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Google Q1 2014 results are in, Motorola continues to struggle

Posted by wicked April - 16 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

Google Logo AA

Google has now reported its earning for Q1 2014, and while the company generated a revenue of $15.42 billion, they actually missed the Wall Street target of $15.58 billion.

Of course, even missing analyst targets, Google still managed to increase revenue by 19% over Q1 2013. Earnings are also on the upswing at $4.12 billion. Out of the revenue generated, $10.46 billion came by way of Google sites such as Gmail, Search and Youtube — a 21% increase over last year. Adsense network revenue generated $3.4 billion, and other revenue (hardware, Google Play, etc) made up $1.05 billion and was up 48%.

In other words, Google is continuing to make money, even if it didn’t quite meet the exceptions of Wall Street. Of course, no one reading this is surprised to see that Google alive and well. What many of us are curious about, however, is where Motorola sits in all of this.

Motorola still struggling to turn things around fiscally

Motorola may be preparing to transition over to Lenovo, but it remains part of Google for now, even if Google reported it as part of “discontinued operations”. Now that the company has had the chance to get out the Moto G and Moto X to more markets, is that ship turning around? Unfortunately, it doesn’t look that way.

For Q1 2014, Motorola brought in $1.45 billion in revenues but saw a loss of $198 million, compared with an $182 million loss in Q1 2013. That’s certainly not the direction we want to see Motorola heading.

Of course, there is some light at the end of the tunnel. The Moto G in particular has done fairly well — even if it hasn’t been able to do enough to stem the bleeding — and Motorola is starting to achieve more great brand recognition in Europe and other parts of the world outside of North America.

Lenovo recently said that they believe that they can turn things around for Motorola, while still largely following through with the vision that Motorola set for itself with the Moto X and G. Whether they are simply spinning things positively for PR’s sake remains unseen.








Motorola Migrate update improves pairing, fixes issues

Posted by wicked April - 14 - 2014 - Monday Comments Off

If you bought the Moto X or one of Motorola‘s other recent handsets, Motorola Migrate likely served as a mixed blessing: while easy to use, it suffers from various bugs that could cause a random loss of connection or trouble pairing. Today the company pushed out an update for the app addressing the problems.

Motorola Migrate is a handy way to transfer the data from one’s previous handset to their new Motorola device, including things like text messages and contacts. The app is available from the Google Play Store, and once downloaded it works with wifi.

The old handset is used to scan a QR code generated by the app on the new handset, which then allows the two handsets to connect with each other. Those who have cameras with fixed focus could run into issues with this, having trouble scanning the code.

The update brings support for QR pairing with a smartphone that has a fixed-focus camera. Beyond this, a number of unspecified bugs that could cause trouble with transferring data between handsets have also been addressed, potentially eliminating any “connection lost” or similar errors.

SOURCE: Google+

Motorola’s 2012 DROID devices still slated to get KitKat in a few more weeks

Posted by wicked April - 14 - 2014 - Monday Comments Off

Motorola_Logo_From_DROID_RAZR_MAXX_HD_TA

Whenever Google releases a new version, or major update, to Android one of the most common questions for owners of existing phones is whether their device will ever benefit. Owners of the Motorola DROID  devices from 2012, the DROID RAZR HD, DROID RAZR M, and DROID RAZR MAXX HD has some reason to be concerned when Android 4.4 KitKat was released last fall as their devices were already “old” in terms of smartphones. They probably breathed a sigh of relief when Motorola announced they would make KitKat available for their devices at some point. After months of no updates though, some were questioning whether Motorola was really committed to the effort to make KitKat available for their devices. The good news for most, if not all, of these owners is that David Schuster with Motorola posted over the weekend that the update was only “a few more weeks” away.

In his post on Google+, Schuster indicates the team has made “great progress” in preparing KitKat for the “2012 DROID family” of devices. He does list the RAZR HD and RAZR M specifically, but left off the RAZR MAXX HD. Hopefully leaving off specific mention of that third device was merely an oversight. Schuster indicates the version to be released will be Android 4.4.2.

