[Poll results out] Hello Moto, time to bring back Moto Maker

New updates are being added at the bottom of this story…….

Original story (published on July 18, 2022) follows:

What if you could buy a smartphone made by your favorite vendor but designed by you? Well, for the uninitiated, this is exactly what Motorola sought to achieve with the Moto Maker program.

In a bid to stand out from the crowded mid-range smartphone market, Motorola debuted the Moto Maker program aimed to offer unique customization options for Moto X buyers.

Moto Maker, which later expanded to cover more Motorola devices, allowed potential Moto X buyers to pick their preferred back panel appearance from a bunch of colors along with accents around the camera and volume button.

Moto-G-colors-from-Moto-Maker

The process was quite easy and fun. Check into the Moto Maker website, pick a back panel color from the list available, including some cool wood finishes.

Not only could you customize the rear panel, but also pick a front color of your choice alongside an engraving or rather “signature” to be printed on the rear.

With Moto Maker, it was not just possible to customize the physical appearance of your phone, but also personalize the software greeting that appears when you power it on.

Motorola-custom-message
Click/tap to enlarge

The best part of all this is that it came at no extra cost. But the result was that everyone had the same phone that looked totally different, which made the Moto X quite unique.

Fast-forward to 2022 and the same problem the Moto Maker program tried to solve is still here, but on a larger scale. More OEMs have entered the market, but there’s little innovation going on to differentiate smartphones.

Nearly all smartphones look the same from the front thanks to the continued push for an all-screen panel. There’s also little going on at the back to make brands stand out, although the recent Nothing Phone 1 is an exception.

Nothing-Phone-1-2

We’ve seen some vendors like TECNO and Vivo launch smartphones with “color changing” back panels that change appearances depending on the lighting surroundings.

Late last year, Samsung also launched the Bespoke Edition of its Galaxy Z Flip3 that allowed buyers of the phone to “customize and select different color options to express their unique personalities.”

Samsung has expanded these customization efforts to include more devices such as smartwatches and smart home products through the YouMake program.

Others like OnePlus and OPPO opted to partner with big brands like McLaren and Marvel Studios to offer unique engravings and software customizations that make their phones stand out from the saturated market.

Samsung-YouMake

These, among other cases, are evidence that the Moto Maker program needs a reboot sooner rather than later.

With Motorola still struggling to stand out from the sea of Android devices available on the market, perhaps bringing back the Moto Maker program would do them more good than harm.

Heck, Motorola may even open up the Moto Maker program to third parties. Or other OEMs could simply borrow a leaf and launch similar programs to customize the appearance of their devices.

Moto-engrave

Samsung, the leading smartphone vendor, is already doing it with its YouMake program that greatly resembles Motorola’s Moto Maker, so perhaps others will follow suit. But it’ll remain Motorola’s legacy.

My only major gripe with programs like Moto Maker and YouMake is the time it may take to deliver the device. Compared to walking into a store, a customized phone may take longer, probably even weeks before you get it.

Still, we’d like to know your thoughts about this in the comments section. As for the Twitter poll below, results will be revealed after a week of voting.

Update (July 25)

Those who took part in the poll all agreed that Motorola should indeed bring back Moto Maker. Time will tell.

Featured image source: Three UK

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Hillary Keverenge

Review Editor. Besides phones, I also enjoy the farm, music, football, and, of course, food.