There’s rumblings of competition in the mid-range and budget phone categories, as Motorola looks to offer several cameras and big batteries for low prices.
While the 2021 year of smartphones has started with a bit of a whimper rather than a bang, there’s still stuff coming. Slowly but surely, even as LG bows out.
Motorola appears to be the next with phones, but isn’t focusing on the high-end to start with, looking towards the mid-range and budget, because not everyone should need to spend a fortune to get something capable.
You may already know that mid-range and budget phones are improving in leaps and bounds, with much of the focus there. With that in mind, Moto’s first batch for 2021 is a replacement to a series that wasn’t released all that long ago, delivering new G-series mid-range and E-series budget phones.
We’ll go from budget to mid-range here, starting with the E-series, which sees two in Australia, the Moto E7 Power (above) and E7, with the E7 Power going for $159 and including a 5000 mAh battery and a 6.5 inch HD+ screen with a paltry 32GB storage and 2GB RAM, and really being a big phone for not much money. Don’t expect high performance with those specs, but at $159, it’s clear Moto is going for folks who don’t want a whole lot, yet still providing two cameras at the back, including a 13 megapixel main and a 2 megapixel macro.
A little bit better, the $199 Moto E7 (below) doubles the memory and storage to offer 64GB storage and 4GB RAM, keeping the screen the same, but cutting the battery back to 4000mAh. There is a better camera here, though, with that 13 megapixel camera upgrading to a 48 megapixel module alongside the 2 megapixel macro.
That’s the budget portion of Moto’s efforts in 2021, or at least the early part of the the year, it seems.
In the mid-range, Motorola is focused on the G10 and G30, replacements to the G9 series, which didn’t see release all that long ago. Gone are some of the cool features there — such as the bundled in truly wireless earphones — replaced with more focus on the phone itself, less on the extras, something Motorola Australia told us came down to price.
“We did a lot of evaluation internally, and though it is a great proposition for consumers, we wanted to hold the price point as close as we could,” said Danny Adamopolous, General Manager of Sales for the Asia-Pacific region, basically saying that they weren’t able to add that value this time, but we’d likely see it in later versions.
So the focus on the 2021 G-series is instead on what the phones can deliver that makes them about value in the mid-range, keeping the price competitive.
For starters, there’s the G10 (above), which pairs a Snapdragon 460 with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage, a 6.5 inch HD+ screen and a 5000mAh battery, making it a little like the Moto E7 Power in size, screen, and battery, but with more grunt.
The extra grunt extends to the camera and connectivity, which sees four cameras here: a 48 megapixel wide camera, an 8 megapixel ultra-wide, a 2 megapixel depth camera, and a 2 megapixel macro camera, too, all in a $249 phone, with Near-Field Communication (NFC) for Google Pay added, too, something that’s missing in the 2021 Moto E series.
Finally, there’s the Moto G30 (below), which takes much the same body, screen, and battery but upgrades the processor to a faster Snapdragon 662, the storage to 128GB, the screen to support a faster refresh rate for smoother animations (60Hz on the G10, 90Hz on the G30), and the main camera being boosted from 48 megapixels to 64 megapixels. That’ll come in the $299 Moto G30.
“This year, Motorola is more committed than ever to push industry boundaries, as demonstrated by our newest smartphones,” said Adamopolous.
“The latest iteration of our Moto E and G series embody our mission to bring exceptional value and outstanding features to Australians, offering quality camera systems, long lasting battery and stellar performance at a great value for money price.”
However keeping that value seems something the company does with the balance of parts for price. For instance, while the G-series used to sit in the middle, the G10’s use of a 4xx Snapdragon is much lower than the 6xx used in the G30, and all four phones use a lower-than-expected HD+ screen. That may come across as jargon, but it means the big screen won’t be sharp, a feature that might be important to some, though perhaps not all.
Price appears to be where Motorola’s foursome is squarely focused, keeping the cost down amidst a smaller lifecycle for phones. With the G9 only released a few months ago back in 2020, there may only be a few more months until the next G-series pops up all the same, and that may mean Motorola’s current mid-range phones may end up being a little less expensive six months from now when a new model arrives.
For now, the Moto E7, E7 Power, G10, and G30 are heading to stores across Australia.