In a response to some questions, Schuster also reported work in continuing on Android 4.4.x for the 2013 DROID devices. However, the team has been dealing with “a number of different and unfortunately changing requirements.” He does think the challenges are behind the team at this point, so those devices appear to be on track to get an upgrade in “a few more weeks” as well.

source: +David Schuster

Come comment on this article: Motorola’s 2012 DROID devices still slated to get KitKat in a few more weeks

DROID RAZR HD and RAZR M Kit Kat update expected in “weeks”

Posted by wicked April - 14 - 2014 - Monday Comments Off

Some good news has arrived for those carrying a DROID RAZR HD or RAZR M — Kit Kat is coming. There has yet to be a changelog shared by Verizon Wireless, however we do know progress has been made and the update should be arriving in a few weeks time. Details have been shared by David Schuster of Motorola who mentioned the update “should only be a few more weeks.”

Schuster posted the details on his Google+ page, but despite mentioning the “2012 DROID family,” there wasn’t anything about the MAXX. The details included specific mention of the RAZR HD and M, however we can hope the MAXX Kit Kat update will be following shortly after.

Android-KitKat1-540x3601111111111111

“A number of people have been asking me about that status of the KitKat upgrade for the 2012 DROID family (HD and M). I am happy to report that we have made great progress and it should only be a few more weeks until you guys can enjoy it.”

Along with a full changelog, we are still looking to see which version of Kit Kat the handsets will be getting. As other Motorola devices have gone to Android 4.4.2 that is what seems most likely. Of course, this will probably leave some disappointed they are not getting 4.4.3, which has just begun rolling out for Nexus 5 users on Sprint.

These 2012 DROID family was originally released back in September 2012, which means those who picked one up around that time would have roughly 5-6 months left on a two-year agreement. Bottom line here, what may seem like an old device to some, may be the only option for others and that being the case — we suspect that group will be very happy with this update.

SOURCE: +DavidSchuster

Motorola: RAZR HD and RAZR M Kit Kat Updates Arrive in a “Few More Weeks”

Posted by Kellex April - 14 - 2014 - Monday Comments Off
Motorola:  RAZR HD and RAZR M Kit Kat Updates Arrive in a “Few More Weeks”


Over the weekend, Motorola’s David Schuster gave DROID RAZR HD and RAZR M owners some fantastic news on the Kit Kat update front. According to Schuster, Motorola has made “great progress” on the updates and should be able to deliver them within a “few more weeks.” 

Moto confirmed back in November that this family of phones would be updated to Android 4.4+ at some point, but doubts had begun to arise after months of silence. Well, we did see a special software “test drive” arrive in March, though nothing really came of it.

He didn’t mention the RAZR MAXX HD, specifically, but did say the “2012 DROID family,” which includes that model.

As we know more, we’ll be sure to pass it along.

Via:  +David Schuster

Motorola: RAZR HD and RAZR M Kit Kat Updates Arrive in a “Few More Weeks” is a post from: Droid Life

Leather joins wood in leaked list of Moto X+1 custom back covers

Posted by wicked April - 14 - 2014 - Monday Comments Off

moto-x-wood-1 The Next Web

Twitter user @evleaks apparently has morsels not just about a red HTC One (M8) but also about new Moto X+1 custom back covers.

The said user has leaked a list naming wood and leather as additional upcoming back panel options for the second-generation Moto X rumored to be called the Moto X+1.

