Motorola becomes third-largest smartphone brand in the US, filling gap left by LG

midian182

Posts: 7,902   +82
Staff member
In brief: One company's loss is another's gain. It seems that's especially true in the US mobile industry, where Motorola has taken advantage of LG's demise to become the third-largest smartphone maker in the country, taking a 10% market share.

According to Counterpoint Research's Market Pulse Service, Lenovo-owned Motorola was the number three smartphone firm in the US last year. In 2008, back when feature phones were the dominant variant, Motorola was the largest handset (smartphones and feature phones combined) OEM in the US, but 2021 marked the first time it has entered the top-three US smartphone market.

One of the main reasons behind Motorola's sales growing 131% last year was the long-predicted exit of LG from the phone business. The last handset rolled off the Korean firm's production line in June, and we started seeing OnePlus, Nokia, and Motorola filling the void LG left behind.

Research Director Jeff Fieldhack said Motorola has all the key characteristics major carriers desire, including "a full portfolio, ability to ramp volumes, and low return rates."

Illustrating just how popular its mid- to low-range phones are, Motorola was the number two smartphone company in the $400 and lower segment in the United States.

"Motorola's sub-$300 portfolio – Moto G Stylus, Moto G Power and Moto G Pure – has driven its success in the US," Fieldhack added. "Thanks to its reliability, Motorola has been a key free 'switch' device, a device carriers use to move subscribers from networks that are being shut off or as a device MVNOs (mobile virtual network operators) use when changing network partners."

Motorola continued its US success in the first quarter of this year; Samsung, which has a 22% market share, could soon start feeling its competitor breathing down its neck. Apple remains the dominant force in the US market by holding a massive 58% share at the end last year. But that number might not be as high in 2022 if reports of Cupertino slashing iPhone SE production in the face of low demand are accurate.

Masthead image credit: Jonas Leupe

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QuantumPhysics

Posts: 6,308   +7,247
Apple's adherence to its own principles regarding control of the hardware and software pushed it past everyone else. Motorola's been going it slow and steady, but to tell the truth, I have no idea what they make at all or who they make it for.
 

wiyosaya

Posts: 7,705   +6,648
crApple's lockdown of its ecosystem keeps it from going even further in crApple's respective markets, IMO.

I've a Moto X4, and that is already more than I need. When the time comes to upgrade, I will look at Motorola first, and avoid crApple phones like the plague.
 

NeoMorpheus

Posts: 1,145   +2,303
Lenovo needs to take the cell phone market more seriously and offer proper updates and upgrades.

Until then, I would not touch a Moto phone.
 

QuantumPhysics

Posts: 6,308   +7,247
crApple's lockdown of its ecosystem keeps it from going even further in crApple's respective markets, IMO.

I've a Moto X4, and that is already more than I need. When the time comes to upgrade, I will look at Motorola first, and avoid crApple phones like the plague.


Apple's doing just fine.
Apple will continue to be in the lead.
 

DZillaXx

Posts: 529   +677
Apple makes great phones, simple as that.

But the software is crap. iOS still is a disappointment. But atleast their devices get long term support. Biggest issue with Android devices is their short software support. No reason why a flagship Android device shouldn't be supported for upwards of 5-6 years.

Sure the Google Pixel line gets proper support, but Google's phone have always lacked in some area. They really need to include a top tier device in their lineup.
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 2,373   +2,883
TechSpot Elite
All that I've had for the last 10-odd years is Motorola. Not because I actively sought them out but because they were by far the best deals at the time. My current Moto G Power seems like it's incapable of running out of battery juice. I guess a 5Ah battery will do that. :laughing:
 

envirovore

Posts: 467   +869
TechSpot Elite
Had both a Moto Z Play, and just retired the Z 3 four days ago.
They were close to stock android, which was nice, but updates ran 6 months to a year behind, and Moto bailed on their promise of 2 android updates on the Z3.

Couple that with their absolute garbage cameras...about the only thing ill miss is the near stock android.

Just got a Note 10, second hand. Not thrilled with the Samsung bloat, but after a few days of tinkering ive got it how I want it and will be happy with it.
 

Neatfeatguy

Posts: 840   +1,451
Got the daughter a Motorola G5 (I think that's the model) for her birthday a year ago - she's dropped it countless times and had used it without a screen protector for about 6 months. It hasn't broken and she did a decent job not scratching the hell out of the screen (couple of minor scratches on it).

It works good and it cost a fraction of the about a third of what an iPhone costs and at least half the cost of a current gen Samsung model at the time. So far it's been a good phone for her.
 

DrewTheBrave

Posts: 18   +18
Motorola's been going it slow and steady, but to tell the truth, I have no idea what they make at all or who they make it for.

It was pretty clearly stated right in the article:

"Motorola's sub-$300 portfolio – Moto G Stylus, Moto G Power and Moto G Pure – has driven its success in the US," Fieldhack added. "Thanks to its reliability, Motorola has been a key free 'switch' device, a device carriers use to move subscribers from networks that are being shut off or as a device MVNOs (mobile virtual network operators) use when changing network partners."

I bought a Motorola for my Grandpa who needed a replacement for his aging Nexus 6 that I gave him many years ago. At $99, it wasn't flashy or cutting-edge, but it keeps him connected and has a battery that lasts for 2-3 days with his limited usage. It's a great budget phone for anyone that doesn't need top-tier specs.
 

Ecurb

Posts: 7   +4
My Moto X4s (I bought a bunch for my family) failed miserably with android auto in our three cars where earlier Motos and Nexus were fine as were the replacement Pixels. I’ll not be considering Moto for the future until I hear of an improvement in quality.
 

MasterMace

Posts: 220   +173
Motorola has long had the issue of both never updating its software on its Android phones, and renewing on the Android Update Alliance. It simply has too many models, and so can't afford to update them all.

Instead of having a low / mid / high setup where it's midrange is last Gen, high is current gen, they decide to release 9 models between the low and mid range and never update anything.

All started way back with the Atrix 4G.
 

p51d007

Posts: 3,156   +2,656
Last Motorola phone I had, was the (digital) Star Tac. Before that, it was the (analog) Star Tac, the 220 & believe it or not, I had one of the original Dyna-Tac BRICK phones back in the day.
 

lazer

Posts: 431   +129
I love my LG, great phone reasonable price.
I will cry when I have to replace it....