Motorola's CEO May Be Able To Fix One Of The Biggest Problems With Android Phones

Dennis woodside motorola ceo talks about moto x phoneScreenshot/AllThingsDMotorola CEO Dennis Woodside.

Motorola’s CEO Dennis Woodside says he hopes the company’s newest phone, the Moto X, will be able to receive timely software updates shortly after Google releases new versions of Android.

If Motorola can pull that off, it’d solve one of the biggest problems with Android phones today.

Whenever Google releases a new version of Android, it takes manufacturers like Samsung, HTC, LG, etc. several months to bring the update to their devices. It’s not uncommon for those companies to fall two or three versions behind.


Because those companies heavily modify Android, which takes time. After those modifications, carriers have to test the software to make sure it works well on their network.

But Motorola’s new Moto X has relatively few Android modifications, which in theory will make it easier to push out updates to the phone.

Here’s a paraphrase of what Woodside told AllThingsD’s Ina Fried about the upgrade process for the Moto X:

But, while Motorola won’t have advanced access to new Android code, the company does hope to have devices that can quickly be upgraded. In part, that stems from not making a lot of changes to the underlying operating system so that updates can easily be readied and then tested by cellular carriers.

Woodside is referring to the latest version of Android, version 4.3, that Google introduced just a few weeks ago. Google is able to push out the new version to its Nexus phones and tablets almost immediately, but manufacturers like Motorola need to spend time more time with it first.

It also demonstrates how even though Motorola is owned by Google, it’s not getting preferential treatment over other manufacturers with early access to new versions of Android.

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