Motorola had a very exciting announcement today. They announced two new Moto X phones - the Moto X Style and the Moto X Play - and they announced a new Moto G.
They made the promise that the Moto X Style will cost $200 less than an iPhone 6 or a Samsung Galaxy S6. They made the promise that the Moto X Play will cost $300-$400 less than the iPhone 6 and the Samsung Galaxy S6.
As always, there’s another funny story. Motorola pointed out that the Moto G comes in black or white, also allowing users to change the back with Motorola Shells. Then they pointed out that you can customize Moto G with Moto Maker, choosing any shell you want, so I’m not sure what the point of saying it’s available in black or white was.
The new Moto G uses a brand new everything, including a 5″ HD display, a quad core Snapdragon 410, a 13 MP rear camera, and 2 GB of RAM in the 16 GB model.
I always find the Moto G fascinating because that was the Lumia killer. Microsoft was extraordinarily successful with the Nokia Lumia 520 because they delivered a tremendous amount of value in a budget phone. The Moto G was Android saying that they could do the same thing.
Then there’s the Moto X Style and the Moto X Play, which both look to be amazing phones. Note that the Moto X Style is the Moto X Pure Edition in the U.S.
The Moto X Style will use a 5.7″ 1440p AMOLED and it will be powered by the hexa-core Snapdragon 808. While I’m not very excited about the idea of a 2K display, I am extremely pleased that they used Snapdragon 808 instead of Snapdragon 810, which os what’s making this a dark year for Android phones.
The Moto X Play, despite being cheaper, seems to be the one I would want. It features a 5.5″ 1080p AMOLED.
Both phones will include a 21 MP rear camera with an f/2 aperture, which is good, but not that great. I didn’t see OIS or PDAF, things Motorola desperately needs in their cameras.
During the event, they kept pointing out how sharp and crisp the images looked when taken with a 21 MP camera. It’s all marketing hype. Anything with a 4:3 ratio that’s over 6 MP has to be scaled down to fit a 4K display, so the only benefit to a higher resolution is the ability to zoom without losing quality. There are also disadvantages to a higher resolution, such as smaller pixels and the camera is slower.
The front camera will be 5 MP on both, which is perfect for a front camera.
The big story here is the battery. The Moto X Style will use a 3,000 mAh battery, which is great; however, the Moto X Play will use a 3,630 mAh battery, which is just ridiculous. They’re promising 48 hours of battery life and it might happen, although I’m betting it’s not 48 hours of SoT (screen on time).
Finally, there are a few more subtle downgrades from Moto X Style to Moto X Play. While the Moto X Style uses a 1.8 GHz processor, Moto X Play is 1.7 GHz. Moto X Style uses 3 GB RAM, Moto X Play uses 2 GB.
I find the camera design to be interesting. It reminds me of the Nokia Pureview cameras from Windows Phone 8.
The new Moto G is available today and the both of the new Moto X phones are coming soon. No word on a new Moto 360, despite Motorola lowering the price a few weeks ago.