For the 5th birthday, Motorola is giving its budget smartphone Moto G a “face-lifting”: the manufacturer is mixing a new design into a smaller format and still gives the smartphone premium features of higher-priced models. A successful upgrade? Here’s the test Moto G5.
The Moto G will be five! In 2013, the mobile phone manufacturer Motorola, which was still part of Google, presented the Moto G with a new low-priced smartphone. For 169 euros it offered a quad-core processor and an HD display, at that time a sensation! In 2017, users can smile about these specifications only tired. The price segment up to 200 euros is fiercely contested in the smartphone market. Chinese manufacturers such as Honor, in particular, offer well-equipped smartphones for comparatively little money in noble metal and glass robes. In short, the Moto G is no longer unrivaled.
Because it is not surprising that Motorola, which is now part of Lenovo, has donated a budget reminder to his budget smartphone for the fifth birthday. Is this successful? Let’s find out together.
Design and processing: Moto G5
Visually, Lenovo has adopted the Moto G5 to the smartphones of the Moto Z series – among other things, clearly recognizable by the large round camera on the back and also in terms of processing has done itself. If the older Moto G models still had a plastic housing, the fifth generation comes with a metal cover. This makes the Moto G5, which you can buy in gold or gray, at first glance look noble. However, the entire back does not consist of metal. At the top and bottom, Lenovo has inserted plastic elements into the cover to improve the antenna performance. These are much more pronounced in the Moto G5 than in the competition and unfortunately are not so inconspicuous. The material change is clearly visible. This makes the noble impression a little.
Another sweeping side of the new design: the MotoMaker is death! The exterior of the Moto G5 can no longer be customized.
The Moto G5 offers a compact format. Motorola returns to the five-inch format, which already offered the Moto G2 and the Moto G3. In the fourth generation, Lenovo had increased the screen to 5.5 inches, which obviously did not meet the taste of the clientele. With 145 grams, the smartphone is also comparatively light.
Equipment and operation: Moto G5
While we looked at the re-design of the Moto G5 as a whole, Lenovo surprised with the selection of the installed components. As a processor work under the hood of the Qualcomm chip Snapdragon 430 and no longer the more powerful Snapdragon 617, which was still used in the Moto G4. As a result, the Moto G5 is not designed to handle demanding tasks such as mobile gaming – especially since the smartphone in Europe is usually delivered with only two gigabytes of RAM, even the in-house competitor Lenovo K6 offers more RAM. A version with three gigabytes of RAM will be available in Europe in May, but only for a surcharge of ten euros.
Not only is the “computing power” – even the internal memory is 16 gigabytes for today’s conditions is not exactly lush. Also for under 250 euro, there are already smartphones with 32 gigabytes of device memory. At least, the device memory can be extended by microSD card. The Moto G5 officially supports cards with a capacity of up to 128 gigabytes. Internal and SD card storage can also be combined into one storage location (Adoptable Storage). This also allows apps to be moved to the SD card.
While memory and processor incisions exist, Lenovo shows itself generously with the rest of the equipment. Bot in the Moto G4 only the plus model a fingerprint scanner, in the fifth generation also the basic variant already has a corresponding sensor. It is installed below the screen and worked very reliably in the test.
But not only is the fingerprint scanner new. Lenovo has also a few gimmicks from high-priced models. Like the more expensive Moto Z models, the Moto G5 now has an always-on display. This will show you missed messages and calls without having to turn on the screen. If you move your hand over the display, a part of the screen lights up briefly and shows you time and notifications in a black-and-white view – a good substitute for the missing notification LED. In addition, an FM radio receiver is installed.
Similar to the new Huawei P10, you can also hide the soft keys and navigate backward with wipes on the home button or call up the multitasking overview. This is even more comfortable than the new Huawei flagship. However, the feature must be activated via the Moto app. This is somewhat confusing. We have searched the function in the settings of the smartphone.
The preinstalled Moto app is, by the way, the only Bloatware on the device. Otherwise, the Moto G5 runs with a pure Android in the latest version 7.0 Nougat, whereby Lenovo has already integrated the Launcher the launcher from Android 7.1. The app Drawer now opens with a finger wip from the bottom of the screen instead of a button. An update on Android O is you by the way.
Voice quality: Moto G5
The voice quality of the Moto G5 is very good. However, this only applies to quiet environments. If the microphone is on the display, the voice quality decreases quickly and sounds tinny. The Moto G5 can be operated with two SIM cards and additionally with a microSD card. You do not have to choose a slot between SIM and microSD card.
Less beautiful: The Moto G5 swallows only Nano SIM cards. Users who buy smartphones in the price segment up to 200 euros, however, frequently still have a larger micro-SIM card. This you have to cut your SIM cards for the use or alternatively payable at your provider exchange.
Battery life: Moto G5
The battery life of the Moto G5 is satisfactory. As a rule, you come with a recharge through the day. In the evening, however, it has then to the outlet, there it invites itself nevertheless within 90 minutes completely. Quick charging is not a matter of course in this price class. In an emergency, the battery can even be changed by hand. Motorola does not yet provide information on the price of a replacement battery. The smartphone is still loaded via a conventional microUSB port, a USB-C connector does not have the Moto G5 yet.
Camera: Moto G5
If the Moto G had a weakness in the past years, then that was the camera. The smartphone family remains true to the latest generation. The 13-megapixel camera on the back makes outdoor use in daylight usable recordings. When looking at the PC, however, quickly inadequacies become visible. Thus the dynamics capture leaves something to be desired. Dark areas are drowning on the shots. In indoor rooms or in low light conditions, the recordings are also fast on the noise and only look acceptable on the smartphone screen.
Price and availability: Moto G5
The Moto G5 has been available in Europe since March. The suggested retail price is 199 euros, but now the smartphone is already much cheaper. From mid-May, the Moto G5 in Europe will also be available with three gigabytes of RAM (RAM). For the plus of RAM, buyers have to pay a small extra. Probably the Moto G5 with three gigabytes of RAM here will cost 209 euros. The configuration can only be ordered via Motorola’s online shop. In addition to the Moto G5, Lenovo also offers a Moto G5 Plus called model. It is bigger and more powerful with 299 euros but also significantly more expensive than the Moto G5. In short, you will also read a detailed review of the Moto G5 Plus at Awaqa.
Conclusion: Moto G5
The success concept also existed in the 5th generation: the Moto G5 offers a comprehensively low price for a comprehensive, carefree package for mobile communication. So the smartphone has to share the crown in the price class up to 200 euros with the predecessor and the strong competition.