Phone ubersite The Boy Genius Report has its hands on Verizon/Motorola’s upcoming Droid phone–in non-final form–and says it’s not only the most impressive Android phone to date but also the most impressive new phone since the iPhone. The site hasn’t posted a review, but it’s got a photo gallery up. Like many (most?) smartphones, the Droid looks a lot like an iPhone at first glance. But its big screen slides up to reveal the physical QWERTY keyboard that the iPhone lacks, and probably will always lack.
I’ve grown reasonably adept with the iPhone’s keyboard, but still find physical QWERTY desirable–I’m still looking for a smartphone with input as good as what I had on my Psion Series 5 more than a decade ago, and I’ve said that my ideal phone might be a Palm Pre that ran the iPhone OS. Also, the one thing that almost nobody remembers about on-screen keyboards is that they take up space; the iPhone will never be a top-notch pocketable word processor, because you can only see a little bit of your document as you type. Phones with physical keyboards can devote all their pixels to information rather than virtual keys.
Boy Genius says they like the Droid’s keyboard, and while it’s impossible to judge a tiny keyboard based on a photo alone, there’s nothing about the first views of the Droid’s keyboard that’s alarming. It could be good…