from USA Today 26 Sept 13 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
FORT WORTH — In a huge facility, rows of workers at Workstations and snap color-splashed Backs onto mobile phones. Then the handset moves down the line to the next station. Occasionally, a cheer erupts from one of the rows as work teams meet daily quotas.
High-tech Assembly lines such as these are typically seen in places like Burma or Beijing. But this facility — a vast space larger than two Costco warehouses — sits in an industrial zone in this Texas city. And the workers, mostly Americans, are making history: assembling the first-ever Smart-phones produced on U.S. soil — for Google.
Moto X by Motorola is Google’s latest high-stakes gamble and a first step in returning high-tech assembly jobs to the USA, according to executives at Google & Motorola, which is owned by the tech giant. “Google is a place where we take bets,” Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt said recently to a gathering of workers and journalists at the facility. “This is a bet we’re taking on America, on Texas, on this incredible workforce assembled here. We think this is a very, very safe bet.”
Made in America. “This is the first of a series of steps that are going to restore the perception of the United States as a manufacturing hub. It’s historic move that’s changing America.” Whether the Moto X facility sparks a resurgence in U.S.-based manufacturing remains to be seen. But it’s clear this Smart-phone facility is the latest high-stakes gamble in what could be called the tech industry’s Teflon company.
Google @ 15, has become ubiquitous in the lives of millions of Americans — from Email & Maps to Searches, documents and self-driving cars. Google-owned YouTube has become the biggest video site on the planet, and its Android is the dominant mobile phone operating system, with 80% market share. Meanwhile, the mysterious Google X wing of the company is crafting forward-looking projects like Google Glass (computer-equipped glasses) and Project Loon, in which balloons transmit broadband Internet to remote regions from 12 miles in the air.
Constantly Create. While much-older tech rivals Apple & Microsoft fend off questions about their innovation, Google is strongly committed to innovation – as ever. Google topped $50 billion in sales for the first time last year. Bold bets on Android, Web browser Chrome & YouTube have paid off, and the company is breathing new life into popular services like Search, Gmail & Maps. Schmidt says the Moto X facility is a perfect example of how Google operates: an idea hatched by low-level employees that bubbled up and became a reality. “Because we listen to our employees”.
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