Review: The Motorola Moto X4 achieves high marks for a midpriced phone


Doubling up for image quality

By Paisal Chuenprasaeng
The Nation

With a sturdy build and good cameras, the Motorola Moto X4 achieves high marks for a midpriced phone

A new Android smartphone developed by Motorola Mobility, a division of Lenovo, the Moto X4 has a long going it, not least the smarter and good quality camera. It looks sleek too, coming in a choice of Sterling Blue and Super Black. I tested the Super Black and loved the look of its curved corners and back cover. The back has the lenses of the two cameras sticking out a little, rather like the lens barrel of a compact camera.

Moto X4

Moto X4 is tough too with an anodised aluminium frame and Corning Gorilla Glass panes protecting front and back with. Moreover, the smartphone is water resistant, conforming to IP68 rating. This allows you to run or cycle in the rain without worrying.

Although Moto X4 is not powered by the flagship Qualcomm processor, performance is still fast. It is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 2.2 GHz octacore processor and it has 4 gigabytes of working memory or RAM and 64 GB of internal storage that is expandable with a microSD card by up to 2 terabytes.

With this octacore processor and a lot of memory, the Moto X4 gives you all the performance you need to watch videos and play games free from annoying stutters. It runs on pure Android 7.1.1 operating system without third-party user interface on top of it that may slow it down.
The Moto X4 comes with 5.2inch Full HD 1080p IPS display with pixel depth of 424 ppi. This resolution makes the display good for watching HD clips and for viewing high-resolution photos.

Moto X4

During the test, apps and video clips ran smoothly and its touch screen and menus were responsive. Moreover, the Moto X4 can play High-Resolution Audio files of FLAC 24bit/192kHz format smoothly. I tried this feature with Sony MDR1ABT Hi-Res Audio headphones and was impressed by the sound quality.

The music was clear with sharp instrument details and powerful bass. The Moto X4 also has fast Internet connection. I tested it on TrueMove H LTE network and found that apps downloaded fast and my snapshots were backed up to my Google Photos cloud storage in no time. As usual, I used Ookla Speedtest app to measure the connection speed and the phone did well here too, achieving a download speed of 75.20 Mbps and an upload speed of 26.13 Mbps.

Moto X4

The Moto X4’s cameras are outstanding and comes with some smart features. Among them is the new Landmark Detection, which lets the camera serve as your eye to the world – just point the lens at an object of interest and it will automatically ask if you want to learn more about what you’re seeing.

When you use this feature for the first time, you need to install the upgrade software first. The camera is also capable of scanning a business card and quickly adding the info to your contacts. And if you’re looking to spice up your selfies, try out the Face Filters feature, which lets you add a layer of animations to your photos or videos.

Again, you’ll need to download and install the Face Filters from the Play Store first but once you have them, you can have fun choosing the stickers to superimpose on your face or a friend’s face when you take selfies. They include an astronaut mask, bunny face, a unicorn horn with a rainbow background, black eyeglasses and a flower crown.

Moto X4

Another fun function of the main camera is the Spot colour feature. This feature lets you pick a colour on the viewfinder by touch it and the camera will disregard other colours in the scene, resulting in a partially monochrome shot with the selected colour highlighted.

The dualcamera system makes the quality of Moto X4’s camera outstanding and makes it fun to use. The rear camera has two lens and two image sensors.

The 12 MP camera uses Dual Autofocus Pixel technology while the 8 MP camera has a 120-degree wide-angle field of view, making it ideal for taking group photos from a short distance. The wide-angle toggle button on the viewfinder allows you to switch quickly between the two.

The 12MP camera uses Dual Autofocus Pixel for speed and delivers good quality pictures thanks to the image sensor’s 1.4 microns pixel size. During the test, I found that the 12 MP camera captured photos in crisp results with bright colours in most environment.

The dual camera system allows the main camera to shoot first and select focus later and allows you to shoot with a blurred background to make your subjects stand out like shots captured with a DSLR. This is possible thanks to the Depth enabled shooting mode and its slide bar that you adjust for the level of background blurring required.

Photos taken in this mode, can be edited with Depth Editor for selecting focus and even black and white for certain parts of the photo. The main camera also has a professional mode that lets you adjust the values of white balance, shutter speed, exposure compensation, and ISO sensitivity.

You can also adjust the focus manually in the professional mode. For selfie shots, the Moto X4 comes with 16 MP wide-angle front-facing camera. And the front camera comes with adaptive low light 4MP mode that harnesses 2 micron pixels and lets in 300 per cent more light than a standard 16 MP camera.

The Moto X4 comes with a fingerprint reader embedded in its Home button that allows you to quickly unlock and lock the display. Moto X4 has a good battery life with 3,00m aHh capacity lasting me a full day during the test. The Turbo-Power charger is useful too, giving six hours of power in just a 15-minute charge.

Moto X4 has a suggested retail price of Bt14,990. TrueMove H users can buy it for Bt9,990 when they subscribe to 4G+ Fun Unlimited 599 package with 12-month contract and pay the Bt2,000 package fee in advance. TrueMove H prepaid users can use 4G Internet speed with full speed for unlimited data for 12 months.

Moto X4 Key Specs:

– Networks: 2G: GSM: EDGE, 3G: UMTS/HSPA+, 4G: LTE Cat 11

– OS: Android 7.1.1

– Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 2.2 GHz octcore CPU

– Memory: 4GB

– Storage: 64 GB, upgradable with microSD by up to 2TB

– Display: 5.2-inch, Full HD, 1080p, 424 ppi, LTPS IPS, Corning Gorilla Glass

– Rear cameras: 12MP Dual Autofocus Pixel Sensor (f/2.0, 1.4 micron), 8MP wide-angle 120-degree (f2.2, 1.12 micron)

– Front camera: 16MP (f2.0, 1 micro in normal mode, 2 micron in adaptive lowlight 4MP mode)

– Video capture: 2160P (30fps), 1080P (60fps), 720P (30fps), 480P (30fps)

– SIN: Dual nano SIM

– Durability: IP68 water resistant, Corning Gorilla Glass

– Wireless connectivity: Bluetooth 4.2, WiFi 802.11ac, GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, NFC

– Ports: USBC, 3.5mm headphone jack

– Battery: 3,000 mAb with Turbo  charging mode

– Dimensions: 148.35×73.4×7.99 (HxWxD) mm (D: 9.45mm at cmaera bump)

– Weight: 163g


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