Motorola Moto E 2015 review
Moto E (GEN 2) A new generation to do more
My Motorola Moto E 2015 review uncovers Generation 2 of Motorola’s budget smartphone which now features the all new Android Lollipop OS.
The new Moto E keeps its compact stylings by housing a 4.5” IPS display with a resolution of 540 x 960 pixels. IPS technology ensures the screen can be viewed at wide angles and the anti-smudge coating works well in conjunction with this to offer a bright and vivid visual experience.
The 2015 version of the Moto E is also a tough little fellow with Corning Gorilla Glass protecting the screen and a water resistant coating which effectively makes this phone splashproof.
The design is dominated by the screen on the front whilst on the back the most distinguishing features are the centrally placed Motorola logo and camera lens. In fact the back looks extremely modern and sleek with a curvature that extends from the corners at 5.2mm to the centre at 12.3mm. Supplied in either black or white the Moto E can be jazzed up a little with coloured Motorola Bands and Motorola Grip Shells, sold separately.
The black or white Moto E 2015 weighs in at 145 grams which isn’t too heavy at all. The build includes a quad-core 1.2GHz processor with 1GB RAM and the 8GB internal memory can be expanded upon with a 32GB MicroSD card.
Phone Set Up
I have never had so much to talk about on the set up of a budget smartphone but the Moto E is however sporting the new Android Lollipop operating system!
Previous smartphone users can get setup straight away by using the Tap & Go instant setup feature. Your old phone must be NFC enabled and a gentle tapping of the two devices together is all that is needed to automatically transfer your old data and apps obtained from Google Play.
If you are new to Android then you may want to visit Google Play to download your favourite apps or explore further for new content via Play Music, Play Newsstand and Play Books. All owners will probably be introduced to Google Lollipop for the first time here and the interface is extremely pleasant to use with the new circular icons with 3D effects created through lighting and shadows.
The set up continues with the option to create multiple user accounts so that guests can use your smartphone without access to your personal or private information or files. Android Smart Lock is also worth taking a look at as life is made much easy with the auto-unlock feature that runs when paired with trusted devices such as a wearable or your car.
The final set up feature to familiarise yourself with is Priority Mode. Priority Mode only lets certain people or certain info get through and extending upon this you can set up Priority Notifications for downtime such as through the night when you are asleep.
The Moto E (GEN 2) benefits from the many improvements offered by Android Lollipop and these include new easy on/off toggles for Wi-Fi, GPS and Bluetooth. 4G internet connectivity is a welcome addition and offers almost instant page loads for those who live or work within 4G coverage areas across the UK.
Google’s voice activated digital assistant takes a lot of the work out of a variety of functions such as getting quick answers, getting directions or sending a text and this can now be activated even when the screen is off. Operation is further enhanced with the ability to respond to notifications from the lock screen.
USB Audio support is the final new trick offered on the Moto E 2015 and this allows for the connection of USB speakers, microphones, amplifiers and mixers.
Camera & Video
The 5MP camera main camera is certainly not going to disappoint any budget phone buyers and there is a decent set of options that enhance the photographic prowess. The camera can be quickly activated by twisting your wrist so you are now less likely to miss a special moment and a second twist can be used to switch to the selfie camera.
Taking a photo can be instigated by tapping anywhere on the screen and far away items can be brought into focus using the 4x digital zoom. The remaining camera features include Burst Mode, Auto HDR and Panorama and these can be selected from a rotating wheel that appears in the viewfinder.
The Moto E can record video at 720p but it is impossible to get past the rather low quality VGA secondary camera intended for taking a selfie or making a video call. We should remember however that this is a budget phone so this is the cost for saving a pretty penny or two.
The 2,390mAh battery puts us back onto a more positive footing and this truly does offer a full days use under mixed usage scenarios. The handy battery saver feature helps to extend play and Android Lollipop once again enhances the experience by showing an estimation of much longer the battery will last as well as how long it will to take to recharge once connected to a mains charger.
Motorola Moto E 2015 verdict: The Moto E (GEN 2) gives fantastic value for money with some of the best deals that you will find throughout 2015. There are very few negative points so I give this a thumbs up for thrifty consumers.
Written by: Michael Brown