The future of smartphones isn’t about specs its about identity. The Moto X delivers.

I’ve been a long time Apple fan and I’ve had every iOS device from the original iPhone and iPad all the way down the line to the iPhone 5. I even started a company around an iOS app which was not only one of the first to be released in the App Store but a short while later acquired by HighTail. Its been a great ride Apple, but now I’m ready to move over to Android.

There are two primary factors for wanting to move to Android. First is the radical interface changes in iOS 7 and the second is the Moto X: Google’s first collaboration with Motorola. With these two very radical shifts in mobility, Google has seized momentum away from Apple by focusing on what I think is the next trend in mobile devices: Identity.

The Moto X spec wise isn’t anything special. It has all the right buzz words, a smallish screen compared to other top of the line Android devices and great battery life. None of those features really differentiate it from other phones because nobody really cares about specs anymore. Just like megapixels are irrelevant to today’s digital camera, the speed of the cpu in your smartphone is fast enough. Your experience using your device isn’t going to improve by any significant margin because of a faster chip. Specs are and old dog searching for new tricks.

The Moto X doesn’t have a lot of fancy features built into its software. In fact its mostly just stock Android and I think that is the right move. Nobody cares about having bloated apps with features that they aren’t likely to ever use creating clutter all over their device. (Samsung can you hear me?) Rather, users want a clean slate, one that they can customize to their own preferences. Ahh. Identity. You can make it your own.

That takes me the the absolute greatest feature on the Moto X. You can order it customized with an insane selection of options including colored rear cases, bezels, and even choose the default wallpaper, startup message and more. All of these options are hand assembled in Motorola’s Texas facility (go horns!) Some of the backs will even be made of real wood. This is where Google and Motorola got it right. The future of mobile computing is all about identity. How can I make this device an extension of me?

And this is also where Apple stumbles. Badly. Instead of embracing the whole identity thing, Apple with its new iOS 7 has flattened their interface taking away all of the flare making it basic, boring and frankly harder to use. I can’t stand the new iOS interface and I think its going to hurt sales of the next iPhone and I’m predicting that Jonny Ive will not lead the UI interface teams at Apple for much longer.

Apple's horribly bland interface in iOS 7.

Apple’s horribly bland interface in iOS 7.

I’m really thinking about leaving Apple and switching over to Android when the Moto X comes out. Its pretty much a forgone conclusion, I’m going to ditch my iPhone.

Motorola, you once dominated the mobile landscape with your ubiquitous StarTac phone. Its been a long time my friend but I think your time to reign again might be drawing nigh.

08/05/2013: Verge’s David Pierce agrees

Looks like The Verge agreed with my assessment of this phone. They scored it an 8.0 which is pretty good but more impressively David said he plans to go out and get one for himself.

Published by joshkerr

Josh is an 8x startup founder and angel investor.

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