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Lenovo Moto G4 Real Life Usage Review

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Lenovo recently launched the 4th generation of its G-series smartphones, Moto G4 in India. It’s quite similar to it’s sibling Moto G4 Plus, which was launched before the G4. Both the phones boast of quite similar specifications.

This phone is aimed at budget-conscious emerging markets, and big screens, big batteries, and big megapixel counts. Moto G-series devices has been always a good choice for the people who want stock Android experience and periodic updates with a budget price tag. Sadly this time around, Motorola has skipped some of the good features like waterproofing, and stereo speaker feature and this phone is just splash proof. It comes in White and Black color options. Moto G4 is priced at INR 12,499 and is available exclusively on Amazon India.

Moto G4 Specifications

Key Specs Lenovo Moto G4
Display 5.5 inches IPS LCD display
Screen Resolution Full HD (1080 x 1920)
Operating System Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow
Processor Quad-core 1.5 GHz Cortex-A53 &
Quad-core 1.2 GHz Cortex-A53
Chipset Qualcomm Snapdragon 617
GPU Adreno 405
Memory 2 GB RAM
Inbuilt Storage 16 GB
Storage Upgrade Yes, up to 256 GB via microSD card
Primary Camera 13 MP with dual-LED flash
Video recording 1080p@30fps
Secondary Camera 5 MP
Battery 3000 mAh
Fingerprint Sensor No
NFC No
4G ready Yes, on one SIM
SIM card type Dual SIM
Waterproof No
Weight 155 g
Dimensions 153 x 76.6 x 9.8 mm
Price Rs. 12,499

Moto G4 Coverage

http://gadgetstouse.com/unboxing/moto-g4-unboxing-quick-review/48144

http://gadgetstouse.com/comparison/how-is-moto-g4-vs-g4-plus/48173

Moto G4 Fast Review, Reasons To Buy [Video]

What are Usage Reviews, Tests and Opinions?

This review is based on our quick tests and usage done with the phone, we try to push the device to its limits and find out the results which will matter if you plan to buy this phone. We hope this review helps you to get your queries answered about the device.

Performance

This phone comes with a 64-bit Snapdragon 617 octa-core chipset with 4 cores clocked at 1.5 GHz and other 4 cores clocked at 1.2 GHz Cortex-A53 CPU. This phone comes with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal memory. The memory is further expandable up to 256GB via dedicated micro-SD card slot. Since it runs on stock Android with very minimal customization, it runs pretty fluid and handles any task with ease. Even the multitasking was quite decent.

App Launch Speed

The app launch speed on the Moto G4 is quite fast. The apps took almost negligible time to start. Even the apps in memory opened pretty quick

Multitasking and RAM Management

Multitasking is quite good in this phone. The stock android enhances the performance when it comes to multitasking and RAM management. Even with a lot of apps running in the background, switching between apps wasn’t a problem. There was occasional reloading of few apps with the heavy apps running in the background. We didn’t face any lag or stutter while switching between casual apps.

Scrolling Speed

For testing the scrolling speed, I loaded the GadgetsToUse homepage on the smartphone and scrolled top to bottom and back on the phone. The web page rendering speed was great and the page managed to scroll easily without any problems.

Heating

When it comes to heating, this device is no exception. It did get heated but nothing was major. The temperature remains quite normal while day to day usage but it gets bit heated when we play some graphics intensive games. The maximum that I could get the device to heat up was around 42 degrees while playing Asphalt 8.

Benchmark Scores

Moto G4 benchmark

Benchmark App Benchmark Scores
AnTuTu (64-bit) 45334
Quadrant Standard 26663
Nenamark 2 59.3 fps
Geekbench3 Single-Core- 713
Multi-Core- 2991

Camera

Moto G4 (4)

The Moto G4 is equipped with a lower resolution, 13 MP Primary camera unlike the 16 MP Camera in the Moto G4 Plus. The Primary Camera comes with Color balancing dual LED flash, ƒ/2.0 aperture, Quick Capture, 4X digital zoom etc. It supports 1080p HD video @ 30fps and features various modes like Professional Mode, Burst mode, Auto HDR and Panorama among others. The pictures came out to be pretty decent with natural colors, great detailing and great saturation.  I have already covered the camera aspect of the Moto G4 in a separate dedicated camera review, where you can find this information in details.

Camera UI

Well, the camera app is a custom app, but it brings a few extra features on top of the usual Google Camera. The app has got very neat and clean with straight-forward design. It offers a minimalistic user interface. It has a shutter button in the center, a quick camera toggle on the left and a video recording button on the right. At the top, you will find the HDR control, flash control and timer. It has also got the options like panorama, slow motion, professional mode etc.

Moto G4 Software

Day Light Photo Quality

G4 Cam HDR


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Low Light Photo Quality

G4 Cam (4)

Selfie Photo Quality

G4 cam sample (9)

Moto G4 Camera Samples

Video Quality

When recording videos with the primary or the secondary camera on the device, the videos came out to be great. The audio in the videos was also good, with good active noise cancellation when there was noise coming from the surroundings. We’ve already included a sample from the front camera and the rear camera of the device in our dedicated camera review.

Battery Performance

Battery performance from the Moto G4 is about average. The G4 packs a 3000mAh cell that keeps the 1080p 5.5-inch screen powered the entire day. I regularly got through to the end of the day without having to put the Moto G4 on charge, with 10-20% of juice remaining. You will easily get around an average of 4 hours of screen-on-time with moderate usage. I Played Modern Combat 5 for 30 minutes and noticed a battery drop of 13% when the Wi-Fi and cellular data was off.

