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Verizon Offers Up DROID Charge for Free, Drops the “DROID” Brand

At one point in time, the “DROID” tag was saved for phones that were thought to be the biggest and most bad ass phones on the planet. The tag slowly started to lose its effectiveness with the DROID 2, but officially hit rock bottom when Verizon and Samsung decided that the Charge was worthy of carrying the title. We argued in our DROID Charge review that it had no business under the DROID brand as it was released with a single-core processor and low level specs at a time when dual-core phones were about to rule the “all machines.” Other than its beautiful 4.3″ Super AMOLED Plus screen, the Charge failed to impress just about anyone.

As of today, Verizon has apparently seen the light, offering it up for free (originally $299 at launch) and dropping the DROID brand from it. The phone is now known as the “Charge by Samsung” and has been pulled from droiddoes.com. Actually, on its product page, they have yet to remove the term “DROID,” but that will likely happen any day. That is if it lasts that long. Normally when we see a top tier phone drop to “free,” it’s on the verge of disappearing for good.

On a related note, droiddoes.com only includes Motorola phones now. DROID brand about to die or will it become a Moto-only thing going forward? Does anyone care?

Cheers to austin, Keyvan, and everyone who sent this in!

  • thebandito

    http://www.verizonwireless.com/b2c/store/controller?item=phoneFirst&action=viewPhoneDetail&selectedPhoneId=5642

    still looks like they are calling it the droid charge on their online shopping page

  • Phoneman67

    The Charge as it is called now, not the Droid Charge was just updated…..so far so good.

  • Ike

    Who cares? A droid is topped by another droid every three months. Even if it’s topped by the same damn phone with a bigger battery. What is that about?

  • EdubE24

    The original Droid was like a drug. It seemed everyday a different Rom came out that you just had to flash. I was constantly checking Rom Manager!!

  • http://twitter.com/iamtyy Tyler Collum

    Just wanted to say, I had the Charge for like 5 months, and the little dev group that we built was very fun and I learned alot. While it wasn’t the greatest phone, I definitely enjoyed having it.

  • http://iamandroid.co/profile/rocktoonz Rocktoonz

    I rather thought the Droid name lost its oomph with the Eris.

  • Tim242

    VERIZON HAS NOT RENAMED THIS PHONE. They confirmed this to Android Central.

  • cooksta32676

    Resolution aside, still the best color popping vivid display PLUS on any Verizon device. Although 400×800 resolution is a tad outdated.

  • iNfAMOUS70702

    The OG droid and the DINC are the only 2 real droids IMO…the DX was a good phone but it was locked down like a mofo…the droid branding is nothing more than a gimmick these days

    • Tim242

      The DROID brand was never anything more than clever marketing. There was never a list of must-haves to be a DROID. Geeks on blogs like to make things up. I love to see people list what they think a Nexus must have tobe a Nexus. It’s comical.

  • Jason Purp

    You don’t know exactly why the DROID branding was removed, so don’t make assumptions. Just because you have a bias against the phone doesn’t mean so many other people do, and nobody likes the device. I could go on, but I’ll stop there.

    • niteperson

      This site is becoming the Engadget of Android blogs.  Sensationalist headlines, hateful, snarky comments.  Ugh.

      • Jason Purp

         I’m a huge fan of Droid Life. I honestly think it’s the best Android blog around. But of course, it can’t be perfect. I personally think that their hatred towards the Charge is annoying as hell. I had the phone for a while and it was an excellent phone. The only reason I got an Incredible 2 shortly after was because the Incredible 2 was even better. But still, the Charge was awesome.

        I don’t really know why I’m ranting about this, but whatever.

  • http://twitter.com/reggie1225 Reginald Jefferson

    Wow so they just kicked the Incredible line to the curb? It’s like that VZW?

  • Booboolala2000

    I think HTC will have the next Droid phone. Isn’t there a LTE incredible on the way? In a way I hope they loose the Droid name. It has lost its cache. Especially now with lackluster tablets. Plus, no Droid labeled phone can live up to the hype any more. Verizon’s best phone is Tue GNEX. At least until quad core phones get on their second Gen.

  • Paul

    I think DROID will be just Motorola phones going forward. Keep it simple as possible.

  • http://www.facebook.com/sternigt Timothy Sternig

    And this is the phone US Cellular is going to launch as it’s first LTE capable phone….they rebranded it the Aviator :

    http://i1.sinaimg.cn/IT/cr/2012/0203/2855931907.jpg

    It will more than likely be about 230 dollars at US Cellular (after a 100 dollar rebate).

