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I Designed My First Custom Moto X With MotoMaker, Here It is

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Motorola invited us to be one of the first groups to test out its new MotoMaker phone customizing service earlier this week, and this is what we came up with. Please don’t say “Oregon Ducks phone!” because we didn’t mean to go that route, even though we live in Oregon. The color scheme just looked too good! But outside of our color choices, this is how it all went down. This is our journey to create one of the first customized Moto X phones.

For reference, this is similar to the MotoMaker tutorial we published on Moto X announcement day, however, this includes the checkout process and all of the finalized colors.

Also, as you all know, AT&T is the exclusive launch partner of MotoMaker. So come launch day, whenever that becomes official, only AT&T customers will get to go through this process. Yes, that’s unfortunate.

Let’s do it! 

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Thanks to Motorola, who gave us a promo code to setup a phone for free (press unit here, folks), this was our start screen. You can see the total under Moto X reads “$0.00” since we plugged in a code, but should you be going through MotoMaker (motomaker.com) without a code, that number would change along the way as you tweak certain parts. Actually, the only real change you’ll see in price is if you go from 16GB to 32GB, and then if you add on accessories at the end.

For those not familiar, Motorola and AT&T are offering you the chance to go into an AT&T store to get your hands on the Moto X and decide if it’s the phone for you. If it is, they’ll let you purchase a gift card with a promo code (like we used) for the amount of the phone that can then be redeemed on MotoMaker. If you know you want to buy the Moto X and customize it, you can simply go to Motomaker.com and follow this same process without a code.

So once you click “Get Started,” you are taken to the first page which is the color-picker for the back color of the Moto X. As you know, I eventually settled in on the Spearment green, but I tried Cherry, Navy Blue, Turquoise, and Yellow at one point. There are 18 color choices – wood is not currently one of them.

On a side note, if you pay attention to the bottom right corner of each screenshot, you’ll constantly see an updated “estimated delivery” time. Ours constantly said “4 days” because there are few orders in at this time, but should you choose a specific color that is in high-demand or you decide to get an engraving on the back, it could jump out past 4 days. For the most part, Motorola is striving to hit 4 days or less.

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You can spin your the device around in a 360-degree motion at any time to see how your color scheme is looking. This becomes important as you move from stage to stage, as you’ll want to see how your design is shaping up.

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After eventually settling on Spearmint, it was on to the front color choice, which is either black or white. I’m normally a fan of white phones, but the white-spearmint combo, wasn’t doing it for me. You can see it below, but I did go with black before moving on to the accent page. Black, along with on-screen navigation buttons, gives this awesome never-ending black look with the screen off like we get with the Nexus 4 and Galaxy Nexus.

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There are 7 accent colors to choose from, however, Motorola tries to match up an accent that they feel will look best as you travel throughout MotoMaker. So when I got to this point, it had already selected Metallic Yellow for me. The yellow-spearmint partnership was what I eventually settled on, but I tried all of the other colors to see how it would look. Grey and black looked extra stealth, as Tim put it, but we had to go with some extra zip. No, not DROID Zap, zip.

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The next step is adding a signature to the back of your device, if you’d like. I should point out that “droid life” was not an acceptable choice, nor was Samsung or HTC. But Burger King, McDonald’s and Nike all worked! So clearly, Motorola doesn’t want you branding your phone with competitors’ names. They also will likely limit you on the swear words. As you’ll see in the photo below, FACKWORS worked perfectly, but we eventually settled on a more classy “D L.”

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The signature is the last piece of the exterior design, unless you count the last tab, which is to buy a case that matches your new phone color scheme. So, now it’s onto internals and some software tweaks.

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The first step is choosing your storage size. If you go with 16GB, you are looking at $199 on contract, but if you go up to 32GB the price jumps to $249. As you can see, the promo code offered to us by Motorola was for the 16GB model.

Once you have this step picked, you get to choose a Power On greeting, matching wallpaper for your color scheme, and decide if you want your Google account pre-loaded on the device when it arrives. Like with the back signature, Motorola doesn’t want you swearing or using competitors’ names. We decided to go inspirational this time around.

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Once you wrap up with those options, you are essentially done. You can choose from some accessories, like matching headphones or whether you want a white or black charger in the box. Since we went black face, we also went black charger. We did not go for the matching SOL Republic headphones.

