The Moto X, Google's latest Motorola smart phone, was unveiled Thursday.
Moto X, which has a 4.7-inch display, costs $199 for the 16GB version with a two-year contract and $250 for a 32 GB version, which is standard for most smartphones. It also comes with 50GB of storage in Google Drive for two years. It will be available on every major carrier soon, at the end of August or early September.
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Last week Motorola confirmed it will be the exclusive supplier of Droid smartphones.
Google acquired Motorola last year,
and it has been a financial burden for the search engine giant
; in the second quarter of this year, Motorola lost Google $342 million
, weighing down Google's significantly more substantial profits, according to CNet. Moto X is the company’s first major device since the deal, and it remains to be seen whether the Moto X will help recover some of those losses.
Here's what reviewers had to say about the Moto X:
CNet's Roger Cheng wrote that the Moto X
is "everything the iPhone is not," allowing users to tweak the colors and materials like the back, edge, and wallpaper, ultimately giving them more control over the device.
"Moto X's customization options change the paradigm on how phones are made and sold to consumers, giving them another way of thinking about their mobile device," Cheng wrote. "With the next version of Moto X, the company could start offering customized components — different processors, screen size, memory, and more — giving even more control to the consumer. Whether that's feasible or even desirable remains to be seen, but it would be a natural evolution to what the company is starting with Moto X."
But the phone has a solid — not cutting-edge — set of hardware features that won't give the phone a great edge over the iPhone.
Tech Crunch's Ed Velazco wrote that while Moto X
's customizable options are refreshing for the smartphone market, it is one of the only features that sets it apart from other Motorola phones.
Velazco commented on the phone's physical features, saying it "feels surprisingly small for a device with a 4.7-inch screen since there’s very little physical cruft."
"There’s only a hint of a bezel running around the display’s left and right edges, and there isn’t a whole of space surrounding the speaker, 2MP front-facing camera, and microphone along the face’s top and bottom," Velazco wrote, adding the curvature of the X’s rear makes it comfortable to hold.
Velazco had positive things to say about the device's touchless controls, calling someone using the phone's voice recognition software and firing up the camera by shaking the phone worked seamlessly. The software recognizes the user's individual voice, which is a breakthrough in this technology.
The Verge pointed out that
users who customize their phone will have it in four or less days because the entire assembly operation for the Moto X is in Fort Worth, Texas. Components come from 16 states and countries around the world, but 2,000 or so workers assemble the phones in Texas and ship them all over America.
"There's certainly a patriotic element to the decision — SVP of product Rick Osterloh said 'it's just the right thing to do' — but the real upside is practical. Since there's no boat from China to wait for, Motorola can have you a new phone in four days. It's like the Warby Parker of cellphones; just try it and see how you feel," David Pierce wrote.
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Pierce said the phone is fast, fluidly opening apps from notifications and swiping around the operating system.
Gizmodo's Brent Rose agrees that the Moto X
"In the couple hours that I've spent with it, I have seen zero lag or skipping. Experientially, it's every bit as quick as the HTC One, Galaxy S4, or iPhone 5 (though we'll see how it does after a longer period of testing). Apps fly open and scrolling is buttery smooth. We expect this will only improve when it gets the most recent Android update," Rose wrote.
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