Motorola Moto X Smartphone – Review

By Jeremy Del Nero on 24 October 2013
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The Moto X home screen

The Moto X home screen

Many industry enthusiasts knew that Google had something up its sleeve when the tech giant acquired Motorola in 2011.  Many went as far as to predict that Google would use Motorola to market its own Android phone.  And they were right; two years later, the Moto X was announced and released to the public.  Let’s take a look at why the Moto X is unlike just about every other smartphone on the market.

What makes the Moto X a unique and impressive gadget isn’t what’s on the inside.  In fact, the specs aren’t particularly remarkable; its 1.7 GHz processor and 2 GB of ram are up to speed with the competition, but don’t break any boundaries or push any limits.  Although, Motorola did opt to utilize its own X8 processor, which contains a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4Pro family processor (including a 1.7 GHz Dual-Core Krait CPU and a Quad-Core Adreno 320 GPU).  While the consumer can choose between 16 GB and 32 GB models of the phone, no removable storage options are available.  Even the 4.7-inch RGB Amoled 720p display, while bright and vibrant, isn’t the largest offered on such a device.

The Moto X is special because of its friendly design, its clever, perhaps gimmicky software, and its customizability – and that it’s the first smartphone to be assembled in the United States.

Motorola claims that it’s the first smartphone to be truly customizable and, indeed, the smartphone seems to seek making itself the user’s own.  Buyers can use the company’s MotoMaker website to select the phone’s exterior colors from among 18 colors for the back of the phone, two colors for the front, and seven trim colors, for a total of  252 color combinations!  The bad news is that the MotoMaker tool is available exclusively for AT&T customers, at least for the foreseeable future.  Standard black and white models are available for the other major carriers.  The good news Is that MotoMaker doesn’t cost a penny extra, and the phone ships free.

The customization doesn’t stop with the exterior.  Using MotoMaker, the user can configure the phone to be preloaded with his Google account, a customized welcome message, and wallpaper.


The set up procedure varies depending on the carrier and method of purchase.  My Moto X was ordered through the MotoMaker website and customized to my specifications (lemon lime back, white face, and metallic blue accent).  Four days later the phone was delivered and the only remaining task was to insert an AT&T micro-sim card.  For customers getting a new number through AT&T, Motorola will ship the phone with the sim card installed.

After charging and powering up the phone I was greeted by my personalized welcome on a surprisingly bright display. It was gratifying to confirm that all settings, contacts, and apps transferred over from my Google account. However, it took some time for the device to download my entire library of Android apps from the Play Store.

Those who are new to Android will want to go through the settings menu to customize things to their liking, as well as familiarize themselves with many of Android’s unique offerings.  The Moto X will occasionally pop up hints to help acquaint newcomers with the interface and Android experience.

Click here to continue to Page 2Using the Moto X

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