Moto X

Like most everyone here, I was pretty excited to see exactly what Motorola had to tell us yesterday. After months of hype and countless rumors, I was curious about what they would, and could, offer up with the X Phone and how it would differ from all those rumors. You just knew they all couldn't be true.

As the news came in, I was pretty happy with the parts that were true. The specs and the new X8 computing system is something I'm excited to have a go with, allowing buyers to pick their color may sound silly but it will be a big hit with plenty of folks, and even the 720p screen was something I'm fine with. A screen is more than the ppi. But the killer feature, and one that matters most to me, was just not to be. That broke the deal.

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Motorola (and Google, since they write the checks) made this one all about the carriers by not selling it themselves.

The AT&T-only color customizations, and the all-important 32GB version exclusivity, made me want to kick something. I am a little disappointed with the price, but willing to accept that smartphones are a luxury item and we'll see big markups on them. My $600 and me would have parted ways as soon as I was able to buy one, except I'm not buying one from AT&T or Verizon.

"I'm a firm believer that you can't make anything better by adding heavy amounts of AT&T or Verizon to it."

I look back on Motorola's previous phones, some of which I really liked, and realized that the experience of every one of them was made worse because they were tied to a carrier. I'm a firm believer that you can't make anything better by adding heavy amounts of AT&T or Verizon to it. Needless to say, I was really disappointed at the news of how and where I can buy one.

I can't help but remember the limited launch of the Galaxy Nexus, where the US version was tied to Verizon. Google took a shot and held hands with Big Red, and look how that turned out. Verizon sold more than a few, and the people who bought one soon started complaining about Verizon's control over the device. And I don't blame them, it was (and still is) ridiculous. 

Oh we know they are coming. Motorola told us as much. Dev editions and unlocked models are in the works. We hope they will have access to all the colors and 32GB of storage, but most of all we hope they come timely.

I am really interested in the Moto X, and still want very much to buy one — a yellow one with "Fatal if swallowed" engraved on the back if at all possible, but even a model in basic black would be fine. But at heart, I'm both a consumer and a tech-geek. My attention span is pretty short, and that $600 won't last long. I'm not going to give it to AT&T, so if you want my money you'll need to offer me the phone you showed us, free of any carrier foolery now and in the future.

I thought you knew better.