Hey look, it's a Hero! We've got the brand new DROID ERIS for Verizon in hand, and it's not hard to see which particular family of phones it hails from. Still, Verizon has its own twist on the form factor, almost scoring a compromise between the "shiny" Sprint Hero and the more angular, matte GSM Hero. Confusingly, the capacitive touch buttons along the bottom of the ERIS' screen are a haphazard twist on the DROID's arrangement (though it's really Motorola that's the non-standard one here), but the phones don't look completely unrelated. In all the rounded, black matte body of the ERIS sort of "fades away" and you're just left with a nice, bright LCD -- it's not making a statement, which is sort of the statement. There's also an iPhone-style face proximity sensor for turning off the display during calls, and HTC has multitouch pinch-to-zoom on here, something Motorola hasn't seemed to manage. Sure it can't stack up to the DROID for aggressiveness or sheer specs, but it's got it's own sort of budget-friendly charm that's not overshadowed by the DROID's bombastic ways, and two out of three Engadget editors agree that the HTC keyboard beats the pants off the stock Android keyboard. %Gallery-77455%
*Verizon has acquired AOL, Engadget's parent company. However, Engadget maintains full editorial control, and Verizon will have to pry it from our cold, dead hands.