. Just earlier this month, an internal screenshot was obtained showing this date as final for the Bionic. So all should be said and done, right? The Bionic comes out August 4th, and that’s the end of it? Of course not.

    More information regarding a release date has made its way online just today. According to some documents from Sam’s Club obtained by Android Central, the release has been “pushed to September.”

    Sure, the Bionic may have also been seen lurking in CelleBrite today, but that doesn’t mean much. It merely means a release is on the way–not necessarily within any sort of time-frame.

    It’s possible that Sam’s Club may not get the Bionic until September, and the device will still see a Verizon launch on August 4th. But at this point, no one knows for sure. All we can do now is sit and wait for yet another leak, or hopefully, some real information from Big Red.

    Wrap up

    The story of the Motorola Droid Bionic is turning into a sad one. The longer it takes to see the light of day, the less people seem to want it. After all this time, there is one good reason to hold onto hope and give the Bionic a chance:  it’s still going to be the first dual-core powered Android device on Verizon to use LTE. LTE devices on Verizon do exist, but none of them are dual-core. The Bionic will be.

    Is that enough for you to keep holding out? Hopefully, it won’t be too much longer. For now feel free to slap this custom Bionic boot animation on your device of choice courtesy of DroidLife. It just may ease the pain a bit.

    Dustin Earley: Tech enthusiast; avid gamer; all around jolly guy.

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