After much anticipation and buzz over it being the next iPhone Killer, Verizon officially launched its Motorola Droid in the US on Friday.

The Droid, Motorola’s most anticipated cellphone since the launch of the Razr in 2004, hit shelves at 2,000 Verizon Wireless stores around the nation today.

Verizon opened up its flagship store in New York City at midnight to jumpstart sales, attracting a line of over 100 people. Various reports posted to Twitter suggest there were queues at other outlets as well.

In any event, the fact that there are lines at all must be an accomplishment for Verizon, which has been looking for a strong rival to Apple’s iPhone, and for Motorola, which hopes Droid will revive its much-diminished post-Razr cellphone business.

It’s the next new thing, said Trevor Smith of New Jersey as he waited in line to buy the Droid.

I had the Razor a couple of years ago and I heard the curve was coming out so I got that but now its outdated so I need to get the next new thing which is the Droid. I'm a Verizon man and I love their service so I'm sticking with them.

The Droid is getting good reviews for its speed, audio quality, screen, overall build quality, choice of physical or virtual keyboard, multitasking functionality, home and car docking options, and free Google Maps Navigation, among other bells and whistles.

Read more on: Why are people buying the Motorola Droid?

Analysts are optimistic of the response over Motorola Droid.

Droid is potentially a game changer for Motorola,” said Tina Teng, senior analyst, wireless communications for iSuppli.

“Motorola now is no longer just emphasizing slick form factors, such as it did with its RAZR handset. The company now has focused on the hottest segment of the global mobile handset market — providing compelling smartphone products that are usable and expandable through third-party applications.”

According to Jim Suva, a Citigroup analyst, Motorola has launched one of the best offerings. At the same time, this handset could impact in a major manner on other launched devices of the same type, he said in a research note. Directly involved could be the Palm Pre and the RIM’s BlackBerry Storm2.

Citigroup analysts do not think, however, that this dramatic promotion of the Motorola’s Droid would have a significant impact on iPhone’s sales, Apple’s device having earned a solid position on the market.

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