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Then it’s time to checkout. MotoMaker connects to your Google accounts, so if you have saved addresses, it can pull those in to make checkout a quick process.

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Here is the official email you receive once your ordered has been received.


And probably the best part, is this little notification. ‘Merica.

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So on Monday, we should have a shiny new custom made Moto X. Actually, we may have two, since we found a backdoor yesterday and managed to order a 2nd. Shhh, don’t tell anyone.

Overall, it’s an interesting process, to say the least. Outside of the MotoMaker site gobbling up computer resources like none other, the entire step-by-step picker is well made and laid out. I will say that deciding on a color scheme for a phone that could run you a few hundred dollars, and that you are supposed to like for two years is very stressful. What if your style changes? What if you don’t want an Oregon Duck colored phone in 6 months when football season is over? What if you take a liking to wood, which isn’t available yet? Very cool deal, making your own phone – just choose wisely.

  • Kate

    what is the promo code you used to get the phone for free?

  • n11

    It’d be nice if I could order one to Canada :/
    A blue with orange highlights and black front at 32GB would be awesome.
    But alas.

  • Rithvik Rao

    Being a good samaritan, I’ll tell you all that the press people ordered their Moto X units using codes provided by Motorola on http://motorola.com/designit/.

    I have a code that’s already been redeemed, but… always the chance that Kellen will tell me the backdoor 😛

  • Anang Taz

    Before you want to buy Moto X , We recommend that you know first look about Motorola Moto X hands on & fey features ,Explaining about the specs, test the camera, the interface is comfortable to use and application, as well as speed in trying some applications.

    Watch the video Moto X review.

  • Derin Richardson

    This could also be the official phone of Kick Ass.

  • umbrellacorp


  • AD4

    Ah if only they would have this for a phone I actually want.

  • Derek

    Sweet Oregon Ducks phone!!

  • Eddie J Camacho

    Its cool for a sec. but Would love to see tribal designs & more things people can call their own unique device & not have the same color as everyone else

  • KleenDroid

    It is very pretty.

  • eagletrippin

    Never understood the point in colored ‘backs’ when the bezel on the front of the phone remains black, or calling a phone “_____ in white” when only the back is white, for that matter. Only Samsung and apple seem to get this right. Another moto fail.

  • Animate

    Isn’t there an option to personalize a message when you start up? is this whenever you turn it on or just the initial boot? If it’s on every start up can this be changed via settings in case I want to have a different message every random number days/weeks/months/parsecs?

  • I wonder if the reason they launched with AT&T instead of Verizon is because of all the bs surrounding upgrades. They would of had to found a way to pull all the user’s info from Verizon to see if they were on unlimited data or other types of plans and then change them over to share everything. Oh and then there is that pesky upgrade fee!

  • Stephen Cox

    If only there was an option for “Sliding keyboard”.

    • Tyler

      I’m not trying to be mean but you’re looking for a dying breed. Sliding keyboards aren’t coming back, at least on high end Android phones. Download Swiftkey or Swype (or try Fleksy Beta) they are great on-screen keyboards. If you need the slider for typing commands or such, get a Bluetooth keyboard.

  • wolfedude88

    So what is the pricing when customizing? Is it set on 199.99 and 249.99 and customizing is free? Doubtful, that is what we really need to know, if we change the colors how much extra will it be?

    • zionlion02

      There is no cost for customizing options. The cost is 199 or 249, period. All the customization options are part of the process and price inclusive. So you can switch it up in the design process as much as you want!

  • mustbepbs

    That looks really, really ugly.

  • justin jordan

    I love my ducks!

  • Brian Menius

    I’m liking this thing more each day. I’d do brown with metallic orange on a black bezel for mine.

    … but I’m on TMobile, so I may never get the option.

  • Bryan Saroza

    Is it possible to order one through at&t prepaid and then put a t-mobile sim in?

  • andrew401

    Wow that thing is absolutely hideous. I’d be embarrassed to whip that thing out and show it off. But I guess to each their own.

    • Drew Blaskoski

      that’s what she said?

  • Alexander Garcia

    Nice color scheme Kel. Mine would be black front, dark grey back, and red trim. So basically a Droid DNA Mini. =)

  • Daniel Russell

    Does anyone know if you can change the power on greeting after getting the phone? This might be something that one would want to change every so often and getting stuck with the same message for the lifetime of the phone would be annoying.

