- No LTE support
- Low storage capacity
- No front facing camera
- “Terrible” rear facing camera
The Moto E is the latest entry-level device from Motorola. While it’s 4.3-inch display, dual-core 1.2-GHz processor and 1GB of RAM are far from top-of-the-line, Motorola’s aggressively cheap pricing could change what an entry-level smartphone is capable of. But does the phone live up to it’s claims? Let’s find out!
One of the most commonly mentioned aspects in reviews of the Motorola Moto E is the build quality. The device shares a similar design and materials to the more expensive G and X devices. Engadget states, “The E is awfully nice to hold, even when compared to premium gadgets like HTC's One M8.” Gorilla glass and a water-resistant case provide added durability while the curved, matte finish plastic provide a comfortable secure grip. A removable back provides access to the SIM slot and a microSD slot. Jerry Hildebrand of Android Central says, “It fits well in your hand, feels solid, and while not made of any fancy materials like wood or aluminum, it's very well built.”
The display receives just as much praise. While it is limited to just 540-by-960 resolution, reviews note that it is plenty crisp and bright for regular use. Android Central says, “A budget screen is part of the budget price, but Motorola did fairly well picking out a bright and clear one.” A few reviews did note that the IPS panel did have mild distortion at extreme angles, otherwise, reviews were generally positive.
While it won’t play the latest games or crush any benchmarks, performance was reviewed quite positive for a budget phone as well. Vlad Savov of The Verge states, “This is far and away the fastest and best user experience you can get in a sub-$150 phone.” Android Central notes, “The software experience is where the Moto E shines, the whole thing feels very fine-tuned to the hardware.” Overall, apps appear to run well, multi-tasking is fluid and the phone responds well. A few reviews noted that image-heavy websites and HD video could cause slight lag on the device but nothing that made the device freeze or rendered it unusable.
There are, however, a couple of potential issues with the device. The biggest is a lack of storage space. All reviews noted that after everything is installed on the device that a scant 2GB remains for regular use. If you plan to download anything, take pictures or play games, Engadget says, “Picking up a microSD card is damn near a necessity.”
The camera is also a weak point in many reviews. Lack of a front facing camera makes video chat and other features impossible. The 5MP rear-facing camera receives lackluster reviews. SlashGear states, “Images lack detail, struggle in low-light conditions, and the fixed-focus means close-ups are pretty much impossible.” The Verge goes as far as to call the camera “terrible.” Combine this with potential storage issues and the device could pose problems if you’re looking to take photos and video with your phone.
Overall, the device appears to be a clear winner in the entry-level category. TechRadar gives the device rave reviews, stating, “at that price I'd argue that there's nothing else out there as good as the Moto E.” The Verge believes this could change the entry-level market of Android devices, saying “Motorola has set a new standard with the Moto E. A handset that’s affordable to many and good enough for most.” Whether you are looking for an affordable device, want a cheap phone for the kids or picking up a backup for your daily use phone, the Moto E seems to offer outstanding value.