Motorola looks for the "sweet spot" with smaller phones

17 Apr 2013
Google Android

First phones from Google and Motorola to arrive in the second half of the year

Motorola has said rival handset makers are creating phones that are too large, saying its phones with Google will be "just right" in size.

The devices, set to be released later this year, will be the first produced in partnership since Google bought Motorola last year.

Motorola's design chief Jim Wicks said his firm is avoiding Samsung’s strategy of producing larger and larger Android-based phones, instead targeting a size that feels "just right" - although he didn't detail screen sizes.

"Certain people like a large screen," said Wicks in an interview with PC Mag. "But there's a sweet spot for consumers that we're currently exceeding in the market. There are some people that like a big display, but there's also a lot of people that want something that's just about right," he said.

There are some people that like a big display, but there's also a lot of people that want something that's just about right

"I think 'just right' is important, and we're designing so we don't disappoint those people," he said.

Wicks said the two companies were working closely together on the new line of phones, which would feature a stock Android experience, leaving consumers free to populate devices with their own apps.

He said that the first phones will roll out in the second half of this year, though he didn't confirm whether that would include the rumoured Motorola X flagship model.

"From a software and UI perspective, our strategy is to embrace Android and to make it the best expression of Android and Google in the market," he said "It will be the unadulterated version of Android, and I feel really good about our embracing Android and being the best Android experience."

Phones plus

At a separate event, Google CEO Eric Schmidt heaped praise on the new line of products, claiming the upcoming devices as "phenomenal".

"Think of it as phones-plus," he told All Things Digital.

The pair’s united front marks a turnaround from earlier this year, after Google CFO Patrick Pichette said that Motorola’s pre-acquisition device pipeline didn’t "wow by Google standards".

Google completed the $12 billion (£7.8 billion) deal last May, with Motorola’s fate hanging in the balance after analysts speculated the search firm had targeted Motorola’s patents to shore up the Android ecosystem.

A new line of Motorola phones could still act as an insurance policy of sorts, with Google reportedly worried that its biggest manufacturing partner, Samsung, has too much Android market share. The Korean firm ships the majority of Android phones, giving it greater leverage to demand a cut of Google’s mobile ad fees.

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