Last known price of Motorola Moto X4 6GB RAM was Rs. 24,999. This phone is available in 32 GB, 64 GB, 64 GB storage variants.
by Asif Iqbal Shaik
Now, barely two months after launching the original phone, Motorola is back with a new Moto X4 variant, which adds an additional 2GB of RAM for a total of 6GB of memory, whereas the storage remains the same at 64GB. What's more, the new variant also ships with Android 8.0 Oreo operating system out of the box. Does the one-two punch of extra 2GB RAM and Oreo manage to deliver a knockout performance compared to the existing 3GB and 4GB variants? Let's find out in our review of the Moto X4 6GB RAM variant.
Design & Build Quality
The Moto X4 shares the same design cues of the Samsung Galaxy S7 owing to its shiny glass panels on the front and the rear, with a metal frame sandwiched between the glass panels. The smartphone is IP68 certified for dust and water resistance as well, so you don't need to worry about the rains or even accidentally dropping it in water for that matter. Moving onto the button layout, the volume and power buttons on the right-hand side of the phone offer satisfying tactile feedback. The headphone and the USB Type-C ports lie at the bottom edge, whereas the hybrid dual-SIM card slot is located at the top edge. Overall, the phone feels quite premium, despite the conspicuous lack of a bezel-less screen ' something that is in vogue these days, even in mid-range phones.
Screen & Audio
The 5.2-inch LTPS IPS LCD screen on the Moto X4 is one of the better ones in its price range. There's plenty of contrast (for an LCD panel) and viewing angles are wide. While brightness isn't too high, sunlight legibility still doesn't suffer under direct sunlight. The 1080p resolution makes everything appear extremely sharp, considering the display size. However, the colours are colder than we would've liked, and there's no way to change it. Touchscreen accuracy is also quite good, as one should expect from mid-range smartphones these days.
The earpiece on the Moto X4 also doubles up as the lone loudspeaker, which can get pretty loud, but its too tinny to be tolerated for anything but the random voice-only Facebook and Instagram clips. Don't expect to listen to music for extended periods through the loudspeaker without putting up with some ear fatigue. I presume the phone's dust and water resistance could hamper loudspeaker performance, but at the same time water resistant phones such as the iPhone X and Samsung Galaxy S8 nevertheless manage to pack in excellent loudspeakers. The phone still features a 3.5mm headphone jack, so you can listen to music through your favourite pair of earphones or headphones. The good news is that the audio quality through wired headphones is close to perfect. Then there's Bluetooth 5.0 too, but we will touch on that in detail in the performance section.
The combination of a 12MP primary and 8MP secondary sensor makes the dual-camera setup on the Moto X4 quite interesting. The 12MP camera is meant for normal snaps, whereas the 8MP ultra-wide-angle sensor can be used to tackle images from a different perspective. It's also useful when you want to cram a lot of people into a single frame. The 12MP sensor features dual-pixel phase-detection autofocus, Æ’/2.0 aperture, 1.4Âµm pixels, and 4K video recording. The 8MP secondary sensor has a fixed-focus lens, Æ’/2.2 aperture, and pixel size of 1.12Âµm. The high-resolution 16MP front-facing camera with Æ’/2.0 aperture and 1.0Âµm pixels is accompanied by an LED flash. Moreover, the selfie camera can also record 1080p videos.
Since the primary camera has dual-pixel phase-detection autofocus, similar to the cameras on the Galaxy S7, S7 edge, S8, S8+, Note 8, and HTC U11, the focussing is ultra-fast. The image quality turned out to be good during daylight conditions. There's sufficient amount of detail and colour reproduction is alright. We would've liked livelier colours, since the colours appear too muted to our liking. The dynamic range can appear limited sometimes, but HDR can be activated to remedy such cases. However, HDR snaps turn out slightly softer than non-HDR ones. Our advice would be to keep the camera in the Auto HDR mode at all times and let the camera algorithm take care of deciding when to enable HDR, which is surprisingly effective. Since there's no OIS, images clicked in low-light conditions are softer and lack detail. Noise increases dramatically too.
