The Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX has finally gotten the update to ICS Android 4.0, which just happens to make it the first in the line-up of phones from Motorola to do so. The update means that the MAXX now has support for recent apps menu, along with multi-tasking, the people app and folder creation through drag and drop. Motorola have of course included some of their own additions, including a better app for the camera, an enhanced browser and new lock screens. So just how will ICS on Motorola stand up to the user interface of Samsung's Touch Wiz 5.0 and HTC's Sense given that we've seen the ICS tweaks on the Samsung Galaxy S3 and HTC One X? Let's take a look and see who offers the best Android experience from the three flagship phones purely from a software perspective.
Best Android ICS experience: Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX, Samsung Galaxy S3 or HTC One X?
On the lock screen the Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX comes with Face Unlock just like the Samsung Galaxy S3 and HTC One X. The users are able to use the device via a ring of shortcuts on their display while the phone is locked. HTC take this a step further with a themed lock screen which also includes using social media without having to unlock the handset. Lockscreen winner: HTC One X
Multi-tasking on the MAXX using a long press on the capacitive home button will bring up a recent apps overlay that is similar to that on the Samsung Galaxy S3. If you hold down search this launches voice search. Long pressing on the menu brings up a list of options which are dependent on your location. The HTC Sense handles multi-tasking better than the MOTOROLA DROID RAZR MAXX in our test thanks to the 3D scrollable menu which makes it easier to move between apps. It is also very satisfying to close app windows as you can flick them into the air. A drawback is we found that the HTC One X is more agressive than the Samsung Galaxy S3 and Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX when it comes to closing apps. For a power user, this can be annoying. For that reason only we find the Samsung Galaxy S3 wins here as it has a balance of functionality and design. Multitasking winner: Samsung Galaxy S3
On the Samsung Galaxy S3 and Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX handsets the web browser syncs to desktop Chrome which means you can keep bookmarks up to date. When it comes to the camera the Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX will allow you to take photos and record video at the same time just like its two rivals. The volume keys can also be used for the camera shutter or they can be used to control zooming. Samsung is better as they offer features such as Best Shot and Share Shot, which allows the sharing of photos with other owners over Wi-Fi. The HTC One X offers rapid fire shooting that works better than any third party app we've seen on the Google Play Store. Winner: HTC One X & Samsung Galaxy S3
In terms of looks, we can't get past how much closer the Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX ICS Blur UI looks to stock ICS (which is beautiful), especially when compared to the HTC One X and Samsung Galaxy S3 which can still be mistaken for Gingerbread. Winner: Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX
In conclusion, with Motorola running Android ICS you get a similar experience to what Samsung offers with the Touch Wiz interface but Samsung goes even further with the S3 with features such as S Voice, Smart Stay, S Beam and Buddy Photo Share. HTC on the other hand are great for design and better than the others when it comes to camera filters, albeit the photo software of Samsung was still better if you sit down and try and edit your shots. By a very narrow margin Touch Wiz is the best of the Android 4.0 skin in my opinion thanks to a combination of being appealing and having innovative features. Overall winner: Samsung Galaxy S3