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Custom Moto X has improved hardware and appealing looks

I wasn't that impressed with the stock white Moto X, but this custom designed model has improvements in hardware quality that make me a believer in Motorola's approach. Let's see if consumers show up too.
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By Matthew Miller, Contributor on
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Custom Moto X box and Skip

Early last week I was given an access code for an evaluation custom Moto X. I ordered it on 20 August and even now the order status page still shows it as "Not Shipped." The custom Moto X arrived yesterday, 8 business days after I ordered it, and I have to say that the custom model is better than the stock white one I have been evaluating.

A couple of the issues I had with the Moto X hardware included the loose and sloppy power and volume buttons and the cheap looking bezel ridge around the front. Neither of these are present on the black front, navy blue back, and orange highlighted custom Moto X I now have in hand.

The buttons are both tight and fit as they should. The orange color highlights on these and the camera lens ring look awesome and I am pleased with my selection.

The front is black and the display seems to meld right into the side with a minimal ridge. The difference in the black screen and two shades of white on the front of the other Moto X gives it low to mid range look. The black looks so much better and reminds me of the well-designed Motorola Droid Maxx.

The black around the front transitions nicely into the Navy blue back. Speaking of the back, the blue looks great and has a soft touch feel that makes you want to hold and twist the device around in your hand.

It looks like the Moto Maker service still has a few bugs to work out, but after experiencing it (see my screenshots of the process in this image gallery) and using a custom Moto X I think the service will help bring in Moto X customers.

I see a majority of people wrapping their smartphones in cases so having the ability to customize the actual phone case and highlight color is a very appealing proposition and I hope it succeeds. As a US military veteran and patriotic person I also appreciate the fact that the Moto X is designed and assembled in the USA. I am willing to pay a bit extra to keep people here in the US employed as well.

Related ZDNet coverage

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Moto Skip provides quick unlock

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First look at the custom back color

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Custom box contents

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Custom launch message

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Back showing orange highlight on navy blue back

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Black front looks good

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Side and back showing blue color and orange highlights

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Side buttons are well designed

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Black and white front of Moto X devices

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I don't like the white face as much as the black

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