Google’s Motorola Devices: Smaller, Stock Android, Second Half 2013
Those hoping for a Samsung Galaxy Note 2 sized competitor from Google and Motorola are likely going to be disappointed as Motorola has confirmed that it’s focusing on smaller smartphones for the second half of this year that feature vanilla Android though it refrained from announcing the rumored Motorola X Phone.
Several weeks ago, Google said that Motorola products had lacked the ‘wow’ factor that Google tends to crave from its devices and many believed that that applied to the upcoming collaborative devices from Google and Motorola. However, according to Motorola’s design chief, Jim Wicks, that quote was taken out of context and in comments made to PCMag, Wicks has supplied some information on some of what Google and Motorola have in-store for consumers in the days, weeks and months ahead. Some of which, could certainly wow consumers.
Wicks claims that Google and Motorola are hard at work on some new products, he doesn’t specifically mention the X Phone, and he says that the company will be aligning itself with a philosophy of “better is better” and not “bigger is better.” Companies like Samsung and HTC have released gigantic phones in the HTC One, Samsung Galaxy Note 2, and the Samsung Galaxy S4, and it appears that Motorola will try and separate itself from that.
Instead, Wicks says that Motorola is working on making the screen size of these upcoming devices just right. What that means, isn’t clear, but we imagine it’s likely smaller than 4.7-inches, the size of the HTC One. The Samsung Galaxy S4 is 5-inches in size while the Galaxy Note 2 is 5.5-inches.
These devices will focus on vanilla Android software which of course means a pure Google experience like the Nexus devices. Manufacturers like Samsung have strayed far away from this, instead opting to include their own software on top of Android for a vastly different experience than stock Google phones. Whether or not that means the end of MotoBlur, Motorola’s UI, remains uncertain.
Wicks says that the first Motorola and Google products will start shipping in the second half of this year. That of course includes the month of July, the same month that has been rumored to be the release date for the first Motorola flagship, the Motorola X Phone, which has been rumored for a debut at Google I/O in May and a release in July. Those rumors have been placed in doubt by a report that suggests that it may miss Google I/O.
It appears that Motorola is ready to expand beyond just Verizon with its phones so that could mean that the X Phone will be coming to more carriers than just Verizon but that also remains unconfirmed.