Motorola CEO defends Moto X specs, touts "high-end performance"
0. phoneArena 05 Aug 2013, 20:07 posted on
There has been a lot of chatter from the geek crowd about the Moto X spec sheet. Many think that the device is somehow lacking because (to boil down the argument) "the numbers aren't big enough". People see the numbers that go with the CPU and display, and decide that because those numbers aren't as high as other phones, the Moto X couldn't possibly be as good. We've already defended the Moto X, and now the Motorola CEO Dennis Woodside is doing the same...
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1. Shatter (Posts: 2036; Member since: 29 May 2013)
"the device isn't aimed at spec nerds, it's aimed at the average consumer"
So your like Apple and your going to overprice your device and hope people who don't know anything about specs buy it.
7. CX3NT3_713 (Posts: 2259; Member since: 18 Apr 2011)
Haha... he should redefine "highend specs" ... lol that phone is wack
21. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 3617; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)
Funny, MotoCEO's name is Dennis 'Wood'side...and everyone was wondering where all those woods came from.
9. Shaznek (Posts: 43; Member since: 18 Apr 2013)
Atleast apple devices have great specs,and a good camera.
16. Red-Pain (Posts: 33; Member since: 13 Mar 2012)
in case you forgot the Iphone 5 (their latest device) is inferior in terms of specs to this device.
Iphone 5 vs Moto X
1136x640 vs 1280x720
an in-house modified dual-core processor (at 1.3 GHz) vs an in-house modified dual-core processor (which is clocked at a higher freq. 1.7 GHz)
a tri-core PowerVR SGX543MP3 vs a quad-core Adreno 320 (which is according to the benchmarks is a lot better)
I find it weird that after seeing this people still complain about it not being a high-end spec-ed device yet they call the iphone 5 which according to the above comparison is inferior to the Moto X, a high-end device
I don't want to start a war here but if you are going to call the iphone 5 a high-end device then i guess the Moto X deserves this title too.
23. 14545 (Posts: 1468; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)
I, personally, haven't considered Apple devices high end since the iP4. Since then it seems like they have always lagged far behind the high end. This is also the reason I don't believe they are worth the money they ask either. Again, JMO.
24. neutralguy (Posts: 1152; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)
Dnt forget that iphone 5 is 11 months older.
High end means it is the top end of that platform. I cant see moto x above gs4 htc one..
People, just accept it. It's a mid range device. But I dont see the problem in it. Why argue if its high end or mid range.
43. jdoee100 (Posts: 334; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)
I agree with neutralguy, why are we still arguing about this? (whether it's high or mid range) Motorola should just say that, It may be a mid-range device or whatever, but it offers a premium experience with a premium price, end of story. Continuing to argue about this issue doesn't help Moto at all.
45. jdoee100 (Posts: 334; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)
Instead of keep denying that it's a mid-range device.
62. xpr3ss10n (Posts: 58; Member since: 15 Dec 2011)
The argument exists because they will be charging a high end price. Its like me selling you a honda for the price of alecus. Hondas are great just not at a lexus.price
27. Napalm_3nema (Posts: 2157; Member since: 14 Jun 2013)
In case you missed it, the iPhone 5 came out almost a year ago, and this thing has similar specs. What's next, comparing the iPhone 4s to the HTC One?
40. gagdude (Posts: 33; Member since: 18 Mar 2013)
iphone 5 vs nexus 4
1136x640 display vs 1280x768
in-house modified dual-core processor (at 1.3 GHz) vs a quad-core processor (which is clocked at a higher freq. 1.5 GHz)
a tri-core PowerVR SGX543MP3 vs a quad-core Adreno 320 (which is according to the benchmarks is a lot better)
1 gb RAM vs 2 gb RAM
now is it fair?
80. Pedro0x (Posts: 271; Member since: 19 Oct 2012)
Iphone 5 has higher ppi. Geekbench 1616 with only dual core at 1,3 GHz meanwhile nexus 4 has 2121 with quad core at 1,5 GHz. Nexus 4 wins in GPU power and in RAM department. So Iphone 5 has about 70-75% power of Nexus 4 and has 68% of battery of Nexus 4 meanwhile having almost double the on-screen time.
I love HW, and that is why I hate WP because they offer no improvement in that way, but you can´t just compare HW. Just think about it, in 2010 android devices offered superior HW in comparison to IOS devices(Iphone 4 vs SGS1) but which one sold more, Iphone 4, because it offered way better premium experience. But today's Android devices match IOS devices in experience or even surpass it.
