X marks the spot for Motorola

GENESIS: The Moto X sensor tech came courtesy of Motorola's Motoactv fitness-tracker watch.
X marks the spot for Motorola

SNEAK PEEK: The Moto X would have a long battery life, and feature new sensors, says CEO Dennis Woodside.


    May 31, 2013

    X marks the spot for Motorola

    THE new Motorola phone, the Moto X, was sitting in the company chief's pocket. But Motorola Mobility CEO Dennis Woodside wouldn't whip it out, preferring to tease instead.

    The few things he would say, as he spoke at the All Things Digital conference in Palos Verdes on Wednesday, were that the Moto X would have a long battery life, and feature a number of sensors that will provide new ways of user interaction.

    The camera can fire up when the phone is taken out of a pocket (he didn't explain how), for instance, and will behave differently if you're driving 100kmh in a car.

    "The ability to engage with the phone is different than (that of) competitors," he said.

    The phone, expected to be launched in October, will be built in a Fort Worth factory where Nokia phones used to be built. The factory is owned and run by Flextronics International, a Singapore-based contract electronics manufacturer that has had a long relationship with Motorola.

    Mr Woodside said that manufacturing in the United States allowed Motorola to make "fast changes" and innovate more quickly with the Moto X. Parts of the phone will come from outside the country, such as the Oled screen which will be made in South Korea, he added.

    In an interview with, he said that the phone owes its sensor technology to information Motorola got through its Motoactv fitness-tracker watch.

    "What Motorola learnt was how to manage very-low-power sensors," Mr Woodside said.

    Motorola is owned by Google, which bought it last year for US$12.4 billion (S$15.7 billion) in its biggest acquisition, seeking to bolster its patent portfolio and adding the ability to design and build mobile products.

    Motorola has steadily ceded market share to Apple and Samsung, with its latest phones garnering a relatively lukewarm reception.