Motorola disappoints with smartphone results

Motorola RAZR

Motorola Mobility has missed analyst predictions in its mobile sales expectations, blaming the patent wars and tougher competition.

The mobile maker estimated sales of 10.5 million mobile devices for the fourth quarter of 2011, 5.3 million of which were smartphones.

Analysts expected more from Motorola's financial outlook too. The company said it believes sales will amount to $3.4 billion, compared to $3.3 billion in the previous quarter.

On the one hand, Motorola is in a much more competitive market than it was involved in the first half of the last decade. Apple and Samsung now lead the way in smartphones, with the latter posting record profit last week boosted by massive sales of high-end devices.

On the other, Motorola is also embroiled in various legal battles over patents, including various court cases with Apple. Others have been hit hard by similar factors, in particular HTC and Nokia.

Motorola will officially announce its results on 26 January.

The company remains busy at the start of 2012. It is still in the process of completing its acquisition by Google, which it expects to happen in early 2012.

"The company reminds stockholders that it is possible that the failure to timely meet such conditions or other factors outside of the company's control could delay or prevent completion of the transaction altogether," Motorola said in a statement.

If the deal does fall through, Google will have to pay Motorola $2.5 billion in breakup fees.

Meanwhile, Motorola will also be present at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas this week, where it has already unveiled two new smartphones.

Check back on IT Pro for all the biggest announcements from 2012's CES.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.