Charging Time

The charging on this device is carried out with a micro-USB port unlike USB Type-C port that we  see on most of the devices these days. Motorola has also taken steps to improve things on the battery front by including fast-charging technology for the first time but the compatible charger isn’t included in the box. It takes around 1 hour and 30 minutes to get charged from 0% to 100% with the turbo charger. Without the turbo charger that is provided, it would take little bit of more time.

Screen on Time

The screen on time for the device would range from anywhere between 3 hours and 40 minutes to 4 hours and 15 minutes, depending upon the usage. If I would do gaming for longer period of time, I would get around 3 hours and 40 minutes, but with moderate usage, I would get around 4 hours and 15 minutes with mostly on Wi-Fi.

Looks and Design

Moto G4

A lot of handsets flaunt metal body these days but Motorola decided to stick to plastic. The phone features an all plastic build, and a brilliant 5.5-inch display on the front. Even though its totally a plastic, it doesn’t feels cheap. It actually feels good in hand and the plastic used here is of good quality. The phone feels solid and comfortable in hand. It’s back is textured which adds an extra grip while holding the device. Back cover is removable but battery is still non-removable. The phone does looks and feels good, but still the use of metals here would have been appreciated.

Moto G4 Photo Gallery

Quality of Material

Unlike most of the phones, this phone has got a total plastic build. Even though it’s made out of the plastic, it feels solid and good in hand. It has also got a good grip and removable back cover. This is also one of the lightest 5.5-inch phone available in the market. Its Dimensions are 153 x 76.6 x 9.8 mm and it weighs just 155 grams.

Ergonomics

This phone is sleeker than its predecessor at 9.8mm rather than the G3’s 11.6mm. The edges of the phone are rounded off, allowing it to sit comfortably in the hand and offering plenty of grip. It is also quite light weighing at just 155 grams which makes it one of the lightest 5.5-inch phone.

Coming to the one-handed usage of the device, I’d say it’s easy to handle the device with one hand if you are comfortable using any other 5.5-inch device. I have big hands, and thus, I can’t really say if it’s a one-handed device or not, but for me, it is definitely a one-handed device.

Display Clarity, Colors and Viewing Angles

The Moto G4 has a big 5.5 inch IPS LCD Display with a Full-HD resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels. The display comes with a pixel density of 401 ppi and color depth of 16M colors. The Display comes with Corning Gorilla Glass 3 Protection. Color reproduction and viewing angles were really very good with accurate color balance. I could see the phone at extreme angles without any problem at all and overall we loved the display.

Outdoor Visibility (Full Brightness)

When putting the phone on full brightness and seeing it under direct sunlight, the display was visible.  Sunlight legibility was good overall and we didn’t face any issue while viewing it under direct sunlight.

User Interface

Motorola is one of the very few Android phone manufacturers that isn’t pushing its own software on top of the Google look, and that’s something a lot of Android fans like and appreciate. The software is some of the purest Android this side of the Nexus line and with remarkably little bloatware. It has got a stock Android with very minimal customization. All the standard Android apps are here, and it means you’re not doubling up on things like media players and email apps like Sony phones did.

The UI is quite basic and stock with Google Now Launcher and the Google Now features. The app switcher is the usual 3D rolodex with a searchbar on top and the app drawer is vertical scroll-able. Even the icons looks quite stock apart from the few ones. People who love stock UI will definitely going to love it else you can always go for the third party launchers like Nova.  It is running on Android Marshmallow (6.0) and will also going to get the next update as well.

Sound Quality

Sadly, Motorola has dropped the stereo speaker setup and has got only single speaker which is positioned on the front. The perk of having a front firing speaker is that you don’t cover them up while holding the phone in landscape mode unlike most of the phones. The sound is loud enough and clarity of the Moto G4 audio is also impressive, considering it’s a budget device. While not the loudest, the G4 offers a strong and clean sound for listening to music.

Call Quality

While testing the call quality on the Moto G4, I used a Vodafone SIM card with it in New Delhi, where we don’t have 4G yet, and thus the phone was on 3G. When on a call, I could hear the other person without any problems, and even the other person could hear me without any issues. I would be on calls for around 2 hours a day, and even then, during such long calls, I wouldn’t notice any problems with the call quality. The call quality is top notch, no doubt there.

Gaming Performance

We know that the G4 comes with the same hardware found in the G4 Plus and we also know it is quite capable. I played Modern Combat 5 on this smartphone and the game play was very smooth and did not show any lag in the beginning of the game. As the game proceeded, I noticed that the game was turning out to be a little slow in graphic intense areas but closing all the background apps fixed this problem at once. Overall I had a good experience while playing games and it rendered the graphics pretty well.

Game Lag & Heating

We didn’t face any lag or stutter while doing multitasking. Though the games did lag a bit while playing graphics intensive games with few apps running in background but that was just minor. We played many heavy games and all ran fine without any lag. Asphalt 8 ran pretty fluid at high setting and  it also rendered all the graphics pretty well. We noticed max of 42-degree celsius while playing Asphalt 8 but it’s just normal with most of the phones.

Verdict

It packs a good hardware with a Snapdragon 617 processor, a average camera with the 13-megapixel and the 5-megapixel shooters and a gorgeous 5.5-inch Full-HD display.The stock Android, and light weight built is something we don’t see in every device. Overall this device impressed us ignoring few minor areas. Also, considering the price at which the phone is offered, I’d say that this is a great device to go with. Though the devices like Redmi Note 3 and LeEco Le 2 gives it a tough competition.


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