Rigging Up the Razr

The thinnest cellphone available has cool accessories that will also work on the phone you've got now

by Luis Bruno

Dept.: Maxed out
Tech.: Motorola Razr V3
Cost: $200 (less with rebates), plus a monthly service plan
Total Cost: $567
Steal | | | | | Splurge

As cellphones continue to take over the world and multifunction units become more commonplace, we technophiles are hard-pressed to feel special. Face it: Your mom has a cameraphone.

That’s why I recently picked up the Motorola Razr V3. It has all the basic functions I need-VGA camera; calendar; Bluetooth, Web and e-mail capability; and a luscious 2.2-inch, 260,000-color screen-and it looks like the kind of futuristic device a tech editor ought to be carrying. Even better, it was free after rebate (with a two-year contract and activation) at Buy.com.

Thanks to the Razr’s ultraslim 13.7-millimeter profile, I’m finding myself with a lot more room
in my pockets for accessories. Most of my favorites can be used with just about any cellphone, including the next-gen Razr V3x (due out later this year, and sporting a two-megapixel camera and videoconferencing). That’s a good thing, because I plan to get that one too.

A. The tiny Jabra JX10 Bluetooth headset ($179; jabra.com) weighs just under 10 grams and sports a digital signal processor to improve audio quality on both ends of the call.

B. Martin Fields Overlay Plus Screen Protectors ($9 per set; martinfields.com) adhere electrostatically and are essentially invisible. The set includes covers for the inner and outer LCDs as well as for the camera lens.

C. Martin Fields’s claim that the speckles on its Overlay Plus Power Extender sticker ($9; martinfields.com) increase battery life is, as one scientist I talked to put it, â€quackery,†but I swear I got a few extra hours with it. For $9, it’s worth a try.

D. Use your Razr in Europe cheaply with a Talk Abroad prepaid SIM card ($80;
cellularabroad.com). You get a Lichtenstein phone number and free incoming calls (outgoing ones are about $1 a minute).

E. Motorola’s Bluetooth Mobile PhoneTools set ($70; accessorygeeks.com) includes software to move contacts, appointments, pictures and ring tones to and from your PC, along with a USB Bluetooth adapter.

F. Gomadic’s Emergency Battery Backup ($20; gomadic.com) charges the Razr’s battery two or three times, at the same rate as the wall charger.

Fully Loaded Razr

Motorola Razr V3 ……………………………………………………… $200

Jabra JX10 Headset ………………………………………………….$179

Screen Protectors ………………………………………………………$9

Power Extender Sticker ……………………………………………..$9

Talk Abroad SIM Card ……………………………………………….$80

Mobile PhoneTools Set ……………………………………………..$70

Battery Backup …………………………………………………………..$20

Total …………………………………………………………………………..$567

Customizing the RAZR

As with most cellphones, certain aspects of the Razr can’t be changed from the Settings menu: the position of the clock, the time the backlight will stay on, the Cingular branding. Fortunately, the active Motorola hacker community has figured out how to change all these things and more. You could kill your phone if you screw up, but most of the mods are pretty straightforward. Google â€MagicTom’s Official RAZR V3 Getting Started Guide” to find the best intro, and check howard forums.com to see the latest hacks.