  • Adamania

    Care to forward me the code?

  • jcorf

    I’m not really all that interested in all the fancy colors. I’ll probably keep it simple and go with all black.

  • NeedName

    I can see how the MOTO X could be a big hit with sports fans — get your team’s colors and engrave it with. . . well, can’t do their logo, but something will work.

  • guest

    I want wood! (on the back of my MotoX)

  • Jeremy Martin

    Now quick get a case to protect it…that will coincidentally cover up that nice customization 🙂

  • Tyler Durden

    Is that a Ducks color scheme?

  • chris420o

    I wanna make one! why cant they open the site to everyone so people will go ape sh*t for this?

    • onDroid

      I went to motomaker.com earlier this morning and it let me try it out. I got all the way to the check out screen and then closed the tab. Now when I go to the site it just prompts me to sign up to be notified of offers. At least I got to play with it before they shut it down.

  • Xious

    I don’t really understand advertising a feature that is not available. A huge part of the marketing push is for the customization, however you won’t be able to do that on most carriers for awhile. And the wood that they’re making a big deal about it not available either. So why release the phone before all of that is ready? How do you expect people to buy in to the phone if the things Motorola wants to be proud of isn’t even available to buy?

    • sagisarius

      I get the impression that this is just the start of it. They’ve said there will be other phones to go with this (like maybe a bigger and/or smaller one). I suspect it will be available for every carrier by christmas, with those other options available as well. Then it will just be more broadly available on future Moto X phones.

      • onDroid

        I expect all future Motorola phones to use Motomaker. This is just the initial roll out. I’m sure AT&T is giving them free marketing and extra revenue for the exclusivity but I would bet that the revenue gained from the partnership would be less then what Motorola would make if they rolled it out to all carriers. I’m wondering if they did this because they wouldn’t be able to handle the initial surge in production at their Texas plant if they rolled it out to all carriers at once. This would function as a beta test to work out all the kinks before it becomes for widely available and spread out the required labor over a more manageable timeline. I don’t like it, but I can see reasons for it.

  • 655321

    Maybe by the time Verizon gets MotoMaker the wood (and hopefully ceramic) backs will be available. Any idea at all how long AT&T gets the exclusive on MotoMaker?

    Also, will you be able to buy an unlocked phone on MotoMaker eventually?

  • TSK

    I haven’t held or even seen the phone in person yet, not sure many have, but what are the chances that, with a little “hacking” the back plates could be swapped? 0%?

  • JackL

    Out of curiosity — Kellex does MotoMaker allow you to buy the phone off-contract or does it force you to do the 2 year subsidy ?

  • sagisarius

    I feel like they have the process a bit backwards on that thing. I get that phone companies want to sell you the phone themselves… but it seems like the real value in Moto Maker is letting everyone go in and customize without a code so they can “make their own phone” and get excited about it, well before they buy it. I really hope they set it up that way with that 3rd party (what do you even call that?) T-Mobile version.

  • DJ SPY

    Isn’t this the same color scheme that Motorola has been pushing in its promo videos?

  • Kenny Larson

    Black and orange would have been a better color scheme.


    I like how you said “your first” how many you plan on buying? Save some for the rest of us.

  • Kenny Hopkins

    I am so surprised that nobody caught that he said since we went black face lol. Prob not the best phrase.

  • Daeshaun Griffiths

    I would put droid life on my personal device. I do live the droid life, don’t we all?

  • Teddy Chen

    Anyone know if Verizon will get the 32GB variant once Motomaker becomes available to them?

    • Dominic Powell

      Most likely.

  • Frank Fitton

    I dig it a lot, the customization aspect makes the Moto X so intriguing. Is this the start of a whole customization craze? I’m hoping so. Hopefully the other companies see this and run with it. I’m hoping the next line of actual flagship devices have these customization options, customizable Galaxy S5 would be awesome. It’s like the Nike ID shop for phones, what a great idea.

    Check out my blog about the Moto X being the start of the customization craze at……….. http://www.gosellcrazy.com/2013/08/motox-customization-craze/

  • Rbq

    Make a Blazer phone, give away to me

  • Wes Jordan

    Thinking out loud here: What exactly is stopping me from buying a Moto X from Motomaker, and then just sticking a T-Mobile SIM inside of it?

    • Higher_Ground

      I think you need a contract to use motomaker, otherwise it’s white/black only.

