Many hardware vendors customize their phones, deviating from the stock “Google experience” like you’ll find on the “Nexus” phones. They replace the launcher, apps, and various other components to differentiate their phones from other Android-powered devices. Motorola’s “customizations” make up the what they call “Motoblur” and are most noticeable on the home screen with its dialer, app drawer, and contacts buttons. Motoblur also adds a collection of proprietary widgets, many of which can be conveniently resized.
At MWC, Motorola is talking about the latest version of Motoblur, which will bring new location, messaging, music, and gallery features. Specifically, three major additions are being brought to the Motoblur experience.
Connected Music is a sharing and discovery tool for music that will let you share content with your friends, or find out what they are listening to. It will provide relevant song suggestions and let you purchase songs inside the app. To top it all off it will stream lyrics while songs are playing, so you’ll be ready for that big date at the karaoke bar.
Connected Gallery will aggregate pictures and videos from social networking and photo sites like Facebook, Flickr, Picasa, and Photobucket. It can also alert you when a friend has uploaded new content, or when someone has commented on one of your photos.
Aloqa, which just passed one-million users, was recently acquired by Motorola. According to their website, “Aloqa is a mobile service that proactively notifies you of interesting places, events, music, movies and other activities near you. Instead of having to search, you can just look at your phone and see your favorite hotspots, activities, events of interest, and recommended bargains close by.” Hopefully Motorola will keep the Aloqa app free for other Android users, as it is currently.
(Brandon Miniman contributed to this article)