A recent update to the Droid X has owners up in arms.Photo: Stefan Armijo/Wired.com
A software update is supposed to deliver the latest and greatest features to your device. It’s not supposed to cripple your device. And yet that’s exactly what happened to a number of customers who received the most recent update to their Droid X phones.
In early June, Verizon began rolling out Android operating system version 2.3.3 (Gingerbread) to the Droid X, which previously ran Android 2.2 (Froyo). Shortly thereafter, the grievances started rolling in on Motorola’s online customer message board.
Complaints about the update spanned the entire gamut. Customers experienced random reboots, delayed start up times, weakened 3G connectivity, reduced keyboard functionality; the list goes on and on. In two of the update’s most egregious offenses, a number of users seems to have lost the ability to store contact information locally on the phone itself.
“In my view, it takes away more than it gives, and it attempts to impose a server-based model for contacts management that has proven to be a disaster for me, my family and my business,” one frustrated Droid X owner wrote.
Google has continually faced problems keeping all the different Android-powered handsets up to date on the latest version of its software. For some phones, it’s simply an issue of the hardware being too old to run the newest Android release. For others, the reasoning isn’t as clear. It is worth noting, however, that manufacturers have less incentive to devote company resources to update older devices rather than spend time on newer ones. It’s unfortunate to see a software update do more harm than good, especially when a company provides a software update to a phone that was released over a year ago.
In one lengthy, exhaustive post, a user on the official Motorola message board web site has documented all the reported problems associated with the update: 80 different problems to date.
Verizon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Motorola issued a statement to Wired.com Friday morning: “We’ve noted the forum feedback, and we are working closely with Verizon on an update for these users.
An official Motorola forums moderator stated multiple times over the past two months that the company is looking into a software fix, but no official timeline has been released.
The kicker to all of this? You can’t easily roll back to the previous version of Android without using third-party software. That means voiding your phone’s warranty, which isn’t exactly a popular option.
So unfortunately for frustrated Droid X owners, they’ll have to play the waiting game with Verizon and Motorola until a fix is released or shell out the cash for a new phone. Was that the plan all along?