The Motorola X’s release must be fast approaching because we’re getting more and more leaks about it lately. The latest one says the Motorola X smartphone will be arriving with “pure Android”, “fast upgrade cycle”, and a so called “Clear Pixel” camera.
I hope this rumor that Motorola X will come with pure Android is true, because it’s exactly what I’ve been hoping Google would do after the acquisition of Motorola. I was very worried they weren’t going to do this when they kept talking about that “firewall” between Google and Motorola, and when they kept insinuating that they won’t do anything to upset their other OEM partners.
But that would’ve been a bad move, because first off, their OEM partners couldn’t care less about using stock Android themselves (at least at the time), so why would they care if Google used it for Motorola? Nobody really used stock Android except in Nexus phones, and all of Google’s design would go to waste if not too many people were going to see it and use it. This is why every single Motorola phone needed to be a “Nexus phone”, which meant stock Android, and also fast and long upgrade cycles.
Speaking of fast upgrades, this latest rumor says that the Motorola X will also be on a fast upgrade cycle, and will presumably get updates as quickly as Nexus phones do. This has the potential to make the Motorola phones better than the Nexus phones themselves (including the Nexus 4). Why? Because they’d have everything Nexus phones do, while lacking one major disadvantage of Nexus phones: they are made by a manufacturer not owned by Google.
This makes things very complicated for Google because the other manufacturers don’t care about the Nexus brand as much as they should, which means they will not go to great lengths to make the best possible phone they can make as a Nexus, and even more importantly, promote it afterwards – over their own phones. But with Google owning Motorola, they can do exactly that – make the best smartphones they can make for the price, with stock Android, and then promote them as much as possible. The company’s revenues depend on it. So if this rumor is true, expect to see “stock Android” become a lot more popular in the mainstream market.
“Clear Pixel” Camera
Here’s what I could find on this (may or may not be related to Motorola X’s camera):
Since they can’t afford to waste battery life on high-power flashes, cameraphones have a tough time handling low light. A new imaging sensor design from Kodak addresses the problem using a different kind of pixel. Today’s cameras detect light with an array of red, green and blue pixels—which each see just one color. That means each pixel is ignoring two-thirds of the incoming light. The new sensor adds a panchromatic or “clear” pixel that detects all wavelengths of visible light, making it much more sensitive to the overall light level.
By using a mix of clear and color pixels, the new sensor becomes two to four times as sensitive to low-light conditions. The specific pattern of how the four kinds of pixels are distributed can be varied depending on circumstances—a cameraphone, for instance, might use a pixel pattern that doesn’t require much computing power to reconstruct the image from the incoming light data. Another benefit is that greater light sensitivity allows faster shutter speeds, reducing the blur in action shots.
This also reminds me of a previous rumor about the Nexus camera, which is supposed to have a “triple sensor”, and help cameras capture the image in the same way film used to do it, before digital cameras came along.
Either way this leak seems to suggest the pictures will have less noise, and at the very least will be great in low-light. If the Motorola X camera can have 4x the light sensitivity, that means it should be at least as good as the HTC One camera in low-light, but without the disadvantage of having a lower resolution, like the HTC One camera.
These latest rumors certainly make the Motorola X phone a lot more interesting than just a regular upper mid-range phone, and it could become the Android phone to have this year.[Via Taylor Wimberley]