Motorola Moto X4
Google’s Pixel smartphones, which effectively changed the Nexus line, have received essential popularity of their layout, overall performance, and in general, their cameras. But that acclaim has come at a rate: the Pixel telephones start at $649 and may fee nearly $1,000, depending on configurations.
That’s been a hard tablet for lots fanatics of the previous Nexus telephones to swallow, as they often supplied a variety of specifications and overall performance for loads less cash than other smartphones. You ought to realistically get a first rate Nexus phone for beneath $500 while not having to give up the developments that lead them to outstanding: easy software, rapid performance, and well timed updates.
Enter Motorola’s new Moto X4 Android One smartphone. While not technically a Nexus phone, it stocks most of the identical traits that made the Nexus line so cherished. Clean build of Android? Check. Promise of rapid updates and years of software help? Check. Reasonable price? Check.
The $399 X4 gained’t attraction to all of us. It’s not supposed to compete with the Pixel or other premium telephone in phrases of features or overall performance, and its biggest limitation is that it’s only to be had on Google’s very own Project Fi community. (Though it comes unlocked and works with different networks, the only manner to shop for this taste of X4 is to be a Fi client.) But in case you’ve been preserving on to that growing older Nexus 5X hoping something might come alongside and select up its mantle, the Moto X4 Android One model is it.
The Moto X4 Android One version has same hardware and layout to the Moto X4 as a way to be bought via Motorola inside the US and other components of the sector. Unlike Nexus phones, Google did no longer have any involvement in its layout or development; it’s a Motorola smartphone through and thru. This is probably the biggest difference among the X4 and the Nexus line of telephones.
THE MOTO X4 IS A PHONE THAT FEELS MUCH NICER THAN ITS PRICE WOULD LEAD YOU TO BELIEVE
The X4 is a metallic-and-glass cellphone with a 5.2-inch, 1080p IPS LCD display, IP68 water resistance, Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 processor, 3GB of RAM, and a 3,000mAh battery. The layout, construct exceptional, and standard in shape and end are high-quality and a widespread step up from the Nexus 5X’s plasticky end. The rear glass panel is curved and melds into the metallic body with nary a seam. Plus, the IP68 water resistance way you can get it wet — even submerge it — without fear, which is some thing that most phones on this rate range do no longer have. The X4 is a cellphone that feels an awful lot nicer than you would possibly anticipate to get from some thing that expenses less than $four hundred.
Though its Snapdragon 630 processor isn’t on the identical stage as Qualcomm’s top-of-the-line 835 chip, it’s far extra than capable of imparting a quick and clean experience on the X4, and normal obligations are completed without drama. Apps open quick, I can switch among them swiftly, and nothing in my every day recurring ever feels like it’s stressing the X4 out (except for taking photos, which I’ll get to in a piece).
On a comparable be aware, the 1080p show isn’t always an ultrawide design, nor does it have as many pixels as monitors you may find on better-end phones. But it’s shiny and vibrant with extraordinary viewing angles. The pixel density is perfectly nice at this size, and I can’t see any character pixels, even if I peer carefully at the display screen.
The battery inside the X4 is barely larger than the one that got here inside the Nexus 5X, and I’ve had no problem the usage of the phone for a full day without having to charge halfway through. Should you want to hit the charger, the blanketed 15-watt TurboCharger can offer “six hours of use in 15 mins of charging,” which basically manner it’s going to price the cellphone quick.
Other factors of hardware hobby: the X4 supports Bluetooth 5.0, which doesn’t imply an entire lot now, however may be useful as soon as we’ve headphones that assist it. If you don’t want to apply wireless headphones, the X4 also has a three.5mm headphone jack subsequent to its USB Type-C charging port.
He Moto X4 has a dual-camera setup, with a 12-megapixel “everyday” camera and an eight-megapixel wide-angle shooter subsequent to it. The 12-megapixel digital camera has an f/2.Zero aperture and 1.4-micron twin-cognizance pixels, even as the 8-megapixel wide-perspective has a much less brilliant f/2.2 lens and smaller 1.12-micron pixels. The X4 is able to popping up to 4K video at 30 frames in line with second (using the normal camera) and has depth manipulate and selective shade modes in its digicam app.
Despite its first rate specifications and feature listing, the camera is where I’ve had problems the usage of the Moto X4. Launching the digital camera app is a gradual and tedious system that precipitated me to miss extra than a handful of photographs. Actually taking a photograph is similarly frustrating, as the shutter hardly ever snaps after I push the button and there is lots of time essential for processing among pictures.
The extensive-angle digicam is so wide that it creates great distortion in photos, bowing and skewing any instantly lines that show up to be for your body. Switching among the same old digital camera and the extensive-angle one also takes longer than it should.
As for the real photograph nice, there’s not anything to get excited about. Images in accurate mild are sharp, have desirable shade rendition, and have a fair amount of element, but indoors the digital camera struggles with movement blur and noise. Shots from the wide-attitude camera are incredibly worse than the normal digital camera (as its decrease specifications might lead you to count on), and I suggest that absolutely everyone the use of the X4 simply forget the extensive-angle choice exists. Like any other telephone with a twin-camera setup, the X4 has a portrait mode to be able to artificially blur backgrounds to mimic a DSLR. It is, perhaps unsurprisingly, now not superb and appears as an alternative fake to my eyes.
So whilst the hardware on this X4 is equal to every different X4, it’s the software construct that’s different. This is the primary Android One-classified phone available inside the US, which means that it has a close to-inventory version of Android 7.1 Nougat on it. It has handiest one voice assistant, Google’s (compared to the three that come on the usual Moto X4), and it makes use of Google’s cellphone dialer, messaging, and launcher apps.
Wisely, Motorola turned into capable of consist of its very useful gesture controls (together with karate chop the smartphone two times to turn at the flashlight and twist it twice to launch the digicam) and Moto Display features, which display the time, date, battery life, and any notifications each time you wave your quit the cellphone or pick out it up. It does not have the fingerprint gesture alternatives discovered on other Motorola phones, however I for my part select the on-screen buttons for home, lower back, and latest apps, so I did now not leave out them.
With the Android One designation comes the promise of two years of software program updates, and Google says the Moto X4 may be up to date to Android eight.Zero Oreo earlier than the cease of this yr. It additionally says that the X4 might be up to date to Android P, whenever that becomes available. You would possibly keep in mind shopping the X4 Android One based in this software program support promise on my own, as it’s miles common for phones on this charge variety to quickly get abandoned by using their manufacturers and in no way see software program updates.
If there’s going to be any phone to select up the Nexus mantle, the Moto X4 is possibly the exceptional candidate. It’s a sincere telephone with honest software program that doesn’t fee a fortune. With the exception of the digital camera performance (which, in idea, might be progressed with software updates), it does all of the same old smartphone things properly, with none gimmicks that get inside the manner.
Given Google’s commitment to the Pixel brand and its statements that it has “no plans” for destiny Nexus products, Android One telephones are the nearest thing we’re probable to get to the Nexus line. And the Moto X4 is the closest issue to a Nexus successor you’ll locate