Verizon has added another smartphone to its stable: the Droid 3 from Motorola.
The third generation of the phone that put Google's Android operating system on the map is the most impressive yet. Motorola has given the phone numerous upgrades, including hardware and visual specifications.
The phone will be available for $199.99 on July 14 with a Verizon contract at Verizon stores. Without a contract, the phone is $460. This will also be the first smartphone on Verizon's network that will only come with a tiered data plan. The data plans will start at $30 for 2GB of data and go up to 10GB for $80. Previously, Verizon offered unlimited data plans to its users.
The next generation of the Droid is an upgrade in numerous ways. It has a 4-inch qHD display, up from the Droid 2's 3.7-inch display. It has a dual-core 1 GHz processor, an increase over the Droid 2's single core offering.
Droid 3 holds more storage space at 16GB, up from Droid 2's 8 GB. Its camera is now 8-megapixels, up from the previous generation's 5-megapixels. It also has a front-facing camera. The phone's operating system is Android 2.3, up from last generation's Android 2.2.
The phone also comes with a thinner frame as well as a QWERTY keyboard with a strip of number keys. It also comes enterprise-ready with security policies, device and SD card encryption.
Surprisingly, the only thing the phone does not come with is the LTE network. Verizon says this phone runs on the 3G network only and did not mention its 4G network at all. Verizon has heard from a number of vocal critics on the subject of its tiered data plan, so it's somewhat shocking that this latest phone wouldn't be 4G to make consumers forget about the data price hike.
The Droid 3 is also the first of the Droids to be launched on Verizon since it added the iPhone to its stable of phones. The first two generations have sold well without that kind of competition in-house. With the iPhone at Verizon, it will be interesting to see how it does.
Follow Gabriel Perna on Twitter at @GabrielSPerna