updated 08:40 am EDT, Thu July 29, 2010
Motorola Q2 2010 keeps moving to smartphones
Motorola today posted results that underscored its urgent move to smartphones. The company's total phone shipments in the spring quarter shrank compared to the winter, falling from 8.5 million to 8.3 million, but its smartphone numbers grew quickly. Continued strong Droid sales and growing ranks of other Android devices led it to ship 2.7 million smartphones, or nearly a third of its entire lineup.
The overall contraction was enough to let Apple retake its position as the largest US-based phone manufacturer, as its 8.4 million iPhones gave it the lead in absolute terms and not just in more advanced devices.
However, the Mobile Devices group that handles Motorola's phones saw a rare instance of being profitable on its own. The results revealed that RIM's settlement with Motorola paid out $228 million, which was enough to swing the phone division from its usual losses to an $87 million profit. Motorola's total profits climbed from $69 million at the start of the year to $162 million today.
The company is pinning most of its expectations for the summer on the Droid X, its first high-end, touchscreen only smartphone for the US. It has remained sold out virtually since launch and is considered both Verizon's flagship and one of the best competitors to the iPhone 4. It should also ship the Droid 2 and is also shifting more of its focus to the high end outside of the US, such as the Milestone XT720.