The Motorola Razr 2019 is one of the few foldable phones not made by Samsung, and while it pulls off the 'foldable' part, we found it fell short in a number of areas – leading to a 2.5 star review where we wondered whether its potential would be realized in a successor device.
Well, that successor device is here, as the Motorola Razr 2020 has now been announced. So will this new foldable phone fulfill its predecessor’s potential?
You’ll have to wait for our full review to find out for sure, but looking just at the on-paper specs and design, along with its price, we’ve compared it to the previous Motorola Razr to give you some idea of how the new phone followed up on the old.
Motorola Razr 2020 vs Motorola Razr 2019 price and availability
The Motorola Razr 2020 will cost $1,399 / £1,399 (roughly AU$2,500) when it goes on sale in 'early Autumn' (Q3 2020) – presumably meaning September or October.
That’s slightly less than the launch price of the previous Motorola Razr, which cost $1,499 / AU$2,699 at launch, while in the UK it was only available on contracts starting at £94 per month with £100 upfront – making for £2,356 over 24 months.
So both models cost a lot, but you get upgraded specs at a lower launch price on the Motorola Razr 2020, which is nice to see. However, we expect the Razr 2019 to get discounted now that there’s a newer model headed to market.
Design and display
The Razr 2020 has a similar design to the Razr 2019, but it has been tweaked and refined a bit. Both phones have a clamshell form factor, with a small front screen and the ability to flip the phone open for a larger 6.2-inch smartphone-sized inner POLED display. (Both displays went unchanged in the newer Razr.)
However, while the Motorola Razr 2019 has a large chin with a fingerprint scanner on it, for the Motorola Razr 2020 the chin is smaller and the scanner is on the back.
The similar design results in nearly identical dimensions, though the new phone is shorter yet thicker. Unfolded the Motorola Razr 2020 comes in at 72.6 x 169.2 x 7.9mm, while folded it’s 72.6 x 91.7 x 16mm. The previous Razr meanwhile is 72 x 172 x 6.9mm when unfolded and 72 x 94 x 14mm when folded.
Despite being slightly thicker yet not as long, the new Razr is also lighter at 192g compared to the Razr 2019’s 205g.
Colors differ slightly too, with the Motorola Razr 2020 being available in Polished Graphite, Liquid Mercury and Blush Gold shades, while the Razr 2019 is only available in Noir Black and Blush Gold.
Both phones are water-repellent, but neither of them have any substantial water resistance. Motorola claims the new Razr has been stress-tested for better hinge resistance, claiming it will last through 200,000 folds – or roughly 100 folds a day for five years.
As for the display, the two Razr models both have a 6.2-inch 876 x 2142 foldable main screen and a 2.7-inch 600 x 800 secondary screen. They both use POLED for the main screen – the ‘P’ being for plastic.
But while there’s not much change to the hardware for the screens, there has been some change to the software to help you get more out of the secondary screen – things like shortcuts to make calls directly from the secondary screen. Although some of these improvements have come to the previous Razr since launch too, as part of its Android 10 update.
One big change for the new Razr model is the camera, as the Motorola Razr 2020 has a 48MP f/1.7 main snapper (which defaults to 12MP photos by combining pixels to let in more light) and a 20MP f/2.2 front-facing camera. The main camera also has optical image stabilization (OIS).
The Motorola Razr 2019 on the other hand has a 16MP f/1.7 main camera (with no OIS), and a 5MP f/2.0 front-facing camera.
On paper then the Motorola Razr 2020 sounds like a clear upgrade here, but we’ll have to see how it performs in practice.
The battery in the Motorola Razr 2020 is 2,800mAh, which isn’t particularly massive but is bigger than the 2,510mAh one in the Motorola Razr 2019. Charging speed hasn’t changed though, with both supporting up to 15W. Neither model has wireless charging.
In practice we weren’t very impressed with the battery life of the Razr 2019 when we put it through a review, so we’ll have to wait and see whether the bump in size here has made a substantial difference.
Specs and features
One of the big additions for the Motorola Razr 2020 is 5G, which should future-proof it somewhat even if you’re not somewhere that currently has 5G coverage.
That's enabled by a Snapdragon 765G chipset and 8GB of RAM in the Razr 2020, both of which are upgrades on the Snapdragon 710 chipset and 6GB of RAM in the Motorola Razr 2019. Both are still configurations we'd expect from mid-range phones.
The Motorola Razr 2020 also has more storage, at 256GB compared to 128GB in the Razr 2019. Plus the Motorola Razr 2020 ships with Android 10, whereas the older model launched with Android 9 – though it can now be updated to 10.
It’s worth noting that Android 11 has just landed, so neither of these are quite up to date, but we’d fully expect the Motorola Razr 2020 will get updated to Android 11 at some point, and the Razr 2019 likely will as well – though it will surely stop getting updates before the new phone does.
The Motorola Razr 2020 looks in some ways like a very similar phone to the Razr 2019 – certainly the design is similar, albeit with some tweaks and refinements.
The screens are similar too, but the real changes are under the hood, with the Motorola Razr 2020 getting 5G connectivity, upgraded cameras, more power, more storage, and a bigger battery, all for a lower launch price.
But while the new model unsurprisingly looks better than the old one, the real question – which we’ll aim to answer in our full review – is how much better, as the Razr 2019 was a flawed device, and with steep competition from the likes of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip, Motorola may need to make big improvements to compete.
- Check out the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2
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James is a freelance phones, tablets and wearables writer and sub-editor at TechRadar. He has a love for everything ‘smart’, from watches to lights, and can often be found arguing with AI assistants or drowning in the latest apps. James also contributes to 3G.co.uk, 4G.co.uk and 5G.co.uk and has written for T3, Digital Camera World, Clarity Media and others, with work on the web, in print and on TV.