What you need to know
- Motorola just launched its new Moto G Play (2024), which will be available to purchase soon.
- The phone has upgrades to its camera and storage, but still no 5G connectivity.
- Moto G Play (2024) will be available in January at a retail price under $150.
Motorola unveiled the latest addition to its wallet-friendly Moto G series on Tuesday.
The Moto G Play (2024) comes with some improvements and upgrades this year. Motorola stuck to its 6.5-inch 90Hz display with a rather large bezel, and on the back, the device comes in a matte finish, a sapphire blue color, and a water-repellant screen.
Instead of three cameras, Motorola only outfitted the Play with a 50MP sensor (f/1.8, 0.64μm), a significant upgrade from last year’s version, which had a 16MP rear camera. It should capture better images at a lower resolution output thanks to pixel binning, but Motorola took it a step further to include HDR and Phase Detection Autofocus to help create balanced, well-lit images.
The main rear camera is expected to have several shooting modes with 8x digital zoom, including night vision, Portrait, Live Filters, Panorama, Pro Mode (w/ Long Exposure), Dual Capture Photo, Burst Shot, and more.
The front camera also got a bit of a boost to 8MP, featuring Google Lens integration and AI-powered Active Photos that detect smiles.
For audio, the Moto G Play 2024 has Dolby Atmos stereo speakers that are said to provide a high-quality audio experience.
This year’s edition will run on Android 13, although instead of a lower-end MediaTek chip like last year’s model, Motorola opted for a Qualcomm Snapdragon chip, which should hopefully provide better performance. The phone now has up to 4GB RAM, which you can increase with an additional 2GB of virtual RAM and should help it keep up with other Android phones under $200. There’s also 64GB of expandable storage, a notch higher than last year’s 32GB.
You will find a 5,000mAh battery that the company claims will survive for 46 hours on a single charge, while its predecessor could do up to 72 hours of battery life. It’s unclear why the battery life was cut, but the two-day estimate is still pretty impressive despite the downgrade. The phone supports 15W wired charging to top up that battery, up from 10W on the previous model, although you will receive a 10W charger in the box.
Unfortunately, Motorola hasn’t yet introduced 5G connectivity to this device yet, which seems to be a significant drawback.
Android Central’s managing editor, Derrek Lee, said buying the Moto G Play (2023) wasn’t worth it since “the phone featured a sluggish MediaTek chip paired with 3GB of RAM that could barely keep up with anything.”
We’ll have to wait till we get hands-on experience to see how the 2024 version fairs, but despite the lack of 5G, everything else seems to be a moderate yet welcome upgrade.
This device will be available in the U.S. starting February 8 for $149.99 and universally unlocked at Amazon.com, Best Buy, and Motorola.com. The Moto G Play (2024) will be available through select carriers and national retailers in Canada starting January 26.