We recently reviewed a simple black version of the Motorola Moto X. We loved it. But that’s not really going to be the full experience. When it hits the market AT&T customers (and later, other carrier customers) will be able to use a tool called MotoMaker online to customize their own device. It lets you choose one of sixteen different color options, one of seven different accents, an etching on the back, the capacity and more. We gave the MotoMaker a whirl recently to see what it’s like, and we’re here to report back our initial findings.
So many choices!
The software is really easy to use; there’s an entire right side panel for choosing what option you want to customize. First, you start out by choosing the face of your phone. We went with black instead of white – from our experience it’s the nicer of the two options. Next, we picked the back color of the smartphone. Unfortunately, the wood option isn’t available right now. We decided to go a bit wild and try the lemon-lime option. We’re hoping it has a neon hue, though we won’t really know until it arrives. That’s the cool thing about the Moto X – you can create a custom smartphone to the point where it’s going to be super rare if you ever run into someone with the same color setup that you have. We selected the accent in the second step, and went with the cherry red color. This changes the hue of the metal circle around the camera, and the volume control keys. Easy enough.
Making it our Own
Next, we chose the etching that we want on the back of the phone. We picked “Moto 137.” It started as part of an inside joke among tech journalists who were cc:d on email chain with 137 people accidentally. A bunch of us agreed that’s what we’re going with. It’s silly. I kind of wanted mine to say “iPhone 6” or “Limited Edition,” just for kicks. You can do that instead.
There are only two options available for storage, 16GB and 32GB. We would have chosen 32GB but that wasn’t available for our customization test. Thankfully, Google and Motorola are providing 2-years of 50GB of Google Drive storage with every Moto X purchase, so we know we’re more than covered for backups. We just wish we had some extra wiggle room for big apps, such as games.
We chose the option to customize our wallpaper. There are about a dozen choices and we picked an image of a raspberry. You know, to match the red accents. Then we were able to remotely sign into our Google account and choose a custom image that displays right when the phone boots. The remote sign in means that the phone will already be logged-in to our Google account out of the box. It’s not necessary, that only takes a few seconds with a new phone, but it’s a nice touch.
There are also several options for accessories and other services. You can pay a fee for a 2-year protection plan, for example, or choose custom headphones that match your new device. The colors are mostly the same as those you can select from for your back or accents.
The whole experience was really fun. We loved being able to tweak our device, but we admit that it’s really hard to settle on a phone. Right now, Motorola will let you change your mind within an hour of hitting order – after that, you’re stuck. You can mail it back within 15 days to swap it out, we believe, but that probably won’t be an issue for most people.Next, we hit check-out, put in our shipping address and we were on our way. Motorola promises the device will ship to consumers within 4 days, after it’s assembled in the United States, which means ours should be here by Monday (we started this project yesterday). That time can vary depending on what you select, or if you add accessories.
We’re excited for the new Moto X to arrive. Our biggest fear is that the device, which looked neon-yellow online, will arrive in a flatter, more boring color. That’s the only problem we can see with this system: you might want to go to a store and see all of the colors in person so you know the accurate hue ahead of time. We’ll report back when the device arrives and let you know if it came on time, what the color actually looks like and more.
If you missed it, here’s our hands-on video of the MotoMaker from earlier: