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Moto X Sold Through Google Play Won’t be a Google Play Edition?

moto x review

On the day that the Moto X was finally unveiled, reports immediately surfaced suggesting that there would be a Google Play Edition of Motorola’s new flagship. We’re talking about the full-stock Android experience, sold directly through Google Play, with timely updates, just like we saw with the Galaxy S4 and HTC One GPEs. But is that still happening? According to Leo Laporte who spoke with Motorola’s Guy Kawasaki, that may not be the case after all. 

On his “This Week in Google” show, Laporte said (audio below) that Kawasaki mentioned to him that there would be a version of the Moto X sold through Google Play, however, it won’t be a Google Play Edition. In other words, it’ll be an unlocked version of the Moto X with Touchless Control, Active Display, and some of the other features specific to the Moto X. If this is true, then I think it’s clear that Motorola thinks their core features are what makes this phone unique and standout. Doing away with them in favor of 100% stock Android would degrade the phone tremendously.

As you all know, the Galaxy S4 and One Google Play Editions both ditch their OEM skins in favor of stock Android. Both were also updated to Android 4.3 within a few days after Google released it. If the Moto X sold through Google Play is not a GPE, then we’re wondering how updates would work and what the benefits are to buying it directly from Google? Any chance that the price is slashed tremendously through Google Play?

With no release date in sight for the Moto X through Google Play, we just don’t know at this time.

Via:  TWiT (10:00 mark)

  • Motto

    GPE is still relevant. Carriers will have to sign off updates made to the phone and it seems this is the main reason for slow updates (referring to Verizon Galaxy Nexus here). GPE would get updates from Motorola directly and as the OS is largely stock updates can roll out faster. Just a thought.

  • Sean Bello

    it should be $350 just for the fact that you have to go through the terrible experience that is buying a device from the Play Store.

  • droidrazredge

    Will the Nexus 4 (2013) version people are rumoring to be made by Motorola be the only Nexus debuted this year or do people think there will also be a Nexus 5 released along side this ?

  • Shaggy723

    Oh well, I’ll just wait for the updated Nexus 4 (or whatever they decide to call.

  • Mike Hilal

    If the unlocked version was available through verizon, this might be news.

  • And will the ones sold on the Google Play Store be customized through MotoMaker?

  • Andrew Weckerly

    I have a hard time imagining how it could be a GPE given that so many of the selling features of the phone are tied into aspects that are not inherently “stock” Android.

  • edmicman

    Will it work with Verizon and get updates directly from Google, on time?

  • He does have a good point considering if they made a GPE you would basically end up with a dual core phone with 6 other cores that have no idea what to do!

  • This phone basically has “Stock Android”. I don’t get the bitching.

  • Daeshaun Griffiths

    Yeah idk anymore. I’m sort of interested in the wood backs.

  • yummy

    Still a pretty phone
    One that I will never own
    Five more syllables

  • The Gooch

    Can someone explain why folks care about downvotes?

  • creed

    My prediction as to why they are doing this is that Motorola won’t have to go through Verizon’s horrible update process and and be able to push updates out directly and much faster.

  • Tony Byatt

    I’ll admit, I was very disappointed when this phone was announced. Now I’m starting to like this phone. I’m still waiting on the next Nexus but the Moto X is definitely getting a second look…

  • Tony Stark

    Good. The x8 architecture would be useless in a GPE.

    Now all that remains is the price… EVERYTHING hinges on pricing…

  • mx

    Updates should still be faster than other editions of the phone due to the lack of carrier interference. I would hope so anyway.

  • M3D1T8R

    Just make a 64GB version for Verizon available on Google Play for $500 and I’m sold. Don’t really care about all the other “weak” specs, just the storage. I would consider a 32GB for $400, but probably just stick with my DNA in this case, keep waiting..

  • Ralph Bretz

    Maybe the Google Play Versions will be free of carrier bloat. One can only hope.

  • joejoe5709


    There seems to be some downvote shenanigans today…

    As for the phone I think it makes perfect sense to skip the GPE due to the nearly stock Android. Like most here I’m hoping Moto makes the next Nexus4 instead. I personally think the Moto Nexus4 will be priced somewhat low and the Nexus5 will be slightly more premium. I also think LG will skip the GPE and go straight for a Nexus.

  • Mark

    Just a random thought but AT&T has the exclusive on the Moto Maker at launch correct… Is this exclusive just between the Carriers or exclusive in general? Could we still maybe see the Moto X that is purchased through Motorola.com or Google Play have access to Moto Maker? Basically only the Moto X that is bought directly from the Carriers (instore or online) would not have access to Moto Maker?

