Motorola is going away, says Lenovo

by: John DyeJanuary 7, 2016


In circa 2005, it seemed like every time a cell phone rang, that cellphone was a Razr flip phone, and the sound you heard was Motorola’s iconic “Hello Moto” ringtone. Now it’s time to finally say “goodbye” to Motorola. At CES today, Lenovo higher-ups announced that their company, which has owned Motorola since 2014, will be phasing out the brand name.

This doesn’t mean that the Moto line is dead, however. Moto smartphones will still be in production in the coming years, complete with their familiar M-brand symbol. However, these devices will also have Lenovo’s branding and iconography.

moto x 2015 second opinion aa (2 of 24)

The basic idea is this: Lenovo wants the brand recognition Motorola used to enjoy. Although Motorola fell out of the spotlights as Samsung and Apple came to dominate the mobile market, they still enjoy a fairly decent fanbase. Lenovo, on the other hand, is a much more obscure name in the mobile industry. Sure, they’re a big deal in computers, but when it comes to smartphones, Motorola is massive by comparison. When they bought the company from Google, it was to bolster their presence in the mobile market.

Motorola Moto G aa 13See also: What’s the true motivation behind Google’s sale of Motorola?83

Lenovo is looking to keep the Moto line running as their upper-tier devices and and continue selling their smartphones as more budget-friendly alternatives. The company hopes that appending their signage to the more highly-regarded Moto devices will increase their brand recognition in the mobile market and perhaps boost the sell of their lower tier products as well.

From the consumer’s perspective, this looks to be a case of ‘a rose by any other name.’ The same people are continuing to develop and produce the same products, the words associated with them will just change as the Motorola brand vanishes. From Lenovo’s perspective, this looks to be good marketing, plain and simple.

What are your thoughts regarding the disappearance of the Motorola brand? Let us know in the comments, and be sure to click the button below to stay abreast of all our CES 2016 coverage!

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  • Arman


  • Linh

    Good riddance…Moto customer support was one of the worse. Telephone support people can barely speak English.

    • Chris

      As much as Apple sucks, they do get one thing right. Their retail stores with the support there…

    • Your comment, absolutely spot on!

      Motorola “Customer Support” in India is “non-existence”, this brand was ousted twice here, and i m a moto user, my screen shattered, it takes ages to get anything repair here by their svc’s. 100% of customers are troubled, no resolution or even hearing of any complain, people can’t reach their top-exec. you think this kind of company whose focus is just selling only gonna go anywhere?

      • Avieshek Rajkhowa

        They r going to Lenovo

  • Edison Dairo

    moto or nothing

    • Victor Creed

      Lol. Right

    • Vikram Prashanth


      • studiotalk

        Stupid idea. Motorola is one of the great iconic brands of the 20th century and a bunch of executives in China think they can get the American public to feel the same about Lenovo. Is it a medication? A vacuum? A feminine care product?

  • Zak Taccardi

    As long as they do screw up Moto’s awesome take on stock Android, I’ll be happy

    • Victor Creed

      As long as they do?

      • Randy Saylor

        Learn to spell check

    • Chris

      Life of a Nerd is so hard huh?

  • nebulaoperator

    Personally , Lenovo smartphone line to me is faceless and with little story to tell. They should be very careful how to make that transition, maintain Moto values, design language and philosophy. Moto G became an iconic budget phone line to me something hardly any manufacturer achieved. And guess what? Simplicity and customization are the success formula. Moto never tried to be someone they invented their style , they are unique. I fear withing time Lenovo will loose it for some wrong reason they might think they are better and smarter. Having said that UK Moto post purchase service from my own experience is pathetic.

    • osm

      Well they’ve been pretty successful at keeping ThinkPad values so I wouldn’t be too concerned

      • nebulaoperator

        I sincerely hope but my last sentence sums it up. I also did some research based Moto UK costumer service since Lenovo acquisition it got only worse . I have some doubts here.

        • osm

          I’m also in the UK, but I’ve never needed customer support from Motorola so I don’t really have an opinion on this.

          What are the details of your research? Have customer satisfaction scores in reputable surveys gone down since the Lenovo acquisition, or is your opinion just based on comments you have seen in online forums?

          Looking at it optimistically, Lenovo must have greater international infrastructure for *hardware* support than Google has so I’d expect the support level to go up. But it will probably take more than one year post-acquisition for improvements to happen.

          • nebulaoperator

            Lucky you are.

            My details are consumer affair organisation. You also have to take in what people say on forums and in general. Just google. You will be surprised.

