Motorola has launched the Moto E in India at a stunning price of INR 6,999 (~ $129) and looking at the specifications it is worth its price. It is exclusively available through Flipkart, it’s unfortunate that Motorola has chosen to stick with online sales in India. The Moto E unlocked (global GSM) version also available on Amazon at a price of $129. Motorola Moto E comes with 4.3-inch qHD display with resolution of 960 x 540 pixels and it is powered by 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 dual core processor with 1GB RAM. There is also 4GB of internal storage which can be expanded to 32GB via memory card. On the imaging front it has 5MP fixed focus camera without flash. There is no front-facing camera on the phone. It runs on Android 4.4.2 Kitkat and promise future updates too. In this post we’re sharing detailed review of Motorola Moto E with respect to design, build, display, performance, gaming, camera and battery. Although in earlier post we shared the First Impressions and Image gallery of the Motorola Moto E. Read on for complete Moto E review:
Design and Build
At a first look, the Motorola Moto E looks like a smaller version of Motorola Moto G and you will see noticeable differences once you start using it. Although the Motorola Moto E follow the same design pattern of Motorola Moto G, Motorola Moto X and on the curved back there is Motorola Logo. The Motorola Moto E feels extremely sturdy and runner-clad offers nice grip. This gives the phone a premium look. It’s a thick phone and on the front – the top has a chrome band above the screen, presumably for the speaker. It also has one under the screen that is mouthpiece.
The screen on Motorola Moto E is protected by tough glass – Corning Gorilla Glass 3, one of the toughest and best panels for smartphones. Also, you get a splash-resistant coating around the phone. Though it is not slim and light, the compact size, curved back cover with matte finish and rounded edges makes Motorola Moto E a pretty good smartphone when compared with others. The Motorola Moto E measures 12.3mm and weighs 142 grams and the bundle includes a headset, charge and some reading material. There’s no USB data cable as it does not support OTG.
The right edge of the Motorola Moto E has volume rocker and power button and there is nothing on the left edge.
The ambient light, proximity sensors and a hidden status/charging indicator LED are located above the screen. A front-facing mono speaker is masked by a metallic strip below the screen. The Motorola Moto E uses on-screen buttons for navigation.
At the bottom, there is a microUSB slot and at the top 3.5mm audio jack.
The back is curved, rubber-coated and because of the compact form-factor, the Motorola Moto E is very good for single-handed usage. You can swap out the back panel on your smartphone for other colours and frankly speaking it’s a pain to remove the cover. After removing the back cover you’ll find the two SIM slot & microSD card slot.
The Motorola Moto E features 4.3-inch screen with a resolution of 540 x 960 pixels. Although it is not as sharp as 720p or 1080p but of you stare it from close, the text and images on Motorola Moto E screen look clear enough. The 4.3-inch has on-screen virtual buttons and because of this some part of the small screen is sacrificed. To prevent Motorola Moto E from scratches, it is protected by Gorilla Glass 3 and has decent viewing angles.
The Motorola Moto E runs on Android 4.4.2 KitKat, the latest version of Google Android without any major changes. Motorola has promised that, it will get the future updates whenever next version of Android is released. Looks like Motorola hasn’t touched the software as it has similar features like clean home screen, a lock screen with camera shortcut, a whole collection of Google apps, Google Now and on-screen navigation buttons which hide when you play games & watch videos.
Apart from this, Motorola has also thrown new features of their own like Motorola Migrate which lets user to easily transfer their current phone’s data (contact, messages, etc.) to the new phone. There’s also Moto Assist app that lets users to determine which ringing mode the phone should be in at certain times. For example, it syncs with your calendar to check for meeting and enters the meeting mode at the appropriate time. The app offers two presets – meeting and sleep, but there are better apps on the Google Play Store for that. There is an Alert app, which can alert your contacts in case of emergency.
The Motorola Moto E comes with 5MP rear-camera with fixed focus and there is no front-facing camera, which means you can’t take selfies unless you are standing in front of a mirror. The rear-facing camera on Motorola Moto E lacks in flash as well as auto-focus and the shots taken are really bad. Above all the photos captured in broad daylight have lot of noise and low-light performance is a whole lot worse.
There is an HDR mode and a panorama mode. One good thing about Motorola Moto E camera is that, it allows you to change the exposure by selecting the area in a scene that you are trying to capture. This helps in low light scenes. Taking macro shots are not possible.
The camera can shoot videos at 480p. The video quality is also not great.
