September 2, 2014

Motorola to close factory in Fort Worth by year-end, a sad day for American manufacturing

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Motorola started as an American company and recently had a dream of bringing a product assembled in the USA to the masses when it opened its new facility last year, but it’s all coming to an end.

According to the Wall Street Journal, also confirmed by The Verge, Motorola will be closing its Fort Worth, Texas, factory by the end of 2014. The plant was created to be able to build custom Moto X’s designed though Moto Maker and has about 700 workers.

“What we found was that the North American market was exceptionally tough,” said Motorola President Rick Osterloh. “The decision potentially leaves hundreds of American workers out of a job.”

Motorola told The Verge that it will continue to offer the Moto Maker service, but it’s not clear as to how it will continue that work with manufacturing moving overseas, as the close proximity to customers ensured the fast shipping time, usually around eight days, not bad for a made-to-order smartphone built in the U.S.

At least that means we should all still get to order a custom Moto X+1 once it releases sometime this summer, but it will probably be the last we’ll see of a company trying to move these type of operations to the U.S. Who knows though.

The plan to close the factory shows that the Moto X wasn’t the success Motorola wanted. Hopefully with the successor, it can be a bigger hit if it has specs to match the other flagship devices. Specs aren’t everything, but with devices like the HTC One, Samsung Galaxy S4 (and now 5) and the LG G2, outselling the Moto X, specs and marketing must matter to most.

Via The Verge