            For instance in the last 3 years I have dealt with HTC Apple and Moto. Apple caused me no hassle what soever. I had a little trouble with HTC but Moto is the whole new level.

            I would love to see someone getting score based research but only on one condition- consumer had to deal with customer service based on return faulty item or warranty based issue. One would argue on the surface Moto service looks very nice. Easy to get hold of them when you call. Chat is usually instant but that’s where it all ends.

            My previous comments wasn’t published for some reason. Probably due to link i have provided. I found legitimate organization that represent consumer affairs in US still looking for UK one( it was few months ago I had an issue can’t remember which one) . Google this “consumer affairs motorola complaint” top few pages is the site.

            From what I came across on internet there are 3 countries signaling bad Moto customer service which are US UK India.

            From what you say your last sentence “But it will probably take more than one year post-acquisition for improvements to happen.” it was bad eve before acquisition. On the other hand US UK infrastructure was already established but neither shined at the time. I remember Atrix, Xoom, Razr (Android) days when post purchase maintenance was non existent. Bad heritage!?

  • rebirthofcool

    when a chinese company like Lenovo acquired the IBM Thinkpad line it amounts to alot of suspicion up until the US govt banned Lenovo branded PCs from government agencies’ use, fast forward today Lenovo was caught with a Superfish scandal on their commercial PCs. now it’s Motorola turn to fold into Lenovo scheming tactic diluting the brand while hoping to maintain the same fanbase of the Moto brand. given the vulnerabilities of Android and known firmware backdoors being put by chinese OEM to their Android devices (wonder why they sell so cheap?) Lenovo branded phone will bear the same suspicion from the public.

    • Zhen

      *Cough* Dell ‘Superfish’…

      • TMFP

        You’re thinking of eDellRoot. Superfish was actually Lenovo.

  • Nafeeur Rahman

    I really wanna kill Lenovo

    • Boonlumsion Piyapon

      And let Motorola gone ?

      • Twixes

        Motorola is not of great condition for a long agoes. But I am not at fan for Lenovo, either. I will not be buyings any, I think.

    • Motorola “Customer Support” in India is “non-existence”, this brand was ousted twice here, and i m a moto user, my screen shattered, it takes ages to get anything repair here by their svc’s. 100% of customers are troubled, no resolution or even hearing of any complain, people can’t reach their top-exec. you think this kind of company whose focus is just selling only gonna go anywhere?

      • nebulaoperator

        Same in UK . Simplebreturm took me 28 days 5 chats 3 calls .Can you believe it? Let me do a short rant . Company that doesn’t care about their costumers is dead and has no future.

        • Yes, they literally don’t care, CEO of moto india is seeing bashed by troubled customers on twitter and he doesn’t even care to respond to them, its impossible to get anything done via their support channels.

          • nebulaoperator

            I threaten to directly write official complain letet to Moto UK. That seemed to work but its ridiculous to what extend one has to go.

    • Mr.Flying Zoom3rz

      Really? Because of what? They bought Motorola so they have all the rights to do whatever they want with all the Moto business. I like the phones made by Lenovo.

  • VeryDisgusted2

    Lenovo is crazy. Motorola name is way much, much bigger than Lenovo. Motorola name evokes American quality and Lenovo Chinese quality.

    • Zhen

      Big disagreement with you here, Lenovo turned over ~£46 Billion last year (2015) and I’d be confident to say only a very hundred million of them dollars was due to the Motorola name. Lenovo is a massive multinational company that doesn’t just cater for the common consumer but for multi-billion dollar multi-national corporations too. They are known for the durable longer lasting electronics such as their portable workstations. Don’t be prejudgement about the American vs Chinese quality debate because you’d be surprised how ‘American’ quality has lead to poor public relations as well for the ‘International’ audience.

      • VeryDisgusted2

        The issue is brand reputation. Motorola name is a big asset and what a waste on Chinese part. No argument in billion of sales of
        cheap Lenovo products.

        • Usman

          Motorola name isn’t a big asset here in Asia it’s almost non existent now!

    • Anon

      the american quality company would have died long ago if google or lenovo had not bought it

    • Dude!! The only american standard quality that we get is from Apple, here in India! Moto phones are awesome, but customer support is “non-existence”, they literally have no stock of parts in india for any kind of repair. People cannot reach motorola via phones or email support, this company wrote its own fate! sorry to say this, but true! you gotta respect customers and you have to provide decent quality support. BTW i m a moto user, and when my screen got shattered, till date my device is unrepaired!

