Just yesterday, Motorola co-CEO Sanjay Jha graced the Credit Suisse 2010 Technology Conference with his presence as he delivered an important keynote to many eager ears. The subject matter of said keynote was surprising to say the least. Jha covered topics including Motorola Mobility, tablets, 4G, and a Verizon branded iPhone. From BGR:
Motorola Mobility will separate from Motorola Solutions with $3.5 billion, no debt, no pension liabilities and 16,500 patents already in its portfolio. In other words, Jha is very excited about the future of Motorola’s mobile business.
Motorola Mobility will definitely participate in the tablet space, but it will continue to focus the bulk of its efforts on smartphones. The company will release both 7-inch and 10-inch tablets in the near future, and it views both product ranges as being “quite meaningful.”
Motorola will focus on software differentiation with its tablets, targeting the enterprise, international and retail market places. Jha views retail as a big opportunity for tablets.
Where smartphones are concerned, Motorola will continue to focus on top-tier and mid-tier devices — mid-tier devices have sold in greater volume internationally, while top-tier phones found success in the U.S.
When asked about 4G smartphones, Jha responded, “I will have 4G devices in the marketplace early next year.”
In discussing Q1 2011 guidance, Jha said first quarters are always down for Motorola and Q1 2011 will be no different. Jha also said, however, that there will potentially be a new “competitive dynamic” developing at Verizon Wireless — Motorola’s premier carrier partner in the U.S. — in the first quarter next year that could have a significant negative impact on Motorola’s first quarter. It certainly doesn’t take a decoder ring to figure out that he’s talking about the Verizon iPhone.
Despite the aforementioned speed bump, which could no doubt be huge, Jha is confident that Motorola Mobility will deliver profitability for the full year as it continues to diversify its product portfolio to combat the threat of a potential Verizon iPhone.
Jha’s expressed concern and confidence in his company are both well warranted, as Moto is very familiar with what the iPhone and Android can do for a manufacturer. By 2007, Motorola had already taken the mobile world by storm with the success of the RAZR, and had started to fade with a lack of innovation. It was July of ’07 when Motorola finally released the RAZR 2, their answer to the iPhone. Fortunately for Motorola, it was Android to the rescue.
This time around though, there should be no rescue to be had. With $3.5 billion to work with, 16,500 patents under their belt, and phones like the Olympus coming soon, I highly doubt history will repeat itself. We clearly have a lot to look forward to from Motorola in 2011, and it looks like Android will be at the center of it all.