Featured Motorola Review

Moto G4 Plus review

Written by STJS

It’s 2016, and motorola is back with a new moto G. This time obviously with the help of it’s parent company Lenovo. Motorola generally follows a 10 months lifecycle for it’s moto G devices. The moto G series revolutionized the Indian market when the first generation device was launched in February 2014 in India. It offered a perfect value for money proposition. Moto G series have been so far blockbuster in India with three generations. But, now time has changed and so has the market scenario in India. Now chinese companies like LeEco, Xiaomi, etc are giving a tough time to motorola by introducing unbelievable value for money devices. But Motorola is known for its reliability factor and quality handsets and also has a great reputation when it comes to resale value. So, does motorola have a perfect device to stay competitive in the market, Lets find out.

This year Lenovo changed their strategy for their motorola devices. Instead of having a different branding, motorola branding was removed altogether in favour of Lenovo moto branding. Thus Lenovo now has three main sub brands in India namely – moto, Vibe & ZUK. Lenovo seems to be very serious about the Indian market, as they have been launching some amazing devices at good prices.

Coming back to moto, this time around they have launched not one, not even two but three moto G  devices namely moto G4 Play, moto G4 & moto G4 Plus with various RAM & storage configurations. As for the Indian market, Lenovo has launched the moto G4 Plus (2GB/16GB ~ ₹13,499/- | 3GB/32GB ~ ₹14,999/-) & the basic moto G4 (2GB/16GB ~ ₹12,499/-). Today we have with us the black colour 3GB/32GB variant of moto G4 plus with us. I have been using this device since more than a month before producing this review.

Specs Overview :

  • 5.5-inch (1920 x 1080 pixels) FHD display with Corning Gorilla glass 3 protection
  • Octa-Core Snapdragon 617 processor with Adreno 405 GPU
  • 3GB RAM with  32GB internal memory / 2GB RAM with 16GB internal storage, expandable memory up to 128GB with microSD
  • Dual SIM
  • Android 6.0.1 (Marshmallow)
  • 16MP rear camera with dual-tone LED flash, f/2.0 aperture, Laser AF, PDAF, 1080p video recording
  • 5MP front-facing camera with OmniVision OV5693 sensor, f/2.2 aperture, 84-degree wide-angle lens
  • Dimensions: 153×76.6×7.9 mm to 9.8 mm; Weight: 155g
  • Fingerprint sensor, Water repellent nano-coating
  • 3.5mm audio jack, FM Radio
  • 4G LTE with VoLTE, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.1, GPS
  • 3000mAh battery with Turbo Charging

Design :camera inside battery The moto G4 plus has undergone some major design revision this time around. Gone are those rounded pebble like user-friendly handy design. Now the design is more traditional and flat. The handset has a huge 5.5″ FHD display in the front, but the handset feels really light for its size. In the front, below the display we can find a fingerprint sensor and the primary microphone. At the top of the display, we get an earpiece which also acts as a speaker, the usual set of sensors and a 5MP selfie camera. At the back, we can find a 16MP camera with laser autofocus and a dual tone LED flash, a secondary microphone and the beloved moto logo. The handset is just 7.9mm thick and has a weight of around 155g. Surrounding the device is a hard plastic rim, which is finished perfectly in order to give a metallic look. The rim also houses the usual set of power button and volume rocker which has very average feedback. There is a 3.5mm audio headphone jack at the top and the usual micro USB jack at the bottom. The back plate of this device can be removed which reveals dual SIM slots, a dedicated microSD card slot which accepts upto 128GB cards and a decent 3000mAH non removable battery. moto G4 Plus also comes with a water repellent nano coating, but mind you it’s not same as the water proofing which was found on moto G3/moto G3 Turbo. Overall, the build quality of the handset is impressive, it feels really good to hold and doesn’t feel like using a big 5.5″ device.

Display :

frontThe moto G series has been growing in display size every generation except for the third generation device. This time around, the moto G4 Plus comes with a rather large 5.5″ FHD IPS LCD display which is covered with Corning Gorrila 3 protection. The display comes with two color modes namely – Vibrant & Normal. The Vibrant seems to oversaturate the color a bit whereas the normal mode makes the display look natural. Overall the display quality is excellent. It has a great balance between brightness & contrast levels & also offer good viewing angles. The auto brightness ambient light sensor works well and dims or brightens up the display properly without any issues. This is easily the best panel ever used on a moto G device.

