Motorola set to return to China

Motorola has announced it is to return to China after being absent from the market since 2013 when it became a Google-owned company. This follows Chinese tech giant Lenovo’s October acquisition of the US-based mobile vendor.

The Chinese smartphone market is one of the fastest growing and biggest in the world. So much so that almost completely purely China-focused Xiaomi recently ranked as the world’s third largest smartphone vendor by shipment volume.

Announcing its China plans in a blog post, Motorola seemed delighted to be re-entering the country. The device maker said it will make its entrance with three of its newest devices: the Moto X, Moto X Pro and Moto G, to go on sale in the early part of 2015.

“With the Lenovo acquisition complete, Motorola is returning to China- one of the world’s fastest-growing smartphone markets- in triumphant fashion, introducing three of its latest devices,” the firm said in the post.

“Motorola has a long history in China and we are pleased that smartphone fans there continue to be passionate about our brand and products.

“Chinese consumers have long been at the leading edge of smartphone use, blazing trails in mobile messaging, media and more. Motorola’s pure Android based devices will give them new choices in how they connect to the world.”

Keen to reconnect with the Chinese consumer in an interactive way, Motorola said it is giving people the chance to vote on the initial colours and materials used for the Moto X. This is a similar tactic to those used by disruptive player Xiaomi, whose business model includes a lot of interaction with users.

The device has a 5.2-inch HD display, a metal frame, and other materials include FSC certified woods and genuine Horween leather. Later on people will be able to use the vendor’s Moto Maker tool to design their own Moto X.

It will be interesting to see how Motorola will take off in China, where it used to have a considerable market share. However, since Motorola’s exit the Chinese mobile device market has moved at a fast phase, and is already very competitive with local players such as Xiaomi, Huawei and Lenovo, as well as internationals Samsung and Apple.

Still, there is a huge population with increasing buying power and Motorola’s success could come down to whether it is able to execute its marketing in the right way. This in turn will depend on how Lenovo chooses to position Motorola versus the Lenovo brand itself, which is currently doing very well in its own right.

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