Google to shutter Ft. Worth handset plant.

Author:Buetow, Mike
Position:AROUND THE WORLD
 
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FT. WORTH, TX -- Google's Motorola Mobility business unit today announced plans to close its factory here by year-end, putting 700 employees out of work. The company previously announced it would sell the handset business to Lenovo.

The 480,000 sq. ft. factory opened a year ago to much media fanfare, and at its peak employed 3,800 workers. Then-Motorola chief executive Dennis Woodside went so far as to predict the plant would change the scope of the supplier-customer relationship, adding, ''Consumers want to design their own devices," Woodside said. "We'll pursue that theme over time in some interesting directions."

Demand for the Motorola devices could not compete with that of Apple and others, however, with analysts estimating that the plant made roughly 75,000 units of the company's Moto-X smartphone a week, a fraction of market...

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