Made in the USA or Made in America always carries a lot of pride, but it’s also on secret that those words always mean the product will cost more, and the Moto X is no exception. Why do you think that Apple charms us with the caption in their commercials, “Designed by Apple in California,” but forget to tell us that it is “Made in China.” Made in America means a lot – a lot more jobs, a lot more money for workers to spend in our economy, and that creates a lot more jobs, and gives the government a lot more in tax revenue, so a lot does ride on a product being manufactured here in the good old USA, or more precisely Fort Worth, Texas. However, all of those benefits comes at a certain cost, and in the Moto X’s case (and parts and labor), that is roughly $5.00.
Yesterday we did an article on the breakdown of the Moto X and found that it costs about $221 to manufacture – some of it is in the parts, but labor is also a deciding factor. In parts, for instance, the Motorola X8 SoC costs about $32 compared to the Samsung Galaxy S4, which costs about $28. By choosing to go with the 720p vs. the 1080p display, Motorola saved about $7.50 in parts costs. Assembly costs for the Moto X were about $12, compared to about $7-8.00 in Asia, where they estimate the Galaxy S4 costs $8.50 and the Apple iPhone about $8.00.
The Moto X is also the first phone you can customize online at Motorola’s MotoMaker website. You can choose the colors of the front, back, buttons, and soon you’ll be able to choose a real wood back to your phone, and when you are done designing your phone, you can even have it engraved and then Motorola will ship it directly to your house. This process would not be possible if the Moto X was assembled anywhere but the USA – the logistics are complicated enough dealing with a made in America product, can you imagine ordering a customized Galaxy S4 from Korea or a custom iPhone from China?
So when we support the “Made in the USA” Moto X, it may cost a little more, but I think it is worth it for the payback in helping the US economy, from the workers to the recipients of the money those workers spend. Let us know what you think of Motorola’s Moto X being made in the USA – are you willing to pay an extra $5.00.