Google to use Motorola acquisition to launch next-generation “X Phone”
After acquiring Motorola for $12.5 billion, Google is said to be working on what is known internally as the “X Phone,” their “stand apart” phone to compete directly with the iPhone, according to the Wall Street Journal. Google has declined to comment. The sophisticated device could be released in 2013, and while reports note that the device should compete directly with the iPhone, and less with Samsung’s Galaxy line or Motorola’s current offering, some question the impact of the “X Phone” release.
The “X phone” project could feature flexible screens that have been grabbing headlines this year, and possibly image and gesture-recognition software. Led by former Google product manager, Lior Ron, the Journal reports that the company is already experiencing development issues, particularly with their supply chain and worries over battery life with all of the next-generation features. The irony here is that with the passing of Steve Jobs, Apple’s new CEO, Tim Cook has expertise in the supply chain, so the timing of the change of leadership couldn’t be better for Apple and worse for Google.
Google is famous for being able to complete projects in record speeds, but that is all based on web projects – hardware and manufacturing are a totally different story, and there are reports that the original plans for the “X Phone” are being reconsidered. Some would take that to mean that the plans are being scrapped, we would speculate that the supply chain is being reexamined as they are likely extremely ambitious with how cutting edge the device is, given that they obviously want to take the iPhone market share.
“Meanwhile, Google must manage complex relationships with smartphone makers that use its Android mobile-device software—particularly with Samsung Electronics Co., a Motorola rival that has become the No. 1 smartphone maker with Google’s help,” the Journal reports.
Future of the “X Phone,” and why develop it anyway?
After the “X Phone” launch, Google will likely develop a tablet based on the same platform, and Motorola will continue to create devices for carrier partner, Verizon.
So why even develop a device? Is it a hatred of their rival, Apple? No, it is more likely just as MacRumors opines, “Google’s acquisition of Motorola was controversial as it puts Google in direct competition with their Android licensees. Apple and Samsung, however, have captured the lion’s share of smartphone profits, and Google is reportedly concerned that Samsung could “fork” Android and preventing Google’s applications from being installed by default. This could have a large impact on Google’s mobile reach if it doesn’t develop its own handset.”