Google hires former Apple evangelist Guy Kawasaki to help turn around Motorola


In an effort to save the sinking ship that is Motorola Mobility, Google could be enlisting some help from author/motivational speaker Guy Kawasaki — a turncoat once known for being the Apple evangelist for many years, only to switch over to “Team Android.”

“Motorola reminds me of the Apple of 1998: a pioneer in its market segment, engineering-driven, and ripe for innovation. I believe that great products can change everything.”

Apparently, Guy will be taking on more of an “advisory role” with the company, focusing on key areas as product design, user interface, marketing and lastly, social media. To kick things off, Mr. Kawasaki has created a Google + community for mobile device talk and while the focus isn’t necessarily that of Moto devices, you can bet he’ll use some of these ideas to help with the rumored Motorola X Phone he’s more than likely already working on.

As for Motorola, they need all they help they can get. Their current track record had them continually posting operating losses in 2012, so Kawasaki definitely has his work cut out for him. What do you guys think? Can Guy really turn around things for Motorola? What key areas does Motorola need help with before you’d purchase one of their products?


Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. in my humble opinion, theres honestly not a whole lot that motorola SHOULD change. very, very happy droid razr maxx user right here. my hope for the X phone: droid razr maxx with a screen akin to the note 2.

    1. brand needs a revamp. Everyone I know jokes about the dumb@@@ commercials. “Ok wait so who is the robot? The phone makes a person the robot? What are the features of the phone”. At this point only diehards get the Droid line whereas Samsung is marketing to the masses. Moto is missing the mass appeal they once had with the OG razr. The phones and the brand are boring and safe these days.

      1. motorola should just keep on, slow and steady. great phone manufacturer, always have been. they hit the nail on the head with the maxx battery. no other phone makes me want to tote it around, like the maxx. my girl has the sIII, its a very usable phone, it does have dropouts, unlike my phone. touchwiz… hate it. motorola has made strides by phasing out blur alone. as for brand revamp, thats verizons’ fault… the whole droid thing anyway. i wish they would quit associating all phones with it, it would cause for a whole lot less confusion entirely! plus, it wouldnt hurt if the masses would educate themselves, instead of blindly following biased/uninformed reps.

      2. That has far less to do with Motorola than it does with Verizon. The latest robo-mercial isn’t even for a Moto phone, it’s the Droid DNA, which is HTC. If everyone thinks the commercials are dumb, blame VZW. Even though most of the Droid phones are Motorola, Droid does not equal Motorola.

        1. it’s also Motorola’s fault for not advertising on their own. I’ve never seen a non droid Motorola commercial. they do have non droid phones. they do need to step up their game. its obvious that samsung is the only one that gets it. advertising = awareness = brand recognition = everyday people knowing the difference between a razr maxx and $90 prepaid virgin mobile phone

          1. Motorola was the only company that pointed out that it uses Google Maps. This was during the Apple Maps debacle. Samsung was only interested in their little features.

          2. You mean that image that i didnt see anywhere besides android tech blogs? I liked it but how many people actually saw it? Also your statement about Samsung “only showing off its little features,” that is how you sell phones. That plus you see the name gs3 everywhere. Everybody knows what it is. Not many who aren’t tech nerds like ourselves know what a droid RAZR maxx unless you walk into a Verizon store and talk to a sales Rep

    2. Umm they have horrible, Just absolutely horrible cameras. Og droid, d2, razr maxx, razr m all severely let me down. My gs3 on the other takes great shots

  2. HUGE news.

  3. Motorola should release less models of a specific phone and use their focus and energy on making the models they release the best they can be. They can do this by keeping the hardware specs current and hopefully top of the line, incorporating better display tech, and drastically improving camera hardware/software, and lastly would be to focuson build design. Motorola already imo have great build quality and cell radios so they have a great start and basis.

    1. Don’t forget about putting a bigger battery there too! It doesn’t matter how cool the phone is; if the battery is dead: the phone is useless!

      1. Their 3100 mAh battery doesn’t leave much to complain about…

        1. The RAZR MAXX, and RAZR MAXX HD have a 3300 mah battery, the Galaxy Note 2 has a 3100 mah battery.

      2. After using the RAZR HD MAXX, they should never go back. It is so nice to still have 50%+ battery left at the end of the day. I hope they do it more phones

        1. AOSP RAZR HD MAXX on Sprint with 800 LTE = I would buy

  4. in my humble opinion theres not a whole lot that motorola SHOULD change. very happy droid razr maxx user right here. my hope for the X phone: droid razr maxx with a screen akin to the note 2.

    1. I have a RMHD and I love it! However, there is always room for improvement. Wouldn’t it be nicer if it had a S4 Pro for example at launch? Or a 1080p resolution screen? Or even a extra Gig or two of RAM. Motorola is makes solid products. Its just they never have the lastest or greatest internals. The X Phone could be the change of this. This is their chance to flip everything. For example what if the X Phone had…
      4.7 – 4.8″ screen size
      4K resolution display
      Improve upon Maxx battery life
      Be the first to drop say 6GB’s of RAM
      and add a feature not found in Android as a platform or by another company like Samsung did with the video/texting at the same time.
      That would be Game Changing. That would put Motorola back on the map.
      Maybe Motorola should hire ROM developers like Samsung did….