Sure Moto X costs as much as SGS4 or HTC One but in return you get better experience and much better GPU performance (720p vs 1080p even though you can´t see any difference OEM are still putting it in their phones, I can not see any pixels on my brother's Nexus 4)
82. feres13 (Posts: 306; Member since: 23 Dec 2011)
Just sayin' the Nexus 4 has thermal throttling issues meaning when you play games after a few minutes the device will be hot and the framerates will go down, check anandtech's gpu benchmarks, it's only better when it's in a freezer. As for the screen it just looks dull to me and has only average viewing angles, it just looks pale. Olther specs you forgot about are the camera which is FAR (FAR FAR FAR) better on the iPhone and the Nexus 4's lack of LTE.
81. TylerGrunter (Posts: 1514; Member since: 16 Feb 2012)
How is that different with this phone?
iphone 5 - 326 dpi, dual core swift, 8 Mpixels camera
Moto X - 316 dpi, dual core krait with higher speed, better GPU, 10 Mpixels camera with better low light captures.
I'm not defending the Moto X and its price here, but if you consider the specs alone it has higher specs than the iphone 5, so you can't defend Apple with that argument.
In fact is like Moto is trying to become Apple and convince people that specs don't count.
96. Kishin (Posts: 704; Member since: 30 May 2013)
Kinda true, but they cant become apple because apple is beautiful in couple ways and the moto X is 2 overprice for its looks and specks. yes specks matter.
15. jdoee100 (Posts: 334; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)
"....it's aimed at the average consumer," well said. It's an average product for the average consumer. Now, even Moto CEO thinks it's average, they just haven't realized it yet.
Stop with name calling, "chatter from the geek crowd," not professional at all.
34. TheLolGuy (Posts: 483; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)
I wouldn't worry too much about it not being quad-core. Benchmarks just show off it's ceiling performance which will pretty much never be reached by any app except super-optimized AAA games which don't exist for Android yet.
The typical developer scene of whom all make apps for the Play Store don't make their apps work for quad-core devices. They need to make sure it works on a range of hardware and older Android versions. Guess what -- none of them have quad-cores! Parallel programming is also hard enough that the average developer (read: 95%) won't be able to do it without massive bugs.
Only the best developers and most important and big apps will have multiple versions for the apps written so that it can maximize use of quad-cores, but that is a marginal number of apps at best.
Now for the screen, it's a toss up. The lower resolution does allow the GPU to focus more power and less pixels so you can get a smoother UI experience. On the other hand, if you have super sharp eyes I guess it could be a bummer. On a 4.7" device however 720p is understandable in my case. Were it a 5.5" screen or more with 720p that would be disastrous in my opinion.
All in all, maybe the hardware isn't the very best out there. However, because of the fact that dual core vs. quad core will never make a significant difference and that the GPU can work more fluidly with less pixels while maintaining 300+ ppi, the real world experience looks to be just as competitive as current flagship models if not better.
Edit: Also, though this is speculation, I believe Moto's skins will have better optimization than ever before thanks to Google. I think the fact that Motorola made a custom processor for this is a hint to that.
36. akki20892 (Posts: 3900; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)
I guess in android high end phone means 1080p and quad-core, in ios iPhone 5, and in windows phone 720p or 768p and dual core. So I don't think moto x is high end, because android is capable of 1080p and quad core for high end phone.
44. TheLolGuy (Posts: 483; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)
Well I never said the Moto X has the best available hardware, but I do think that it can deliver good performance that even tech fans can appreciate.
The truth of the matter is that far too often those 2 other cores of quad-core SoCs will not be used and will be idle sipping power (a pretty teeny amount though) constantly.
There is a reason why even with Haswells arrival, the i5-2500k which is a dual core processor is still a beast for gaming. There are some PC games that use 4 cores or more like Crysis or Battlefield 3, but those are rare exceptions and most certainly not the rule. There will be a time when tools will be advanced enough to help even inexperienced developers utilize the power of quad cores, but that time isn't now.
Adding a second CPU core helped, 4 -can- help, but the benefits are diminishing. This is why Google is pushing Renderscript, because AMD's HSA initiative is a better direction to go rather than to keep adding cores.
