Moto G "the best cheap phone"


#1

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#2

I love my Moto G 2nd Gen (which is what they review, the 2014 edition; there’s an earlier 2013 edition also called Moto G that has the option for LTE). The only complaints I’ve had about it is actually about Android itself and app design. So many apps will only work if every bit of them, as well as the data they use, are stored on the phone’s internal memory. 8gb can be cramped if you have a couple games, audiobooks, and podcasts. I guess it’s for security reasons, not giving apps write access to the sdcard? Still annoying, and I’d think the OS could give the app write capability only to a special folder, to mitigate the security aspect.

The only other minor downside is that it can be a bit too big at times. When I’m holding it one handed and tweeting, my hand is holding it at the bottom for the keyboard, but if I need to press any buttons near the top, I have to shift my grip so my thumb can reach it. Super minor, and I wouldn’t give up the biggish screen for it.


#3

It’s a great phone, I sold an iPhone 5 and switched to a 2014 Moto G last year and couldn’t be happier. Owning the phone outright is the way to go–I went from a $90/mo bill to about $12/mo with a prepaid MVNO (like Ting, US Mobile, etc.). You can get the very latest Android 5.0 release and it’s not encumbered by terrible vendor skins or ‘enhancements’. The only thing I miss is the great camera on the iPhone, but the G camera is passable.


#4

It’d be sweet to see this type of review comparing new kit to what you can get used. Is a new Moto E a better unit than a gently used S5? Etc


#5

Yes, I think the photo shows a 1st gen Moto G, not the currently available 2nd gen. I bought mine a few months ago, and I’ve been pretty happy with it. The internal memory is a bit on the low side, so you do need to move as many apps as possible to the external card. Also the stick icons are ugly as sin, so I used Themer to reskin the whole thing to something slightly less clunky.


#6

Bought my 1st Gen Moto G 16GB 18 months ago. I can’t see any reason to replace it in the next 18 months. No 4G, but who cares? Fantastic piece of kit for £112


#7

To a degree “best cheap phone” depends on what you mean by cheap. I used to set myself a budget of £130 for phones, but now I’ve gone overboard and gone for £200. Over 2 years I spend £360 on my SIM contract, so really I think spending about half this on a phone isn’t unreasonable. At around this price I bought an Xperia Z1 compact - LTE, excellent camera, waterproof, and 3-4 days battery life on Lollipop, once I’d worked out to turn off push Exchange - which I do not need and sucked battery. Things I like are the magnetic charger plug (so the micro-usb doesn’t wear out) and the variable touchscreen sensitivity so it works fine with a glass screen protector. KK launcher and so no Sony bloat running.
I’m sure there are other similar bargains to be had among other slightly older models, but this is the one I happened to investigate. The Moto G has many good things about it, but in the end it just seems a bit too limited. It’s like one of those city cars which is very good of its kind, but at the end of the day it’s worth paying a bit extra so you can travel on the motorway without fear of death.


#8

I bought my gf a first gen moto g over a year ago for $70, and I am still astounded by what a great deal that was.

Right now it’s $40 from best buy for the prepaid verizon first gen without a contract. I don’t know that any other phone can even come close to that kind of value…


#9

How are they for taking to other countries by simply swapping out the SIM card?


#10

I went (down?) from moto G (1st gen) to moto E (2nd gen) and I’m still totally happy. (only swapped because I broke a screen)

For me, a light on the back and slightly better cameras wasn’t worth the extra price. My smart phone experience is very utilitarian: no apps, (browser is fine when I need it,) mostly random browsing, calendar, and GPS usage. (sometimes I even make or receive calls and texts) The Moto E does all that on the latest android with a nice price tag.


#11

I would not downgrade from my NOKIA 520 to anything else, Rob.


#12

Indeed! Last year I needed to replace my four year old Nokia C3 and all of my research screamed loudly at me that the Moto G was the best phone for my pricepoint (around $200 or under).

True, the camera isn’t the greatest and space is occansanly an issue but almost a year on I love this phone.


#13

I’m using a Galaxy Avant, and I think they give it short shrift. Granted, it runs KitKat instead of Lollipop, but it has more RAM and storage: 1.5 GB RAM vs. 1 GB for the Moto E, and about 12 GB of internal storage available to the user (16 GB total) an SD card slot that can take up to a 64 GB card. It looks, more or less, like the S5’s slightly smaller brother. The screen is slightly smaller and isn’t as high resolution: 4.5" 540x960 vs. the E’s 5.0" 720x1280. The camera, though, is pretty bad even compared to the E. Cheap phones get cheap cameras.

On the other hand, it has all of T-Mobile’s LTE bands, now that the latest firmware update has been pushed out. Tradeoffs, tradeoffs.


#14

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