      1. Or perhaps Moto should release phones on other carriers besides Verizon?

      2. okay… you can’t even notice the difference between 720p and 1080p on a screen as small as a phone. 4k resolution on a phone is kinda ridiculous…

  5. Next we should hire Woz!

    1. Just posted the same thing. Regardless, this is a great start.

  6. So this Guy is gonna turn Motorola Mobility around, we’ll see about that… sorry couldn’t resist – :-)

    1. Couldn’t resist what?

      1. He made a pun, “so this ‘Guy’ is gonna turn…”, Guy is the name of the guy.

        1. I’m pathetic. And I read the article too. LoL!!

      2. The guy’s name is.. nevermind..

      3. His name is Guy. “So this Guy”

    2. Stop being such a wise Guy. Sorry, couldn’t resist :)

  7. I hope he works fast b/c Samsung’s plan to take over the phone world is near completion.

  8. I’m still trying to figure out why people care about what this guy says.

  9. woo! let’s go X-Phone!

  10. This is great news. Google can use a GUY like this. I have a lot of respect for this GUY (buwahahaha….knee slapper).

    OK, Im done. =0(

    1. I see what you did there. Hot digitty dog! That’s a knees slapper.

    2. Wait, you are saying this GUY and not that GUY?

    3. The fake, painted on smile of a salesman. /evangelist = same thing. /motivational speaker or “cheer-leader” LOL…

    4. You fail, good day sir! :-P

  11. Part of Motorola’s failures are due to their exclusively offering their “best” handsets to Verizon customers only. The Android Razr line could have been much more successful, had it been expanded to all US providers, as well as Internationally. If the Motorola X phone lives up to the hype, that could turn things around…assuming it will be available on all US providers.

      1. 10 stock from a seller I’ve never heard of for a phone from 1.5 product cycles ago doesn’t count as offering on multiple carriers

        1. And no warranty.

      2. No good for CDMA providers.

    1. That is 100% right..

  12. I remember his EvangeList. They used to drive everyone crazy if they said something bad about Apple. Wow, he’s now working for Google?

  13. This dude gets around….wasn’t he also promoting Microsoft Office last year?

  14. Unlocked bootloader

    1. ^THIS!

      The Droid X was my 1st foray into the Android Universe. And while it was an awesome phone, the locked bootloader was a deal breaker for me. I’ve never bought a Motorola product since that one. Which is a shame, because I feel their quality and workmanship is the best on the market. But I want an open phone. Which is why I stick with LG and Samsung now days

  15. Oh no this could be bad, I mean look at the iPhone the same thing over and over again with little improvements.

  16. Sinking ship? Really? That’s what I expect (and got) from the BGR article. Didn’t expect that type of hyperbole here.

  17. Motorola should release their RUMOR X PHONE and a X PHONE for qwerty lovers

  18. The Galaxy S3 was a big seller because you can buy it on every carrier and you can buy an unlocked one for prepaid networks. Can I get a Razor for anything other than Verizon? Nope… Their biggest problem isn’t bad phones, its being locked into what ever contract they have with Verizon and not releasing phones for other carriers

    1. They made an international razr. Not sure if it’s compatible with att or tmobile though

  19. release their phones on every carrier. problem solved. also timely updates. even a 2 years old can run motorola.

  20. Sinking ship? Turn things around? Motorola has already turned around.

  21. After the Atrix 4G debacle, Google couldn’t pay me to use another Motorola phone. They screwed over thousands of people and we’re not going to forget!

  22. Motorola first off needs to focus less on releasing variants of a specific handset, but rather support their products for a specified cycle. On several occasions Motorola would release handsets in rapid succession and would quickly cut support of the oldest device in that group, often only having been a window of a few months. Secondly they need to allow the user customization of their devices. If a consumer will be paying $200+ dollars for a handset, they should be allowed to customize said device. Locking down the bootloaders of these devices prevents user control in some regard, and stifles what is really one of Android’s best features, the dev community.

    1. Blame verizon for the locked bootloaders in this case

      1. True enough. That needs to be handled as well. Had a D2G that was locked and a locked GSIII until the bootloader exploit leaked. Locked bootloaders cut down on the some of the greatest things that can be done with these smartphones.

  23. Seriously…we couldn’t someone else For the Android (Motorola) community. this guy is a douche bag…why do you think Apple doesn’t want him anymore. look him up on Google..interesting.

  24. Looks like everybody is missing a key point that luckily Google has not. It is not just enough to have great specs, now the phone is going to have to provide a great experience. This is something that Samsung has figured out with the Galaxy S3 and Note 2. For this reason I am excitedly waiting to see what does Google have planned for the X Phone when they say it is going to do things that has not been done on a smartphone before. It has taken Google a while but they are learning that fast alone is not good, must have the customer experience as well.

