Motorola has had a tumultuous time as of late. Back in January, the company’s Lenovo overlord made waves when they announced that the Motorola branding would be phased out of products, leaving only the “Moto” line and the signature batwing logo intact. In spite of disappearing as a company on product branding, Motorola has nevertheless found itself in legal hot water after a small army of disgruntled users decided that they’d had it up to here with the company’s subpar customer service. Now the chaos continues as Lenovo/Motorola appears to be arbitrarily changing the name of the Moto X line to Moto Z.
This news comes via VentureBeat, who claims to have glimpsed 2016 promotional material revealing that this year’s new Moto smartphones will be sporting a Z instead of an X appended to the end. Motivation is a hard thing to suss out in this scenario. Historically, we’ve seen line brandings endure year after year with examples including the Samsung Galaxy S line, the LG G line, and even the iPhone. Consistency in branding is a crucial part of marketing, so many companies are hesitant to mix it up. To some, this Moto Z change seems a little like Instagram’s recent design shift, which some decried as “change for change’s sake,” not change for improvement. As a point of trivial coincidence (or perhaps dark conspiracy), Sony actually pulled the opposite swap by shifting from Xperia Z to Xperia X. Illuminati confirmed?
There’s no official word from Motorola or Lenovo at the moment to backup this report, so we’re having to lean on VentureBeat’s sources for this. Either way, we’ll know one way or another by the Lenovo Tech World show in San Francisco on June 9 at the latest. While we wait to find out whether it’ll be X or Z for Motorola’s main line in 2016, let us know what you think of this rebranding and the new line of Moto devices in the comments below!