  • JGaLaXY

    theyre just gonna keep the M dimple on these phones and change everything else as far as branding? lol

    • Avieshek Rajkhowa

      A for Apple & M for Lenovo?

      • Lindle

        M for Moto. I think it will be like Lenovo Moto X

        • Avieshek Rajkhowa


  • David Hamel

    Goodbye Moto. Hello Nexus.

    • josuearisty

      My last Moto phone will be the Nexus 6!

    • Chris

      And your mothers basement

  • 404

    Holy fap Lenovo is crazy. They apparently haven’t realized 80% of consumers purchase things based on brand name, especially if it’s a luxury brand, which is why Apple is extremely popular and why people buy Mercedes. There are still people from the generation of Motorola’s fame, and so they would buy it. But nobody knows about Lenovo, and so it will fail.

    • Usman

      You know what in most Asian countries Lenovo name doing better than Motorola even when pricing is almost same!

  • Tommy_Oliver

    So Lenovo admits they have far less brand recognition than Motorola. So their solution is to kill off the recognized brand and replace it with their own that no one cares about/trust?


  • Robert Cabrera

    Levono has this bass ackwards. If they want to capitalize on the Motorola name and reputation they should keep it and rebrand other their Levono handsets being sold stateside with that moniker. As it stands the name Levono connotates cheap and poor quality. Look at what’s happened with their line of laptops and desktops. Thinkpads were considered the gold standard for business laptops before IBM sold out. Now, when most think about Levono, they think cheap, poor quality and preinstalled rootkits. Because of this the Levono name will only hurt handset sales, at least here in the States.

  • Stefano Gonzales


  • Manish Kumar Sharma

    Lenovo should change its name to Motorola rather the other way round!! Cause the brand motorola sells more than lenovo!! Moto has become pathetic under Lenovo.. I had hopes of it being the best under Google but now its doomed!! Sick of u lenovo and ur pathetic devices… Google had done good with motorola.. wish they had continued with it!!

    • Motorola “Customer Support” in India is “non-existence”, this brand was ousted twice here, and i m a moto user, my screen shattered, it takes ages to get anything repair here by their svc’s. 100% of customers are troubled, no resolution or even hearing of any complain, people can’t reach their top-exec. you think this kind of company whose focus is just selling only gonna go anywhere??? People don’t even consider moto, even though their handsets are great!

      • Avieshek Rajkhowa


        • its not flipkart’s(vendor) fault, hey may be thats why moto stuck to selling their phones via online portal so that people cannot reach the vendor easily if their newly purchased set had any defects. It is totally motorola’s fault, and dude their support, its horrible, a nightmare if ur device gets damaged and you want it to be repaired! seriously stay away from moto if u live in india, my warning!

          • Avieshek Rajkhowa

            Why do you think, people still prefer going to a showroom or iStore is a phenomenal accepted concept in the world market.
            There are Micromax TV’s and etc etc enticing deals too for u, traditional ways maybe old but old is gold my friend

    • Lindle

      In Asia, Moto sales are very low but Lenovo sales are very high

    • osm

      Lenovo are the number one PC maker in the world. They have a lot of respect for the continued excellence of the ThinkPad line.

      Motorola were once great, but now they are also-rans in the Smartphone world. They cocked up the transition from feature phones to Smartphones, similar to Nokia. Only Android aficionados have any meaningful affection for them. People who used to use Motorola feature phones also have some affection for them but this is not very relevant – similar to how the Walkman brand does not really help Sony anymore.

      So not sure the basis for the “brand motorola sells more than lenovo” argument.

      • cold fusion

        Moto devices r the some of the best affordable customisable devices be can easily flash custom roms in to them and develop our own Android device experience ,lenovo not so much and they tend to look different from moto devices, we can’t deny the fact that moto devices look good and even deliver best Android experiences at such a price most of Android phone fail to do the be that way even in long usage like a year 2 or may be 3

  • Ruby

    A very dumb move on Lenovo’s part. All in the name of nationalistic and corporate shaped egos.

  • Chris

    Bad move, but that’s what happens when you sell out to foreigners,

  • woome

    Lenovo, an obscure brand?? Your website have been reviewing their phones for ages now. Btw, who actually “killed” the Motorola brand? It’s the American iPhone buyers. If you so love your own American brand, you all should show more support & vote with your $$$.
    On a more serious note, Lenovo is big in Asia and they outsold Motorola for many years now. You don’t kill the bigger brand (Lenovo) and let the weakling (Motorola) survive in this tough mobile world.

