[dropcaps]Motorola has had an interesting career since the introduction of the smartphone. Before the smartphone, Motorola was king of the communication world. I mean, Motorola was the communications source for the Apollo 11 for crying out loud. Everyone remembers the Motorola Razr flip-phones. All the cool kids had them. Enter the iPhone, and subsequently the HTC Dream, and Motorola quickly dropped to the bottom. Remember the Motorola Atrix (*shudders*)?[/dropcaps]
Then, Motorola was purchased by Google. It is not quite clear exactly how much of a hand Google had in Motorola’s creation of their next smartphone: we’ve seen some reports that they worked very closely, and recently we’ve seen Motorola reps say Google kept them at arm’s length. However much involvement there was, one thing’s for sure: Motorola’s next phone changed the industry.
The original Moto X was representative of consumer feedback they had received:
[list][item icon=”fa-android” ]It had near-stock Android, with no bloatware[/item][item icon=”fa-android” ]Features that enhanced the user experience, not blocked it[/item][item icon=”fa-android” ]Control over design choices, particularly color[/item][item icon=”fa-android” ]A form factor that was comfortable to hold[/item][/list]
What’s more, Motorola proved that consumers didn’t necessarily need top-of-the-line specs. While the Moto X was no iPhone or Samsung S in terms of sales, it definitely took the Android community by storm (including myself). They noticed that users loved the lack of a UI overlay, and that devices flew off the shelves when they sold the device at a sub-$400 cost.
This leads to the release of Motorola’s famous budget phone: the Moto G. The Moto G managed to bring a good user experience to an unbelievable price – $180. The phone certainly wasn’t breaking any speed records, but it held favor with consumers. Motorola would later announce the Moto G as their most popular phone, ever. This would lead to the introduction of the even cheaper Moto E.
Still, the Moto X did have its share of problems: poor camera, not great battery life, and while the hardware proved a point, it was still lacking. Further, they saw the trend of phones getting bigger (even though many, including myself, appreciated the smaller form of the original Moto X).
So, Motorola announced the new Moto X (which, by the way, is owned by Lenovo at this point):
[list][item icon=”fa-android” ]Bigger, better resolution screen[/item][item icon=”fa-android” ]More focus on camera, with a ring flash[/item][item icon=”fa-android” ]Better, updated hardware[/item][item icon=”fa-android” ]Improvement on beloved features, with a couple of new additions[/item][item icon=”fa-android” ]More options in Moto Maker to customize the phone the way you want[/item][/list]
This, combined with an updated Moto G that had even more unbelievable specs (for the same price of $180) led to one of Motorola’s best quarters – 10 million smartphones sold in Q4 2014.
Add onto that the Moto 360. The Moto 360 was the first round smartwatch to be released. And, was touted as the best looking smartwatch for awhile (still is considered to be by many). While smartwatches haven’t really “caught on” yet, the Moto 360 was the best-selling Android Wear watch in 2014, and I’m sure still is with its recent price drops (another thing Motorola noticed consumers liked).
[blockquote author=””]You can see it through each iteration of the Moto X – Motorola is listening to its consumers.[/blockquote]
Even still, the Moto X wasn’t quite there yet. Many people still complained about poor battery life (although this was mildly solved by the Moto X (2014) being one of the first phones with Quick Charge), and the camera being poor. That being said, many were praising it for its continuance of a slim OS, useful features, and control over its design.
Fast forward to present day, and we have seen Motorola’s newest addition to the flagship line: the Moto X Pure Edition. With this announcement, Motorola focused on four things:
[list][item icon=”fa-android” ]Bigger, better battery[/item][item icon=”fa-android” ]Bigger, better camera[/item][item icon=”fa-android” ]Better, smaller price[/item][item icon=”fa-android” ]Absolutely Pure: no carriers involved[/item][/list]
The truth of those claims has yet to be seen, but one thing is for sure: Motorola is listening. You can see it through each iteration of the Moto X, and the mere idea of the Moto G (not to mention the addition of a SD card slot). Motorola is listening to its consumers.
Think about it for a second: Motorola is giving all the carriers one nice, big middle finger, all for the sake of the consumers. How else can a mobile phone company place their trust in a company?
I loved the first two Moto X’s but the new Pure Editions screen is too large and battery too small compared to the play . I want a Moto X play made for t-mobile US with a 5.2 screen.
Totally agree, what was so good about the first two Moto Xs was that they weren’t scared to deviate from the competition if they felt it was better for the consumer. The smaller screen size was the obvious choice but with the 3rd gen increasing to 5.7″ is just crazy. This can be forgiven if the Moto X Play was more reasonably sized like the 1st or 2nd gen Moto X but even that is 5.5″ which is still crazy big. The Moto X Play was so very close to being perfect. If they had only just put in a 5″ screen instead.
To the author: and you conveniently forgot the instrumental role that product manger Punit Soni played in building trust with future Motorola users?
I did not “conveniently” forget… Not even sure what you’re trying to imply. I am aware of his efforts, and I even connected with him myself. But I was trying to make a point in regards to their phone designs specifically, in contrast to other Android manufacturers.
Great article Mr. Trerise
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