The ultra-wide-angle shots sadly cannot match the degree of detail exhibited by the primary sensor. Having said that, the primary camera simply can't match the interesting perspective provided by the ultra-wide-angle sensor. Like most premium dual-camera phones out there, Motorola's dual-camera setup too takes a stab at background blur, but the results are unsatisfactory in most cases as the phone can't seem to get the subject borders right. I was surprised by the quality of 4K videos recorded using the Moto X4, though. There were plenty of details and colours were vibrant. The selfies turned out to be good, too. When there isn't enough light, the front-facing LED flash can be used for better images. The 4MP resolution setting for the front-facing camera uses pixel binning to offer better images without depending on the LED flash.
An out-of-the-box Android 8.0 Oreo experience is one of the things that sets the Moto X4 6GB variant apart from the outgoing models. The interface has stock Android-like look and feel. However, the company has added a lot of customised features that make a difference in everyday tasks. Most such custom software features are thoughtfully grouped together in the Moto Actions app.
The app launcher can be set to dark or light themes. The Moto Key feature lets users save login usernames and passwords onto the phone and access them securely using the fingerprint reader. It can also be used to unlock compatible Windows-based PCs and log into websites when needed. The One-button navigation feature lets users navigate the UI using just the fingerprint reader. The on-screen navigation buttons are disabled to maximise screen real estate when this feature is activated. Here are all the ways the One-button navigation feature can be used:
The Moto Display feature can discreetly show notifications (by fading in and out) when the phone is in sleep mode. It can be used to reply to messages right from the lock screen. It can be configured to block some apps from showing notifications for privacy. The Night Display is nothing but a blue light filter and it can be adjusted as per user preference. Attentive Display keeps the screen active when the user is looking at it.
The Moto Actions feature is a combination of a bunch of gestures and motions that can make life easier. Here are all the Moto Actions available on the Moto X4:
Apart from Google Assistant, users can use various 'Show me' Moto Voice commands on the Moto X4 to swiftly perform various actions such as opening apps and displaying weather or calendar entries. It shows the required information for five seconds when a notification arrives. Users can either tap and hold to retain the information long enough to read or simply tap to fetch more details. However, this isn't very secure considering how it bypasses the lock screen and instead relies on the less secure voice recognition avenue for authentication. How is it better than simply using Google Assistant, you ask? Well, it is faster and can be used even when there's limited internet connectivity.
Moving on, other nifty features include the capability of the camera app to automatically recognise barcodes, business cards, landmarks, objects, and QR codes. Other Android 8.0 features such as app shortcuts, notification channels, and Picture in Picture mode are supported as well.
The Snapdragon 630 chipset used inside the Moto X4 6GB RAM variant is a potent SoC for mid-range phones. It has four CPU cores clocked at 2.2GHz and four CPU cores clocked at 1.8GHz. The Adreno 508 GPU offers consistent frame rates within the UI and for almost all casual games. However, if you are into graphically intensive games, expect slight stuttering here and there. The front-mounted fingerprint reader is easy to reach, fast, and reliable.
Thanks to 6GB of RAM, a lot of apps can stay in the memory. I tested this feature by opening all the apps that I use on a day-to-day basis and checked if they were running in the background by switching to the first few apps that I had opened, and sure enough these apps remained untouched by the phone's memory management algorithm. Overall, the performance is quite swift in general usage. The wireless reception, be it Wi-Fi or cellular, was stellar throughout and I didn't face any problem whatsoever.
The phone features dual-band Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 5.0 (with aptX), GPS (A-GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO), NFC, FM Radio, and USB Type-C port. Thanks to the wonders of Bluetooth 5.0, you can listen to wireless audio through four Bluetooth devices simultaneously. You can also set two Bluetooth speakers as a stereo setup. The unified remote control ensures that the volume and playback on connected Bluetooth devices is kept in sync.
Just like the Moto X4 variant sporting 4GB RAM, the 6GB model too comes with 3000mAh battery. The phone supports 15W fast charging, and the company includes a 15W rapid charger inside the box. It can be charged up to 40 percent in 30 minutes. Expect it to be fully charged in 1.5 hours. Like most modern smartphones, the battery can't be removed by the user. My usage included two email accounts synced along with five social networking apps, five IM apps, and two SIM cards.
