Bye Bye, Moto: Motorola’s Fort Worth Factory on the Chopping Block

Motorola Mobility made a bold move last year by opening up a manufacturing facility in Fort Worth, Texas, tasked with assembling and the company’s new Android device, the Moto X. That factory is set to close at the end of the year, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal. The factory opened in May 2013 and employed around 3,800 workers, with around 700 workers currently employed.

Motorola’s Fort Worth factory was created almost specifically for the Moto X which aimed to carve out a new niche for Android smartphones. Easy to use, convenient features, excellent battery life, and deep customization instead of raw horsepower. The Moto X’s specs were fine, but certainly not cutting edge. The marketing around the Moto X centered much more around its ease-of-use and fun features, pitting it more against Apple’s iPhone than high-end Android devices. The personalization offered by the Moto Maker was also a key selling point, giving customers the opportunity to create their perfect custom device. Motorola, then backed by Google, banked everything on the device, even opening up a factory in the United States again conventional wisdom. The price of doing business in the U.S. plus the Moto X’s slow sales were more than Motorola could handle. The Moto X was not a flop by any means, but it certainly did not attain the high-flying status that Motorola would have liked to see.

“What we found was that the North American market was exceptionally tough.” – Motorola President Rick Osterloh

While news of the Fort Worth factory closing is certainly a little sad, Motorola is doing quite well with the Moto G which has gained popularity across the globe. The Moto E is poised to do the same, and Lenovo (who recently acquired Motorola Mobility) surely has the lock on cheap manufacturing in China. Moto will stay afloat – but don’t expect to see any high-powered devices coming from the company anytime soon.

via: Android Central

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