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Motorola Moto G 5G Review – Cheapest 5G Phone

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By Akhil Kapoor - 
28th Feb 2021
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Motorola Moto G 5G
Review Summary

Motorola introduced the Moto G 5G in the market as the most affordable 5G phone. However, you shouldn’t buy a phone solely for its communication capabilities. It sure packs in a good set of specs like a capable chipset, a reasonably good panel that offers a solid viewing experience, and a reliable camera setup but misses out on other important specifications like a high refresh rate panel and charging speeds. But none of these issues is major deal-breakers or hampers the device’s overall experience in a significant way, plus the 5G capabilities make it futureproof when the next-gen communication service arrives in India.

PROS
  • Huge 5000 mAh battery with standard fast charging
  • Sufficient internal storage for storing huge data
  • HDR10 display for an immersive visual experience
  • 5G connectivity for super-fast downloading
  • Dedicated Google assistance button
CONS
  • Bulky with 212 grams of weight
  • No side-mounted fingerprint sensor
Key Specs
Battery Capacity
Battery Capacity
5000 mAh
Operating System
Operating System
Android v10 (Q)
Screen Size
Screen Size
6.7 inches
Highlights:
  • Yes
  • 5000 mAh
  • Android v10 (Q)
  • 6.7 inches
Introduction

Motorola has been quite serious with its smartphone lineup in 2020. In the Indian market, which is otherwise dominated by brands like Xiaomi, Realme, and Samsung, its Motorola that has been offering some really compelling smartphones, especially in the affordable price range. After the One Fusion+ and the excellent Moto G9, Motorola is back again with the Moto G 5G – the most affordable 5G phone to date. It is powered by the brand-new Snapdragon 750G SoC that has 5G modems built-in and a more enhanced core than even the Snapdragon 765G, a 5,000mAh battery and a 6.7-inch FHD+ display.

Also Read: Best 5G Smartphones That You Can Buy In India

Prices in India, Variants, Availability

Motorola Moto G 5G is available in two variants. There is one variant with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage and the other with 6GB RAM and 128GB storage. Currently, you can only get the 6GB RAM variant for a price of ₹20,999. As of now, there is no information as to when will the 4GB RAM variant be available in India.

Motorola has offered two choices for the colour option with the Moto G 5G. It is available in Frosted Silver and Volcanic Grey shades.

You can buy the device from Flipkart.com or via Amazon, but the price tag displayed on Amazon is ₹22,699 for the same 6GB RAM variant. Also, do check out for some amazing deals and offers available on Flipkart like the buy with exchange and the no-cost EMI offer.

Box Contents
Specs at a glance
Design and Build - Not A Major Change

The design of the Moto G 5G looks mostly similar to the previous Moto G phones, which according to me is not really eye-catching. The back panel is polycarbonate with a glossy finish, which makes it a huge magnet for fingerprint and smudges. The camera module is exactly similar to the one on the Moto G9, but the placement is a little off-centre. The device weighs around 212gm, making it one of the heavier handsets out there, but it still doesn’t feel that heavy in hand due to its excellent weight-balancing, thanks to the design engineering of Motorola.

The display at the front is a 6.7-inches IPS LCD panel, protected by Corning’s Gorilla Glass 5. The bezels are average, all around with a standard-sized chin at the bottom. The selfie-camera is located at the top-centre of the screen in a punch-hole style cutout. The device does come with IP53 certification, making it resistant to splashes and rain.

Moving to the ports and buttons, we have the 3.5mm headphone jack, USB Type-C port and the speaker grille present at the bottom. The right-side houses the fingerprint sensor that doubles up as the power button and the volume rockers. The SIM-tray along with the dedicated google assistant button is present on the left-hand side. There is a secondary noise cancellation microphone and is located at the top.

Display - Fantastic Colours

On the Moto G 5G, you get a 6.67-inch FHD+ display with a narrow aspect ratio of 20:9. Motorola is using an HDR10 compliant IPS LCD panel with a 1080p resolution. It can reach a peak brightness of 443 nits with a manually maxed-out slider and can boost to 543 nits in bright environments if you have the adaptive brightness enabled. It ensures a comfortable viewing experience even under direct sunlight.

The colours look fantastically good on the Moto G 5G’s big vibrant display even for those who crave the “inky black” AMOLEDs. The viewing angles are great too. I enjoyed watching videos on YouTube and other OTT platforms like Amazon Prime Video and Netflix. Don’t forget that this smartphone comes with Widevine L1 certification so whatever you watch, you can watch it in maximum quality across all streaming services.

Overall, the display on the Moto G 5G is a good one, which produces some fantastic colours and provides an immersive viewing experience. However, it is still the standard 60 Hz panel, while many other devices in this price range offer a higher refresh rate display, which can become a possible off-putting for some potential buyers.

Performance - As Mid-Range As It Could Be

The Moto G 5G is powered by the all-new Snapdragon 750G SoC, the latest mid-range chipset from Qualcomm which comes with 5G connectivity. The 8nm chipset is placed squarely between the higher-end Snapdragon 765G and the recently released 732G SoC. The 750G is definitely a power-efficient option and a proper mid-range processing powerhouse at the same time. Benchmark tests reveal a score of 326,394 on the Moto G 5G which is nearly similar to OnePlus Nord having a score of 331,193 with Antutu. It is quite impressive that the Moto G 5G manages to pull such good performance scores comparable to the OnePlus Nord, at a price that is about ₹5,000 lower. Real-world usage mirrors the benchmarking scores as well. Regardless of what we threw at it, it handled all with ease, without any lags or stutters. Switching through apps, navigating across the UI, looking up options in the settings or editing photos: none were able to slow it down.

