Motorola is the natural extension of Google's Nexus plans
The Nexus tradition
- To showcase Google Android - not "pure" Android, but Google Android and the features and functionality that Google envisioned as the future of the platform.
- To be a developer reference device - easily unlockable, easily rooted, and always running the latest version of Android
- To highlight the fact that manufacturer customization was the number one issue in why Android updates were so slow to be pushed out.
Motorola: the manufacturer proxy
1. adrialk (Posts: 18; Member since: 04 Sep 2013)
Motorola and Verizon have always had close ties ... we are probably just seeing it in the way of a software update for the first time.
2. buccob (Posts: 970; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)
Great article Michael...
I kind of like Sony for making their skin lightweight but they need to get their updates faster still..
I think it also comes down to making less devices, instead of flooding the market, and focusing on maybe 5: entry, midrange, flagship, phablet, tablet. This way, the manufacturer can manage all of them to update...
Motorola promised this a while ago and it is doing it... and Sony mentioned this too but it still flooding... hopefully they learn from Google/Moto.
9. cezarepc (Posts: 439; Member since: 23 Nov 2012)
Sony are the only phones that I would suggest you don't put custom ROMS in. It's almost stock, with added functionality (just like moto's) just like how I want it.
Would be great to have another Xperia S - Google Developers working on an EOM phone (not all stock like Google edition GS4 and HTC One).
3. danwatson (Posts: 102; Member since: 03 Jan 2012)
I used to care about updates a bunch more. Now, so much of the updates takes place outside the OS that most hardly notice when a new Android version rolls around. The new problem that Google will face is now manufactures are even LESS likely to update. Look at Samsung that still runs 4.1 on the GS3 (probably the most popular android phone). People hardly notice the difference between 4.1 & 4.4 that Samsung feels less pressure to update and doesn't mind skipping a cycle.
To me the biggest issue is competing products between Google and other manufactures such as Google Now/S Voice. Samsung almost forces S voice with hardware integration which is an issue for me because it competes with Google Now on my device. The fact that Samsung has a tun of (mostly) stupid air gestures makes no difference to me. Just turn them off and who cares. I'm fine with the add on features Samsung made on my Note 3, even though I hardly use them. But please Samsung, stop trying to compete with Google on things like voice search and PLEASE don't link your apps to my hardware buttons unless you give me the option of changing them
4. shinywindow (limited) (Posts: 28; Member since: 06 Apr 2012)
Must be nothing important in the tech news today. What a dumb and pointless article.
19. Doakie (Posts: 737; Member since: 06 May 2009)
Actually I thought this was an interesting read. Go back to one of the iPhone blogs.
24. kabhijeet.16 (Posts: 519; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)
This is one of the very few interesting articles which PA publishes... Much better than iBugs...
6. VZWuser76 (Posts: 896; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)
What I don't understand is how would them using Moto as there hardware extension bring an antitrust case? If that's the case, wouldn't Apple be subject to that as well? And MS always showed favoritism towards Nokia, giving them money instead of charging for their OS. And even more so now that they've bought Nokia's hardware division. How would that be different if Google decided to use Moto in the same way? How is it not illegal for Apple & MS, but it would be for Google?
7. jroc74 (Posts: 3630; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)
I dont get it either.
Look at Samsung and LG....Google has went to them for the last handful of Nexus devices over the past 2-3 years. And hasnt went back to HTC since the Nexus One.
If that isnt favoritism, I dont know what is. Never went to Moto expect for the Xoom. And thats a good point about MS and Nokia. Its fine for them to to partner, but Google and Motorola cant?
20. Finalflash (Posts: 899; Member since: 23 Jul 2013)
No because look what happened with MS with that strategy. All their partners have abandoned them and now they are losing even on the desktop front. Google needs to keep moto out of the "usual" phone business. By that I mean drop the regular phones and make premium unique phones like that "phonebloks" thing or moto X style. In that way, they could keep it profitable while also having a in-house hardware playground while not angering their partners like MS did.
8. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2604; Member since: 26 May 2011)
Because Android is the dominant player in the market, not iOS or WP. It would be seen as Google wielding power unfairly over the market.
Also, the actual logic of it doesn't really need to be all that sound. Google is already on the Justice Department's radar because of its dominance in search, and once you're the focus of one antitrust hearing, even the smallest thing can get you called back in.
11. jroc74 (Posts: 3630; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)
"Google is already on the Justice Department's radar because of its dominance in search, and once you're the focus of one antitrust hearing, even the smallest thing can get you called back in."
I think its more this than anything. Its like a repeat offender of personal fouls, technical fouls in sports.
