Aug 02 AT 1:21 PM Dima Aryeh 22 Comments

No Moto X for UK, Motorola CEO promises cheaper Moto X devices


The Moto X was announced yesterday, and it did not seem to go over well with the tech community. Most people are calling it a major disappointment, but not because it’s underspecced or didn’t live up to the hype. Most people are disappointed because of its high price. At $199 on contract, it goes for a high-end price without delivering the same specs as high-end phones. So what is Motorola’s response?

Motorola CEO Dennis Woodside claims that there will be a cheaper Moto X. He seems to understand that the prepaid market is getting big here in the US, so Motorola plans to release multiple devices under the Moto X brand. There will be cheaper variants for those who buy off-contract.

But why is the Moto X so expensive in the first place? Well first of all, US labor is pretty expensive. US assembly probably tacks on quite a bit of price by itself. And the customization factor could raise it even more. Finally, Motorola might just want people to associate the Moto X with “high-end” via the price tag.

While many US consumers don’t much care about a cheaper Moto X, those in the UK might. Not because they’re more budget oriented, but because Motorola has no plans to launch the standard Moto X in that market. The cheaper Moto X devices will launch across Europe, so they may be the only option for our British friends.

Our first thought about a cheaper Moto X was “the Moto X is already not high-end, we don’t need an even lower end model.” However, the more we think about it, the more viable it becomes. Looking at the new DROID line, the DROID Ultra is pretty similar to the Moto X, and both are $199 on contract. The DROID Mini, retaining the same specs (camera, processor, resolution) drops to $99 with a screen size drop. If Motorola could release a smaller Moto X, or even one that’s not built in the US and is made from the same mold and doesn’t offer customization, that could drop the price significantly.

We know that making the Moto X even worse isn’t exactly what the tech community wants, but if it drops the price significantly, it could become perfectly worth buying off-contract. What do you think of a cheaper Moto X?

Source: CNET, Pocket-Lint

Dima Aryeh is a Russian obsessed with all things tech. He does photography, is an avid phone modder (who uses an AT&T Galaxy Note II), a heavy gamer (both PC and 360), and an aspiring home mechanic. He is also an avid fan of music, especially power metal.

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  • JT

    The only people I read about that are complaining are the people who haven’t gotten their hands on the Moto X. The people that have one and are testing it are writing positive things about it.

  • apo

    Other cheaper variants with even cheaper specs ?
    No thanks Motorola, you’ve failed miserably.

    • djcoming

      You call dual-core Krait 300 CPU (released in january), quad-core Adreno 320 GPU and 24-hour battery cheap specs? I’m sure there are plenty of “geeks” like you out there who think better scores on benchmarks translate directly to better user experience. Sorry, this phone is not for you!

      Talking about benchmarks the X is surely not the best on every category but on gaming and browsing it performs really well:

      • apo

        Sorry but I’ve never run a benchmark on my Nexus 4, as I know it’s perfectly smooth and I don’t need those numbers.
        However, what I also know is that my Nexus 4 is 350$ and quad-core which ensures it a bright future for at least 1.5 years.
        So if Motorola needs to compromise even more on specs ( which I didn’t say weren’t enough ) to reach a lower price ( which I guess will still be much higher than the Nexus ), I call it a fail.

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  • david jones richrads

    This news is all over the internet now. Hope we get a cheaper Moto X but it seems there is a conflict between Motorolla and Google Employees

  • SGB101

    One problem, if you think US labour comes at a price, I can’t wait to see the UK price, minimum wage by law in UK is About $12per hour, and I doubt it will be done with totally non skilled labour.

    Also I worry for ‘a cheaper’ device, as that means less spec. I like this phone, even at its less than satisfactory spec, but I know at a lesser spec it will be a non starter, as the nexus 5 will be about the same spec of this motor X at around £280, I just can’t see it competing.

    Then again the moto X (eu lite) will be bright and in shops, the nexus will be hidden on the play store.

