The arduous task of reversing the ongoing collapse of Motorola’s post-Razr phone business will begin with thousands of layoffs and a big bet on Google’s Android mobile operating system.
Sanjay Jha, Motorola’s new co-chief executive and head of mobile devices, is expected to announce a major overhaul of the company’s cellphone division when it reports earnings Thursday. And sources close to the company say it will include a new round of job cuts and the jettisoning of four software platforms. This will leave Motorola with three supported platforms: Windows Mobile for high end smartphones, Android for midtier consumer devices and Motorola’s own P2K for low-end phones.
For Motorola (MOT), whose current device lineup includes too few popular phones running on too many different operating systems–six, to be exact–this winnowing down of supported platforms is a wise move. But it’s not going to do much to help the company hang on to its fast-declining market share position. To achieve that, Motorola needs a hit phone–or even a popular one. Other than the $2,000 Aura the company just introduced in the middle of a recession, that is.