When it comes to battery life, the Moto X4 6GB variant lasted anywhere between 20-24 hours with a screen-on time of 4-5 hours, depending on the load. I had paired the phone with the Misfit Vapor smartwatch during the review period. If you don't use any smartwatch or wearable device with it, the battery life should be slightly longer. The overall endurance is similar to what we experienced with the 4GB RAM variant, which speaks volumes about Motorola's Oreo optimisation.
The Moto X4 6GB RAM variant is a likeable phone, thanks to its premium build and looks, dust and water resistance, out-of-the-box Android 8.0 Oreo, good performance, and all-day battery life. Its dual-camera offers extremely fast focussing, an ultra-wide-angle lens, and quality 4K video capture. What's more, Motorola's custom software features improve the usability of the phone without being too intrusive.
Although the loudspeaker sounds tinny, we don't want to complain considering the X4's price point. Very few phones in its price range offer the combination of features that the Moto X4 provides. The Moto X4 6GB RAM variant delivers plenty of headroom for all your apps, along with the tightest Oreo integration we have witnessed so far. Combine that with the IP68 water resistance and you're looking at an unprecedented value proposition in this segment, with a premium design that belies its price.
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 630|
|Display||5.2 inches (13.21 cms)|
|Front Camera||Single (16 MP, f/2.0 Camera(3.1" sensor size, 1 m pixel size))|
|Rear Camera||Dual (12 MP, f/2 Camera + 8 MP, f/2.2, Wide Angle, Ultra-Wide Angle Camera(13 mm focal length, 1.12µm pixel size))|
|Launch Date||February 1, 2018|
|Dimensions||5.84 x 2.89 x 0.31 inch (148.3 x 73.4 x 7.9 mm)|
|Build||Case: Metal, Back: Metal|
|Water Resistant||Yes, Water resistant, IP68|
|Colors||Super Black, Sterling Blue|
|Chipset||Qualcomm Snapdragon 630|
|CPU||Octa core, 2.2GHz, Cortex A53|
|Operating System||Android v8.0 (Oreo)|
|Internal Memory||64 GB|
|Expandable Memory||Yes, microSD, Up to 2 TB (Hybrid Slot)|
|Size||5.2 inches (13.21 cms)|
|Display Type||IPS LCD|
|Resolution||1080 x 1920 pixels|
|Protection||Corning Gorilla Glass v3|
|TouchScreen||Yes, Capacitive, Multi-touch|
|Color Reproduction||16M Colors|
|Screen to body percentage||68.32 %|
|Pixel Density||424 pixels per inch (ppi)|
|Rear||Dual (12 MP, f/2 Camera + 8 MP, f/2.2, Wide Angle, Ultra-Wide Angle Camera(13 mm focal length, 1.12µm pixel size))|
|Sensor||CMOS image sensor|
|Flash||Rear (Dual-color LED Flash), Front (LED Flash)|
|Front||Single (16 MP, f/2.0 Camera(3.1" sensor size, 1µm pixel size))|
|Camera Features||Auto Flash, Auto Focus, Face detection, Touch to focus|
|Shooting Modes||Continuos Shooting, High Dynamic Range mode (HDR)|
|Video||Rear: 3840x2160 @ 30 fps, 1920x1080 @ 60 fps, 1280x720 @ 30 fps|
|Fast Charging||Yes, Turbo Power|
|USB OTG Support||Yes|
|Wi-Fi||Yes with a/ac/b/g/n/n 5GHz|
|SIM Configuration||Dual SIM (SIM1: Nano) (SIM2: Hybrid)|
|Network||4G: Available (supports Indian bands), 3G: Available, 2G: Available|
|Voice over LTE(VoLTE)||Yes|
|Wi-fi features||Mobile Hotspot|
|GPS||Yes with A-GPS, Glonass|
|USB||USB Type-C, Mass storage device, USB charging, USB On-The-Go|
|Fingerprint sensor||Yes, Front|
|Other Sensor||Light sensor, Proximity sensor, Accelerometer, Compass, Gyroscope|
|Audio Jack||Yes, 3.5mm|