    • Omar Amer

      MotoMaker is exlcusive to AT&T for now. Might just be a popularity test bed for now to see if other carriers would like to utilize the service. If it takes off with AT&T, other carriers might be on board.
      I dont see Google Play offering the same service because of the way MotoMaker works. You would need to go to carrier and pay for the MotoMaker card there which then you can take home/in-store kiosk to customize your MotoX. Ones available in store/google play would more than likely be your standard White/Black phones.

    • NexusPhan69

      Just noticed they updated the morotola.com moto X page today. Still “end of August/early September” tho.

  • Omar Amer

    I dont ever see “assembled in the US” and “low price” ever being in the same sentence, let alone in the same paragraph. Only way this phone will drop in price is if they drop the customizability and have it be manufactured in china just like everyone else.

    • Motto

      “The Moto X can never be low price as its assembled in the US” easy..

  • sr_erick

    Are there actually different hardware variations for different carriers? I thought the Moto X contained all the radios to operate on all carriers, just a little different software packaging. Has anyone confirmed this?

    • NexusPhan69

      I highly doubt it. That’s why a unique model passed by the FCC for each unique carrier.

  • Patrick Crumpler

    Updates will come through Verizon. As it will not be a Google Edition. Just the same phone you get from Verizon.

  • Please be around 300 to 400 for verizon so I can preserve my unlimited data!!!

    • Kevin

      if GPS sells it, it’s highly unlikely it will verizon compatible.

      • Moto CEO already said a Moto X GPE for Verizon will be released. Only thing we don’t know… Is the price! Right Kellex?!

        • Justin Barrett

          Care to share the link to support this claim?

          • Woops maybe I hallucinated. But I thought I saw that it was coming to Verizon? Anyone else know?

        • Kevin

          i’d like to see that too, i’m not finding anything that says it.

        • Mark

          yes please provide a link to support this…..I am on Verizon and all I want is a Moto X off contract for less than what Verizon will charge off contract directly through them. A Moto X directly from Google Play or Moto.com would be the best bet of this happening. Not guaranteed but has the best shot… especially if the reports are true that the Moto X is sold to carriers at 350 bucks. Google Play or Moto.com needs to undercut the Carriers greedy pricing and pass the value of the Moto X directly to us!!!

        • Ralph Bretz

          There will be a Verizon Developer Edition from what I read not a GPE

  • michael bourgoin

    is it possible that the nexus 5 moto rumors are true and that the next nexus will be based on this phone and the GPE would preempt that?

    • Bill Slowey

      I thought the rumors were that the next Nexus would not be based off the Moto X.

      • michael bourgoin

        i saw somewhere that the next nexus might be moto. Also heard LG rumors…but they are all rumors so who knows

  • Joshua Bailey

    Makes sense if Moto is making the Nexus 4 2013.

  • bozzykid

    If it is a regular Moto X without carrier bloatware, it seems the Play Store version would be the exact same as the Developer Edition that they have confirmed.

  • Alexander Garcia

    A GPE Moto X is pointless!

    • Godzilla

      Not really. The GPE designation alone will help a lot with updates.

  • Butters619

    Moto UI (is that what they are calling it now) is pretty close to stock besides a couple small things, so this sort of makes sense. Hopefully though they lower the price a bit before hitting Google Play.

  • Godzilla

    None of this matters for Verizon people, LOL. Google hates Verizon

    • sagisarius

      Verizon depends largely on CDMA, I think Verizon hates it’s self. Though, eventually they’ll be all LTE, so they’re on the path to unlocked phone land.

      • Godzilla

        I know that, but trust me they dont like unlocked land. If they can find a way to keep locked phones, they will. Likely? No. But they will try.

        They are not going to simply “turn off” CDMA once VOLTE starts up. They cant becuase not all phones or rural areas will have VOLTE

        • sagisarius

          I guess I was thinking more to the point of people would feel comfortable buying a LTE only phone, and not really worrying about the CDMA.

          And on the unlocked land. Totally agree. I love how Google forced that open requirement on them via the bidding. And how verizon then decided they wouldn’t follow it, and got totally smacked down by the courts!

          • droidrazredge

            So just a thought, but technically when Verizon implements their VoLTE wouldn’t a tablet with LTE like the Nexus 7 be able to be used as a phone ? If that was the case that would be 350$ for a phone, the only downside for some people being of course the size.

        • aye_winchell

          They could, and just give people equivalent upgrades. When at&t bought alltel they were cdma, at least in montana where i am, and everything was fine for the first few months as they didnt make any changes, but after getting everything ironed out and they made the switch to the gsm network in place now everyone had to change phones, so they just gave people phones that were equivalent to what they had or gave a discount on upgrading.

