Motorola Atrix 2

The "white whale" at this year's CTIA is the Motorola Atrix 2, the recently announced successor to the Atrix heading to AT&T on October 16. We got our hands on one at tonight's Pepcom event here in San Diego, and we're excited about what we saw. While the Atrix 2 might not be enough for owners of the original Atrix to spring for, those looking to tap into AT&T's 21 Mbps speeds have found a solid choice. 

The Atrix 2 has a solid build quality: it's light, it's solid, and it feels great in the hand. Despite it's 4.3-inch display, the phone doesn't feel oversized or out of proportion. And about that display: it's qHD and it looks fantastic. Motorola wouldn't say (or, perhaps didn't know) whether or not the Atrix 2 is rocking a Pentile display, but if it is, it is certainly an improved version. The display looks crisp and bright, much like the Bionic, though the "pixelation" issues that have plagued Motorola's latest crop seem to be missing here. That's good news. Camera wise, the Atrix 2 has a 1.3 megapixel front-facer, and out back there's an 8 megapixel shooter capable of capturing 1080p video.

Inside, the Atrix 2 has got a dual-core OMAP processor clocked at 1 GHz along with 1 GB RAM and 8 GB of onboard storage. Together, the guts give the Atrix 2 a major kick. No lag, no stuttering, and no hang-ups. We'll throw the usual benchmarks and graphics tests at it when we get our hands on a review unit. 

The Atrix 2 is a Gingerbread device that comes skinned with (you guessed it) Motoblur. On the radio end, it supports AT&T's HSPA+ network, and Motorola claims you'll easily get "true" 4G speeds of up to 21 Mbps. Again, we'll test this more when the Atrix 2 launches, but we're hoping it's true. 

Like I said, I don't know if the Atrix 2 is worth it for those who bought the original Atrix not too long ago. Although at $99 on contract, it could be too good to resist. You'll be able to decide on October 16, when the Atrix 2 officially launches on AT&T. Until then, enjoy some photos and a hands-on below. 


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Reader comments

Motorola Atrix 2 hands on


I got the OG atrix the day it came out... I can't say im impressed with the "improvements".. im waiting for an LTE device. Other than price I don't see why anyone would get this over the sgs2?

It's smaller. Not everyone likes the bigger 4.3"+ devices.

Great thing about Android is there are so many different options out there when it comes to form factor

It also has a smaller battery and smaller internal storage.

I upgraded from a Captivate to the Atrix after the Gingerbread update and I am honestly liking it as it is. The Atrix 2 removes almost all the features that I value the most on my device. Sorry, not going to downgrade my phone so I can get it to move faster.

so they removed the fingerprint scanner and cut the internal memory in half and consider it an "upgrade" over the original atrix? good move at&t.

Really? You actually think AT&T had anything to do with this phones design and what went into it? Yeah, it couldn't possibly be Motorola's doing... Way to jump on the AT&T haters bandwagon and blame them for everything under the sun.

+1. I was about to scream a few weeks ago if I saw another "when will the Thunderbolt get Gingerbread?" and the "I'll just wait for the next Nexus phone because this will be nothing compared to it" supremacy is pretty obnoxious too. But look at me complaining now.

Huh. Did they switch to an OMAP processor in order to make the Ice Cream Sandwich update easier? Wasn't it rumored that Google was using an OMAP in the next Nexus?

No, as far as I know (and what the rumors are all saying) the nexus prime is going to have a dual-core 1.5ghz Exynos processor.

I wish they hadn't of branded this the Atrix 2. It's not really an upgrade to the Atrix. A few hardware improvements combined with some feature downgrades does not equal an upgrade in my book.

Not complaining, just calling it as I see it.

You're right, they should have labeled it the AtrixS or AtrixGS. So we as consumers know that this was an incremental upgrade and not a full blown sequel.

Lol, actually I would go more with the Atrix -1 or the Atrix 0. The S implies that it's the same phone essentially, with the added improvements. Now if this was truly an upgrade to the Atrix, meaning same/better battery, storage, biometric, and HDMI out, then I would definitely invest in it. As it is, I will have to wait for whatever comes out in 2012. The SGSII is not my phone. I went through the fun of the SGS and I much prefer my Atrix.

