Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Why I Betrayed Apple and Switched to the Moto X

By Tim Beyers - Jan 11, 2014 at 7:08AM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

A Mac loyalist turns tail on the iPhone and switches to Google's Moto X after five years as a loyal user. Here’s why.

Recently, my wife of 16 years accused me of cheating. She's right. I'm in a new relationship. Not with a new woman, but a new phone. After five years with various models of iPhone, I've switched to Google's (GOOGL -0.61%) Moto X handset.

Tuesday morning, I would have told you I'd never go back. But then the device simply stopped working during Sony's keynote at this week's Consumer Electronics Show. And I do mean stopped: the Moto logo appeared, then a few prancing animals (mocking my misfortune?), and then a black screen. What was once a smartphone -- and my go-to device for recording events like this -- had become a brick.

The good news? Google's own services helped fix the problem. See, I use a Verizon (VZ 1.17%) hotspot when working away from my desk and on trips. This time, I used portable Wi-Fi to dial Verizon customer care from my Mac using Google Hangouts and a pair of earbuds to make the call.

My first attempt dropped after a few minutes of software tests. But the second ended with a Verizon rep routing me to a tech support agent who documented the failure and recommended an in-store replacement. A few hours and $120 in cab fare later -- this is Vegas, remember -- I had a new Moto X, which is updating to Android 4.4 as I type this.

Why I'm giving Google a second chance
I'll admit I was tempted to ask Verizon to credit my Moto X purchase toward a new iPhone, especially since the device is less than a month old. Why didn't I do it? Gmail is my go-to email service. I write in Google Docs and track data in Sheets. Drive holds my article drafts, photos, art, research reports, and recorded interviews.

Moto X is also built on Android, which is optimized for handling Google services in ways that their iOS counterparts aren't. For example, Google Now automatically offers to render the route to my next meeting in Maps. No need to enter an address. Google just does the work for me, which I appreciate.

And that's not all. Here are three other ways the Moto X has changed my perspective.

1. The viewing experience is better. I've long argued that Apple (AAPL -0.14%) needs something closer to a phablet in order to cater to consumers who want a better smartphone viewing experience. Moto X's 4.7-inch display isn't so large as to fit in the phablet category, but it's more generous than what I had with the iPhone 4S and much easier to read as a result. I'm also happy with the brightness and clarity of the X's AMOLED screen -- though if you look at Apple's share of the domestic smartphone market and the estimates for what come from the new deal with China Mobile, it's fair to say I'm in the minority.

2. Cheaper isn't always worse. I'd be remiss if I didn't also point out that I got a deal. Verizon's holiday sale offered a $50 rebate on the 16 gig X, making the effective take-home price $99 versus $299 if I'd chosen to upgrade to the 5S, as my wife did. Most of the apps I use frequently are either available on Android or are easily replaced with native substitutes. Any.do's Cal is a good example, as is Contacts+, which I use in place of Cobook for contacts management.

3. My carrier experience is better. For at least a year, we'd been paying AT&T (NYSE: T) for LTE service that was so spotty we'd turned it off in order to avoid dropped calls and frustrating delays in data downloads. We've yet to experience this problem with Verizon, and that's true even when I'm getting one or two bars of service in my basement office. Verizon's expansive LTE build-out -- effectively finished at this point -- seems to be paying off.

So, for now, I'm in this affair for the long haul. Do you think I'm wrong? Have you switched from an iPhone to Moto X or another Android device? If so, what was the experience like? Leave a comment below to let us know what you think.

Google is betting that customizable Motorola phones will entice some Apple iPhone users to switch. Sources: ABC News/Google.

Fool contributor Tim Beyers is a member of the Motley Fool Rule Breakers stock-picking team and the Motley Fool Supernova Odyssey I mission. He owned shares of Apple and Google at the time of publication. Check out Tim's web home and portfolio holdings or connect with him on Google+Tumblr, or Twitter, where he goes by @milehighfool. You can also get his insights delivered directly to your RSS reader.

The Motley Fool recommends Apple and Google. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple and Google. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

Alphabet Inc. Stock Quote
Alphabet Inc.
GOOGL
$117.47 (-0.61%) $0.72
Apple Inc. Stock Quote
Apple Inc.
AAPL
$165.35 (-0.14%) $0.23
Verizon Communications Inc. Stock Quote
Verizon Communications Inc.
VZ
$44.95 (1.17%) $0.52

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
377%
 
S&P 500 Returns
123%

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 08/07/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.