      • tomn1ce

        that sucks if you have to sign up for a contract to design the phone…

      • CARPDM

        Yeah, I was thinking of using my parents upgrade on ATT and taking it to Tmo or VZW, will that work since they have all the antennas in it?
        (My parents dont need their upgrades, if they do I’ll get them Nexus4.)

        • Tyler

          Verizon uses completely different radios then att their lte is on a different frequency and cdma is completely different then the gsm radios that att and Tmobile use. Not sure about Tmobile though.

  • EC8CH

    Beige Back + Black Front + Silver Accents = Hottness

    *Currently no Beige Backs 🙁
    *Going for VW Cornsilk Beige two tone interior look

    • Justtyn Hutcheson

      I had to go with the grey interior for my 2013 Passat. The beige looked great, but my OCD refused to let me ignore the slightly off-tone plastic pieces and leatherette vs. the cloth accents.

      • EC8CH

        I’ve got a 2012 CC R-Line.

        No cloth so I didn’t have that problem. I did swap out my ugly open North American cupholder for a nice black Euro rolltop cover one to match the backseat.

        I hope they add a similar looking Beige backplate option for the X. I think that would be a very classy looking color combo for a phone.

        • ReturnOfTheMack

          As soon as I read Cornsilk Beige, I knew you had to be a VW owner. A CSG R-Line with that interior wold awesome, btw are you on Vortex?

          • EC8CH

            Yep… Same user name in the CC forum.

            Just did all the regular vagcom tweaks this weekend. I’m particularly happy to be rid of the day time running lights.

  • marko358

    Any word on when other carriers will finally get access to Moto Maker?

    • Still don’t know. Rumors say November, my gut says November, but we hope it’s sooner.

      • EC8CH

        Marketing is be weird until then. Hard to push customization as a feature while it is so limited to only a single carrier.

        • cns2007


        • NeedName

          They usually market in concert with a particular carrier. So, it’s not a problem. And it will only be till November.

          • marko358

            I keep hearing November but where has this actually been confirmed?

      • Guest

        I talked to an engineer for Motorola last week and he said verizon and us cellular should get it October or November and that he’s not sure about t-mobile even getting the service

    • Teddy Chen

      I’m guessing it’s a 3 month exclusivity, so that’ll put it at the end of November. I believe I also read somewhere that “wood” should be available by then, that’s if that doesn’t also enter exclusivity with AT&T.

  • Chris Bailey

    Shake yo moto maker… Shake yo moto maker…

    • MacNificent

      and then the camera comes on!

  • Shane Redman


  • zakry obrien

    Back door? Tell me more…

  • panicswhenubered

    Engrave: “iPh0ne 6” lol, umad, Apple?

    • NeedName

      That would be a great troll. . . . better yet, just put an appleish logo on the back.

    • onDroid

      How about “Pinch to sue” on the back

  • ahhh yes

    the white and green not bad but black green and yellow…YUK

  • beng8686

    Black and green looks gooood.

  • Ben Featherstone

    Oregon Ducks Moto X?

    • Eric

      Screw the Ducks!

  • fillyo75


  • NemaCystX

    You designed the exact one I want. Gimme! 😛

  • ArrowCool

    Shoulda stuck with FACKWORS!

    • sc4fpse

      Seriously! A FACKWORS X? Shut up and take my money!

    • That’s what I said!!! That or either “Got Jank?” 🙁

  • kixofmyg0t

    I’m thinking a White front Pink back X engraved with FACKWORS should be the prize of a DL giveaway!

  • Valilla

    Kellen, any verification on if numbers or symbols work? I’m planning on something like “$ rwd [email protected]

  • Good_Ole_Pinocchio


    • DJ SPY

      In the videos moto have been posting it shows a link one for a brief second. Check the end


      • Rithvik Rao

        There’s blush and purple. No DL pink. 🙁

        • DJ SPY

          They have a contest going on their Facebook page to choose the next color and that nice light pink is one of the colors you can vote for.

          • Rithvik Rao

            Oh okay…


            My dream Moto X:

            -Given away by DL

            -DL pink

            -FACKWORS engraved

            -Yellow or green highlights

            -An unlocked bootloader

            -Android 4.3

            What a pipe dream…

  • Patrick Crumpler

    Go Beaves!

