Man do we have a good one for you today – the new Motorola Droid Turbo up against the new Samsung Galaxy Note Edge. At first glance, the Note Edge will grab this win in the looks department…the sculptured metal frame and the faux leather back give the Edge the look and feel of a premium device. The Droid Turbo is built like a brick house (ha-ha) – it has that great Motorola toughness about it, and still uses plastic reinforced with Kevlar and a new option this year has a model with Ballistic Nylon on the back, which adds a nice grip to the device.
Both new devices are powerhouses, and although designed for different audiences, actually have many features in common. They both are using the Quad HD (QHD) and AMOLED technology for their displays, which are only four-tenths of an inch different in size. Both the Droid Turbo and the Note Edge use the exact same Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 processor clocked at 2.7GHz and both even come with 3GB of RAM. Both devices have a 32GB option for internal storage, but at that point they part ways in memory options.
They both have the usual suspects – Dual-Band Wi-Fi, NFC capable, Bluetooth (4.0 in the Droid Turbo and 4.1 in the Note Edge), VoLTE Calling and a microUSB v2.0 connector for charging and data transfer. For now, they are both running Android 4.4.4 KitKat, although the Droid Turbo is running almost a pure vanilla version that will get a much faster upgrade to 5.0 Lollipop then the Note Edge and Samsung's heavily skinned TouchWiz.
Please take a close look at the detailed specification chart below and see exactly what these two devices bring to this comparison. After that, we will look more closely at each individual device and point out their pros and cons. Between all of this information, we will pick a winner in this tough comparison.
Motorola Droid Turbo
The Motorola Droid Turbo is from Verizon's Droid collection, but this time around, rather than having a Droid Maxx, Droid Ultra and Droid Mini, they simply have a Droid Turbo. You will never mistake the new Droid Turbo's design for anything but a Droid device – it has the familiar 'chin' at the bottom front and the shiny plastic and Kevlar backing. Solidly built and a good feel in your hand are all Motorola trademarks.
Motorola and Verizon really up the specs for the new Droid Turbo. It comes with a 5.2-inch QHD AMOLED display with a resolution of 2560 x 1440 and a tremendous 565 pixels-per-inch (PPI)…and we will talk more about the Note Edge's display later. The Droid Turbo is using the best processor that Qualcomm currently has out – the quad-core 805 clocked at 2.7GHz…the same processor found in the new Nexus 6, Galaxy Note 4 and Note Edge. It also comes, like the Note Edge, with 3GB of RAM and either 32GB or 64GB (online purchase only) of internal storage with no room to expand beyond those boundaries. The Note Edge has only a 32GB option, but allows for internal expansion of up to an additional 128GB.
Motorola really upped the main camera for the Droid Turbo with a 21MP Sony Sensor and then threw in auto-focus and a dual LED flash – still no OIS. The Note Edge does not have a dual LED flash, but its excellent 16MP camera does have OIS this time around. The Droid Turbo has the usual 2MP FFC whereas the Note Edge adds a little to the mix. The 3900mAh, non-removable battery in the Droid Turbo is awesome and somewhat larger than the removable 3000mAh battery in the Note Edge – both devices, because of their Qualcomm 805 processors with Quick Charge 2.0 can take advantage of the 'turbo charging' capabilities, but the Droid Turbo includes the charger in the box.
As far as other features go – the Droid Turbo does have a front-facing speaker, a nano-coating for water resistance, it comes with the Turbo Charger in the box, has built-in wireless charging and some great software. It comes with Android 4.4.4 KitKat, is only available on Verizon for a very attractive $199 on a two-year contract and $599 off-contract for the 32GB model…add $50 for the 64GB model.
Samsung Galaxy Note Edge
Samsung surprised the world when it not only announced the new Galaxy Note 4, but also their new Galaxy Note Edge with the right side of the display curving down to form another small panel of 160 pixels to add a new innovative notification panel, among many other functions. Samsung had to take the 3220mAh battery found in the Note and whack off a 220mAh to fit it under the new, curved display. The metal trim is designed as such to keep your fingers away from the side display, as well as engineering features Samsung did in order to help keep you from accidentally selecting something on that side display.
The new Samsung Galaxy Note Edge comes with a 5.6-inch QHD Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 2560 x 1440 x 160 and 524 PPI. This display is Samsung's own model and was chosen as the best display along with the Galaxy Note 4. The curved 'Edge' operates independently from the main display and programmers can use it at their discretion – for instance, when you have the camera on, the camera controls are along that side panel, leaving the main display to only show your picture with nothing to get in the way. The Note Edge uses the same Snapdragon 805 found in the Galaxy Note 4 and the Droid Turbo as well as the same 3GB of RAM. For internal storage, the Edge is set at only 32GB, but does offer a microSD card slot to add up to an additional 128GB of storage…plenty for all of those photos, videos or songs.
The 16MP shooter is an improvement over last year's 13MP, but what makes this camera better is the inclusion of OIS, along with auto-focus and the LED Flash. The 3.7MP wide angle FFC is a nice addition for taking group selfies or an office video chat. The 3220mAh battery from the Note 4 had to be reduced to 3000mAh to fit under the curved display – not as large as the 3900mAh found in the Droid Turbo, but certainly a large enough size to last you throughout the day, especially with Samsung's Ultra Power Saving Mode (UPSM) and the quick charge feature.
As far as extra features go, the Galaxy Note Edge has a plethora of them – S-Pen and related software, IR Blaster, LTE Cat 6 capable, download booster, fingerprint scanner, Heart Rate sensor, UV and Oxygen saturation sensor and many Apps specifically designed for the S-Pen and multitasking.
The Galaxy Note Edge is running Android 4.4.4 KitKat with Samsung's TouchWiz and can be purchased on any of the major carriers in the U.S. for $399 on a two-year contract or about $840 off-contract.
…And The Winner Is…
Depends on Your Needs…TIE: I love freaking out readers with the picture of the winner – sorry, I really need those little pleasures in life. If money was no object, to me there would be no question…I would pick the Samsung Galaxy Note Edge – it simply has so many more features, options, the S-Pen, the special Apps, a larger Super AMOLED display, the 'Edge', an optional microSD slot to increase internal storage, Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) for the main camera, a 3.7MP wide angle FFC, an IR Blaster, metal frame and trim, fingerprint scanner, Heart Rate, UV and Oxygen Sensors and is available on all networks in the U.S.
With all of that going for the Galaxy Note Edge, you might ask why I would consider this a tie with the Motorola Droid Turbo – but it is only a tie based on your needs and wallet. Where else can you get a smartphone with a 5.2-inch QHD display, Snapdragon 805 processor, 3GB of RAM, a 21MP main camera with dual-flash, a 3900mAh battery, front-facing speaker, water resistance, wireless charging, a Motorola Turbo Charger thrown in, and almost pure Android and fast updates all for only $199 on a two year contract. You get all of that for $200 less than that Galaxy Note Edge.
The Samsung Galaxy Note Edge is better looking, more innovative, and has a lot of functionality crammed into it, but it is a steep price to pay. If you have the money, I would get the Galaxy Note Edge, but if you want some real value and won't use the many features built into the Edge, then the Droid Turbo should satisfy you on more than one level.
Please hit us up on our Google+ Page and let us know which device you would pick and WHY…as always we would love to hear from you.