The leaked list also named several other custom back panels classified as “Cool,” “Neutral,” and “Warm.” The list has a total of 5 categories offering 25 various back panel options, as shown below:

  • Cool –
    • Navy
    • Turquoise
    • Olive
    • Royal Blue
    • Dark Teal
  • Neutral –
    • Slate
    • Purple
    • Smoke
    • Black
    • Chalk
  • Warm –
    • Red
    • Orange
    • Lemon Lime
    • Violet
    • Crimson
    • Raspberry
    • Cabernet
  • Wood –
    • Teak
    • Bamboo
    • Rosewood
    • Ebony
  • Leather –
    • Black
    • Red
    • Grey
    • Blue

Motorola’s customization tool known as Moto Maker currently offers wooden back panels under the “Natural” category, but in the leaked list, wooden panels go into a category all their own — “Wood.”

Rumor of the leather back panel option came out earlier this month via the same leak source. If true, the addition of real leather to the usual fare of back panels will elate those who want a touch of luxury on their Motorola phones.

Only few manufacturers exclusively produce luxury smartphones with real leather back panels. The Vertu Constellation series, for example, uses real handmade leather.

Several users have been wondering whether or not the leather back panel for the Moto X+1 will be made of real leather. Considering that Motorola has not yet officially announced anything about it, one’s guess is as good as anyone else’s, but it is worth noting that the custom wood back panels for the Moto X are real wood. So, the leather-series panels will most likely also be real leather.

Which back panel option do you fancy?








Moto X+1 backplate choices leak, leather is ready for the spotlight

Posted by wicked April - 13 - 2014 - Sunday Comments Off

Moto_G_Back_Cover_Removed_TA

Remember the Moto X+1 name that leaked earlier this month? It is now (almost) confirmed that it will be the device to feature Motorola’s upcoming leather backplates. On Twitter, @evleaks tweeted an image that listed twenty-five varieties among five categories. The star of the show here is the Leather category as it will allow customers to choose between four differ colors. Also, Wood backplates make a return along with the usual Cool, Neutral, and Warm categories.

Rumored Moto X+1 backplates, from @evleaks:

  • Cool: Navy, Turquoise, Olive, Royal Blue, Dark Teal
  • Neutral: Slate, Purple, Smoke, Black, Chalk
  • Warm: Red, Orange, Lemon Lime, Violet, Crimson, Raspberry, Cabernet
  • Wood: Teak, Bamboo, Rosewood, Ebony
  • Leather: Black, Red, Grey, Blue

 

 

What backplate choice tickles your fancy?

Source: @evleaks

Come comment on this article: Moto X+1 backplate choices leak, leather is ready for the spotlight

6 future Android phones to keep an eye on

Posted by wicked April - 11 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

galaxy note 3 oppo n1 xperia z1 ultra phablets aa 2

Some would argue that it has been a bit of a slow start to the year for Android phones. New flagship handsets from HTC, Samsung, and Sony haven’t quite produced the big technological leaps that some were expecting, and overall these latest Android phones have received a bit of a mixed response from the community.

Fortunately, the world of Android is full of other companies all vying for our attention, with some truly exceptional smartphones on the horizon. So, what’s worth keeping an eye on? Let’s find out.

OnePlus press (2)

OnePlus One

Let’s start with the handset that we probably know the most about, the OnePlus One. The former Oppo development team has been very open about their “never settle” approach to hardware, and the new OnePlus One should fit the bill for those of you who have been waiting for a no-frills powerhouse handset. Not only that, but this will be the first handset to come with its own official version of CyanogenMod as the default operating system.

For hardware, the OnePlus One will feature the current top of the line quad-core Snapdragon 801 clocked at 2.5GHz, with a sped up 578MHz Adreno 330 GPU, compared with the 450MHz clock speed found in the Snapdragon 800. This is the same SoC found in the Galaxy S5, and also includes the eMMC 5.0 standard for faster flash storage speeds.

The OnePlus One also has a 5.5 inch IPS display with 1080p resolution, 3GB RAM, a 13 megapixel rear camera, a 3100 mAh battery accompanied by some “mystery” battery tech, and will come in 16GB and 64GB storage options. We haven’t had a look at the handset’s design or build materials yet, but there’s certainly a lot of tech packed in for less than $400.

htc-one-vs-oneplus-one

Moving on to software. Anyone who has taken the effort to flash CyanogenMod in the past will have a good idea about what the OnePlus One experience will probably be like. However, for the fast majority of consumers this is their first chance to try out the tweaked Android distribution, and it could raise a few interesting questions for Google’s Android platform.