    • NeedName

      You all better not tank half way through the years, again!

  • Stephen

    Kellen — If you got away with ordering 2, I say that’s the next DL giveaway!!

    • We’ll be working on that. 😛

      • googlyeyedfrog

        i think you should give one to Ron as his daily driver instead

  • George264

    Should have engraved Verizon ✔ 4GLTE

  • James Hill

    You paid zero dollars!?! Wish I could get that deal.

  • Derin Richardson

    I personally like the “black and yellow” color scheme. I hope people don’t get the impression of the Pittsburgh Steelers, as I am in California.

    Plus, I loathe Wiz Khalifa…

    • Guest

      Wake Forest?

      • Derin Richardson

        Bingo! Lol

        Actually, while I do like WFU’s football, I just really dig that colour scheme is all.

    • BCoils


    • Animate

      I was thinking of s similar customization but it’s my fraternal colors unless they have gold and not just yellow.

  • Guest

    All of these other colors, but no orange? That makes me sad. The moto x would be my next phone if I could’ve made it orange..

    • Orange accent is all the orange I saw. Rest of the “warm” colors for the back are all pinkish reddish things.

  • BigWormBigPerm

    The engraving I would get would say “No one can read this because everyone uses a case on their phone”

    • Abhijeet Mishra

      Everyone? No, just no. Cases suck, they ruin the feel of the device, so no, not everyone uses them. 😛

      • C-Law

        I prefer cruzrlite tpu cases on the galaxy series, they are just too slippery without a case imho

    • Matt Cooper

      No cases here. I like to see the phone as the manufacturer intended.

    • chris420o

      bumper case?

    • C-Law

      I use a case bc I normally buy used phones on swappa, but if I ever get to buy a new one again(don’t wanna lose vzw unlimited data), I would buy squaretrade insurance and go caseless. Of course only if it had a non slick back. I have to use a case on the galaxy series bc they are so slippery but I never had an issue without a case on my og droid and gnex

    • NeedName

      Haven’t used a case yet on any of my Android devices. . . and probably never will — won’t buy something that is so fragile it needs a case.

    • JasonS

      I have never used a case. I also have never broken phone. All of my phones after 2 years of use only have small cosmetic damage. I dropped my Bionic onto concrete from waist height and only got a small scratch out of it.

    • Tyler

      I like my phones the same way I like my women … naked.

  • panicswhenubered

    No pink Droid-Life color scheme? Kellex, I am disappoint.

    • The pinks they offer just aren’t DL enough. 😛

      • panicswhenubered

        You’re right, I just looked at the pink color they offer. Seems more like salmon than pink. Maybe it’s just my super over-saturated Gnex display. lol

      • C-Law

        Dang, a droid life themed phone would be awesome!

      • sk3litor

        Now you have a phone to match your green checkered shirt; )

      • michael arazan

        Another Moto X?

        Do I Smell A Moto X Give Away???!!!!!!

  • Godzilla

    Dat color

  • jnt

    Now slap a case on that bad boy!

  • samosa king

    Why do they not accept “Droid Life” though? Kellex care to explain if you know why?

    • theentropic

      I’m guessing it had something to do with the word “Droid” and the fact that it is a Verizon brand type thing.

    • jhlinka

      Droid is what’s getting caught

      • Exactly. We were able to put in dr0id with a zero, but it’s just not the same.

        • bkosh84

          You couldn’t put in Android Central either.. They tried it over there and it didn’t work.. Neither did putting the word Android.. Which is strange considering it’s the OS on the phone, lol.

          • aQuickBit

            I wonder if Symbian would work?

        • Paul Hansen

          Using all caps the DR0ID LIFE might have looked ok depending on the font.

    • Valilla

      Droid is a brand name.

    • EC8CH

      Should have engraved:

      “Ron Approved”

      • krudl3rx

        No, should engrave: “Per Sarge.”

      • NeedName

        “my other phone is an iPhone”

        • HarleyFan72

          I brake for ‘roids…

    • Mitch Joa

      because droid life is designing a phone. unlocked carrier, unlocked bootloader, 128gb internal, sd card, 4.7″ 1080p display, 4000mAh battery, nokia 42MP camera sensor, unibody aluminum shell, stock android, pink.

  • samosa king

    LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL!!! I love how they don’t accept “Samsung” being engraved on their Moto X sold!

  • NexusPhan69