The Moto X is expected to launch in late August or early September

Motorola Mobility has finally revealed its first flagship smartphone since being acquired by Google -- the "Moto X" -- and it looks to be an All-American, fully-customized smartphone experience that can't be ignored despite a crowded market. 

Motorola knew it would have to come up with a very different Android-powered device in order to get any attention in a market dominated by Samsung's Galaxy line, and phones by other tech giants like Apple's iPhone. The Moto X seems to be the answer, with customization being the key differentiator.

Customers can make their Moto X all their own, designing the front, back, memory, wallpaper, accents and even engraving. There are over 2,000 designs and colors to choose from, and more are on the way -- including very different ideas like real wood backs. 

Aside from customization, Motorola is proud to say that the Moto X is assembled in the U.S. (more specifically, Fort Worth, Texas). So when a customer is done designing the Moto X of their dreams, the phone can be shipped to them for free in four days or less. 

Motorola has touted features such as Touchless Control, which brings up information on the Moto X like weather and directions just by voice (no touch necessary); Active Display, which keeps important and relevant information on the Moto X's screen without any annoying notifications or without the need to wake it up, and Quick Capture, which allows the user to turn on the camera quickly with just two quick twists of their wrist. 

Earlier this month, it was reported that Google and Motorola Mobility were spending as much as $500 million on Moto X marketing. This is a pretty significant amount, considering Apple spent $333 million and Samsung spent $401 million to market their smartphones last year in the U.S. -- and they're the two largest smartphone makers in the game. 

This goes to show that Google and Motorola are betting big on the Moto X and want to make it stand out amongst the crowd. Think the Moto X might be for you? Read on for the specs, reviews, photos, pricing and availability before you decide. 

  • 4.7-inch RGB AMOLED display
  • 1280x720 resolution
  • Motorola X8 processor (dual-core 1.7GHz Snapdragon S4 Pro CPU/quad-core Adreno 320 GPU)
  • 2GB RAM
  • 16GB/32GB storage options
  • 10MP ClearPixel rear-facing camera
  • 2MP front-facing camera
  • 1080p video recording 
  • dual-band 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth 4.0 LE+EDR
  • NFC, Miracast, USB 2.0 connectivity
  • 2,200 mAh battery with up to 13 hours of talk time; 24 hours of mixed usage

CNET, TechCrunch and Mashable have had a quick hands-on demonstration of the Moto X, and this is what they're saying:

Brian Bennett, CNET:

"Motorola really needed to make a big splash -- or at least a cunning maneuver -- with the Moto X, and that it did. Instead of the traditional tactic of beating potential customers over the head with powerful components and every feature under the sun, Motorola decided to cater to shoppers' softer side -- how they most use their phone every day. Don't get me wrong; the handset certainly packs in plenty of interesting abilities and functionality. When you add up the specs, though, this really is a midrange phone. Hard-core Android enthusiasts likely won't find the Moto X awe-inspiring. The key to the Moto X's fate, as with any new device, is whether its unique blend of capabilities and design will prove valuable to ordinary consumers."

Chris Velazco, TechCrunch:

"I’m reserving final judgment on this thing until I’ve had the chance to play with it for more than three hours, but I actually rather like the X. Do I wish Motorola could have pushed the technical envelope further? Sure. I also think the customization angle, neat as it is, is essentially a ploy to make an unassuming phone stand out in a crowd. And frankly, it’s a little frustrating to see that a solid chunk of what the Moto X can do will soon be replicated by — you guessed it — just about every other new Motorola phone in the works. It’s far, far too early to tell if Motorola has a hit on its hands — especially because the X will ultimately compete with Motorola phones with similar feature sets. If nothing else though, Motorola’s X represents a dedication to creating a smarter breed of smartphones, and I doubt that’s something the rest of the industry is going to ignore."

Pete Pachal, Mashable: 

"The Moto X is an amazing smartphone, just not revolutionary. Its name implies the phone is built in the spirit of Google's X program, which seeks to improve things by monumental leaps rather than increments. The first phone to be designed and built by Motorola as a Google company isn't going to transform mobile communication as we know it (the company's stated goal since the acquisition), but it is a fantastic phone with many great features. My favorite is Touchless Control. Apple likes to talk about the "magic" of its products, but this feature is the most magical thing I've seen in mobile in a long time. With your phone sitting on the table, you can utter the words "OK, Google Now," and it immediately comes alive, listening for voice commands. Ask it the weather, to call a friend or do a Google search, and it'll just do it, and you never have to touch the phone."



Pricing & Availability

The Moto X will be $199 with a two-year contract, and will be available through Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and U.S. Cellular. The Moto X is expected to launch in late August or early September. 

Sources: Motorola, CNET, TechCrunch, Forbes

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