47. Jimstar (Posts: 259; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)
First of all, you should really know when to use "you're" instead of "your"...
Second, it isn't overpriced. They invested money in that X8 system and we'll see it used on a bunch of devices going forward supporting a variety of CPUs. Oh and it isn't made in China which isn't optimal for pricing.
Third, if YOU knew anything about specs, you'd know we've reached the point of diminishing returns when it comes to them and there's no need for them to get much bigger. Problem is alot of you just know how to read specs and then jump to a conclusion based on numbers, and in every industry in the world, time and time again that has been proven as a foolish way to come to a conclusion.
49. softfurryanus (banned) (Posts: 232; Member since: 09 Jul 2013)
It isn't overpriced even remotely as much as an iPhone, it's actually absurd to compare the two. It costs $575 off contract and from a recent article here it supposedly costs $225 to build, (that probably isnt exact but it doesn't sound far off because it is made in the US keep that in mind) $350 in profit. The Samsung Galaxy S4 is $579 off contract, and costs $237 to build, $342 profit. The iPhone 5 on the other hand, costs about $200 to build and costs $649 off contract... $449 profit.
I will say that other phones can offer more for the price, but the comparison is far off. I do consider myself a specs guy and this phone does look attractive. At the end of the day a phone that is personalized to my liking with close to stock android might be worth more to me than say, the S4 and its gazillion features that I'll find little use for and its top notch specs.
98. TruPatriot (Posts: 110; Member since: 27 May 2013)
I predict this phone will be $100 or free by xmas
3. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10439; Member since: 14 May 2012)
Mid-range phone at a high end price. Nice try Moto, but you're not fooling anyone.
6. akki20892 (Posts: 3900; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)
True said. Anyone can sell device high price if that device have great innovation.
29. CX3NT3_713 (Posts: 2259; Member since: 18 Apr 2011)
Lol this is one of those phones, that come free, when you open a new contract
4. Sauce (unregistered)
Ego inflicted fanboys: stop seeing in black&white and start looking from new and/or different PoV's.
37. TheLolGuy (Posts: 483; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)
Since Android 4.3 removed OpenCL in favor of Renderscript, I think we'll be seeing the Moto X deliver pretty good performance for it's 2 year lifespan for the early adopters. The CPU is basically a dual-core Snapdragon 600, so I don't know why everyone is still calling it an S4 Pro. With Renderscript being more developer-friendly than OpenCL for GPGPU, maybe we can see some apps putting that graphics horsepower to good use!
At the very least I'm sure Google's official apps will be buttery smooth.
5. evarod48 (Posts: 154; Member since: 30 Oct 2012)
I don't see the problem with "mid-range" specs, and like android.
8. krysis (Posts: 76; Member since: 14 Dec 2009)
Everyone bitching about this phone but no ones tested it out yet. Wah. I'll hold my judgement til i can get some hands on time.
10. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10439; Member since: 14 May 2012)
Don't need to because the price is a turn off.
30. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 3617; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)
Come to think about it...the two most overpriced phones available right now are from the US.
Makes my spine chill up thinking about what Motorola may come up with if they went on like this.
12. sprockkets (Posts: 1611; Member since: 16 Jan 2012)
For all you whiners complaining about the price, I guess you all prefer Chinese foxconn slave labor making your phone.
Want a better reason to buy this phone? Moto gave ms the finger with their patents, thus you won't support ms or nokia's crusade against android (that's right, Nokia is suing moto over android).
13. joey_sfb (Posts: 5435; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)
Motorola has scale down their manufacturing capacity but the customization option has vastly improved.
The fact is limited market reach would also limits it's market share.
A Ground breaking experience that not many people would learned about.
14. Sauce (unregistered)
So much rabble. Consumers who have the money will buy expensive phones. Just like people who buy GS4's and iPhones off contract (for example). It comes down to WHO wants WHAT. Not everyone is poor, and not everyone is well off. What ever floats the damn boat and pleases the consumer.
18. frydaexiii (Posts: 1429; Member since: 01 Dec 2011)
Haha, nice try, you're not an Apple employee, you can't say "Retina displays are better than 1080P/720P displays." and get away with it.
19. neutralguy (Posts: 1152; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)
All of a sudden, many people here didnt care for the specs. Lol.
