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Moto X buyers to "choose their own smartphone spec"


By Nicole Kobie

Posted on 3 Jul 2013 at 09:06

Google could allow buyers of its first Motorola handset - the Moto X - choose their own hardware spec.

Google bought Motorola in 2011, but has yet to release any hardware via the manufacturer. The Moto X will be the first smartphone from the pair, but it's not expected to arrive until October.

Details about the handset have been scarce, but now Google is starting to advertise the phone - despite it not being available for months. The ads give weight to one long-running rumour: that it's going to be customisable.

"The first smartphone you can design yourself," the ad reads, according to a report in Ad Age. "Because today you should have the freedom to design the things in your life to be as unique as you are."

It's unclear exactly how customisable it will be, with reports suggesting customers will order it like they do a PC from Dell, choosing specs, colour, mobile operator and even apps to make it their own.

"Smartphones are very different than other tech products a consumer owns," Brian Wallace, Motorola's vice-president of global brand and product marketing, told the website. "They're closer to shoes or a watch. You carry it with you everywhere you go. Everyone sees what phone you're carrying and they judge you on it. Yet it's the one thing you carry that's the least customisable."

Motorola has also previously said the Moto X will make use of sensors, so the handset "knows" the context in which it's being used - such as if it's being taken out of a pocket, or the user is driving, for example.

The report also reveals the handset will be manufactured in the US - although components will be brought in from overseas. Google also previously manufactured the Nexus Q in the US, but quickly stopped production of the media streamer - though it could be set for a reboot soon.

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User comments

"The first smartphone designed, engineered and assembled in the USA."

This isn’t going to do “brand USA” any favours - the X Phone is sounding like just another mid-tier smartphone.

By TheHonestTruth on 3 Jul 2013

Pork-barrel politics...

The whole "Made in USA" is just more PR shtick from Google, like Apple, to get the politicians off their back.
Expect the 'production facility' (i.e. where they assemble the foreign-made bits) to be in the constituency of a Google critic....

The "Made in USA" sticker has no relevance, and probably negative resonance to\with buyers in most parts of the world.
Contrary to what the average US citizen may believe, the rest of the world is important.
Of course Google currently has Samsung to flog handsets to the rest of us.

Consequently it seems logical to conclude that this product is aimed mainly at the US market.
It will be up against Apple's iOS dreadnought, but I don't really think that selling huge numbers is the objective.

By wittgenfrog on 3 Jul 2013

If this is to be the next 'Nexus' phone (and it's rumoured to be so) then it will be selling a lot outside the US as the Nexus range is top dog among the Developer community. And being able to spec a phone to your needs would be VERY advantageous to a lot of Nexus users

By EddyOS_2K9 on 3 Jul 2013

Just give us the top spec and let economies of scale kick in to get that price real low.

Guessing this is a reaction to Motorola's need for profit and Google's desire for a low headline price (see Nexus 4). Motorola can make its profits on the upgrades.

By Mark_Thompson on 3 Jul 2013


The customisability only extends to picking a chassis colour, storage capacity and engraving a message, according to ABC News and Techradar.

By TheHonestTruth on 4 Jul 2013

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