MotorolaMotorola this afternoon posted its Q1 2012 earnings, and things aren't all that rosy on the phone side of the biz. While revenue in its mobile device division was up 3 percent to $2.2 billion, Motorola Mobility still posted a $121 million (GAAP) operating loss for the quarter, some $32 million more than a year ago.

On the plus side, Moto shipped some 8.9 million mobile devices, with 5.1 million of them of the smartphone variety. 

Moto's bullet points for the quarter were the Droid RAZR MAXX and Droid 4, the Motoluxe (which is a bit of a hit outside the U.S.) and the Bubba Watson-branded MOTOACTV Golf Edition.

Source: Motorola Mobility

 
There are 25 comments

Dan29466 says:

pssstt....

"some $32 billion more than a year ago"

Billion, million, whatever. It's not like I gotta count it.

sniffs says:

*SHOCKER* People seem to want a device that has the ability to have an unlocked bootloader, here's looking at you HTC/Samsung..

People will want their devices "more" when they can do "more" with them! *cough*unlock bootloader*cough*

Dan29466 says:

Of the 5.1 million Motorola smartphones sold last year, how many of those buyers do you really think even know what a bootloader is? Seriously. For the overwhelming majority of users, the bootloader has something to do with ordering shoes using the Zappos.com app.

Loony2nz#AC says:

100% aqree. My friend and my aunt both have the RAZR MAXX. Use it stock and have no worries about the phone. Does what it's supposed to do. For the mere 1-2% of us tech nerds who want to muck with their phones all the time, it matters. So we don't buy Moto/Samsung/otherandroidmfgwithlockedbootloaders.

I bought a Verizon GNex for this reason alone. I muck with my phone all the time. Why? it's fun!

bigdav1178 says:

I'll agree with this comment.

I'll also add that consumers hate the little incremental updates that they make to their phones every couple of months; it's as if they engineer their phones to be obsolete in a couple of months. For example: Bionic > RAZR > RAZR MAXX > (rumored) RAZR MAXX HD, or even back with the Droid 2 > Droid 2 Global. You could even make a case for this with the Droid 3 and the Droid 4; in fact, with its obsolete-at-launch screen and small internal battery, this is why I haven't jumped on the Droid 4 - I expect a Droid 4 HD in about 3-4 months.

Motorola, focus on making a couple good phones, and make them good enough to not be replaced in a couple months. Stop pissing off your customers by building in obsolescence with a new device planned only a few months after release.

raddbj03 says:

I think that's a problem with android. There is such a thing as too many options. Sure, there are budget phones for the poor people who just want a smartphone and don't care about quality. But many people I know opt for iOS because they know they are getting the best product running that platform and their purchase won't be outdid for another year, not 60 days.

vic6string says:

Yeah, as much as I want an unlocked bootloader on my Photon, I acknowledge I am amongst the vast minority of users. Motorola makes fantastic products... most of them considerably better then the competition, but their marketing is atrocious. Take my Photon as the perfect example. When it launched, it was easily the best Sprint phone in the lineup, and maybe the best smartphone out there in general.... yet NO ONE heard about it. It is still quite possibly the best business phone out (especially for travelers) but it is a year old and already looking at EOL status, and even sales people barely know anything about it.

So basically, the only people who really know about phones and stuff (like us) are the only ones that know how great their phones are, but they are one of the worst companies to deal with for us because of the locked bootloaders.

butters619 says:

Yeah really the number of users who care about unlocking is so small in comparison to the total number of users. They are pretty vocal though.

N8shon says:

32 Billion more than a year ago? Um, no.

ajfink says:

I had such high hopes when Google bought Motorola - that this would usher in a golden age of Motorola opened bootloaders, pure or almost-pure Android and quick updates, essentially a manufacturer specializing in Nexus handsets.

But it's a redheaded stepchild, mostly because Google doesn't deem it important enough to lean on them to get their act together.

Edit - And, in fact, it's become known that they never wanted them in the first place, just the patents.

Rob White says:

You should be well aware of the fact then that Google does not yet own Moto. They have yet to receive all the regulatory clearances needed.

Whether you agree with the purchase or not, Moto is worth what Google is willing to pay. Nothing more nothing less.

As for what phones they will make & what software, it's irrelevant until the acquisition is complete.

hmmm says:

$12.5 billion for some patents. Was it a good buy Google?

Google can't focus on them with their phones without alienating other manufacturers and even their set top box division is suffering (or going to suffer) as cable companies worry about Google throwing their own services onto those Motorola cable boxes.

MOTH477 says:

Samsung ships 5M Galaxy Notes and people still consider it a "niche" device. So are all Motorolla phones niche devices for shipping only 5.1M?

patfactorx says:

Their shipments are up 24%. They took a loss because of structuring costs associated with a merger...

Tech bloggers need to read some books on how to read earnings reports

mercado79 says:

i also think they need to stop with these ridiculous verizon exclusives. i am 100% sure they'd sell a ton more razrs if sprint, tmobile, etc. had them. same holds true for the droid 4's. there are many people that'd love to have a solid keyboard slider, but aren't willing to switch to verizon due to higher fees.

JtothaR says:

I agree, but you have to remember that VZW grabbed Motorola Mobility from the clutches of death and dropped them softly into a pile of advertising dollars for the original Droid.

tbhuang2 says:

Motorola has always been Motofail since day one. Every other company makes better phones.

pappy53 says:

Motorola makes the best phones out there. Best radios, speakers, signal strength, build quality, etc.

DWR_31 says:

@pappy53
Good hardware, bad software.

Motorola Cliq XT, it left a bad taste in my mouth. Kinda like castor oil.

mitchger says:

I've never even considered a Motorola. UGLY and BORING. for the record my phones owned: nexus one, nexus s, galaxy s II, galaxy nexus, one x

BasPilot says:

This is probably why informing us and putting ICS out for the Bionic hasn't been a highest priority.

I'm still happy with my Bionic and I DO like Motorola.

Jayshmay says:

I had way, way too many problems with the original Motorola Droid, charging port, touchscreen, keyboard, way too many problems to give Motorola another chance.

Brian_d says:

Boo frickity hoo! Maybe Motorola would do better if they didn't bone their customers by releasing the razr then the razr maxx right after...

android010 says:

I hope they lose more and more until they learn to start shipping fewer 'and better' phones each year

They flooded the market with their phones yet they lose just like htc did last year

moises1204 says:

they have to stop making such ugly phones.