Moto X is great. Dont care if it's a mid range spec'd device. I just find most people here, funny. Haha
20. 14545 (Posts: 1468; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)
Michael, I get where you are trying to go with this. However, my view is that beyond 300 hp most drivers will never know the difference either. That doesn't mean you can justify a 300 hp mustang selling for the same price as a 562 hp 458 Italia. Yes, a Mustang(or insert other nice lower end sports car here) is a great choice, but it still isn't the Italia. Premium price tag or not, it's not a 458, and it never will be. That's why this phone doesn't, and shouldn't command a premium price. It's not a truly premium phone, that's where Apple screwed up the market. If you want me to pay premium prices, then sell me a truly premium phone with the specs to go with it. I look at it this way, if your bill of materials is 200 and competitor X's BoM is 275, and competitor Y's B M is is 265, then you can't honestly think you are giving your customers what they paid for when you sell them a much cheaper(materials wise) phone at the same price as your competitors. Just my .02, take it how you may. I just don't think experience alone is justification for it's price. I would have bought it off contract for 400 in a 32gb model.
39. evarod48 (Posts: 154; Member since: 30 Oct 2012)
1. if your mustang could go as fast or ride smoother than a more expensive car, why wouldn't you buy it?
2. You don't know that the materials for the X are cheaper than the higher spec phones.
95. 14545 (Posts: 1468; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)
You're clearly not a car person or you would understand how a (insert low end sports car) could never = a high end exclusive sports car. No matter the modifications or *close* factory specs.
No, I don't know for sure that the BoM for the X is less than the One, S4, etc. But considering it clearly doesn't have the display of the other two(no matter your feeling of detriment to the device or not), and we know the processor is less expensive, there isn't much else that could drive the device higher to compete with the other devices.
22. scott5626 (Posts: 49; Member since: 01 Sep 2009)
Pocketnow review states when you shake the phone you hear the wiggly power and volume buttons rattle. Seems kinda silly since your supposed to do that gay wrist shake to launch the camera.
25. 14545 (Posts: 1468; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)
I can't ever see anyone actually doing that to open the camera. It honestly seems like less work just to have a lockscreen widget. 2 touches, the power then the camera. (assuming you don't use a password.)
83. gazmatic (Posts: 794; Member since: 06 Sep 2012)
or how about... i dont know... a dedicated camera button
28. Zero0 (Posts: 592; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)
Someone want to point me to the "mid-range" part?
GPU looks top-notch.
Screen IS 720p, but it's non-PenTile AMOLED, which is nice for colors. For the three of you who have eyes that can distinguish the difference of 1080p on a 4.7" screen, sorry.
CPU is a bit lagging, but who in the hell needs four cores on a PHONE? I have two on my laptop.
Battery is nothing crazy, but they make the most of the mAh with the phone's features.
Camera appears to be top-tier.
And it's compact as anything out there. Everyone else packs more cores and more pixels, they're adding volume. This is a really, really nice size. Balance is everything.
It's a really good phone that let down only because it was rumored to be cheaper and even more customizable.
And did I mention it wasn't built in conditions that rival slavery?
32. 14545 (Posts: 1468; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)
You can put 2k HRE's on a 1 year old Toyota corolla, that still doesn't make it a sports car.
41. evarod48 (Posts: 154; Member since: 30 Oct 2012)
your car comparisons suck. This phone would be the equivalent of a smaller engine car going faster than a car with a bigger engine. the normal car vs. exotic car comparisons have no relevance here.
55. alltechinside (Posts: 248; Member since: 21 Apr 2013)
I agree with the screen, but I disagree completely with the CPU. We've all said the same thing: Who need's 512 mb of RAM? 1 GB? Overkill. Dual-core processor? Overkill, etc.... Moto X may not need an insane amount of cores to perform right now, but it would eventually need more horsepower on the long run. But I wouldn't be complaining if the price was lower....
Battery life is pretty decent (from the reviews I've seen), but Moto could do better especially looking at the price. They have the technology to easily pack in a big battery on a thin package, but they chose not to. Again, the price doesn't help either.
I've looked at Camera, but it looks mediocre (from reviews I've seen). Obviously, I haven't had the chance to use it myself but from the videos I've seen, the Moto X takes fast pictures but not the best camera performance.
Honestly, I would have been happy with the Moto X if the prices were lower. With Moto Maker only benefiting AT&T users, it doesn't justify the expansive price tag.