  25. Get rid of that verizon contract bullshit!!!!!! I would have bought the Razr Maxx HD in a heart beat if it wasn’t because of overpriced verizon service and crap ass UI

  26. Next up… Woz.

  27. big battery, timely OS updates, microsd slot and epic specs :)

  28. I absolutely love my RAZR MAXX HD. More people should try this great phone. No other phone has such great battery life. The ONLY shortcoming is the camera, and this is not the reason I have a smartphone. The hardware quality is superb.
    No Samsung plastic phone comes close in feel or durability..
    Upgrade the camera and boom… Number one.
    FYI… I have owned HTC and Samsung phones.

  29. Unlockable bootloader
    Bigger form factors
    No more pentile screens
    Better screens please
    Stay with the kevlar design, love it
    AOSP experience
    Sell through Google Play at low prices
    Sell through carriers at subsidized 2 year contract price points (since they should be priced at about $300-400, they should sell for $50 max on a 2 year contract)

    If they do this, the enthusiast will become interested meaning when someone in the office asks me what I recommend for the next phone, I’ll say “get a Motorola”.

  30. The Razr series should be it’s own brand. I use a razr maxx hd and have sold plenty of razr M’s (best phone for the price, hands down), and they are light on UI tweaking (basically just the nice circle widget and quick settings which are both quite useful), simpler than Samsungs as such, awesome battery life, nice screens, and fine build quality. The DROID brand pushes people away, IMO. It’s too techy, too masculine. The only complaint I have is the camera, and it’s not even THAT bad, fine for stills, not so much for a lot of movement. They need to target a bigger demographic. Samsung’s marketing is appealing to the average consumer, quite broad, while the DROID brand feels targeted too much towards ultra tech savvy people, gamers, and men between the ages of 16-30. It’s overwhelming for people. It’s too loud.

  31. A phone like the RAZR MAXX with unlockable boot loader, replaceable battery, AOSP and good camera and I’m in “shut up and take my money”-mode^^

  32. Motorola should do what Samsung and HTC are doing – make the same phone across all carriers. I would love to have a RAZR MAXX HD on T-Mobile. This exclusive stuff is BS. They have a great phone that is only on one carrier. Motorola, please make the X Phone for T-Mobile.

  33. mighty casey steps into the batter’s box.

    why do they think they need a pundit?

    just make the best products and people will buy them, regardless of hucksters.

    been using and buying moto since my G1 became obsolete.

    they are the best signal grabbers case closed.

  34. droids looks crazy good just make em stock ROM on all providers

  35. i agree with only having the best phones on verizon if they had better phones across carriers
    it would have helped but i really thank motorola helped push android to success because of the
    ” droid ” marketing it was so successful that people don’t know the difference between a droid and an android. one exception was the motorola atrix it was awesome but if they had the original razr on all carriers and it was a smash hit then i think the “droid” razr would have been a smash hit as well if it was offered on at&t tmobile and sprint not just verizon and global verizon screwed the galaxy nexus just like they did motorola

  36. More timely updates!!!!!!!!! I use the RAZR and i am seeing handsets older that are getting updates sooner. I am still waiting for J.B.! And then theres handset upgrades, spend 500 on a phone just to have a upgrade model released less than a year later. I have stuck by moto, but the last couple years are leaving feeling screwed with and i dont like it.

  37. Oh and lets not forget being stuck in the middle of the pack when it comes to internals.

  38. My first Android was a Motorola milestone (international). I was very unhappy as motorola never updated it (not sure if never just took way too long) and it was very very difficult to unlock bootloader and root.
    Had no problem with my nexus devices after that and my note 2.
    So if motorola can work on fast updates and easy root, It’ll be perfect and will have a buyer in me.


  40. I was never impressed with this guy. My Droid Razr Maxx is a great phone.

  41. Yes Google/Motorola should hire Woz instead of Kawasaki.

  42. Won’t help. Kawasaki wants everyone to listen to him, but doesn’t like listening to anyone else. It’s part of the ego-driven “I’m a blogger, I’m an e-book writer, I babble on social networks so listen to me” thing. If you want him to pimp something after it’s built, that might be good, but making him responsible for figuring out why Motorola isn’t doing well? FAIL. Sounds like someone at Google is just giving a buddy a job….politics style :-P

    Ditto what people have said here about releasing them on all networks.

    But the other major issue is that, besides the MAXX, there isn’t anything unique about the Motorola hardware either. Contrast this w/ Samsung who has come up with a *LOT* of innovative features…S-beam (better NFC use), gestures, watching for your eyes to keep the screen from shutting down, big OLED displays, integrating a real Wacom pen, etc.

    That’s why Samsung is succeeding…it’s not a branding issue that Kawasaki might be able to help with. It’s innovation. Kawasaki backed Apple for a while too…another company w/ lack of innovation (besides their Retina display that pushed everyone)…doesn’t bode well for Motorola :-(

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