(Pocket-lint) – Motorola brought back the Razr (again) for 2022, having not released a new model since the 2020 Razr 5G, giving us two years of anticipation to see how the company would step up to the challenge of competing with Samsung’s popular foldables.
There was a lot to address, from the chipset inside the phone, through to the display and – more importantly – the price tag. So exactly what has changed since the Razr 5G? We compare the new model to the old one to answer that exact question.
Design and build
- Razr 2022: 167.0 x 79.8 x 7.6mm (unfolded) – 86.5 x 79.8 x 17mm (folded) – 200g
- Razr 5G: 169.2 x 72.6 x 7.9mm (unfolded) – 91.7 x 72.6 x 16mm (folded) – 197g
- Both: Horizontal fold/clamshell design
- Both: Water-repellent coating and Gorilla Glass 5
While the main idea of the design has remained – it’s an angular foldable phone that opens and shuts along a horizontal hinge – a lot of the rest has changed to make the new Razr a more practical device.
That means – to incorporate the larger display – Motorola has made the phone around 7mm wider, and that’s something you’ll definitely notice when it’s in your hand, whether open or shut. It is a little shorter though and – when open – it’s also slimmer.
There are a couple of other easily visible changes. Again – to make room for the larger screen – Motorola removed the protruding chin from the bottom of the phone, meaning the surface is completely flat when open. What’s more, the hefty notch at the top of the display is gone, replaced with a punch-hole cutout for the selfie camera instead.
Another key improvement was the hinge. It’s been redesigned so that the phone can hold itself open at different angles, and doesn’t just pull itself open or shut.
Otherwise, there are some similarities. Both phones have aluminium frames and are covered in Gorilla Glass on the top and bottom half of the exterior. Both also have a water-repellent coating to ensure they don’t get easily damaged by spray or moisture. They’re not waterproof enough to be submerged, however.
- Razr 2022: 6.7-inch p-OLED display – 1080 x 2400
- Razr 5G: 6.2-inch p-OLED display – 876 x 2142
- Razr 2022: Up to 144Hz – HDR10+
- Both: 2.7-inch OLED cover display
As far as displays on the two phones are concerned, the experiences are night and day. Where the Razr 5G had a narrow 6.2-inch display with a hefty notch, the Razr 2022 has a much larger and more expansive 6.7-inch panel.
As well as being a more traditional 20:9 ratio – which makes it feel like using a regular phone when open – the Razr 2022’s display is also brighter and features much faster refresh rates.
It supports HDR10+ too, so you’ll get bright, colour-rich video with great contrast. Plus, animations are much smoother in the user interface and – if you play a supported game – it can even ramp up to 144Hz refresh. For most content – however – it’ll switch between 30Hz, 60Hz, 90Hz and 120Hz, depending on what’s needed.
It’s a much better display and one that’s great for media consumption and gaming, thanks to its picture quality and large scale.
As for the external display, that’s remained mostly unchanged. It’s a bespoke 2.7-inch display that’s designed primarily to give you quick glances at notifications and widgets for weather and calendar events. It can be used as a camera viewfinder too, allowing you to use the primary lens for selfies, and can even load apps for quick replying to messages without having to open the phone. For most apps, however, this view is far too cramped to be useful.
Performance and battery
- Razr 2022: Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 – 8GB/256GB RAM/storage
- Razr 5G: Snapdragon 765G – 8GB/256GB RAM/storage
- Razr 2022: 3500mAh battery – 30W wired charging
- Razr 5G: 2800mAh battery – 15W wired charging
There are a couple of big internal changes with the Razr 2022. Firstly, where the Razr 5G had the mid-range Snapdragon 765G processor, the Razr 2022 has a much more powerful and efficient Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chipset.
The Razr 2022 also has a larger battery, squeezing a 3500mAh cell into its compact chassis. That’s up from 2800mAh on the Razr 5G, although – due to the bigger and brighter display and the more powerful processor – the actual battery life isn’t all that different. Both can comfortably get you through a full day.
Another area you’ll see improvement is in charging speeds. The Razr 2022 has 30W wired charging support, and ships with the charger. Razr 5G maxed out at 18W, so it’s not quite as quick to top up, but it’s still fast enough to be convenient thanks to that smaller battery capacity.
Both phones – in the UK at least – ship with the same 8GB RAM and 256GB internal storage.
- Razr 2022: 50MP f/1.8 main camera – 13MP f/2.2 ultrawide
- Razr 5G: 48MP f/1.7 main camera
- Razr 2022: 32MP f/2.4 hole-punch selfie camera
- Razr 5G: 20MP f/2.2 selfie camera (in notch)
Even in the camera department, there’s an important change: where the Razr 5G only had one main 48-megapixel camera on the cover, the Razr for 2022 has a primary and an ultrawide lens, which you can switch between for a wider field of view.
In our experience using it, however, it’s not the strongest ultrawide camera. Results are quite dark and soft, lacking in colour compared to the 50-megapixel primary camera.
Due to its processor improvement, the Razr 2022 can also shoot up to 8K video if needed, and features better overall image processing.
Even in the selfie camera inside the phone, there’s a change. Moto swapped out the 20-megapixel camera for a 32-megapixel one. It sounds good on paper, but in reality, the more pixel-dense sensor doesn’t really improve results all that much. We’d suggest making use of the cover display and using the main display on the front instead.
- Razr 2022: £949
- Razr 5G: £1,399
One of the biggest issues with the Razr 5G was its cost. When it was first announced, the phone cost comfortably more than £1000 in the UK, in fact, at £1399, it was right at the upper end of what flagship phones cost.
The Razr 2022’s launch price is below the £1000 mark, making it much more competitive, and far better value for money considering the increase in performance and improved features.
Overall, Motorola addressed pretty much all of the areas that needed to be improved from the Razr 5G. The 2022 edition features a larger, better display, the design is more practical, the processor inside is a true flagship processor and – most important – the price tag was reduced to a more palatable level. The only thing it’s missing is a bit of that nostalgic magic that the Razr 5G had with its original Razr-like protruding chin and display shape.
Writing by Cam Bunton.