I don't see this phone as "mid-range", but I don't necessarily see it as "high-end" either.
Moto's only hope is their Marketing. But since they are competing with Samsung and HTC, I just don't see how they can overcome that. And from the fact that the iPhone is coming out soon....
64. Zero0 (Posts: 592; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)
I'm betting on camera being largely a software problem. They're saying that the processing creates noise -- this can be fixed. (I think the HTC One had the same issue around launch.)
I think if they had this at about $400-$450 unlocked, there would have been a lot less backlash, especially when the analysts and rumors called for $300 unlocked.
As for the elephant in the room that is CPU... Architecture and clock speed matter more than number of cores. There isn't that much multitasking to do (especially with a couple of the tasks already being relegated to the natural language processing cores).
67. alltechinside (Posts: 248; Member since: 21 Apr 2013)
I really hope that is a software problem. The camera quality was pretty disappointing.
Ya, the hype really brought this phone down. I would have been forgiving if they had it around $400, but for $575 as the starting point and $200 on contract, I really can't see this fly off.
I agree with you that Architecture and clock speed is more important, but having more cores does have a factor on the long run. Newer OS ,apps or software features may require more horsepower. And I don't see why would it hurt to have a better processor since the price isn't any different.
Always On and Moto assist (when the phone automatically changes to driving or night mode) are one of the most impressive things I've seen but still, it probably isn't worth buying it for a premium price tag.
33. Mass88 (Posts: 56; Member since: 06 Jan 2012)
I have a Galaxy Nexus that was bought back in December of 2011 and it runs just as good and better in some cases than my friend's GS4.
People need to stop hating on Motorola for this. You don't like the phone? Fine. But why get all worked up about it? No one is forcing you to buy it.
53. fanboy1974 (Posts: 1345; Member since: 12 Nov 2011)
I'm sorry but I had a Verizon Nexus (now my sons) and that phone sucks compared to my Note 2. And the S4 is suppose to be faster than the Note. I had 3 batteries for that phone and it was still not enough for a heavy day of use.
But this is what suppose to happen when it comes to technology. I hope the Note 3 kills my Note 2 in every category. The Moto X is not an upgrade from my 9 month old Note 2; I actually lose features.
65. Zero0 (Posts: 592; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)
The Nexus 4 isn't on Verizon. There's a reason for it, and it's not because Verizon turned Google down.
Verizon takes software and delays it so that it can be filled with all the bloatware they can get.
I wouldn't get a carrier Moto X. You take your hardware customization and screw it up with 33 of your carrier's favorite apps, 5 logos printed on the device, and a locked bootloader. Blah.
35. Avenger337 (Posts: 80; Member since: 14 Apr 2013)
I partially agree with this gentleman, resolution of 720 on a smartphone is great and should not necessarily be bad when compared with more. I think the same, the specifications are pretty good, the only detail is that ofrescan all for an attractive price or it could be a scam.
38. jphillips63 (Posts: 218; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
With no memory expansion aka SD card it's out for me and any phone that comes to market I will not consider purchasing unless it is capable of using a S card
50. joey_sfb (Posts: 5435; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)
I only left 1.6G for my 64G microSD. Please launch the 128G microSD card now!
42. flynfree (Posts: 374; Member since: 09 Jun 2013)
Let says it is high end, I'm still goin' to high end quad core and full hd display than high end dual core. Sorry to say, but that's the practical decision for me.
46. Sniggly (Posts: 7305; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)
My fracking God, each day I come in here and see people bitching about the Moto X's specs, I become more and more disappointed in the Android fanbase. If the advanced features on the Moto X, which offer a new and different experience and the same performance as phones with twice the primary cores, aren't enough to justify its price to you, fine. But stop acting like your opinion is objective. The idea that quad core processors aren't necessary for the average consumer on Android has been a slow realization that the Moto X has thrown into sharp relief. Pick up any phone with a slower clocked dual core processor that still runs Jelly Bean and you will see that it runs just as smoothly as the S4 or HTC One, and that's even without the graphics and dedicated secondary cores that Motorola has in its new phones. Look at the S3's display and tell me that it isn't so goddamn sharp that you swear you're looking at a sticker on the screen instead of the screen itself. Time and again these days I have customers who opt for the S3 unless there's a way they can knock the S4's price down because for the way they'll use it, the S3 is perfectly adequate in ways that the S2 wasn't at the same age.