Gadget review: Moto X Gen 2

  • Nishant Nayyar, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Oct 05, 2014 13:10 IST

Motorola’s Moto X 1st Gen was touted to be their knight in shining armour. Trying to stir the Android contenders with top-notch specs and affordable price point it didn’t make the competition look pale, but definitely marked the arrival of Motorola.

However, a year later, they didn’t have to look at what competitors were doing; they just had to upgrade their own product. And they’ve done it pretty good this time.


This is where you’ll fall in love with the Moto X. A first glance and it’ll captivate you with its sheer beauty. It would be appropriate to point out here that the people at Motorola have spent plentiful man-hours in bringing about the exterior of this phone.

Wrapped in a metal bezel, this iteration of Moto X has taken a big leap forward in defining the aesthetics of a phone. It is, unquestionably, a lot better than what was offered on the table last year. Despite sporting a striking 5.2 inch AMOLED screen, the phone has to be the most comfortable one to fit in the hands, especially because of the varying thickness. Yes, the Motorola native design still boasts of the curvaceous back - an intentional feat that provides a better grip on this 5.2incher phone. Back panels have been given a special importance – you can choose between a bamboo-patterned wooden or a black leather-pattern panel.

We got the wooden panel, and though we were a bit vary to use it, the phone gelled with us really well. We’d like to point out that a black leather panel, for obvious reasons, would look appealing to the eye, but it would also scream of those scratches and scruffs. A standard go-to RAM of 2GB does the work - at par with others. Camera has been upgraded from the 10MP that was seen last year to the 13MP strong one seen in this year’s model. Major overhaul on the SoC (System on Chip) from 1.7Ghz dual core to 2.5 Ghz Quad core makes this phone a multi-tasking powerhouse.


Running on Android 4.4, the overall performance has been quite overwhelming. A whole day’s heavy usage shall drain the battery out, which stands at par with most other smartphones out there. Arrays of new native features have been added to round off a completely new experience. With several IR sensors on the screen, which are very quick to notice any movement near the screen, one can check the last three notifications. This particular feat is useful for and a breakthrough from that screen lock/unlock monotony.

Also read: Motorola unveils new Moto G and X, smartwatch with Flipkart

A new voice assistant has been infused in the OS that does need to be woken up by the traditional ‘Ok Moto/Ok Google Now’ voice commands – your own custom phrase can do the trick. For obvious reasons we retorted to use ‘Hello Moto’ and it worked just about fine. Another worthwhile addition is the Moto Communicate, which pairs up with your computing device – allowing you to receive and respond through these devices. As expected, the setup was tedious, but once we’re through the setup we really loved the utility. It does however act as a major drain on the battery. Moto Assist can be tuned as per your requirements and thereafter it works as a personal assistant, and does a pretty flawless job on it.


The gradual bump from the 10MP to the 13MP got us much intrigued about the camera of this phone. A dual LED ring flash surrounds the camera that functions to provide a balanced flash exposure to the subject. Coupled with a 4k recording and 1080 slow motion just added to the excitement. Sadly, it under delivers here. The pictures, leave aside in the low-lights, are grainy even at decent exposures. Ring flash seizes to be another gimmick, though the colour corrections in the post flash images stand to be good.

Besides this the app strangely lacks any filters/ enhancers. 4k video is good but still a feature that most users will find redundant, as it eats a lot of storage memory. The front snapper is a basic 2MP that fairs decent to make those Skype calls. Oh, and did we forget to tell you that when you take the phone out of your pocket you can shake it to launch the camera fast – a decent timesaving trick for the Instagrammers.


An enchanting 401 PPI (pixels per inches) density leaves you in total awe with the screen of this phone from the moment it boots up. Gorilla Glass 3 is rounded off at the edges where it meets the chassis of the phone, leaving a smooth, unaltered touchscreen experience. Wide-viewing angles can push the limits, whether indoors or outdoors. Speaker has been placed in the front and is pretty loud and clear.

Battery and Cellular Reception

A mere upgrade from 2200 mAh that was seen in the last Moto X, to this year’s 2300 mAh is a tad bit unimpressive. The metal bezel nestles the antenna well in its form, and without doubt Moto team has done a good job here. There hasn’t been any lag in the call reception, inside or outdoors.


Moto X is definitely the saving grace for the Moto stable. It does pack in some great gesture controlled features, and its voice command agility can even put the iPhone 6 to shame. Where it disappoints, is in its lackluster camera performance. By saying this, we’re not concluding that it is a totally worthless camera – its just about average. With a choice of leather and wood panel, the phone can seemingly find a lot of consumers.

We are nearing the launch of OnePlus One in India, and the next Nexus shall be out in a couple of weeks as well. Both these phones can cause a big dent in the demand for Moto X.

Price: 33,999 (16GB) available on Flipkart

Motorola Moto X (Gen 2)

SoC 2.5 GHz Quad Core Snapdragon 801

RAM/Memory 2GB, 16/32GB

Display 5.2" 1080p Super AMOLED

Network 2G / 3G / 4G LTE (Qualcomm MDM9x25 IP block UE Category 4 LTE)

Dimensions 140.8 x 72.4 x 3.8-9.9 mm, 144 grams

Camera 13MP Rear Facing, 1/3.06" CMOS size (Sony IMX135), 2.1MP FFC

Battery 2300 mAh, 3.8V, 8.74 Whr

OS Android 4.4.4

Connectivity 802.11a/b/g/n/ac + BT 4.1, USB2.0, GPS/GNSS, MHL, DLNA, NFC

SIM Size NanoSIM

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