13
Aug
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Just three short months ago, China approved Google's purchase of Motorola Mobility, effectively finalizing the deal. Apparently, neither company is looking to waste any time, as Motorola's new Google-driven leadership has already revealed the basics of the big turnaround plan. The first step: lay off 20% of its employees (including about 1,330 in the US) and close 94 offices around the globe. Given that Moto's phone unit has only made a profit in 6 months of the last 4 years, that's not so surprising.

What is perhaps more interesting is that Googorola will cut the number of devices made to "just a few," including dropping low-end devices from the portfolio entirely. The new CEO dreams of making their phones truly top of the line, with voice sensors to recognize who is in the room, better cameras, and much longer battery life. Coupled with Moto's already class-leading radios and chips, that could be a true recipe for success. The best part? In order to push the envelope, Google has created a group called Advanced Technology and Projects, headed by -- get this -- a former DARPA employee. That certainly sets some high expectations.

Other changes include reducing their presence in Asia and India, and having Chicago, Sunnyvale, and Beijing being the lead R&D centers. Google's head of consumer marketing (Gary Briggs, the man behind the "simple and emotional" Google ads) has taken over marketing at Motorola and intends to follow a similar style with Moto while focusing on how the company's products are superior.

Only time will tell how well Google's new plan for Motorola's products will play out. But perhaps even more important is the relationship between the two units - and whether or not it alienates Google's largest Android partners.

[Source: New York Times]

Aaron Gingrich
Aaron is a geek who has always had a passion for technology. When not working or writing, he can be found spending time with his family, playing a game, or watching a movie.

  • Abhijeet Mishra

    "Other changes including reducing their presence in Asia and India".

    Damn, if the next Nexus gets made by Motorola, I'll probably have to get that unofficially and without bill/warranty too just like I got my GNex as it probably won't come to India.

    But good thing will be to completely move out of India, as Motorola's after-sales support here already sucks, so I can't imagine how bad it will be when they reduce their presence :D

  • http://twitter.com/rohanXm Rohan Mathur

    Sucks about the layoffs though, the U.S. economy (and I'm sure wherever else people are getting laid off) is doing pretty bad right now. Best of luck to those who are affected.

  • akshat oswal

    'reducing presence in asia and india'.. regarding this they are already invisible in India. Once you buy their phones you reach a dead-end. Every 2-3 months their service centres change agencies. Also support offered is almost equivalent to google search. So better they exit completely from India rather than offering high-quality phone but sub-standard after sales service.

    • vhick

      Agreed, but it not surprising, as it is always happened...

      To bad for the customers in this continent, I feel like this continent is a basin of phones with a support near to end.

  • Ahmad Nadeem

    Do they even have presence in India that they will reduce their presence here???

    • gauthamns

      Motorola has development office in Bangalore. Reducing presence in R&D and are not talking about operations.

  • grellanl

    Look at the year-old article on the related list -- Confirmed: Motorola To Make Bootloaders On Current Devices Unlockable In "Late 2011"

    Yeah, right. The lies and the terrible approach it takes to its customers are why Moto is in the state it's in.

    They make some lovely hardware though. If they can mend their ways and provide up-to-date software with a timely and fair schedule (no delaying regions for no good reason), and *unlock the devices*, I'll be happy to buy a Moto Nexus Maxx.

    • http://www.facebook.com/Shinakuma George Millhouse

      yes thats the reason for their problems ..locked bootloaders lol...so sick of the 1% who do this kind of stuff thinking that everyone does it

      • grellanl

        That's a real sophisticated thought process there George. You're so sick of people that think we have the right to do what we want with the devices we buy? You're so sick of people standing up for your liberties? Tell that to anyone who got saddled with a Motorola Milestone running old Software and had to watch on the sidelines while the DROID guys got updates and custom ROMs that fixed so many problems in the original software.

  • RedPandaAlex

    Is it callous to ask if the blur team is on the chopping block?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      I think it's safe to say most of the jobs cut in the US are in customer service and the less important arms of the company: TV set top boxes and modems, and any other non-phone hardware. I fully expect Motorola to just stop making tablets.

  • redsmith

    So... Motorola Nexus it is, then?