Similar results were obtained while switching gear to gaming. Moderate 3D titles such as Beach Buggy Racing 2 and Genshin Impact were able to run at over 100fps at the max settings. Call of Duty: Mobile can also be cranked up to higher graphics or frame rates for a respectable performance. I played the game for 25 minutes and though the phone did get slightly warm there was no prominent heating.

Software - Love For Stock Android

Moto G5G ships with Android 10 out of the box, and as far as software experience goes, Motorola’s MyUX is the closest Android skin to Google’s very own stock Android which is present on the Pixel Phones. There are no annoying ads and app recommendations in the entire UI. Also, there is a little to no bloatware installed on the Moto G 5G (including Google apps and some Motorola apps), which is something you don’t see in a Samsung phone or an LG Phone. The default texting app is Google Messages. Google Photos is the only pre-installed gallery app, and Google phone is the default dialer app, etc. Instead of going out of its way and re-creating services that already exist, Motorola lets Google do what it does best. As a result, you get a phone that feels lightweight with its UI, and user-friendly.

The pre-installed “Moto” app is one of the few custom apps that Motorola includes and houses all the custom software features that the company has become famous for, over the years. The Moto Actions includes various gestures with which you can perform certain actions on the device like twisting the phone to open the camera app- Quick Capture and double chop to open the flashlight-Fast Flashlight.

The device ships with Android 10 so you will get an update for Android 11, but there is no assurance for a major update after that since the phone is not part of Google’s Android One program.

Cameras

Moto G 5G shares its Camera unit with the Moto G9. The camera module houses the triple camera and the LED flash as well. The Primary camera is the very popular 48MP Quad-Bayer sensor that shoots 12MP binned photos by default. The ultrawide camera is an 8MP shooter with a 118-degree field of view and f/2.2 aperture. Lastly, we have a 2MP macro sensor which is almost a gimmick but is trendy, so all mid-range smartphones ought to have one.

In daylight, the primary camera performs well. Shots taken are rich in detail with great dynamic-range and true-to-source colours. The images have that contrast-y overall feel and look. The Ultrawide angle camera takes decent pictures in an ample amount of lighting but is nowhere near the main one. The images tend towards a bit on the softer side, although the colours look good enough and have a decent dynamic range.

The image quality drastically reduces once the light starts dropping. The low-light images are often underexposed and contain a fair amount of noise. The dedicated Night Mode can be activated with a single tap once the sensor detects a lack of light in the viewfinder and it does a better job in improving the details and exposure.

As for the front camera, the Moto G 5G has a 16MP selfie shooter that can capture some very good selfies in proper lighting. The skin tones look natural, however, there is a slight oversharpening of facial details but it doesn’t spoil the overall feel of the image. Selfies were taken in portrait mode come out good as well with proper edge detection and a wide dynamic range.

Video recording maxes out at 4K 30fps and has stabilization. There is also an option to shoot in the cinematic 21:9 aspect ratio while the standard 16:9 aspect ratio allows you to shoot in 60fps. The front camera allows to shoot in 1080p @ 30fps.

Battery - Enough To Last A Day

Moto G 5G packs in a mega 5,000mAh cell which still isn’t an excuse for its girthy design. It should not come as a shocker that battery life is good on this device. Moto G 5G lasted for more than a day without breaking a sweat, upon heavy usage which involved watching multimedia content, an hour or two of gaming and camera usage. However, it should be able to pull through for at least a good part of the second day keeping your usage in check.

The Moto G 5G comes with 20W fast charging with the charging brick inside the box. It can charge the device from a dead battery to full in about two full hours and can reach up to 50% in about 45 minutes after which the charging speed throttles down. In comparison, there are other competing devices, like the Realme 7 Pro which houses a lower capacity cell but offers a speed of 65W fast charging.

Audio and Security

The Moto G 5G has a solitary, bottom-firing speaker which is decently loud. The audio output from the solo loudspeaker is just average and doesn’t really impress in any particular way. Can there be stereo speakers in the Moto G 5G? Yes, Of course. There are devices like the Realme 7 Pro and the Poco X3 that do have the stereo speaker setup built-in and are priced even lesser than 20K.

For security, the Moto G 5G is accommodated with a side-mounted fingerprint sensor that doubles up as the power button and works fairly fast. There is also the option for setting up a Face ID for those who prefer this method and it detects your face instantly in most scenarios. As usual, you can also set up a 6-digit secure PIN, Password, Or Pattern.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  •  Huge 5000 mAh battery with standard fast charging
  • Sufficient internal storage for storing huge data
  •  HDR10 display for an immersive visual experience
  • 5G connectivity for super-fast downloading
  • Dedicated Google assistance button

Cons

  • Bulky with 212 grams of weight
  • No side-mounted fingerprint sensor
Verdict
Motorola introduced the Moto G 5G in the market as the most affordable 5G phone. However, you shouldn’t buy a phone solely for its communication capabilities. It sure packs in a good set of specs like a capable chipset, a reasonably good panel that offers a solid viewing experience, and a reliable camera setup but misses out on other important specifications like a high refresh rate panel and charging speeds. But none of these issues are major deal-breakers or hampers the device's overall experience in a significant way, plus the 5G capabilities make it futureproof when the next-gen communication service arrives in India.


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