Google is apparently going all in to support the Moto X, the first flagship handset released by Motorola Mobility since being acquired by the Web giant a year ago.
Google is expected to allow the unit to spend up to $500 million marketing the highly-anticipated smartphone in the U.S. and overseas, people familiar with the matter told The Wall Street Journal. The device is expected to be available on AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless this fall, sources told the Journal.
With an emphasis toward customer convenience and customization, Motorola has reportedly taken steps to limit “bloatware,” the apps and services pre-installed on handsets by carriers that are often useless and difficult to remove without rooting the device. Customers will be able to choose the colors for the back of the device and the trim and engrave a name or message to the back cover, ABC News reported earlier this month.
A Motorola spokesperson declined to comment on the report.
Beyond a solid partnership with Verizon, Motorola has struggled to sell its Android smartphones. With Google’s backing, the Moto X represents Motorola’s best chance in years to make inroads against Apple and Samsung.
After months of rumors and speculation, a sign-up page for the Moto X handset finally went live earlier this month, offering users access to the product information and promotional offers. The page, which touts the Moto X as “the first smartphone designed, engineered and assembled in the USA,” promises that the handset is “coming soon.”
Motorola said it expects to have more than 2,000 new employees at a Fort Worth, Texas, facility building the phones. The domestic location will enable the phones to arrive in customers’ hands within days of their order, according to ABC News.