User Interface :

The moto G4 Plus runs the latest version of Android – 6.0.1 Marshmallow. The experience is almost stock with no bloatware. This time though moto has added some useful features like a simple easy to use and beautiful file manager, a toggle to turn on and off mobile data in the notification panel and also a round clock widget, which showcases the current time, date and weather info.

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Along with the above, moto G4 plus comes with the great moto app which includes moto actions like double karate chop for torch, flip for do not disturb, pickup to stop ringing and twist for quick capture. Moto display is also included in this device which is definitely the best feature a smartphone can have. The Moto Display features shows notifications, which makes up for the lack of a notification LED light. But do note, this device do comes with a LED which activates only when the device is charged while the phone is actually turned off. FM Radio is also included which has an elegant interface and even works without a headphone jack. Moto has also added a clear all button on the overview screen.

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Thus all these software features make motorola phones unique and these features actually complement the clean stock android experience preety well. What’s the best part is moto’s promise to update the new moto G series to Android N & Android O.

Performance :

The moto G4 Plus runs on a Qualcomm Snapdragon  617 chipset. This means there are eight Cortex-A53 cores, four of which are clocked at 1.5GHz and the remaining four at 1.1GHz. The Adreno 405 GPU is clocked at 550MHz. The phone comes in two configurations, 16GB variant that has 2GB of RAM, and a 32GB variant that has 3GB of RAM. We have the 3GB variant with us, the performance of which is good for the price. The phone runs smoothly and RAM management is great on this device. It also runs various games like NOVA 3, Asphalt 8, Modern Combat 3 without any hiccups. The problem was though on extended usage the phone used to heat a bit. on extended continuous gaming for around 30 minutes, our device reached around 45 degrees Celsius. Though it’s not worrisome, this thing could have been prevented with proper heat throttling. Overall, moto G4 Plus is a decent performer for it’s price.

Camera :

The moto G4 Plus comes with a 16MP OmniVision sensor on the back with f2.0 aperture, phase detection with laser assisted autofocus, and a two-tone LED flash. There is also a new camera app, which is totally revamped and also features a pro mode. The camera can be opened by double tapping the lock screen button and also by double twisting the wrist.

Screenshot_20160629-175721 Screenshot_20160629-175730 Screenshot_20160629-182506

This is easily the best camera ever used on a moto device and easily the benchmark of the segment. The image quality is really very good on direct sunlight and proper outdoor conditions. The level of details captured by the camera is great and the color reproduction is pretty accurate. However we do recommend you to keep the camera setting to Auto HDR mode as it livens up some pics which would have otherwise been dull. The low light performance is average though. Depending on the lighting condition, there is some noise in the pictures taken in low light and zooming in just worsens the matter.

Coming to the front selfie camera which is a 5MP sensor, is quite decent and gets the work done for most people. This camera same as the main camera performs very well under daylight conditions, but suffers when it comes to low lighting.

sideCheck out the camera samples here : CLICK HERE

Moving on to the video, the moto G4 Plus records 1080p videos at 30fps. Slow-motion video is fixed at 120fps at 540p resolution. The video quality is good and the focusing is really very fast for a device of its price.

Battery Life :

usbThe moto G4 Plus comes with a 3000mAH non removable battery. It comes bundled with a Turbo Charger which promises to deliver upto 8 hours of power in just 15 minutes of charging. There is no separate data cable though, as the cable is attached to the adapter. In our tests we found the battery to be above average. While we got a full day of charge under heavy use, also got a Screen-On-Time ranging from around 4.5~5 hours. The charger took around 1.5 hrs to charge from 10% – 100% which is good for its price. Overall the battery life is decent.

Conclusion :

Overall we love the moto G4 Plus. Its a good handset for it’s price. Though many would prefer the new Chinese companies like Xiaomi & LeEco, but those companies don’t have the the brand value, the reliability factor, the trust which Motorola enjoys in India. There are people still rocking a moto G1 without facing any serious problem. Thus moto G4 Plus is a great addition to the moto G family which offers great value and is now ready to compete with the already crowded sub ₹15,000/- market. Also, now combining with Lenovo, moto also gets the advantage of extended service centres network and a much more broader appeal. Priced at ₹14,999/- and available exclusively via Amazon India we recommend this device for anyone who doesn’t game extensively, need a good camera, a reliable device to be used for a long time.

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Camera Sample Link

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