    One question to the US peeps, do u have a device section on your phone’s? We (uk) only have it on the online store

    • ben

      Compared to “easter” labour, US labour is much more expensive. If there is a cheaper Moto on the way (and i would only consider it if it was exactly the same sans the customisation and not actually lowered specs) it wouldn’t be build in the uk nor in any other western european country, but china, thailand and so on. I really wanted this phone(as I think it is the best looking phone I have seen yet), but if they keep being cryptic about exactly what kind of product europe will get, I will just wait for a new Nexus.

    • ken

      Now Google is fully in the hardware game, I expect them to raise prices of Nexus 4 as well. Companies have to turn a profit and conditioning the masses to expect cutting edge at Nexus 4 prices is not smart. Samsung price higher and laugh all the way to the bank.
      I see people clamouring for Snapdragon 800 etc etc it will cost

  • NotRelevant

    I wonder if you folks realize that the CPU/GPU in the Moto X is exactly the same as the one in US Galaxy S4? The only difference is 2 fewer CPU cores.

    • Dima Aryeh

      The CPU is different, it’s a last gen Snapdragon S series. The GPU is the same, being an Adreno 320. Does that affect anything? It’s still not a Snapdragon 600, it’s not 1080p, and it’s not 32GB. Does that make the phone worse? No. Specs don’t matter that much. But it makes it harder to justify for $199, because you’re paying the same money for worse hardware.,

      • Ryan

        I do agree that it should be at a lower price point. I think Motorola didn’t pitch the phone well where they should have sold the phone as loaded with specs that you’ll actually use. Most people that go out and get the newest and greatest phone with high end specs don’t know what they’re doing with them. Dual core processor is great for those people along with the 720 display. Then they could market as a phone that isn’t overkill.

        But they went the other way and said here’s the specs and some cool software tweeks, will you pay the same as the S4 please?

  • Mike
  • Mike C.

    In the past Motorola’s support in Europe has been lacking. By not selling their phones in Europe they are doing consumers a favor and protecting their brand. Everybody wins!

  • Ryan

    I think Motorola should come forward and tell people that US labor is more expensive, and that if we want to keep jobs here and not ship every manufacturing job to another country then we should get used to paying more. Maybe in some better PR terms, but you get the point. US can’t get excited that Motorola is bringing tech jobs back to the States, and then complain that we’re paying to much. I guess if it’s being made at Foxconn and we can’t see the conditions that cell phone assemblers are working in then it’s ok just as long as we get our cheap phone.

  • egon

    And how will be a cheaper Moto X for Europe? Will it look like Nokia 3310? Or what?

  • redarmynews

    I really don’t know why people are complaining about the $200 price point. Let’s take a look at the iPhone 5 – dual core @ 1.2ghz, tri-core GPU, 1 gb ram, 1136 x 640 resolution, 8mp camera, 1,434 mAh battery. People have NO problem paying $200 for the iPhone, yet we all know the specs are improved in almost ALL categories with the Moto X.

    And for how fancy all of these quad-core, 1080p phones are, they all still lags at times…quad core doesn’t really mean anything if the architecture can’t effectively utilize all cores. (My Nexus 7 (quad-core) was extremely laggy during certain tasks before it sideloading 4.3) If Motorola/Google can make a dual-core phone with little or no lag, what’s the problem here?

  • jefmes

    I have no problem with the specs, it’s a nice phone with nice features, and I’d consider it along-side the best of the phones out there today.

    I have a problem with the carrier exclusives and I have a problem with the contracts. On the price, they should have gone no carrier no contracts at $299 and they would have killed it. Phones DON’T NEED to be $600 off contract, it’s just…silly. Especially with Googl’s backing, they should be shooting for volume sold to make their profits over charging premium prices.

  • Paximos

    So, with all the hypes surrounding this phone, what is so special about it?

  • henry0011

    Hope that it will be compatible with this!

  • donger

    Really? Moto X is not high end at all, Just get a S4 or HTC One and get a case of your choice for it.

  • Andy

    i would prefer a moto x over any phone out there including the Nexus 5, the Moto G is a great budget phone but ffs motorola release the X in Europe or at the very least UK.