          Its possible they could go VoLTE and make people switch, in fact i’m sure they will at some point, but it probably wont be for 5 years after they launch VoLTE or maybe 5 years after they finish the roll out of VoLTE to rural areas.

          • sagisarius

            yeah, I think you’re right, they will eventually, but it will be a long way out.

        • C-Law

          Yeah that sucks. People think we are about to enter a magical time next year when volte starts on Verizon but the truth is, if you don’t have a 4g connection, you won’t be able to use ur phone as a phone, or ull have to pay for roaming. I’m in Houston and have great 4g coverage but anytime I visit another city, there are always spots along the road that won’t have 4g in between big cities. I’m sure it will be at least another 10 years before cdma dies

    • Tim242

      That is a myth

      • brkshr

        Verizon hates Google…

  • kixofmyg0t

    Heres to hoping for $349 16GB and $399 32GB. Cheap enough for Moto to still make a profit off them.

    Wouldn’t that be awesome to MotoMaker them as well?

  • Tim242

    Google nor Moto said there would be one. Blogs jumped the gun. I’m glad the truth is finally coming out.

  • Xcalibur1011

    Scrap that and just concentrate on making the Nexus 5.

  • Godzilla

    With Rumors of a Motorola Nexus coming soon if I was shopping for a phone I would wait and see what the holidays offer.

    LG Nexus 5? Very likely
    Motorola Nexus “ultra?” Rumors suggest one is coming
    Possible Note 3 GPE?

    There are many options for people in the market right now, if I were you, i’d wait.

    • KleenDroid

      Waiting for future phones doesn’t make sense.

      If you pay full retail you dont have to think about contracts.

      If there is a phone you like now… get it and enjoy it. If a new phone comes out in a few months that you really want… get it. You can always sell your current phone that is basically brand new to help offset cost.

      I know many focus on their contracts and the magical 2 years. But why torture yourself when you can simply get any phone whenever you want it.

      • JonathonFlores

        Maybe because most people don’t have an extra $400-$600 to spend on a new device every month or two. I’ waiting not bc of my contract or upgrade but why would I spend $600 on a moto x today and then drop another $600 on a Note 3 next month? Maybe I sell the moto x online somewhere for 2/3 of what I paid for it. I’m still out $200. Don’t be an idiot.

    • Ralph Bretz

      If there was a chance another Nexus would actually land on verizon tehn I’d be all other it, but has that will never happen I got to go with the X dveleoper edition

  • Weber

    What would be the point of a GPe? It pretty much is that already.

    • NexusPhan69

      Uh. Timely updates?

      • Weber

        I’d have to imagine that what little extra the Moto X has on top of the OS won’t cause the phone to get untimely updates.

        • NexusPhan69

          True. *Unless you’re on Verizon.

          • Weber

            You’ve bested me.

          • NexusPhan69

            Haha. Not the a GPE would help Verizon users anyway, because we all know the GPE will not be Verizon compatible. Damn. Bested myself.

          • normmcgarry

            It can still help the devs with creating a bug-free AOSP rom on Verizon.

        • normmcgarry

          It doesn’t have Android 4.3, so I think that pretty much answers that.

          • Weber

            True, but in the realm of how most non-GPe and Nexus phones get updates, I can’t imagine this one taking forever to get it.
            It isn’t hurting me any, as the phone hasn’t been released to the general public yet. Let’s see how long after release it takes to get 4.3.

          • normmcgarry

            Sure, it’s all good right now, but 1 year from now when the S4 and HTC One GPe are sitting on Key Lime Pie and the Moto X is still chillin on Android 4.2, it’ll be a different story. That’s the point.

          • Weber

            I get that, but I just don’t see it happening with any carrier but VZW. Sure, the GPe phones get the updates right away, but what would the point of a GPe be for the MotoX? It’s damn near stock as is, and once you take away the few features it has, then you’re stuck with what, an HTC First, in terms of specs? If the few add-ons on the X are too much for carriers to handle when it comes to updating the OS, then that’s just ridiculous.

          • chris420o

            this phone is basically manufactured straight from google…not sure why your coming to this conclusion

          • normmcgarry

            Because Android 4.3 is already out and on GPe devices and this thing is being released with Android 4.2. It’s a pretty fair conclusion, I’d say.

          • Weber

            Or maybe it won’t get 4.3 at all, because the “OS upgrade wars are over.”

          • chris420o

            does your phone have android 4.3

  • Milind Shah

    Either way it won’t matter as moto x is close to stock/vanilla

    • SparkysShocker

      On top of that I can see the Google Play sold X will see updates much faster because it won’t have to wait for carrier approval.