CyanogenMod’s minimal and clean experience should provide a compelling quick experience, when combined with the handset’s top of the line specs, but the ROM also has plenty of its own useful features to help it compete with the other big players. CyanogenMod comes with full theme support, FLAC audio, USB tethering, and overclocking features out of the box, plus many more. It’s going to be interesting to watch how CyanogenMod challenges the more established Android ecosystem.

The handset will come with the Android 4.4 KitKat based CyanogenMod 11 and will finally be unveiled later this month on 23rd April.

LG G2 Review Hands On

LG G3

I don’t think we could mention top of the line hardware without looking forward to the upcoming LG G3. Last year’s LG G2 offered up high-end hardware at a much lower price than other premium smartphones, demonstrating that the manufacturer can do much more than produce midrange smartphones.

Alongside Samsung, LG is the other big name in mobile display technologies, it was the first to bring a QHD display (that’s 2560×1440 pixels) to the market, which could be making its way to the G3. Not only does the 5.5 inch display have an impressive 538 ppi, but the display comes in at just 1.21mm thick with an equally thin bezel of 1.2mm. LG already offers handsets with the biggest body-to-screen ration, so if you care about bezels, LG is certainly the company to watch. Although the various QHD display rumours haven’t quite panned out so far, bar the Oppo Find 7, LG has the technology to be one of the first.

body to screen ratio wide 1600px

LG has also been pushing the envelope with other media centric technology, the LG G2 was the first handset to offer up 192kHz audio. Speaking of media, the LG G3 is expected to feature a 16 megapixel camera, so we’ll probably see 4K video recording come as standard this time.

Rumour has it that the LG G3 will show up around May or June, which matches up nicely with the expected arrival of the first Snapdragon 805 powered smartphones. The Snapdragon 805 features new Krait 450 CPU cores, clocked at 2.5GHz, a new Adreno 420 GPU and double the memory bandwidth of the Snapdragon 800. If this pans out, LG will have one of the fastest smartphones on the market, offering up a bigger generational performance leap than the Galaxy S5, One (M8), or Xperia Z2.

If LG comes up with another really top notch piece of tech with another very reasonable price tag, the company could really shake up the market. Especially given the mediocre and mixed receptions of the Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One (M8).

LG G Flex Hands on AA (6 of 19)

LG G2 Flex

Sticking with LG, the company is not only working on its QHD display technology, but it’s also one of the leading manufacturers of flexible displays too. Although the original LG G Flex may have had one or two minor flaws, it was a better proof of concept than the Samsung Galaxy Round. We were recently given some insight into LG’s plans for future flexible devices, which could make the G2 Flex a really compelling handset.

While Samsung is busying away with curved aesthetic designs, LG is planning to upgrade the performance of its own panels this time around, which means that we’re very likely to see a 1080p flexible device from LG at some point this year. This would address our only real complaint about the original G Flex, the 720p screen. Other than that, the G Flex was a powerhouse of a smartphone, and with even beefier processors and better camera components heading our way later this year, the G2 Flex should be the first bendable smartphone to rival the plethora of rigid premium handsets.

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 jet black aa 43

Samsung Galaxy Note 4

Although the yearly unveiling of Samsung’s new Galaxy S flagship receives the most fanfare, the Galaxy Note series is often where Samsung really gets to flex its engineering muscles. The Note 3 was Samsung’s first Snapdragon 800 device and also made wider use of Samsung’s big.LITTLE octa-core processor, not forgetting the 3GB worth of RAM, so we’re anticipating big things from this year’s Note 4.