15. VZWuser76 (Posts: 896; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)
While that sounds reasonable, if say android hadn't come to pass, and Apple had the lion share of the market, it would be no different other than they had never had any patners in iOS. And going by what happened to MS back in the 90s, that was them forcing manufacturers to use Internet Explorer as the default search engine. What Google is doing with Android is different. They are saying do whatever you want with Android, but if you want our services then do not fork Android beyond certain laid out guidelines.
But the thing is as far as favoritism in regards to updates, other OEMs could do the same as Moto, but they'd have to untangle their overlay from the OS and make it separate, much like a Nova or Apex launcher. Then they'd have much less work to update their hardware, assuming all of them get the rough builds at the same time. In essence, Moto had less software to update and make compatible due to their minimal/nonexistent skin. As long as other OEMs keep making their overlays more bloated and intertwined, Moto will continue to beat them on update speed. But, that is the OEM's fault, not Google's.
10. jellmoo (Posts: 357; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)
It isn't a matter of illegal or not, Google can use Motorola as their hardware unit all they want, the issue is their relationship with OEMs. Right now Google is keeping some separation between their hardware company (Motorola) and themselves to ensure that companies like Samsung, LG, HTC etc... don't feel as though they are at a pure disadvantage. If they felt that Google were doing things that did not allow for a fair playing field, these companies may decide to abandon Android and go other route like WP, Tizen, Firefox, Sailfish, Ubuntu, etc..
12. jroc74 (Posts: 3630; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)
I get that, but what about Sony, HTC, and whoever else was in the running for a Nexus device the past few years seeing Samsung and LG basically the Nexus OEM's right now?
That would seem like favoritism towards LG and Samsung, especially Samsung. They did back to back Nexus phones. LG might have just done back to back Nexus phones too.
If its a matter of "bring it on"...and Moto brings it....I dont see whats the problem if they get picked for the next 5 Nexus's.
13. jroc74 (Posts: 3630; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)
Forgot about Asus and Nexus tablets. And Samsung again for a Nexus tablet. Forget Motorola.....other Android OEM's should be upset about the relationship between Samsung and Google.
23. buccob (Posts: 970; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)
Yeah the problem I see is that Google once offered Sony(-ericsson) the opportunity to make a Nexus device and they turned it down...
So I guess it is like a "now you should come begging me"
Anyway I hope Google reconsider and ask Sony to make a Nexus again... Sony has been working closer to Google's guidelines than other popular manufacturers I have seen...
14. chadcy (Posts: 9; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)
Should I get a Motorola X or a Nexus 5? I like both and am leaning towards the Nexus 5. Would a Motorola made Nexus device be any different from the Moto X? Since Google owns Moto, is there really even a desire for a Moto made Nexus device? What would the specs look like? It would definitely need a micro sd card slot for me even though the current Nexus does not have one. Just thoughts in my mind I thought I would pose.
16. danwatson (Posts: 102; Member since: 03 Jan 2012)
Maybe the LG G2 would be a better fit. It's basically a better Nexus 5 (though with weird button placement). I do prefer the back of the N5 to the Glossy G2 as well and you will likely get used to the buttons in no time.
It has a more skinned version of android but a new launcher is just a free app away.
18. VZWuser76 (Posts: 896; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)
When asking for a Nexus phone, most people want one because of updates. So far LG hasn't said anything for the G2, which is ridiculous because it's a current model, it should be a no brainer. Their poor track record with updates is what made me choose a Maxx over the G2. And as far as microsd slot, I don't believe the G2 has one either.
17. VZWuser76 (Posts: 896; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)
A Moto made Nexus would basically be a Moto X, minus the Active Notifications, Touchless Controls, & Moto Assist, which I believe along with the minimal skin are the main selling points for choosing the X. Better radios and build quality would also be included in that.
As far as microsd slots, that's basically Samsung's thing. Every other OEM has gotten rid of them, except for the lone HTC One Max. Google started that on their Nexus series with the Nexus S (ironically made by Samsung) and continued through the Nexus 5 and in all of their Nexus Tablets. At this point a stock build of Android and a microsd slot will involve a Samsung phone, rooting, and a stock ROM. Sorry.
21. jan25 (Posts: 351; Member since: 26 Feb 2012)
It basically comes down to this, Moto X has better battery life and more features, Nexus edges out in display and camera. I would go with the Nexus 5. I like where the Moto X is going, it's just not there yet in my opinion, especially when competing with the Nexus.
25. kabhijeet.16 (Posts: 519; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)
A nexus already is everything which we desire minus battery life
Nexus+Motorola will change that also and we would have better battery also..
So Moto Nexus is the best device ever.
26. MobStarr (Posts: 2; Member since: 19 Nov 2013)
I don't know if it is just me but I am not a big Motorola fan....I have had alot of their phones and for some reason I have not been pleased with them....I could explain it but it would take too long....all I can say for right now is that since I got the Electrify M I am not much of a fan....