The father of the smartphone has some of Android's best
Motorola is a longtime communications company, the manufacturer of the first cellular telephone — and it may well be responsible for making Android what it is today.
Motorola wasn't the first smartphone maker, but it was the Motorola Droid on Verizon that helped make Android the household name it is today. The original Droid (known as the Milestone in Europe) sold millions and spawned a number of successors. The Droid MAXX on Verizon continues to be popular, though aging.
But Motorola struggled to make money, and in August 2011 it was announced that Google would purchase Motorola Mobility — they company previously spun off Motorola Solutions — for $12.5 billion. Hardware was just one reason for the purchase — patents were very much another. Google insisted that it didn't buy Motorola with the intention of continuing to lose money, and indeed Motorola began to lose less. But in January 2014, Google announced it was effectively unloading Motorola to Chinese company Lenovo for $2.91. (Much of the disparity in price is due to the paring down of the company, as well as Google retaining "the vast majority" of patents.)
Much of 2012 and 2013 was quiet for Motorola, but in August 2013 Motorola rolled out its rebirth — the Moto X. Wonderfully designed, with customizable features such as the front color, back casing (including wood!) and camera housing — and it was to be assembled in Texas. (Sadly, that assembly line shut down.) The Moto X was heralded as an above-average smartphone that bucked the oversized trend, and didn't fall into the trap of packing in unwanted features and redesigned software.
The Moto X paved the way for two lower-cost smartphones — the Moto G and Moto E.
Motorola also has the excellent Moto 360 for Android Wear.
16 November 2015
Motorola won a legion of new fans when it rebooted its phone line up a couple of years ago. Things haven't slowed down since then, and this little list right here is a round up of the best that Moto currently has to offer.
Android Wear in the round
17 September 2014
The first of the round Android Wear watches is stylish but imperfect.
The Moto 360 has been a long time coming. Never mind the wait between the watch being announced and finally finally getting into folks' hands...
Bigger, better, Moto
25 September 2014
Android’s most unassuming smartphone gets even more impressive in its second iteration
There's nothing overly surprising about the new Moto X. Let's just get that out of the way. There's no one real whiz-bang feature that you're going to see repeated in commercials, or hear heralded by bloggers.
No, truth be told, the new Moto X — same name as last year's model — is one of those rare phones that is a near seamless transition from one model to the next.
And you know what? That's not a bad thing at all.
And that's not to say that we don't have a lot to talk about. Because we do, both good and bad. So let's jump into it. This is the Android Central review of the 2014 Motorola Moto X.
A new mid-range standard
07 August 2015
The third-generation Moto G is the best thus far, with most of the features you want, and a price that's almost impossible to beat.
06 November 2014
Motorola made a phone that challenges its own Moto X on Verizon, and in many ways bests it
Droid. It's the name that arguably kicked off Android's popularity back in 2009 and one we've still yet to completely shake as an inaccurate descriptor of just about every phone running Android. Verizon's marketing machinery is strong, but has thankfully toned back in the last two years to match Motorola's new direction.
Motorola now has an exclusive deal to provide Verizon with a steady stream of "Droid" branded devices for the foreseeable future, and since 2013 it has been bringing its new "less is more" mantra from the Moto X series over to the Droid line. The Motorola Droid Turbo is the 2014 flagship from this Verizon/Motorola tie-up, and the best way to describe it is as a "super" version of the 2014 Moto X.
No spec has gone un-bumped, and no design decision was made without considering how it would exude the "Droid" brand for Verizon. This is a Droid through and through, and one that could easily be considered as the best choice on Verizon today.
Read on for our full review of the Verizon Motorola Droid Turbo.
Another big change
21 June 2016
Motorola's head of its design team, Jim Wicks, has departed the company to join the faculty at Northwestern University. Wicks had been with Motorola for 15 years.