On November 13th of 2013 the budget market forever changed with the introduction of the Moto G. While devices like the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 had already given consumers a taste of high-end performance at a reasonably affordable price tag, the Moto G’s sub-$200 pricing brought things to a whole new level.
Fast-forwarding to 2015 and Motorola has now announced the third-generation iteration of the Moto G. But what a difference two years can make. While the original Moto G had virtually no real competitors, the budget market has exploded over the last several months with the introduction of products like the Asus ZenFone 2 and Alcatel OneTouch Idol 3 — just to name two.
It’s way too early to say whether or not the Moto G (3rd gen) competes on the same level as some of the more recent budget-friendly alternatives, but we are liking what we see so far.
Moto G (3rd gen) specs and features
Let’s start by running through the key specs:
|Display||5-inch 720p display|
|Processor||1.4GHz quad-core Snapdragon 410 processor
Adreno 306 GPU
|RAM||1GB / 2GB RAM|
|Storage||8GB / 16GB storage
Expandable via microSD
|Camera||13MP rear camera with dual LED flash
5MP front facing camera
|Software||Android 5.1.1 Lollipop|
Replaceable Color shells
Replaceable Flip shells
The Moto G (3rd gen) is powered by a Snapdragon 410 with 1GB or 2GB of RAM, depending on whether you buy the 8GB or 16GB internal storage options. This is a small but welcome upgrade from the Snapdragon 400 found in the 1st and 2nd gen iterations. While many would have liked to have seen 2GB across both models, remember that Motorola’s main concern is keeping the price tag down and these modest specs help with that endeavor.
Related: Best Moto G (3rd Gen) Cases
Dual-SIM compatibility remains on the check-list, as does 4G LTE connectivity and a microSD card slot, for those who need the extra storage space. On the display front, the Moto G retains the same 5-inch 720p panel as before, and the phone still features the same dual speaker design on the front of the case. Though this time it has a refreshed design for the phone’s back panel, with a colored accent running from the camera to the Motorola logo.
Some of the biggest changes include the addition of an IPX7 rated design, meaning that the phone is water resistant up to 1 meter for 30 minutes. Even more exciting is the camera. The Moto G (3rd gen) now uses the same sensor as the high-end Nexus 6. Each generation of the line has seen some improvements, but the leap up to a 13 megapixel sensor, f/2.0 aperture lens and dual-tone LED flash should make a noticeable difference to image quality.
For software, the Moto G comes with Android 5.1 Lollipop and a few of Motorola’s own pieces of tech. These include Moto Display, Quick Capture and a Chop Twice feature, which turns the phone’s flash on and off by shaking the phone twice.
In India, the smartphone will be priced at Rs. 11,999 for the 8GB model, while the 16GB version with 2GB of RAM will cost Rs. 12,999. US prices begin at $179.99 for the 8GB model, while 16GB of internal storage costs $219.99, when ordering directly from Motorola.
The Moto G is now also compatible with the Moto Maker, complete with a range of customization options to tailor the smartphone’s looks to your own preferences. The Moto G can be customized with a variety of front, back and accent colors. There are also new Flip Shells for the smartphone priced at $30, which bring some additional color options and offer protection for the front of your phone too.
The engraving option also applies to the Moto G, at a cost of $5. Moto Maker has been expanded to Brazil, where previous Moto G smartphones have proven hugely popular.
While the Moto G might not feature massively overhauled hardware from its predecessor, that’s really never been the point. Ever since the Moto X and Moto G lines debuted, Motorola has prided itself it putting the customer experience ahead of pure specs. With improved design, waterproofing, a great camera, a ton of customization options, and other improvements, that’s exactly what we have with the latest Moto G.