Android VP of Engineering: Google treats Motorola “just like HTC or Samsung”

February 28, 2013
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Google has just told the press, yet again, that they treat Motorola like a separate company. Hiroshi Lockheimer, Vice President of Engineering for Android at Google (pictured above), told C|Net that Google treats Motorola like they’re just another partner. That there’s a firewall between the two companies. That the Nexus program is still open to everyone.

None of this is new if you’ve been keeping track of the Android space, but still, we wonder, is Google just lying to everyone in order to keep their partners from freaking out? HTC still makes Windows Phones. Samsung is trying to build a totally new operating system called Tizen. Sony has said that they’re going to experiment with Firefox OS in 2014. LG just bought webOS. There is definitely some fear in the air that Google will do something with their Motorola unit, but are those fears warranted?

Anyone who thinks Motorola will become as big and as successful as Samsung is seriously delusional. Google would have to drop some serious coin on components, factories, and advertising in order to become “the next big thing”. What Motorola can become however is the shining beacon of light that everyone looks towards.

Next devices have never been big sellers because they’re almost always sold unsubsidized. That’s not the most attractive way to buy a phone in rich Western markets where people are used to subsidies. Even with a starting price of just $299, that’s still a bit much for most.

But just think about the Nexus 4. Google packed all that hardware into such a cheap phone. Imagine what they could do if they gave themselves a price target of $599? We think that’s the most likely scenario for Motorola, for them to become a small, but important player.

What do you think? More importantly, when do you think we’ll finally get some real answers?

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