Moto X: the “mid range phone” for the high tech savvy
And that by all means isn’t my consensus right off the bat. I love the Moto X . Its perfect contour shape. Its weight. Its 4.7 inch 316ppi screen. I love this phone. I am sick, however of people calling it a mid range phone. x8 architecture is nothing to shake a fist at. It works. Motorola knows it. I know it. You will know it if you decide to go this phone’s route. And hopefully after my review of it. To which I present. My Moto X review.
A little background. Many of you know me as a HUGE tech enthusiast over the last 8 years. Many devices have come and gone and some have left me still itching for the greatest. The HTC One was pretty much it for me as far as physical specs and hardware goes. But after gifting it to my girlfriend I was inside of my trusty LG Optimus G and HTC EVO LTE for a few months now and after going through just about every rom on the forums. I decided it was time for AOSP love. Enter the Moto X.
I was very patient waiting for this device. I let the reviews flow over me like an river of calm. I saw so many videos my head spun. I played with it in stores many times to my hearts content. I pretty much did everything except play with Moto maker (which at the time of purchase was still exclusive to AT&T users only)
After finally deciding this was the “perfect” size for me. I bit the bullet. After a small exchange of emails it was ordered. When it arrived I was out of town and didn’t get my hands on it just shy of a week after delivery (Thank you Donald for being there for the delivery)
Upon opening it the beautiful design and size drew me in. I settled on all black. (yes settled. I wanted a wood back to be honest on first view from tech sites)
It powered up with just enough juice to get the activation, Google sign in, and camera update MR downloaded and installed. I plugged it in and started on my regular customizing. One word: FAST. Just pure and unadulterated speed. X8 is real.
The battery also charged up really fast. I could get used to all this speed. I noticed you cannot change the battery icon to % without root so i immediately installed Circle Battery Indicator to make sure I always knew how much juice I always had. Note: I still haven’t used the built in battery saver.
In the past setting up a phone is a disaster but apps were a breeze with backup and restore. After cleaning, disabling apps, downloading widgets, and getting all apps all arranged in folders it was time to set up email and social networks. Another breeze. Outlook and YMail all got set up with the stock email client with no issues, whatsoever. Seesmic Pro handles FB and Twitter feeds. Haxsync handles my FB contact and caller ID integration. This device was really hitting all the marks,
So here I am 8 days later and I still in love. I had to wipe the phone after playing around with too many 4.4 apks last week and while i was a little disappointed I didn’t have my ultrabook with me to do a local back up before wipe I didn’t exactly have a million pictures but I had 2 local albums I stored. GONE but NBD
A WIPE IS A WIPE. This is nothing to play around with. BACKUP BACKUP AND BACKUP again. Dropbox, Sugarsync, Sync, and many more can assist with huge backups.
What do I love most?
Google’s Touchless controls. I love it. I use it all the time to set reminders and alarms. I also find myself using Google Now more than ever before. This is one of the best AOSP experiences and I cannot wait for the official update announced by Motorola to 4.4 Kit Kat.
Also an honorable mention goes to the rear speaker quality which is surprisingly loud and
50GB of Google Drive for 2 years was awesome too BTW.
The 10mp is no slouch. I absolutely the “twist to activate” feature on this phone and almost prefer to the 4.2.2 lockscreen camera quick launcher. HDR works. Flash not so much. Multi shot to AUTO AWESOME works. Flash not so much. As you can tell I hate using flash on photos bc OEMs STILL haven’t figured it out and I don’t really care if they ever do. It’s a phone first, camera second. But yes, it takes great pictures for all your photo social networks needs. Instagram videos works really well too. A sentence I haven’t said since the HTC ONE review days. Love the Google+ photos additions as well as the Motorola Camera App updates. Thank you for finally listening to users, Motorola.
Voice Quality on calls work good not great. Some calls came in a little choppy some dropped all together which is very odd on Sprint, indeed. Battery life is absolutely phenomenal and I hardly ever worry about a dead phone. Even with radios on. No lie. WiFi, GPS, Sync, all day. Brightness varies where I am but like I stated I hardly worry about a charge.
Music sounds really well over AUX and headphones and Kingston MobileLite Wireless. I tested the device using my Sony MDR 7506s and JLABS’s J4, respectively. I switched the EQ to LIVE STAGE and found all my music
sounds much better with amazing clarity and body.
I re-installed Google KEEP and quickly realized how much of a EVERNOTE addict I was. I give everything a fair shake and the Google Now integration works really well within the Google Experience across many apps.
YouTube and many other video apps work really well over WifI and 4G LTE but don’t even think about streaming anything over a few seconds on 3G. It chokes. Just being honest, here.
Local movies look really well on the 720p display and the device feels so great in hand, jean pocket, and cupholder. When you are talking on it you often forget you have it in hand.
The MOTO Assist features blow away anything I have ever installed before that provided a real “hands free” experience inside of a car.
While I did “test” the 4.4 KitKat apps for a day before wiping I really can’t stress how 4.4 KitKat will make this thing look, feel, and just plain fly.
Motorola Connect is AWESOME SAUCE! Take note, OEMs, this extension needs to happen on every Android device ASAP. I absolutely love it and it’s just a joy to use while I write this.
For everything I love there’s contrast…
What do I hate?
Sprint’s 3G on this device. Don’t even think you are going to use this device over 3G to full potential. Play Music, Google Now, even Maps stopped working while on 3G. Handover from LTE works fine but I needed to be in 4G LTE almost every time I wanted to use my phone 100%. It’s quite embarrassing to ask for WiFi passwords when you want to give a demo when STUCK in 3G and that’s what it is. STUCK.
Motorola could have also made Windy Day UNINSTALLABLE. For real. I like what you are doing but I don’t want this app taking up my GBs on my phone.
Should you buy this phone?
The price keeps dropping and Moto Maker is shaping up to be released on all carriers soon enough. So yes. you should if you are sick of giant phones that are too unwieldy, cumbersome, and just hefty beyond your comfort zone. Just be ready for a pure AOSP feel with a new set of thrills and no frills.