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Motorola: Other modular phones have 'completely failed'

Derek Walter | June 10, 2016
Moto executives proclaimed the Moto Z to be metaphysical perfection, while promising modules will be forward compatible.

Moto execs proclaimed the Moto Z as the most reliable smartphone around, period. Well, on Verizon’s network anyway, as the company said they took advantage of their previous work with Verizon on the Droid line to optimize the LTE performance. They claimed it outperforms any other phone on Verizon’s network.

“It’s a technically challenging solution, Verizon is our biggest partner and this device is performing its best on the Verizon network,” said Wicks. “There’s a great focus we get by doing this first with one single carrier and not necessarily trying to do it with everybody at once, which is advantageous for us in terms of innovation.”

Going slim from the start

The panelists also revealed that from the very beginning, the goal for the module design and performance was for modules to snap on, “just work,” and feel have a feeling in the hand that wasn’t bulky (unlike Lenovo’s other phone, the ginormous Phab2 Pro).

This is why there was so much focus on getting the width down to 5.2mm, which meant foregoing the headphone jack and moving around other interior components when necessary. It’s also why there’s a batch of pins on the back, which can communicate with modules (but won’t zap you in dry climates, according to their internal tests).

“That was a goal from the very beginning, that’s what drove the innovation in liquid cooling, and strength, to maintain,” said Wicks.

Castano echoed those comments that the inside engineering needed to be the partner of a slim design. Certainly there are plenty of slim phones out there, so Moto execs were hitting that point pretty hard, which you’ll probably hear about later when it’s time for marketing.

“Our design allows us to have that flexibility that’s forward looking. From a design we made specific choices,” he said. “For example, the round camera is functional, but it’s also a design choice. It allows for you to snap a module easily without the camera getting in the way. It’s as simple as snapping it on and things work. There’s nothing else the consumer needs to do.”


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