      • Milind Shah

        hmm, yeah that is true

  • MacNificent

    idc how it goes this will be my next phone. i do hope that it come through google play for verizon and is a bit cheaper. although nobody knows how much its gonna be anyway. its the closest to a GPE you will ever see without it really being a GPE.

  • Kevin

    i’d be fine if the price was slashed… if it was on verizon (sad trombone)

    • Robert Willis

      +1 for the sad trombone

    • JonathonFlores

      Moto knows they have a good product. They just don’t know what they want to do with it.

  • DroidzFX

    I am secretly hoping this fails so they(carriers) realize you should not charge this much for the phone.

    not really a secret anymore.

    • hkklife

      While on one hand I want to see Moto succeed, I want the X Phone to be a spectacular failure to remind them that all of the “me too” software gimmicks and hype in the world don’t make up for an overpriced, overhyped phone.

      Also, I don’t trust anything Leo Laporte says these days, especially when the X is concerned!!

      • DroidzFX

        I want Moto to succeed as well. Just not at that price point. Maybe the next gen Moto X will have better pricing.

      • Godzilla

        totally agree

      • Logan Kraus

        I wouldn’t really call these “gimmicks.” It’s not like Samsung’s throw-everything-at-the-wall approach. These software additions seem genuinely useful, and something I would probably use all the time.

      • briankariu

        I am with you there. Leo laporte has lost credibility in my eyes

    • brkshr

      Or you could start buying phones at full price… The carriers won’t care if one phone fails. They have a ton of other phones to sell you at that same price point. Try not giving the carrier ANY money for a phone. The entire carrier/customer relationship would change if more people would do this. Kinda how Europe carriers work.

      • DroidzFX

        If the google play edition is cheaper that would mean the carriers inflate the price for their own profit. Guess we will have to wait and see.

        But the point is I think all the new motos are overpriced for what you are getting.

        • brkshr

          They are definitely making a profit. I believe it was Android Central that reported AT&T is paying Moto $350 each.

  • AndrewScottRox

    Laying a phone face down on a rock? I see you like to live dangerously…..

    • Gently. 😛

      • Tyler Durden

        I still don’t see why people do it. Not like a rock is more special than a table.

      • NexusPhan69

        Moto X price on Motorola’s website. We’re getting closer here.

        • Tony Stark

          You got me excited for nothing… 😛

          • NexusPhan69

            They’ve added it to their phone line-up. We’re getting closer to a release date. Keep checking that apge for the T-Mobile one to show up available for purchase!

      • I believe those were the last words of your Nexus 4 before the accident.

      • aQuickBit

        So tomorrow, Kellen, I expect something along these lines of a “gentle” Moto X article picture.

    • DanSan

      for some reason all the blogs do this and i honestly dont get it. grab a towel or something. whats the point of taking a picture of it on a rock? to catch it in its natural environment or something? just a giant pet peeve of mine and makes me cringe

  • chris125

    Because if they take those features away then its just another average mid range phone. Those “gimmicks” are one of the few things keeping it alive

    • Tough to argue with that. The features they added are what make it unique.

      • Tyler Durden

        And can be found on all 4 devices.

        • Guest

          Wow, I didn’t know MotoMaker was for the Droids as well. . .

          Droid-Life really failed here not letting us know that!

          • joejoe5709

            He was talking about software seem as how the main difference between a GPE Moto X and a standard Moto X would be the software.

      • Jason Downing

        Remember this from the interview with the Moto Engineer? Could be interesting

        On adding future customizable features to Moto X (like RAM, screen size, processor, etc.):

        We do have a road map for extending the capabilities of the device and customization in the future, but I’ll talk about that in the future.

  • litobirdy

    slash the price, but then wouldn’t the carriers be like WTF MAN. that’s cheaper than our retail price.. but then again this version won’t be compatible with verizon anyway

    • Keep in mind that T-Mobile sells the Nexus 4 at a much higher price than Google does.

      • BobbyG

        been thinking this all along. Maybe Moto suprises us and we something like $299 or $399 off contract

        • Butters619

          I could see $499, $549 off contract. I really don’t think they would go much lower. Moto is still a hardware manufacturer and needs to turn a profit.

          Although I’m still praying for lower.

          • Godzilla

            stil too high

          • Butters619

            That’s still too high for any of us to buy (well for the most part) but I wouldn’t be at all surprised if that is the prices they showed up at.

          • Scott Webber

            I would strongly consider paying $499 for this phone if: 1) verizon, 2) customization

      • NAM37

        I’m not holding my breath…