    • Well, both Nokia & motorola killed themselves, by not innovating and not the people buying iphones. Talk about motorola customer service, its trash when compared to samsung or apple, you can never go wrong with apple!

      Motorola “Customer Support” in India is “non-existence”, this brand was ousted twice(yes two times they were kicked out bec of the way they operated!) here, and i m a moto user, my screen shattered, it takes ages to get anything repair here by their svc’s. 100% of customers are troubled, no resolution or even hearing of any complain, people can’t reach their top-exec. you think this kind of company whose focus is just selling only gonna go anywhere?

  • Masd

    Motorola name is legend…. Y lenovo as to do such things!! People would think twice when they see lenovo on the phone even if it’s made by the same people who make Motorola
    First IBM now Motorola
    Great lenovo!! U just ruined the fun

    • Legend? dude! Not at all, a company is known by its product and most of all how it provides customer support and related services, kindly take a read about troubled customers who bought motorola and are literally begging to get any support from the company. Any other brand like htc, apple, samsung etc exist bec of reasons!

    • osm

      Motorola is only valued amongst Android aficionados and those still clinging to the pre smartphone era.

      For everyone else, the name Motorola no longer carries much weight.

      • Eric Wei

        What rock have you been living under? Herd of the moto x? Moto g? Moto 360? Droid turbo? Those are among the better selling phones out there. Its basically the only non nexus option if you want a pure android experience. As long as they keep the dimple and the moto branding (I think it looks really nice) and otherwise keep the lines on the path that they’re on I’ll be happy. If I see lenovo’s UI on these phones I will personally murder whoever thought it was a good idea. On second thought, replacing the pure android experience on the moto devices will kill Lenovo itself. I won’t even have to do anything.

        • osm

          Motorola’s US market share has gone down from about 8% in 2013 to about 5% in 2015, and it must be lower worldwide since the combined Lenovo-Motorola market share is only about 5% worldwide. In that same period I think Samsung’s US market share has gone up a few percentage points. Hardly evidence that a huge number of people care deeply about the Motorola brand or the near-pure Android experience.

          Only some Americans care about the former and only Android aficionados, like readers of this site, care about the later.

          Anyway, I can’t see Lenovo abandoning the pure Android experience on the Moto line. I think they’ll follow the successful model they have had with ThinkPads. That is to say retain the core values of an admired product line that they’ve acquired.

        • Mr.Flying Zoom3rz

          And what if you see it? Can’t you just install a Nova Launcher?

  • Mickey Jones

    Incredibly stupid marketing to think just placing “Lenovo” next to “Moto” will help the Lenovo brand. Lenovo will bring the Moto name down. I own a Moto X Pure and it may be my last. Too many alternatives to choose from.

  • karampudi babu

    Kill You Lenevo fucker!!!??

  • Vikram Prashanth

    this will kill both brands…
    am switching to nexus line if this is really happening…

    should be the other way round – lenovo should go away and motorola name should be everywhere, even on
    their laptops.
    stupid decision for which they are gonna regret forever

  • Dante

    lol , it should be the other way around

  • Wolf0491

    Hi can we get rid of these full page mobile ads that always scroll me back up to the top of the page… They have plenty of other ads I can click to make money for the site.. Thanks

  • nikolas ostropolskiy

    Dumbest move in tech history. How are you going to destroy a name that literally sells the entire phone? They are part of history as the first cellphone ever on top of that. Lenovo must be full of bad decision makers, just look at their tech.

  • Akash

    Lenovo just want people to know properly that they have bought Motorola and has complete authority over such an iconic brand.

  • Rudrashish Bose

    this is scary, considering Lenovo has the crappiest and ugliest UI’s in the market, also why kill an iconic brand name, Lenovo will never be able replicate the history of Motorola! -_-

  • Avieshek Rajkhowa

    Well, well, maybe sum1 else can use the name Motorola since they’ve no use

  • mrochester

    So that’s Nokia gone and Motorola going in recent times. Who’s next?

    • samsung

      • Kollár Dávid

        That i personally wouldn’t mind, never liked their stuff, neither in my eyes samsung sounds as something “wow, that’s awesome”
        Also it seems unlikely, as they seem to be doing fine

      • Lindle

        Apple :))

    • GrumpyTroll


  • aquabond

    Change the name all you want , but pls pls dont start using your vibe ui on these too. There are not many stock android devices , dont ruin these pls .

