Motorola Refreshes the Moto G Family for 2021


The Moto G has long been a go-to for those who want a solid phone for $300 or less, and now, Motorola is giving its Moto G lineup another refresh — and expansion, in a way. The new 2021 models of the Moto G Play, Moto G Power, and Moto G Stylus have been announced for CES 2021, along with a revamped version of the Motorola One, called the Motorola One 5G Ace.

None of the new phones are radically different from their predecessors, but they didn’t really need to be. They add a few new features, camera improvements, and in the case of the Motorola One 5G Ace, a much lower price tag.

All four of the devices, unfortunately, will support “at least one OS update� and two years of security updates. Considering that they all ship with Android 10, this essentially means that you only get an update to the already-released Android 11, unless Motorola decides down the like it wants to offer more. That’s a major bummer.

All four of these new devices will be available starting on January 14, with pre-orders opening on January 8.

Motorola One 5G Ace

You might assume that the Motorola One 5G Ace is just a slightly refreshed version of the One 5G, but while it’s similar in some respects, there’s one major difference: The price tag. Last year’s One 5G came at $550, frankly too much for what it offered, while the new One 5G Ace starts at a much lower $400.

The specs on the phone are a little worse though. The One 5G Ace has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 750G processor, coupled with either 4GB or 6GB of RAM and either 64GB or 128GB of storage, though there is a MicroSD card slot to expand upon that storage. Powering it all is a 5,000mAh battery. And, of course, it has 5G.

There’s a 6.7-inch Full HD display and 16-megapixel front-facing camera on the front, and on the back, there’s a quad-lens camera system with one 48MP main sensor (though an effective output of 12-megapixels given the quad-pixel tech), an 8MP ultrawide camera, and a 2MP macro camera. It’s a little frustrating that the macro lens is here instead of a telephoto lens, but it seems to be the go-to choice for inexpensive phones.

The One 5G Ace is, unfortunately, the only device among the four new ones to support NFC — which means that you still won’t be able to use Google Pay on any Moto G device.

The Motorola One 5G Ace will be available starting on January 14 for $400.

Moto G Play

There are a total of three new Moto G phones, starting with the cheapest, the Moto G Play, which comes in at $170.

On the front, the phone has a 6.5-inch display with a 720p resolution, and a small teardrop notch for the front-facing camera. On the back, there’s a dual-sensor camera in a square camera bump in the center of the phone, alongside a fingerprint sensor right underneath it. Under the hood, there’s a Qualcomm Snapdragon 460 processor coupled with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, which is expandable through the MicroSD card slot.

Powering the Moto G Play is a 5,000mAh battery, which Motorola says should last up to two days of use. The camera, as mentioned, is a dual-sensor camera with one 13-megapixel main sensor and one 2MP depth sensor for portrait mode and other camera effects.

Moto G Power

The Moto G Power is perhaps the most compelling of the Moto G lineup. The device offers the same square camera bump on the back, but the fingerprint sensor has been moved from the back of the device to the power button on the right-hand side. On the front, there’s a 6.6-inch display with a 720p resolution and a hole-punch cutout for the front-facing camera.

The Moto G Power has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 662 processor, along with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage in the Best Buy-exclusive model, or 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage in other versions. The battery capacity sits in at an ample 5,000mAh — and if the prior model is any indication, the battery life should be excellent.

On the back of the phone, there’s a triple camera system, which is made up of one 48-megapixel main sensor, a 2MP macro sensor, and a 2MP depth sensor.

The Moto G Power will be available at $200 for the 32GB model, or $250 for the 64GB model. Seriously impressive.

Moto G Stylus

Last but not least is the Moto G Stylus, which, as the name suggests, comes with a stylus built into it. You might expect the phone to be pretty much the same as the Moto G Power aside from that, but it actually offers different specs, an extra rear camera, and a slightly different design too.

For example, the quad-sensor camera on the back can be found on the top left of the back of the phone, instead of in the center. There is a fingerprint sensor, also built into the power button. On the front of the device, there’s a 6.8-inch display with a 1080p resolution. And as you can see, it’s incredibly tall.

The Moto G Stylus comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 678 processor, along with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, all powered by a 4,000mAh battery, which Motorola says should still last up to two days of use. That extra storage is a big bonus, but the loss of battery in order to get a stylus isn’t likely a trade-off most value-focused buyers will make.

The camera on the Moto G Stylus is a quad-sensor camera, with a 48-megapixel main camera, an 8MP ultrawide camera, a 2MP macro camera, and a 2MP depth sensor.

Despite the upgrades and stylus addition, the Moto G Stylus will be available for just $300.

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