Motorola have been quite quiet recently regarding their upcoming Android devices. Sure, we’ve heard a thing or two here and there, but nothing huge. So what are the business analysts saying about Motorola’s chances now that they’ve taken Android up as their OS of choice for their upcoming bunch of mobile phones?
The short answer is ‘success’, but not like RAZR, arguably one of the most popular phones among consumers a few years back that literally set design trends at the time. No, this time analysts believe that most of the upcoming Android devices by Motorola will be low to middle end and therefore will avoid competition with the best selling smartphones that are somewhat more top-end devices (think iPhone, Pre, and Blackberry). According to Matt Thornton, an analyst at Avian Securities, the new Android handsets from Motorola won’t set any bars in terms of hardware, but will have a great chance of putting Motorola back on the map. Michael Mahoney, senior managing director at investment manager Falcon Point Capital, made similar comments.
So how will Motorola set themselves apart? Richard Doherty, director with research firm Envisioneering Group, believes the trick lies in “unique mobile services made available through software customized specifically for consumer, business, and government users”. Furthermore, by avoiding competition with the most well known brands, it gives Motorola a chance to actually start earning some money right away without having to beat the competition first. According to Barclays Capital, one new Android handset should sell for $300 before carrier subsidies, and another for $500. This is decent for a mid-range phone. Given a holiday release worldwide, Motorola could push as many as 1.5 million units.
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The tricky part of this is to not overlook all the cheap no-name brand phones from China that will be running Android as well. Just like in the PC business, once a tech becomes a comodity, it’s whoever can churn them out at the lowest cost, and motorola is going to have a tough time with that.
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