Moto X comes up short with a high price and no Android 4.3

Still, the new smartphones custom features could help Motorola and Google (see video below)

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"Everything about this device except price speaks to a market that is largely saturated," Golvin added. "Motorola is saying people want customization and personalization by making the phone their own with custom cases and engraving. At the same time, people need fundamental utility from smartphones, and this device will go all day long."

The 2200 mAh battery in the Moto X is larger than many recent smartphones, and capable of up to 24 hours of mixed usage or 13 hours of talk, Motorola said.

"Most phone features are available on virtually all devices," added Jack Gold, an analyst at J. Gold Associates. "So small things -- like case customization, voice command, special apps -- matter. The market for smartphones is becoming so saturated that vendors have to try to be unique and go above the noise."

Nokia has uses a high-quality camera in its Lumia 1020 smartphone as a differentiator, Gold noted. "What can Moto do to find a differentiation niche? Compete on price? No. Compete on features? Hard to do, as most features are a commodity. This 'have it your way' personalization might work for them."

The Moto X measures 5.1 x 2.6 x .4 inches (at its widest point since it curves) and weighs 4.6 ounces.

This article, Moto X comes up short with a high price and no Android 4.3, was originally published at Computerworld.com.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at  @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His email address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

See more by Matt Hamblen on Computerworld.com.

Copyright © 2013 IDG Communications, Inc.

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