Sunday Debate: How Will Lenovo Affect Motorola’s Future?

Sunday Debate: How Will Lenovo Affect Motorola’s Future?

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Join us in a fun Sunday Debate on Lenovo and Motorola. Come with your opinions and feel free to read some of our thoughts, then pick your side or play devil’s advocate to get your voice heard and engage in friendly discussion. You can read our food-for-thought or jump straight into the fray below!

  • Do you trust Lenovo?
  • Do you think Lenovo will push Motorola forward?
  • What is your opinion on the new interventions and alleged merge?
  • What do you think will happen to Moto phones?

20150830170034590Google’s acquisition Motorola marked a great beginning for the smartphone elder. One only has to look back at the Moto G and its “a Google Company” branding to begin fathoming the influence the Search Giant had on Moto, and how the shift in course also marked a clear turning point for the industry at large. Since 2013, many great devices have come and gone under Motorola’s name, and in the end, it seems that most of them have been met favorably: the budget E line, the excellent G mid-rangers, the beloved X flagships, the niche Turbo and even a premium Nexus.

Then in January of 2014, shortly after the Moto G’s success, Google sold Motorola Mobility to Lenovo, a very well-known Chinese manufacturer of PCs, for $2.91 billion. This was a shock to many, as Google has bought Motorola in 2012 for $12.5 billion, and nobody expected Lenovo of all players to acquire the company. Analysts quickly began theorizing the reasons behind the sale and the purchase, many concluding that Google needed Motorola to exploit crucial patents and that Lenovo could use the company (and most importantly, its name) to enter the U.S. smartphone market.

Distrust and Performance

In the past few years, Motorola phones have been very well received. However, many fans are still worried about the future of the company for various reasons. One of them is that Motorola is an age-old mobile manufacturer, and much of that expertise and talent might be stunted by Lenovo. Other reasons include distrust for Lenovo for various controversies in the past.

20150830165622124There are a few things to consider: the U.S.-China Economic Security Review Commission called for a probe on a Lenovo deal due to concerns about possible spying. Lenovo is also known for having pre-installed software in consumer laptops from a company called Superfish, which could hijack web connections among other adware functions. The other issue we saw this year was Lenovo-Motorola’s GPL violations as there were numerous delays on their source releases. Considering Motorola was once a Google company, the concerns the infringement received were more than justified.

On a positive note, Motorola has had some great releases in the past year and since Lenovo’s purchase. The acquisition was finished by October of last year, so we can assume that some of the developments are partially due to Google’s influence. But the 2015 Moto G, for example, managed to give us all a surprise with its updated camera, speedy performance and great bang-per-buck. The Moto X Play is getting good reviews (despite it’s lack of gyroscope) and many are excited about the Moto X Pure/Style and all the greatness it offers for just $400. The new Moto 360 has been leaked numerous times and that also has many enthusiasts excited. Will this change?

Concerns

This month we’ve seen much news that have plenty of Motorola fans worried. First of all, Motorola was reportedly cutting 20% of their jobs and getting a new identity under Lenovo. The company was apparently not making enough money as Lenovo hoped, and now Lenovo wants to get a tighter hold of it. Now that Motorola is so big in emerging markets, Lenovo is injecting its people into the company and going forward with manufacturing in India. The latest reports, however, say that a bigger merge is taking place. While it originally seemed that Motorola kept functioning without much influence from Lenovo, the dynamic has changed and it is expected that Lenovo will intervene in many Motorola developments directly and indirectly. Finally, it’s also worth noting that Lenovo has their ZUK branch, which established relationships with Cyanogen and will have devices sporting Cyanogen OS.

Debating

On one hand, Motorola’s performance so far has been notable, and plenty of Android enthusiasts believe they are at a high-point. Lenovo’s resources might have been a deciding factor in many products consumers love, and injecting new blood into a company is not necessarily bad — in fact, it’s often beneficial. However, Lenovo has been under the microscope for various reasons in and out of mobile, and disrupting the structure of such an experienced mobile manufacturer may result in dissatisfying products for the sake of profit.

  • Do you trust Lenovo?
  • Do you think Lenovo will push Motorola forward?
  • What is your opinion on the new interventions and alleged merge?
  • What do you think will happen to Moto phones?