    • fixxmyhead

      god help us all. worst oem. not that i care about the nexus line but i would never buy anything motorola

      • Sxeptomaniac

        My Droid1 was a solid, dependable phone. It worked well and could take quite a beating without giving me any trouble. Personally, I like their tendency to go with a more industrial, solid design, too. Motorola has, for the most part, made good hardware for well over a decade, but their software quality for those phones has often been lacking (as seen with MotoBlur, for example)

        The only thing that stopped me from getting a Droid Razr Maxx was the fact that they kept the price so high after the Galaxy Nexus had already dropped quite a bit, so I went with the latter. I would have no hesitation about buying a Motorola Nexus in the future.

        • uansari1

          Not to mention no one has speakers like Moto..all other speakers pale in comparison.

      • http://www.facebook.com/lucyparanormal Daniel Tiberius

        Yeah it would take a huge turnaround for me to buy anything Motorola as well, having seen a lot of my friends have issues with the Droid and Droid X phones, driving them all to go get iPhones.

        • ElfirBFG

          Once you get rid of Blur, they're great phones. Durable, dependable, even with LOTS of tinkering/OC'ing. I'd buy a Moto Nexus with Vanilla KLP in a heartbeat.

          • fixxmyhead

            What is this LOTS of tinkering u speak of with locked bootloaders? There's a reason these phones don't get support from the cm team

          • ElfirBFG

            I haven't had a stock ROM on my Atrix since February, about 45 minutes after getting rid of the bootloader. I've tried numerous builds of CyanogenMod thanks to devs like: Jokersax, Th3Bill, epinter, turl, etc.. I've had 7.2, 9, 10, Paranoid Android 1.5(ICS/HC) and now I'm using PA 1.95(JB).

            The glory of the Android ecosystem is that you don't need 'official' support. There are people out there willing to crack BLs, allow one-click root, and bring the newest version of Andy to your phone. I'm grateful for those people.

            I do think unlocked BLs are better, and I hope 'Googorola' brings that, and also brings Vanilla Android to Moto devices. Only time will tell though.

          • fixxmyhead

            Ur the exception bro the atrix is not even supposed to have that boot loader unlocked but some one leaked an official dev unit that's why ur bootloader is unlocked. Get another Motorola phone and see how that goes. I want 'official' support for a working camera and pretty flawless rom not some half baked rom

      • http://www.facebook.com/Shinakuma George Millhouse

        agreed. I HATE their hardware...buggiest shit out there

        • Sxeptomaniac

          Huh? "Buggy" is a term related to software, generally, not hardware. I'd agree that Motorola typically makes buggy, non-user-friendly software, but I've almost always found their hardware to be solid and dependable.

  • Asphyx

    I would bet most of the Layoffs are in areas where there is already duplication of services at Google itself. Top of that list is likely the Blur crew. They don't need to keep folks who are only there to hack Android and why would Google pay for someone to do what they already pay lots of developers to do?
    They may be closing offices in India and other locations in Asia but that too is probably due to Google already having offices in those locations to handle thier presence there.
    As for the Bootloaders that would appear to really be a problem with the carriers as much as Moto itself. Moto's refusal probably has as much to do with Why piss off the guys who carry our phones as much as thier insistence on always protecting thier proprietary work (which has always been an issue with Moto even in the settop and radio divisions.)
    I doubt we will see any change and I also doubt Moto will be picked anytime soon to release a GED device. They will continue giving these out to various partners to prove to them the purchase of Moto is not going to hurt thier partners but what will be done is Moto will be the front runner in new hardware features Google would like to see incorporated into future devices.
    I see 3D cameras maybe even IR sensors (the return some would say) and better voice command support for these devices perhaps even a chip based voice command which Moto certainly has the ability to design and put to silicon.
    It will be interesting to see what kind of hardware innovations the Googorola will create as they will now have the ability that Apple has had to drive the hardware where before they were pretty much at the mercy of someone else's hardware.
    And all thier partners will benefit because they will easily be able to add those same features knowing full well Android AOSP will have that support built into the OS.
    People wer so concerned this would mean war with Google's other Android Partners but it's really War against Apple and it's tyrannical ways!

    • CJ Walker

      This would be so awesome if true.

  • Tyler Jones

    With Google in charge they should finally start making good choices such as an unlocked bootloader. I would love to see razr nexus. One can only imagine the perfection and awesomeness it would have

  • Freak4Dell

    I can't wait.

  • http://twitter.com/yellowspyder Spyder Ryder

    The only reason I'd never buy another motorola is the BLUR. God I hated that. Had to re-sign in every time you do anything like take out the sim card. It was nothing I ever used and resented having to deal with it. No, I don't want to put in other ROMS... I've done that a million times and the other ROMS always lack something or something doesn't work.

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