Motorola has done many things right this year. The Moto X was an innovative phone that emphasized build quality and a handful of features - the opposite of Samsung's approach. The "Lazy Phone" ad campaign that accompanied it was humorous, informative, and memorable - something that can't be said for HTC's. The company has even released many of its exclusive apps into the Play Store to provide speedier updates, including the boring ones.
Since being bought by Google, Motorola has developed and released a number of apps into the Play Store, ranging from Touchless Control and its camera to the Moto G's FM Radio. This would be exciting stuff, except these apps remain limited to the devices they ship on, and Google Play availability just allows for quicker updates (which is still exciting, just for less people). Yet even for the people who own these Motorola devices, the latest app the company's dropped into the Play Store isn't going to do much to draw a smile.
A big update is rolling out for Motorola's Touchless Control app that should alleviate some of the frustrations users have had with its functionality. Primarily, voice commands no longer require you to unlock your phone first in order to work. Yet for safety reasons, emails, texts, contacts, and other private information remain protected behind a lock screen. Speaking of which, users can now unlock their Moto X by saying their PIN out loud (behavior, while cool, I would be very hesitant to recommend).
Verizon shocked many of us by being the first carrier to update the Moto X to Android 4.4. This update came less than a month after KitKat made its first public appearance, and it was followed by OTAs from T-Mobile and AT&T mere days later. Then came US Cellular's turn in early December. Today, Sprint finally rises to the occasion and has started to push out Android 4.4 to its version of the Moto X, making it the last of the large national carriers to do so.
The coupon codes were completely distributed in under 10 minutes last time, so today is your last chance to save $150 on an off-contract Moto X. The website just went live with the promotion a moment ago. Don't waste time – gogogo.
To sign up, just enter your email and begin the waiting game.
One of the Moto X's defining features is Active Display, which lights up the phones screen to display notifications such as messages, missed calls, and the like. That functionality is now the latest Motorola feature to enter the Play Store, where it's easier for the Google-owned company to distribute timely updates and fixes. Speaking of which, the version to land in the Play Store should remove the 1 - 2 second delay some users started encountering when swiping to unlock following the KitKat update.
There are a lot of things to like about about Motorola's bargain wonder the Moto G, but the animated boot logo probably isn't at the top of the list. The boot animation which it shares with the Moto X is admittedly cool, and at least someone at Motorola is paying attention to it, even after launching both phones. The Motorola Boot Services app was published in the Google Play Store today, downloadable only on the Moto G.
Update: Despite allegedly increasing the number of devices available through the promo, all the spots are already gone. It took under 10 minutes. There are going to be a lot of unhappy folks out there, but there's another slot open next Monday.
Original post: Things didn't go super-well for Motorola on Cyber Monday – it turns out people really like getting $150 off a full-price phone and pretty much crushed Motorola's website on Monday.
Update: Motorola CEO Dennis Woodside posted an apology for the Cyber Monday failures on the Motorola company blog. The company is also extending extra savings on accessories for the affected days. Here's a snippet: