Thankfully, it isn’t all bad news. Despite Lenovo’s head of mobile saying that Motorola would focus on premium devices, the company cleared up any misconceptions, confirming that the Moto G and Moto E will not be discontinued.
“Although we are simplifying the combined Motorola and [Lenovo] portfolio, we have no plans to retire Moto G, our most successful smartphone, or Moto E,” a Motorola representative said to The Verge.
That is good news, especially since the Moto G was the company’s best selling smartphone last year. It is also one of our most loved budget smartphones of 2015, offering an excellent design and decent specs for a killer price.
It does make Lenovo’s statement a bit shallow however, since the head of mobile Chen Xudong said the Lenovo Vibe line would be the company’s budget brand. If the Moto G and Moto E are available, that means the Vibe will be competing with Motorola for brand recognition in the budget section, which might muddy the differences between the Vibe and Moto brand.
When Lenovo acquired Motorola in 2014 for $2.91 billion, it seemed willing to give the company a lot of space. Apart from moving manufacturing from the U.S. to China, Lenovo didn’t change any of the Motorola smartphone lineup or force the company to stop its partnership with Verizon.
This year might be the time when much of that changes, especially now that Lenovo has reported a poor quarter spearheaded by its under-performing mobile division. The question is, will Lenovo sell more smartphones if Motorola becomes nothing more than a brand name, or will it become another shelved brand like Nokia post-Microsoft acquisition? Time will tell.