    US Cellular really needs some direction. They’re getting pretty pathetic.

    • Derek Gelinas

      seriously.  ting has the galaxy s2, at least.

      • http://www.facebook.com/sternigt Timothy Sternig

        True. Wish they would have came with a better first LTE phone though. I was initially interested when I heard they were setting up their LTE here in Milwaukee, but I’ve since lost interest lol. They really need to make better choices in phones that they decide to carry. I know they are only a regional company and don’t have a lot of room to work with, but if they ever want to be more than just regional they have to make better decisions when it comes to matters like this….

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Travis-Royer/100000358962998 Travis Royer

    Moto only. The Droid brand pretty much lost it’s appeal when they started barfing Droid on everything.

    • Raven

      I agree.  I think they will keep it for the true Droid phones with physical keyboards.  I had the OG Droid and I am still rocking the Droid 2 Global.  The Droid 3 was a little weak, but the Droid 4 is pretty decent except for the screen.  Hopefully they will get it right again with the Droid 5 about the same time my NE2 is up in September.

  • jak_341

    The Droid name died when the Droid X and its Blur and locked bootloader came out.

    • Rodeojones000

      100% correct. There is only one real Droid phone, the Original Droid. Everyone since has been a bloatware-filled and skinned disappointment.

      • Tim242

        DROID was just clever marketing. There was never a must-have list to be a DROID.

  • Prime7

    The DROID brand just means “full of bloatware” to me now.

    • 4n1m4L

      Nexus ftw

  • Bicycle019

    For those of us that live in a 4G LTE market that were trying to get into VZW’s unlimited data plan before it expired back a the beginning of July, the only real choices were Charge or Tbolt.  Tbolt reviews were pretty lack luster at the time, especially with regard to battery life.  The Charge was the best of what was available, so that’s what I went with.  With a custom ROM (Eclipse in my case) it’s been a great phone.  I’d loved to have bought a Gnex, but that just wasn’t possible if I wanted unlimited data.  Another OTA just rolled out for the Charge, and there are a couple of good ROMs and Dev’s working on it so it’s not quite dead yet.

    • KnightCrusader

      If you have unlimited data and switch smartphones, you don’t lose it. Even when going from 3G to 4G. Not sure why you said getting the Galaxy Nexus isn’t possible with unlimited. I know its possible for sure because my fiance has a GNex on our grandfathered unlimited account.

    • Tim242

      You can most certai only have a Nexus with unlimited. I do.

      • TC Infantino

        You probably got grandfathered in on the unlimited data, like alot of us who already had an unlimited data plan when VZW switched to tiered plans.  I believe that Bicycle019 means that he didn’t have an unlimited plan, or he was a new VZW customer and thus had to get on the unlimited LTE plans before the tiered plans kicked in.

        • Bicycle019

           Exactly.  Those of us stepping up to a smartphone were limited in our options at the time.  Next phone (SGSIII?) I’ll still have unlimited data, and the “killer handset” to go with it.  For now though a rooted/ROM’d Charge is working fine.

  • http://twitter.com/DroidBricker Droid Bricker

    Arrrgh.  I read the title wrong.  I thought they COMPLETELY dropped the “Droid” branding and for a minute had hope that people would stop calling every Android phone a “Droid”.

    • TC Infantino

      I understand what you are saying, but I like that the Droid name has become the call sign for the Android phones.  People know it and recognize it, as opposed to “Hey, cool phone, what is it?  Oh, never heard of one of those…”

  • moelsen8

    I’ve always considered the Droid brand to be solely Motorola’s. Sadly, I really don’t care anymore. At least til moto pulls its head out of its a$$ and gives us a Moto Droid Nexus.

    • PigHeaded

      A Droid Nexus would be so awesome, even for the name alone.

  • Guest

    I don’t care if Verizon brands them as the “CrapSlab” as long as they come up with something new and up to date with current specs.

  • Tim242

    Verizon has never been consistent on DROID branding. The awful Eris was a DROID, but not their first LTE phone, the Thunderbolt. It was once listed as the Droid Thunderbolt, but they dropped the branding before release. The Charge got it, but the Rezound nor the Spectrum got it. It must just be some random last minute decision, with no logic. How do you change the name of a phone after being out this long? That is idiotic.