    • Avieshek Rajkhowa

      Not enough, cry

  • Piyush

    If I was Lenovo’s CEO and I wanted to do some real business I would focus on PCs and Tablets and bring Mobile division under Motorola.
    Moto by Lenovo is a huge failure as the Moto fans would also part their ways.

  • Kollár Dávid

    I hope some Lenovo guys come here to see that we clearly DO NOT WANT LENOVO. You bought Moto, great, you’re doing well thanks to it, great, we’re glad. Just Please Do Not Take Away What We Love. If things are about to change, the quality drops, the phones become bloated, I and many others will stick to older gens.
    As others before me: Moto or nothing.

  • Dato Alavidze

    They want to rename Motorola smartphones to Lenovo for fame? I think the other way around would be more efficient. ( I mean if they really wanna do something like that change the name Lenovo to Motorola). I rather have Motorola than Lenovo.

  • Eimantas Adzgauskas

    I think that with the Lenovo branding they will have much smaller amount of sales (at least in Ireland and UK) because everyone knows the Motorola branding is a sign of quality and great products, switching that to Lenovo would make it harder to sell even with the Moto symbol on it, I mean stores don’t even want to sell Lenovo phones here but Motorola phones are every where (Moto E, G1-3 ,X Play, Nexus 6 Moto X) I think by renaming it they will ruin a lot of the sales that come from the Motorola branding, as Lenovo is an unknown name in phones and people wouldn’t want to choose it, I think/hope eventually Lenovo revert their decision to change the name, coming from a person who has gone from the first gen Moto G, through 3 generations, to the Moto E, now onto the Nexus 6, even my friends (all Motorola users) hate the decision of Lenovo to change the name and we as a group are put off from buying them again with the new Lenovo branding :/

  • Ryan Ko

    Goodbye to Motorola?? I will be super sad…. Motorola was and still is my favorite company and I just freaking loved the brand…. well… Guess I have to say goodbye.

  • vmxr

    people already calling it Moto i don’t see any issue even the new devices called moto not motorola. good luck to them

    • Chris

      Thing is its been known as Motorola for years, probably longer than you’ve been alive

  • Rohit Raja

    I had the Razr V3, pppl then used to go nuts i pulled it out and flipped open….

  • Rahul Mahesh

    Lenovo is gonna ruin moto!

  • MASierra

    I bought a Lenovo laptop during the time Google owned Moto (which I had the Moto X gen 1). Loved the phone, hated the computer. It was by far the worst computer I’ve owned. I had the extended warranty with all the bells and whistles due to its price and customer service was atrocious. Needless to say, I ended up buying a different computer and when it came time to upgrade phones went back to Nexus because I will NEVER own a Lenovo device again. I hope Lenovo never gets a foothold in the US because nobody deserves to deal with such a terrible company.

  • rocketryan

    Still love my moto x 2014, and still swap my sim back from my galaxy s6 on a regular basis.

  • Matthew Dorris

    This is a mistake. No one wants to buy a smartphone with lenovo branding. Even if it is still a Moto device, people will be deterred by an unfamiliar name on the device such as lenovo. I get that lenovo is huge in the PC world but that isn’t the case for mobile. They should have kept mobile devices under the Motorola brand and kept PC’s under the Lenovo brand. Lenovo is using Motorola as a tool to make a reputation for themselves in the mobile sector so they can eventually kill off Moto all together.

    • osm

      They won’t kill off Moto. They’ll keep it as a special line with unique values (compared to the rest of their devices) like they have done with ThinkPads.

  • jpswain

    This has all the genius of HP paying billions for Compaq then scraping the brand.

  • Larry R

    lenovo is a laptop I would never buy….and my trusty aging 1st gen G LTE will be the last Motorola, I guess. Lenovo. What a horrible name. Look how well Microsoft has done rebranding Lumias. Zero cachet in Lenovo branding. Get your Motos while still Motos!

  • Lamont Shuman

    I will stop buying Motorola phones, I have been a customer since the chirp phones. I have the motox 2 and will not be buying anymore of the moto phones. Company’s always destroy a good thing. Levovo will lose alot more customers by doing this. So good bye Moto and hello Asus Zen.

  • Heil Shitler

    To hell with these chinese people,they sure know how to ruin a good thing.

  • Gordo

    I remember back in the day I had a Motorola phone and it was a real good phone but one day it just stopped working I was like dude what happened and I was like I don’t know

  • Gordo

    now I think about it I had a girlfriend who had one of these phones and she was real mad one time because it stopped working on her too and she was like what happened and I was like I don’t know