While the traditional September release date will make the Note 4 a little early for the newly announced Snapdragon 808 and 810 SoCs, which are expected in early 2015, the release window falls right behind the arrival of the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 SoCs. There’s even a rumor going around that Samsung’s is preparing its own 64-bit Exynos chip for some time near the end of 2014. If Samsung is going to launch such a chip, you can bet that the Note 4 would be where it debuts.

Ultra-high resolution displays might not be so necessary on 5 inch or smaller smartphones, but they make a lot more sense as we start to approach the 6 inch mark, or higher. Maybe the Note 4 will give us our first glimpse at Samsung’s Super AMOLED QHD resolution display that we keep hearing whispers of.

The Galaxy Note 4 is Samsung’s next chance to show off its technological achievements and it will no doubt be an industry leading device when it arrives later this year. The Note 4 is definitely one to watch.

moto-x-aa-wood

Moto X+1

The Moto X is still a tough handset to beat in the mid-tier smartphone market, and for that reason alone it’s exciting to see what Motorola will offer with its next generation design. Part of what made the original Moto X so good was its excellent combination of hardware and software features, without the need to go overboard with the specifications or the price tag. However, that doesn’t mean that it can’t offer up some serious competition to the other big players.

Hardware wise, the Moto X+1 name suggests that we’re looking at an incremental upgrade rather than a complete overhaul, so no Snapdragon 805 processors here, but that’s part of what makes the handset so exciting. While high-end tech may not be moving as quickly as we’d like, a lot of last generation’s technology is beginning to trickle down into the mid-range, see the new HTC Desire range.

While we don’t have any specs at this time, there’s a good chance that we’ll be looking at a quad-core processor this time around, perhaps something like the new Snapdragon 610, a boost to the existing 10 megapixel camera, and we might even see a 1080p display in the new Moto X+1. Although the Moto X isn’t about specs, the constant downward pressure on component prices could see the mid-range make a big leap forward this year.

We haven’t even mentioned potential improvements to the Moto X’s unique features. We recently heard rumors of a leather rather than wood back for the new device, so customization still seems to be key with the Moto X+1. It will also be interesting to see what Motorola does with Voice Commands, Google Now, and its other software features, now that it’s no longer associated with Google. Will Lenovo keep things close to the stock Android experience?

It’s likely that Motorola will be releasing a refresh of the Moto X sometime soon, the company has hinted at a late summer release date in the past.

motorola project ara modular smartphone (1)

Project Ara

This leaves us with the biggest potential game changer of them all, Project Ara. Although the device is still in its infancy, Project Ara’s modular design could completely reshape the way we think about smartphone upgrades and components.

For now, it’s difficult to gauge how well picking and choosing components would go down with the average consumers, who typically prefer products that just work out of the box. However, for us smartphone enthusiasts, Project Ara should allow us to keep up with innovations in smartphone technology and build our ideal devices, without having to fork out for a new handset every year.

project-ara-mdk-2

For a recap, Ara’s modular design means that there are a limit number of slots available to assign components too. Each component can be placed in any slot that will accommodate it, and, providing that you’ve included the basic CPU and battery, you’re free to build whatever type of smartphone you’d like. Project Ara will ship with three different sized skeletons, each offering a different number of modules and layouts.project-ara-mdk-6

This means that owners would be free to change out components for whatever suits their budgets or needs. Fancy a better camera, you can just change out the camera module, or if you want to try out a heart rate monitor to help track your fitness, you can just pick on up and slot it in, and cracked screens can be replaced far more easily. The most recent images have also shown that users can opt for different display sizes with each skeleton, and can even customize the type of keyboards and number pads used on the front of their device.

There are also plans for an online shop for picking your parts and Google Play integration to come, which opens up potential for a whole new market in third party modules. Project Ara may still be quite a long way away from a consumer release, early 2015 is the current estimate, but there’s bag of potential here which will hopefully open up smartphone technology to people of all budgets and needs.

Have any of these handsets made their way onto your watch list? Which devices are you most looking forward to over the coming year?