So they promote fingerprint reader apps, and the successor doesn't even have a fingerprint reader.
Way to go motorola!

Captivate to atrix and currently trying out a sgsII which is not that much better than the atrix if at all in my opinion.

I will take a look at this atrix 2 on sunday. Motos video says it has better battery life, faster 4g and better camera/video and screen and those are important to me. I do not use the fingerprint scanner but do use a pin.

Anyone know the non contract price?

Lol, I went from the Captivate to the Atrix too. I'm loving it so far. Going to be putting up a video comparison review soon.

Don't really want to see this one. I want to see some hands-on action with the Samsung Galaxy R Captivate Glide S 2 4G Slide or whatever it is. Or its shorter name: "my next device." :)

The ATRIX 2 is nice for new buyers but I have the OG one, and in some ways the sequel is a downgrade (storage space, no fingerprint scanner, and I prefer Tegra2 over OMAP) despite the slightly larger screen. If I'm gonna downgrade, I want a QWERTY keyboard out of it...which is what I want anyway. :) And I want to keep my GeForce Tegra2 graphics.

After getting screwed by Motorola on the Atrix, I don't think I'm quite up for more pain with the Atrix 2. From the laptop dock being priced 2 - 3 times over what it was worth, to its strange two window operation, to no HDMI mirroring, to the Atrix getting all of its Contacts photos from social media for Corporate email - Moto seems always miss the mark. Unfortunately, for us customers, its a painful 2 years when we buy it on contract.

Not to mention whatever Motorola did to the Atrix's wireless radio signals hardware-wise is absolutely abysmal. Both the mobile signal and the wifi have major problems. Yes, I've replaced my atrix twice, and yes, this is a frequent and well-recorded issue with the atrix, as well as the infamous "muffled voice" issue. Moto's quality control center is missing their mark terribly...reminding me of ASUS (Transformer) quality control now. Don't get me wrong, I still like the phone and use it daily, but as a new customer to Motorola, I won't be trying them again unless I know something has changed. Like you said, I am now stuck on a 2-year contract with it. Thank goodness I don't live in Canada with their 3-year contracts.

It's a good thing they replaced the Tegra 2 processor with OMAP. I have the original Atrix 4G and this device does not have HD playback "on the device." Every time I tried to play a HD youtube video or tried playing a HD movie on my device, the device would either drop the resolution to 480p or show an error message "This is not supported on your device."

Hopefully Atrix2 plays HD on the device itself.

Pretty pathetic for the "MOST POWERFUL SMARTPHONE IN THE WORLD" not to be able to play HD videos on the device itself.

It comes out on the 16th and I cant find a case for it. I'm still within my 30 days to return my Atrix 4G. I may just get it and hope I dont drop it.

My friend got a SGS2 from Sprint the week it came out, still doesn't have any protection at all. Personally, seeing as I have had my Atrix 4G for over 30 days and I'm hoping that the Atrix 3 will be more of an Atrix 2 than the Atrix 2 REALLY is.

Smaller battery, no fingerprint reader, doesn't come prepackaged with the HDMI cord like the original. Only 4.4 usable gigabytes of onboard memory, less than half of the original. Plus the Nvidia Tegra 2 uses an Older and simpler specialized circuit that lowers power consumption when the phone is idle.My niece has the Atrix 2 and I was not impressed. The fit and feel of the device felt cheap and it seemed slower than my original Atrix, and i wasn't blown away by it's screen. I personally dont like 4.3 inch screens, defeats the whole portability thing VS. Power consumption. The Atrix 2 isn't worthy a worthy successor, should of been called Atrix C

Have had my Atrix 2 for a couple of weeks and really like the phone. Unfortunately, the reason I bought it was that I could get a lapdock to extend it. Was really excited! Motorola has COMPLETELY screwed me over on my order with no resolution in sight after almost three weeks. I really caution anyone about buying this from Motorola. Try a different product from a different provider.