Moto G 2nd Gen: bigger, better, affordable

Moto G 2nd Gen: bigger, better, affordable

The Moto G has been my top phone of choice over the past year due to its overall excellent price to quality ratio. At just US$179 ($226), the Moto G is affordably priced, and yet does not skimp on build quality and performance.

The phone became a bestseller and helped revive Motorola back to its glory days. Therefore, it's fitting that Motorola would release an update to feed on the Moto G's massive popularity.

Last week, the company released a brand new Moto G, bringing a lot of exciting improvements over the predecessor while still maintaining that attractive price tag.

This second generation model is larger now, following the trend of smartphones growing in size year after year. It boasts a five-inch IPS LCD screen, up from the 4.5-inch on the previous model, but maintains the 720p high definition resolution.

And that's a good thing. Opting for a 720p display instead of 1080p brings significant benefits to battery life.

Yet at 720p at this screen size, small texts still look pretty sharp and images look less "jaggy". The average person won't be able to tell the difference between this and a 1080p display on a high-end phone.

You won't get this display size and resolution in this budget phone category other than on the Moto G.

The all-plastic construction and curved rubberised back panel with the signature Motorola "dimple" makes a return here as well, though there's the addition of front-facing speakers that significantly improves the audio quality and experience.

The back panel is removable and swappable with the various colourful back covers Motorola is selling online.

The internal storage is still on the low side at 8GB (as a cost-cutting measure), but the new Moto G now conceals a MicroSD slot, something that was missing from the previous model.

The new Moto G runs on a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 chipset clocked at 1.2GHz. It's not as fast as the high-end chipsets found in high-end phones, but it's fast enough for everyday tasks and multitasking.

This phone also supports 4G connectivity for blazing-fast internet download speeds, and the rear camera has also improved from the mediocre five megapixels up to eight megapixels, capturing better low-light, colour, focus and detail shots.

The software on the Moto G is standard Android 4.4.4 kitkat with very little customisation. Pure Android OS is easy to use, has no bloatware and promises immediate updates. With the next version of Android, dubbed Android L, just around the corner, the new Moto G will definitely get the update faster than most high-end phones running on customised OS.

With all these features, it's still hard to believe that Motorola is selling this phone for under US$200, considering that many phones in the same league tend to cost around US$400 and above.

The new Moto G is a phone for the rest of us; those that need a no-nonsense phone that fulfils all our basic smartphone needs and is easy to use.

A lot of folks that are looking for phones in this category, often those on a tight budget, are not big on specs. They'd care less about extreme quad-HD displays or how many cores are there in the chip.

But no one deserves a poor-quality phone, and so the new Moto G is designed to give these folks a solid phone without them having to pay a lot of money for it.

I have been highly recommending the previous Moto G to anyone, and I would definitely recommend this new version today.

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