Ever since Motorola officially became a part of Google last year, punters have been waiting for a flagship handset with an intrinsic understanding of the Android operating system. The Razr V is not that phone.

Released before the arrival of the higher specced and 4G-enabled Razr M and Razr HD handsets, the Razr V is an affordably priced Optus exclusive, competing not in the upper tiers of its 4G brethren, but in the mid-to-low areas occupied by the likes of the Huawei Ascend P1.

Motorola Razr V review

Powered by a dual-core 1.2GHz processor and 1GB of RAM, the RAZR V has some fairly run of the mill specifications amid an army of quad-core smartphones like the HTC One X and the Samsung Galaxy S3. At 540 x 960, the 4.3-inch screen isn't anything to get too excited about, while the 8MP rear camera is a fairly standard offering these days, capable of recording 1080p video.

Like the original Android Razr - the one from 2011, not the iconic flip phone - the Razr V is coated in kevlar on the back to stop bullets and create robustness, while the screen is made from GorillaGlass.

Motorola Razr V review

Design

With all the litigation between Samsung and Apple about copied designs, it's refreshing to see Motorola go its own way in the design stakes. From front on, the Razr V is squarish with subtle angles cut into the corners, kind of reminiscent of the books in Battlestar Galactica, although much less pronounced.

Motorola Razr V review

Aside from the sliced corners and the 4.3-inch screen, the front of the phone is rather simple, with a Motorola logo, speaker grill and front facing camera all found above the screen.

The sides of the phone tell a completely different story. The top end of the Razr V is significantly thicker than the rest of the phone, giving the handset a lopsided weight and somewhat awkward to hold feeling.

Motorola Razr V review

A volume rocker adorns the right hand side of the handset, while a rather tight cover houses the phone's full sized SIM card and Micro SD card slot. The decision to go with a full-sized SIM card is an interesting one in the age of the Nano SIM, especialy given the bulky heel at the top of the phone.

The top side of the phone is where the bulk of the action happens, from the power button to the 3.5mm headphone jack located smack bang in the centre. The Micro-USB charging port is also located on the chunky top side of the phone.

Motorola Razr V review

The back of the handset is dominated by the now-standard kevlar design found on almost all the Razr branded Motorola handsets. It's smooth to feel, yet rubbery enough to offer a substantial grip.

The 8MP camera, LED flash and a speaker grill run across the engorged top end of the handset, perhaps explaining the chunkiness, but not making it any more comfortable to hold.

Motorola Razr V review

Like the iPhone and HTC One X, the Razr V's 1780mAh battery isn't replaceable, which means that back cover won't be coming off without more than a little brute force.