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The facility first opened in May 2013

Motorola’s Fort Worth, Texas factory first opened for business in May 2013, but sadly, it will be shuttered before the year is over. The facility was abuzz with 3,800 workers at its peak, but now employs just 700 workers.
 
Motorola cites a lack of demand for the factory’s closure, as sales of its flagship Moto X smartphone have failed to take off. According to Strategy Analytics, Motorola sold fewer than one million Moto X smartphones during the first quarter of 2014. Apple, on the other hand, was able to sell 26 million of its flagship iPhone 5S.
 
The lackluster sales coupled with higher labor costs in the United States compared to other countries meant that it was only a matter of time before Motorola would be forced to make this decision. Lenovo’s announcement of its intent to acquire Motorola Mobility earlier this year accelerated those plans, as the company is looking to shift more production to China.


Inside Motorola's Fort Worth, Texas factory [Image Source: KERA News]
 
"Manufacturing or assembling smartphones in the U.S. was always going to end in tears for Motorola," said Neil Mawston, an analyst for Strategy Analytics. "The U.S. is well positioned to design smartphones, as Apple does successfully, but manufacturing them is a whole different ballgame."
 
The Forth Worth factory was also home to the Moto Maker customization service for building your own, unique Moto X. The Verge reports that this service will live on despite production moving to China.
 

Motorola's Moto Maker service

The Moto X debuted with a price tag of $599 off contract. The price was reduced, however, to $399 off contract in January (and is currently selling for $349 off contract).

Sources: MarketWatch, The Verge





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