Motorola Moto G4 Plus Review
Motorola’s latest phone offers large size and equally large value for its asking price.
In the Android smartphone world, almost everyone has a play in the premium space, even though as a nation we tend to buy only Samsung or Apple smartphones if we’re after a premium device. Motorola’s latest pitch has been to leave the premium bloodbath alone and instead focus on mid-range and value segments. That’s solidly where the Motorola Moto G4 Plus sits, with either 16GB or 32GB versions available for $399 and $449 outright.
|Motorola||Moto 4G Plus|
|Processor||Octa Core Snapdragon 617|
Upsides: Why you’d want the Motorola Moto G4 Plus
- Good performance: Mid-range phones should deliver mid-range performance, and here the Motorola Moto G4 Plus performs quite well, challenging higher priced mid-range options such as the Nexus 5X or Telstra Signature Premium at a lower price point. Here’s how it compares against a range of mid-range and budget handset options in Geekbench 3’s standard tests.
Handset Geekbench 3 Single Core (higher is better) Geekbench 3 Multi Core (higher is better) Oppo R9 867 3303 Google Nexus 5X 1188 3198 Telstra Signature Premium 745 3116 Motorola Moto G4 Plus 715 3042 Oppo R7s 696 2980 LG Stylus DAB+ 470 1418 Alcatel Go Play 453 1368 Samsung Galaxy J2 315 1044 Alcatel Pop 4 289 945
The same performance comes through in 3DMark’s Ice Storm Unlimited test, where the Moto 4G Plus acquits itself well:
Handset 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited Result Oppo R9 11053 Motorola Moto G4 Plus 9757 Telstra Signature Premium 9559 Oppo R7s 8390 LG Stylus DAB+ 4321 Alcatel Pop 4 3863 Samsung Galaxy J2 3469
- Fingerprint reader: The Moto G4 Plus’ front-mounted fingerprint reader works quickly and well, and it’s a great inclusion on a phone at this price point if you hate having to input PINs, passwords or screen patterns all the time.
- Dual SIM: The Moto G4 Plus is dual-SIM capable with two slots plus microSD expansion. Many competing dual SIM phones allow you to add two sims but no memory expansion, or are single SIM if you need microSD.
- Quick camera: The Moto G4 Plus’ camera confirms what we’ve thought about mid-range cameras for some time now. They’re getting very good, which poses a challenge for the higher priced premium smartphones. The G4 Plus has fast focus and a simple launching mechanism that involves a double flick of the wrist that never failed us during testing. You’re not likely to get truly exceptional shots with the G4 Plus, but it shoots above its price weighting for what it is.
- Great battery life: The Motorola Moto G4 Plus’ battery life is very good when you consider that it has to power a large screen for what is a mid-range phone. Using Geekbench’s battery test with screen dimming enabled, the Motorola Moto G4 Plus beat out a host of mid-range and budget contenders, bested only by a phone with a much smaller display.
Handset Geekbench 3 Battery Test Duration Geekbench 3 Battery Score Samsung Galaxy J2 10:05:20 2689 Motorola Moto 4G Plus 9:44:10 3977 Alcatel Pop 4 9:20:30 2490 LG Stylus DAB+ 8:11:40 3278 Alcatel Go Play 7:21:10 2941 Google Nexus 5X 7:14:20 4062 Oppo R7s 7:00:00 2800 Oppo R9 6:41:50 4018 Telstra Signature Premium 5:48:50 3260 Alcatel OneTouch Idol 3 5:42:00 2276 Huawei P8 Lite 4:39:40 2768
Downsides: Why you might not want the Motorola Moto G4 Plus
- Very plain design: The Motorola Moto G4 Plus isn’t the worst looking phone we’ve seen. Indeed, the most striking thing we can say about it is that it’s really rather plain; a slab of black glass and plastic with protruding camera bump on the back and ridged fingerprint sensor on the front. You won’t wow anyone with the Moto G4 Plus’ style, but you’re not likely to offend them either.
- Fingerprint reader isn’t the home button: The Moto G4 Plus uses an onscreen home button, but the fingerprint reader is right below it. On almost every other fingerprint-enabled phone, the reader in this position doubles as the home button, because that’s where your fingers tend to automatically go. On many occasions, we’d hit the fingerprint reader when we wanted the home screen because of this particular design quirk.
- Big and slippy: Larger phones are harder to hold in your hand purely due to their size. The Moto G4 Plus has a somewhat slippery back and curved sides, which accentuates this. As such, if you were keen, we’d advise you to buy a case, because accidental drops feel more likely than not.
- Sealed battery: You can remove the rear cover of the Moto G4 Plus; this is how you access the SIM card and microSD card slots. What you can't do is swap the battery out, however, because it's sealed into the phone body.
Who is it best suited for? What are my other options?
The Motorola Moto G4 Plus competes in the mid-range space where a lot of outright purchase buyers are flocking. It competes really well, and is recommended if you want a larger handset, because to date we’ve seen little that matches up to it in specifications and outright performance at this particular price point.
You do have a lot of other choices if, for example, the Moto G4 Plus’ rather plain style doesn’t appeal. Consider Telstra’s Signature Premium phone if you’re happy on Telstra’s network, or Oppo’s R7s perhaps. If you want a large phone in the mid-range space, you could also consider LG’s Stylus DAB+ phone.
Where can I get it?
Motorola sells the Moto G4 Plus through its Australian web store for $399 (16GB) or $449 (32GB), as well as through Harvey Norman, The Good Guys and Officeworks.