Moto G5: Good performance and camera

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The smaller version of the G5 Plus adds to the available budget options

Lenovo-owned Motorola’s fifth generation iterations of the G series — the G5 and the G5 plus — were released in India in March and April, this year. The bigger of the two, the G5 Plus, was launched earlier and this seemed a good move, given how the market acclimatised to the phone, and then, the cheaper version was brought in — offering users similar features for a cheaper price.

There’s not a lot that tells the two phones apart. Even their packaging is more or less the same, and after unboxing, it felt like holding a stouter, slightly shorter version of the G5 Plus. The G5 is thicker than the Plus, and there’s no doubt that the bigger sibling is the sleeker of the two. The G5 gets a five-inch screen, as opposed to the G5 Plus’ 5.2 inches, and a removable 2,800mAh battery, instead of the fixed 3,000mAh battery on the Plus. These are some major differences, apart from the rear camera, which the G5 gets 13MP of, as opposed to the G5 Plus’ 12MP shooter.

The back panel of the G5 looks and feels plasticky and is nowhere near as smooth as the shiny G5 Plus. However, the camera lens on the G5 doesn’t protrude like it does on its larger sibling and I found this an advantage. The rest of the looks are more or less the same, with the front of the G5 housing the fingerprint sensor on the bottom and the ‘Moto’ logo on top. The slight extra thickness is a nice touch, given how almost all phones are so slim; gripping them snugly becomes a far cry.

The full HD display, sporting a 1080x1920p resolution, is sharp and lucid, making watching videos and viewing pictures a pleasant experience. Although I’d recommend choosing a wallpaper with bright colours to enhance your screen experience.

With 3GB of RAM and a 1.4GHz octa-core processor, the G5 didn’t give me any performance issues, save for a few niggles such as heating up quickly when shooting videos or during continuous gaming. It also heats up quite quickly when charging. The loudspeaker is good as long as you’re in quiet surroundings, but don’t expect much outdoors or in crowds, even the small ones. It comes with Android Nougat out of the box and like other Motorola offerings, the almost-stock Android experience is great to use.

Motorola phones have made themselves known for good camera quality in the budget segment and the G5 doesn’t disappoint, with the 13MP rear shooter giving me good clicks during the day. Focus is quite fast and the shutter is snappy, making it a good prospect for clicking moving objects. Low light photography is also acceptable and you can use the professional mode to tweak exposure, white balance, ISO, etc. The front 5MP camera does good with selfies, which it is mostly intended for.

The battery is a tad disappointing. It didn’t last the full day, with pretty much regular use of apps and a few calls and some basic gaming like Subway Surfer. But there is a fast charger in the box and it does its job well.

Motorola keeps the competition in the crowded budget segment alive with the G5, but if you can shell out a little extra cash, go for the G5 Plus.

Price: ₹11,999

Pros: Looks and grip, good camera, stock Android experience

Cons: Underwhelming battery, heats up

Published on June 07, 2017

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