Update 8/5/14: The sale has been extended from July 31st to August 7th.
Motorola loves discounting its flagship Moto X phone at every possible opportunity. The latest is the nebulous "back to school" season, but I think they were just getting itchy - it's been a whole week since the off-contract Moto Maker editions of the X went on sale. Right now you can pick up a standard 16GB Moto X for $299 ($100 off), the 32GB model for $324 ($125 off), and the 64GB model for $374 ($125 off).
It's never a bad thing when phones get the latest version of Android software, and Motorola seems committed to sending it to their devices sooner rather than later. After the usual Verizon soak test a couple of weeks ago, the updated ROMs are ready and apparently flying out to both the high-end Moto X and Verizon's customized CDMA Moto G. If you don't see the update alert in your notification bar, you should sometime over the next few days.
We've been hearing rumors and seeing at least some evidence of a new Motorola flagship for the past few months. The Moto X was released in August of last year, which makes it just about time for a refresh in the current yearly phone cycle. Recently a tipster sent us a series of photos, claiming that the device is a "near-final prototype" from Motorola. The source claims that what you're looking at is the Moto X+1, and based on the evidence, it seems reasonably legitimate.
Motorola's sale to Lenovo doesn't seem to have dampened its resolve for speedy Android updates. After upgrading the 2013 DROID line to the latest version of KitKat earlier this week, it looks like the Moto X and the Verizon-only version of the Moto G are getting ready for the same treatment. We've been sent alerts that some users are being invited to a "soak test" for Android 4.4.4, which means that a full rollout is probably a few weeks away at most.
Motorola has some Moto Xs lying around that it wants to get rid of, so it's offering the smartphone on its website at a discount if you happen to know the magic word. In this case, that word is gibberish. Just head over to the site, pick out a Moto X in any size, and enter the coupon code MBXISMOT at checkout.
One of the drawbacks of going with a prepaid carrier is that you have to pay full price for your phone at the time of purchase – no subsidies or payment plans. Going with Net 10 might seem like a more viable option today, though, with an extra $100 off the Moto X via Moto Maker.
Android 4.4.4 is a thing now, but Sprint Moto X users will have to make do with 4.4.3, which is heading out starting today (build KXA21.12-L1.22). This is one of those times you're going to have to wait your turn, as the OTA is going out in waves.
Motorola's newer phones have a lot of little touches that improve the overall experience, one of which is the boot services app. Sounds boring, right? Well, it is most of the time. The exception being days like today when Motorola uses boot services to push out a new boot animation. This time it's got a World Cup theme.
Customized Moto X phones are already a good deal, considering that the standard models are the same price as their retail counterparts, or just a bit more if you want one of those swanky wood backs. But there may be a more practical reason for you to use the Moto Maker service: a bit of free insurance. A Reddit user recently broke the screen on his(?) Verizon Moto X, and after letting Motorola support know, he got a code for a free replacement phone on Moto Maker.
Anyone who has ever tinkered with a Moto X has likely noticed that the popular TWRP recovery didn't offer an official version for this device. There have been some unofficial ports based on the v2.6 branch of TWRP (v2.7 is the current one), but now there's an official version for all your modding needs.