Overall, the less I talk about the Motorola Moto E camera, the better it is and it is the only let down in this smartphone.
The Motorola Moto E has only 4GB in-built memory and of which only 2.21GB is available to the user to install apps or anything else. The memory on Motorola Moto E can be expanded further to 32GB via microSD card but this extra space cannot be used to install apps. The limited memory is the biggest issue with the Motorola Moto E and that’s what it stops it from being used for many games and apps.
The Motorola Moto E has in-built storage of 4GB and out of which 2.21GB is available for user. According to Motorola, it is expandable up to 32GB but it also supports 64GB memory SDXC memory card too. Once you insert memory card, the phone prompts you if you wish to move all the videos and photos over the SD card. In addition to this, you can manually move installed apps over as well.
For audio, you get the same enhancements that you seen in Motorola Moto G and Motoroala Moto X. The loudspeaker is loud for a mono speaker & offers pretty good clarity too.
The Motorola Moto E does not support Full HD video recording but 1080p MP4 files can be easily played on it.
Motorola Moto E is a decent performer and I played casual games like Angry Birds Go, Temple Run with ease but when I played a demading game, Asphalt 8 at high graphics setting, there was some occasional lag.
The Motorola Moto E has usual connectivity options like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, USB 2.0, GSP and GLONASS. It is a quad-band GSM and 3G handset. The Motorola Moto E doesn’t support USB OTG, it means you cannot plug-in in a pen drive to transfer files on the move. In addition to this, it does not support Miracast, which lets you mirror your phones content onto a compatible TV.
The Motorola Moto E packs 1980mAh non-removable battery and it will give you almost a full day backup on normal usage. Normal usage includes regular phone calls, playing games, listening music, surfing web over Wi-Fi. After playing video for 11 hours and browsed on Wi-Fi for 7 hours it works pretty well. The standby time is pretty amazing as well since the battery barely drops even after hours of inactivity.
Motorola Moto E powered by 1.2GHz dual-core processor which is paired with 1GB RAM and has 4GB in-built memory (only 2.2GB memory is accessible to user) which can be expanded up to 32GB via microSD card. Motorola Moto E runs on Android 4.4.2 KitKat and it is a good performer. It is extremely responsive with most regular tasks like email, browsing, calls, messaging, instant messages, social networks, photos, videos, gaming, office work all are handled smoothly. During browsing I found the pinch-to-zoom gesture on a webpage and while switching between apps I didn’t notice any significant lag. Played Dead Trigger 2 and neglecting few lags, it works fine.
The default video app that comes with Motorola Moto E doesn’t play 1080p videos although it can play 720p videos. The Motorola Moto E has mono speakers under the screen and the sound quality is average, but is loud enough to fill a small room with sound. Sound quality during music playback though headphones (not the one which comes with device) and calls is satisfactory. The bundled earphones are uncomfortable to use and sound bad.
Motorola Moto E supports two SIM cards and there are dedicated options for managing the SIM cards. When it is used with 3G connection & Wi-Fi, I found the connection speed to be satisfactory.
The Motorola Moto E packs 1,980mAh battery and lasts for only 6 hours on heavy usage. I’m slight disappointed with the battery life but at such a price, you can’t expect more. When used with 3G connection, the battery lasts for 15 hours.
Overall, it is a capable budget Android smartphone and will stand out against its competitors.
The Motorola Moto E is the best smartphone you can purchase in the sub-7000 range and just after the launch it’s a mega hit just like Motorola Moto G. I’m excited to see how the competition will respond now as the bar has been raised by Motorola Moto G. It is specifically designed for beginners or the users moving from feature phones to smartphones or want to introduce someone to the world of Android and it does its job brilliantly.
At such a price, it’s a great phone to buy for its build, display, Android KitKat 4.4.2 and you don’t feel short-changed when it comes to the features and good performance. The Motorola Moto E is good enough for an average user who just needs calling, texting, WhatsApp, browsing, email, some games, photos and light work. The Motorola Moto E has raised the bar of entry-level smartphone and I can easily recommend this phone, if you want a smartphone on a super-tight budget.
The Motorola Moto E has bad camera (5MP camera with fixed focus), limited internal storage for installing apps. If you know how to root Android device, then you can install apps on the external microSD card.
The only other smatphone that comes close is the Nokia Lumia 520/Lumia 525 which runs on Windows Phone 8 and will get the Windows Phone 8.1 update in sometime.