Watch Out Humans: Verizon DROID Arrives Next Week

BlackBerry Storm 2, move over? The DROID smartphone from Motorola Inc. will roll out next week on the Verizon Wireless network. The companies said on Wednesday.

Verizon is doing a full-court marketing press for the DROID, its first Google Android-based handset (perhaps you’ve seen the “iDon’t” ads that talk about all the things that the iPhone doesn’t do – like multitasking?). On Nov. 6, customers can start plunking down their $199.99 to see what the fuss is about (with a new, two-year customer agreement and a $100 mail-in rebate).

The DROID, the first commercial handset with Android 2.0 inside, will offer some smartphone staples, like 3G, real Web browsing, voice-activated search, customizable screen, QWERTY keyboard and access to the Android Market applications store with its 12,000 offerings. It also has a 5-megapixel camera with video, voice recognition, an integrated messaging center, embedded Google applications like Maps, YouTube, Gmail and Google Talk, plus the Amazon MP3 store.

The DROID is the first fruit of a strategic partnership between Verizon Wireless and Google to use Android in a range of devices. Verizon’s network is essentially acting as a testbed for Google, making the carrier a bit closer of a partner than others that have Android devices on their networks.

As for service plans, Verizon’s nationwide voice plans begin at $39.99 for monthly access for 450 minutes, and an “Email and Web for Smartphone” plan goes for $29.99 for monthly access.

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