Motorola reported a surprising quarterly profit on better-than-expected demand for its higher-margin smartphones, so far vindicating its strategy of relying on Android.
The mobile devices division still posted an operating loss of $192 million in the first quarter, but this was much narrower than its loss of $545 million a year earlier.
While Motorola smartphone sales rose to 2.3 million from 2 million in the fourth quarter its overall phone sales fell to 8.5 million phones from 12 million in the last quarter.
This was short of the average forecast of 10.2 million from nine analysts contacted by Reuters but Jha said the sales decline made the unit’s progress all the more impressive.
The reason for the different outcomes, in a word, may be Android, Google’s operating system for mobile devices. “Motorola did quite well by jumping on Android’s bandwagon,” said Roger Entner, a mobile analyst with Nielsen. “Whereas Palm went the route of having their own operating system and launching that with Sprint, right against the iPhone.
— The New York Times