The unique Moto X ought to maintain a particular place in smartphone historical past. It wasn’t essentially the most highly effective machine, and the digital camera struggled, but it surely was the primary main cellphone with contextual consciousness baked in, supplying you with a hands-free assistant with voice recognition. All of us yell at Alexa from throughout the room as of late, however in 2013 it was magic. Each Moto X was completely different, too. You can customise it nevertheless you appreciated—deck it out in vivid neon colours, backed in soccer leather-based, or lined in bamboo—and Motorola would ship it to you from its meeting plant in Texas, not China.
Motorola has gone via a number of adjustments since 2013, and is now owned by Lenovo, however DNA from that first Moto X shines via within the Moto X4. It’s nonetheless not all that highly effective, however is comfy to carry, now waterproof, and has a set of helpful options distinctive to Motorola’s handsets.
Metallic, Meet Glass
Moto’s days of bamboo and dazzling colours are lengthy gone. Metallic and glass are de rigeur on high-end telephones, so after all the most recent Moto X is roofed in each, front-to-back, and is available in any colour you need as long as it’s black or silver. Like a Samsung Galaxy cellphone, the glass on the again tapers in on the edges, making it simpler in your palms. The glass additionally makes it extremely slippery, fingerprint-prone, and breakable, however not more than some other iPhone-like machine on the market. My assessment unit has already picked up minor scratches so I like to recommend investing in a case, like this one from Spigen.
The brushed steel edges easily curve across the cellphone’s corners with care. Except for the USB-C port, its curves are solely damaged up by the pop-out tray (it holds the MicroSD card and SIM) up prime, a headphone jack on the underside, and the three buttons on the appropriate facet for quantity and energy. Onscreen navigation buttons are current, however savvy customers can save reclaim display house by enabling sliding gestures on the iPhone-like fingerprint sensor underneath the show.
Motorola Moto X4
Half the worth of a Galaxy S8. Smooth design and helpful particular options, like Moto Actions and Bluetooth speaker networking. Battery life is strong. IP68 waterproofing. 16-megapixel selfies rock.
Occasional lag and the same old Android replace woes (except you purchase the Android One model). 32GB of storage will replenish quick. Rear cameras are gradual.
At first look, I assumed the Moto X4’s 5.2-inch display was 1440p and OLED, but it surely’s a surprisingly vivid 1,920 x 1,080-pixel LCD display with additional deep blacks. Powering the show is a mid-range Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 processor, 3GB RAM, and 32GB of storage. The storage is sufficient, however you want a MicroSD card earlier than lengthy, particularly for those who are inclined to preserve offline media in your cellphone.
Which Taste of X4?
Relying on which model of the Moto X4 you purchase, the apps included will differ. You should purchase the $400 Moto X4 with Android One, which is packed solely with Google apps, and will get safety and software program updates immediately from Google. Or, you should buy the brand new $330 Moto X4 with Amazon Prime, which is much more reasonably priced. It could not get updates fairly as continuously, however does include Alexa and different Amazon apps baked in (and Amazon’s well-known lockscreen advertisements). It additionally comes unlocked, whereas the Android One model requires you to join Mission Fi, Google’s mobile service, to buy. However wait, there may be one other! Although all three variations are largely an identical, I reviewed the usual $400 unlocked Moto X4 which you could purchase on Motorola.com. It nonetheless has Alexa built-in, however doesn’t have lockscreen advertisements.
No matter which model you select, the core Moto X4 expertise received’t change a lot. As of this writing, the cellphone nonetheless runs Android 7.1.1 Nougat (final yr’s taste), however ought to get the brand new Android Eight Oreo replace in some unspecified time in the future. Motorola didn’t lather too many additional options on Android, which supplies it a clear look. I didn’t encounter lag too usually, but it surely does crop up now and again when typing an extended electronic mail or ordering one thing on Amazon. Moto added has some good perks to make up for the occasional lag. It looks as if I’ve to enter a password each 10 minutes, and Moto Key shops them utilizing the fingerprint sensor, irrespective of the place I’m within the OS. The X4 may string collectively as much as 4 Bluetooth audio system to type a single, Sonos-like sound system for multi-speaker audio.
In just some days, I’ve grown connected to a number of Moto Motion gestures. By swiping from the middle of the display to the decrease nook, as an illustration, I can shrink the display for simpler one-handed use. Shaking the cellphone in a chopping movement activates the flashlight, which helped me discover my cellphone charger at the hours of darkness the opposite night time.
A Story of Three Turkeys
The twisting gesture that permits you to open the Moto’s digital camera was important once I noticed three turkeys land and stroll down the sidewalk and thru an intersection, flippantly disregarding site visitors legal guidelines. I’d have by no means gotten a photograph of them with out the gesture, however the digital camera did nonetheless go away me craving for extra. I’m glad I’ve the shot, but it surely fell wanting Instagram-worthy. These turkeys appeared terribly grainy, which made me want the cellphone had a second 2x telephoto lens, just like the iPhone Eight Plus.
The twin 12-megapixel/Eight-megapixel rear digital camera setup will get the job finished underneath most circumstances, however pictures typically take a second or two to course of, and the app is gradual in comparison with a lot of its friends. The second Eight-megapixel digital camera has a wider lens and permits software-powered background blurring, which didn’t work practically in addition to I’d hoped.
To check the Moto X’s fauxkeh, I took a closeup of my very own hand. The cellphone wasn’t capable of make out the distinction between it and the grass under. The top consequence appeared like a Photoshop novice had tried his darnedest to offer my image a DSLR-like look, and failed. The front-facing digital camera can take 16-megapixel pictures, which is a boon for selfies, so at the very least there’s that.
You received’t have to fret about battery life greater than regular for a mid-range cellphone. I used to be capable of kill the Moto X4 in a single day, but it surely took a number of effort. I put in apps, performed video games, captured video and pictures, and usually abused the battery from 7 a.m. straight via 11 p.m. Regular use ought to put you at a couple of day and a half of life.
There are many Android telephones that may outshine the Moto X4, however at $330 with Amazon Prime gives, it’s a honest step up from the $240 Moto G5 Plus and half the worth of the Google Pixel 2 and Samsung Galaxy S8. Sadly, neither of these compelling telephones allow you to shake your cellphone like a madman to activate the flashlight.
If you purchase one thing utilizing the retail hyperlinks in our product opinions, we earn a small affiliate fee. Learn extra about how this works.
Go Again to Prime. Skip To: Begin of Article.