Analysis

Google’s Motorola Experiment: The Silver Linings

Art: Matt Vascellaro
Art: Matt Vascellaro

Google’s strained stewardship of Motorola has been called a failed experiment, but the temporary subsidiary accomplished many things for Google.

For starters, Motorola is pushing down prices in the smartphone market with its Moto G device—a less slick version of the flagship Moto X—which retails for less than $200 without a wireless plan contract. Motorola executives say that in recent months the Moto G has become one of the top selling devices in markets such as Brazil and India and that millions have been sold overall.

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Last but not least: Several dozen Motorolans who were recruited from Google—but kept their status as Google employees—now have the option of going back. Their learnings about hardware will undoubtedly come in handy in future projects.


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There is already talk within Motorola that Google will be able to pursue new partnerships with Lenovo’s PC unit and that it might help Google do more business in China.

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