  • http://twitter.com/sinisterblogger Ethan

    Bah.  I have a Charge.  It’s a fine phone and does what I need.  *shrug*

  • cpro

    I have the charge and I have to say I hate it, the whole reason I even got it in the first place was because it was the best 4g phone Verizon had before it got rid of its unlimited data plan…..

    • Tim242

      The Thunderbolt is a better phone. The Charge screen may be better, but not the rest.

    • Tyler Cameron

      Or you could’ve been smart and bought a used 3G phone, gotten unlimited data with that, waited for a good 4G phone, and then upgraded with that. Instead, now you gotta wait or pay full retail. Nice going.

  • http://twitter.com/geirbiscohn geirbiscohn

    The Charge isn’t THAT bad… Sure it’s not high end but it’s a decent midrange phone. Especially if you slap a custom rom on it.

  • JosephCabrera

    I’d like to see a BOGO offer on the Nexus

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=10215724 Raj Bhatt

    The Droid brand used to mean the best of the best. Boy, they sure let that go.

    • Tim242

      No, it never meant that. The 2nd DROID phone was the awful.Eris.

      • http://twitter.com/DroidBricker Droid Bricker

        Hey, I still have my Eris and it kept my 6 year old entertained for a whole 10 minutes!

        • Rodeojones000

          10 minutes??? For a six year old that’s got to be some kind of record.

  • EC8CH

    Time to update the Site K:

    -Life.com

    :-P

    • http://www.droid-life.com Kellex B

      Updating. :P

      • Rodeojones000

        You’re opening yourself up to more “Nexus-Life” whining with these comments. Be careful, those RAZR and Rezound owners are pretty sensitive.

    • Tim242

      Haha…or just no-life.com. I kid, I kid : )

      • 4n1m4L

        I resmble that remark… 8-(

        • Andrey Feldman

          you resemble it? 0_o You look noting like it!!

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/G7JEMDQSTP5KBNIATN76VAELYU Justin

      my roomate’s sister-in-law makes $84 every hour on the internet. She has been out of work for 7 months but last month her check was $8179 just working on the internet for a few hours. Go to this web site and read more : LazyCash5.Com

  • snowblind64

    I honestly wouldn’t care if the “Droid” brand went away. Don’t worry, I’ll still be a regular visitor of Droid-Life.

    • http://www.droid-life.com Kellex B

      No worries, we moved beyond just the “DROID” brand some 2 years ago. :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=509638401 Anthony Lamberto

    interesting branding choices now

  • shdowman

    The problem with it is that it was so effective a marketing campaign that so many “unwise” friends ask what kind of phone they should get by calling it a “Droid”.

    The branding wont go away, but Verizon has certainly diluted the brand..

    • snowblind64

      I find it annoying when people refer to non Droid branded phones as “Droids”.

  • drt054

    The Droid Fighter is looking to be pretty bad-ass.. maybe it will reclaim it’s fame

  • Michael_NM

    Wasn’t the Eris the first lackluster Droid?

    • TrevorSP

      Yeah, but even that has an unlocked boot loader now

  • Logan_jinx

    Between the hardware and the manfacturer support the device cant live up to the “Droid” name branding.
    Avoid this phone like the plauge!

    • Tim242

      But, the Eris lived up to this made-up idea of what DROID means?

    • Djyosnow

      Ditto and stuck into my 2yr on a vzw contract… Why wont they take my money?

  • Tim242

    DROID was never just for cutting-edge phones. Verizon’s second DROID phone was the DROID Eris. Need I say more? I think.the DROID brand was once great, but is now getting old.

    • http://twitter.com/djstarion Francisco Rodriguez

       As far as I can remember, I think the Eris was the only DROID branded phone that didn’t have a “droid eye” boot animation. It just had a standard HTC/Verizon boot

      • Asuriyan

        The Droid Incredible didn’t get the eye animation until Froyo was released.

      • B Diggs82

        The Dinc didn’t gave it either when it was released, it was only added two or three months after it was released

      • Tim242

        Never saw one boot, so not sure on that. But, the HTC DROID Incredible had the eye. I loved that phone.

  • Mark Wilk

    “Does anyone care?”

    George Lucas cares.

    • EC8CH

      He obviously doesn’t care about attaching his brand to subpar products…

      Have you seen the Star Wars Prequels?

      • Tim242

        DROID ERIS