Droid_by_MotorolaAfter weeks of speculation, followed by a real announcement, followed by more waiting, Motorola and Verizon have finally released the Droid, the supposed iPhone-killer which is the first device using version 2.0 of Google’s Android operating system.

The reviews have been positive so far, with gadget king Walt Mossberg calling it “a more credible alternative to the iPhone” as well as “the best super-smart phone Verizon offers, the best Motorola phone I’ve tested and the best hardware so far to run Android.” MobileCrunch’s Greg Kumparak said it’s “the very first phone in over two years that I would consider carrying for day-to-day use instead of my iPhone.”

The VentureBeat team hasn’t managed to play around with the device long enough for a full review, but the demo I saw was super-impressive, and I’ve heard positive things from other writers on-staff too. Oh, and you can practically see my boss Matt Marshall drooling as he lists the Droid’s different features. (By the way, Matt’s birthday was yesterday, so if you’re wondering what to get him, I don’t think he’s made it to the Verizon store yet …)

As a reasonably satisfied iPhone owner, I don’t have any immediate plans to switch over, but I’ll definitely be listening closely to what my friends have to say about their Droids. And even if I don’t switch, it’s exciting to finally see a device that seems to be generating as much excitement from tech geeks and app developers as the iPhone.

Of course, it remains to be seen whether all the early buzz translates into sales. It helps that Google will be reminding everyone to buy a Droid with a message on its home page. At the same time, it looks like Verizon can’t compete with Apple when it comes to bringing out the first-day fanatics.