Note: There is a poll embedded within this post, please visit the site to participate in this post’s poll.






Motorola names Rick Osterloh as its new President

Posted by wicked April - 9 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

RickOsterloh

There seems to be a fair share of uncertainty brewing over at Motorola these days. Not only did Google catch most of us off guard when it announced its plans to sell Motorola to Lenovo earlier this year, even their CEO Dennis Woodside recently announced he was jumping ship to work for Dropbox.

Rick Osterloh is officially taking Woodside’s place as the top-dog at Motorola

Despite the upcoming change of hands from Google and the loss of its CEO, Lenovo remains confident that it can help turn Motorola around quickly and has previously hinted about its plans to expand the brand into emerging markets in a more meaningful way.

As Motorola marches forward, it’s going to need a strong leader if it wants to keep up the momentum that it has generated over the last year or so. To that end, Motorola has now announced that Rick Osterloh is officially taking Woodside’s place as the top-dog at Motorola.

We are pleased to learn that Motorola has named Rick Osterloh to lead Motorola Mobility, effective today. Rick has a strong track record of success and delivering outstanding innovation for customers. He is a trusted, proven leader. We’re confident in his ability to not only manage a smooth transition at Motorola from Google to Lenovo but also to lead the business forward for continued growth.
Liu Jun
Lenovo executive VP

It’s important to note that Osterloh is not titled as CEO, however, and is instead the president and chief operating officer of the company. Osterloh is no stranger to Motorola, and previously headed up the company’s product management group.

It’s hard to say whether or not Lenovo plans to keep Osterloh as Motorola’s head once the dust fully settles, though their initial comments seem to suggest it is certainly a possibility that Osterloh will continue to be a key part of Motorola during and after the transition to Lenovo.

Motorola still has a long road ahead

For Osterloh and company, Motorola still has a long journey ahead of it, and it’s still hard to say exactly what the company will look like a year from now, let alone five or ten years out.

To Motorola’s credit, they seem to be on the right path, even if it’s a slow-going one. In particular, Motorola has seen a great deal of success with its budget-oriented Moto G. Recently Motorola revealed the Moto G was the best-selling smartphone in the company’s history, beating out popular Droid devices even. Additionally, the Moto G has done very well in select European markets, with Motorola now controlling about 6% of the smartphone market in the UK.

Although the Moto 360 won’t arrive until sometime later this year, the initial excitement generated by the announcement of the company’s unique round smartwatch also seems like a good sign for the company.

What do you think, are you cautiously optimistic about the future of Motorola under Lenovo? Do you think that Osterloh is the right man to lead, or do you wish Woodside would have stayed on? Let us know what you think in the comments below.








Motorola may boost benefits for credit account holders

Posted by wicked April - 9 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

Motorola began offering financing options for smartphone purchases several months earlier. At the time those looking to make a purchase were being tempted with zero down and zero interest offers, but essentially the Motorola option was just like signing up for any other credit card offer.

Taking that last thought a step further, it now looks like Motorola is getting ready to boost the setup with extra perks and benefits. Details are just beginning to take shape, and so far what we are seeing comes courtesy of a few Droid-Life tipsters. It seems there are a few surveys being sent out to members of the credit program. The survey is your standard question and answer type with the options ranging from very likely to don’t know.

More to the point, these appear to be lining things up for everything from free shipping, to extra Google Drive storage and Google Play gift cards. There was also mention of a “Loyalty Bonus” for those who “stayed loyal to the brand for 12 months.”

Of these two surveys, one points more to a Rewards Program with the other being an “Elite” benefits package. Further details on the Elite package look to include a “modest” monthly charge which could later be used for benefits including the possibility of a free phone. On the other hand, the reward program looks like it will be free and more similar to other credit card reward options.

As this is still in the random survey stage — we aren’t sure when (or if) any of this will be added to the credit program.

VIA: Droid-Life

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