Phones Reviews Smartphones

Motorola Moto G Play (2021) Review


The Moto G Play is the least expensive of four phones that Motorola recently introduced. The Moto G Play’s spec list makes the price reasonable: a 6.5-inch 720p LCD with a standard refresh rate, a Snapdragon 460 processor with 3GB of RAM, and a generous 5,000mAh battery.

Moto G Play Design

= Image Source: PCMag

The Moto G Play looks fantastic but it doesn’t have the sleek backs and hole-punch displays of its more pricey siblings. It measures 6.6 by 3.0 by 0.4 inches (HWD) and weighs 7.2 ounces, and the weight is well distributed and comfortable to hold.

There is a 6.5-inch LCD alongside a teardrop notch for the camera at the front, while the display resolution is at 1,600 by 720 pixels, for a density of 269ppi. The display is bright and clear and superb for video streaming. Although, with close examination, the images and text look soft. This isn’t a big deal, but if you prefer reading long articles or e-books on your phone, it’s better to look for a sharper display. 

You’ll discover a slightly textured panel with a matte powder coat finish at the rear of the phone. It feels warm and lovely, but it’s a fingerprint magnet. It has a square camera module at the top center, with the iconic Motorola fingerprint sensor below it. 

Image Source: Android Authority

There is a headphone jack on top of the phone, while there is a USB-C charging port and a speaker below the phone. You have the volume rocker and a textured power button on the right side, while the left side houses the SIM/microSD slot. Fortunately, the controls are responsive, easily located, identify and click.

The durability is quite good considering the price. The plastic back and frame can endure drops without excess damages. Motorola doesn’t state the glass used for the display, but it looks firm and managed minor dings. It was placed inside the backpack with some sharp or pointed objects for some days during the phone test, and it was unscratched. It doesn’t have an IP rating, but it’s water-resistant and should have the ability to resist rain or sweat without any problem.  

Moto G Play Performance 

Image Source: PCMag

Moto G Play is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 460 chipset, with 3GB of RAM. It has 32GB of storage onboard, with only 14.5GB available out of the box on the unlocked model. But if you get the AT&T model, you may find it less since it adds more than two dozen preloaded apps. Fortunately, a microSD slot allows you to add any size of storage you want. 

Well, this cheap phone doesn’t have the similar lightning-fast performance of other expensive siblings, but the Snapdragon 460 SoC is speedy. The G Play is an eight-core CPU, with four Cortex A-73 performance cores and four Cortex A-53 efficiency cores, and it has a similar Adreno 610 GPU that is used on the more increased Snapdragon 665 processor. 

There’s a slight delay when opening apps or swiping between screens, but it’s not more than what you can bear. If all you want to do with your phone is to scroll through social media, stream video content, and check emails, the G Play performance will be suitable.

As regards the gaming performance, it’s hit or miss. The phone was tested with some hours of gameplay on PUBG Mobile or Alto’s Odyssey. The loading times of both games were a bit slow, but there weren’t any unforeseen or sudden shutdowns. If you’re keen smartphone gamers, you will want to get higher-end hardware.

Image Source: PCMag

Concerning the Geekbench, a standard that quantifies raw computing power, the Moto G Play earned a total of 255 single-car and 1,269 multi-course. Due to comparison, the cheaper Moto scored 228 single-core and 791 multi-core scores.

Motorola stated that its 5,000mAh battery provides about three days of power between charges, and we’re bent on believing them. With regular daily use during the test, we could use it for exactly three days before charging it. 

Moto G Play Camera 

Image Source: Mobygeek

The G Play possesses a 13-megapixel as the rear camera (with a 2-megapixel depth sensor) and also a 5-megapixel for the front/selfie camera. But the absence of an ultrawide is a disappointment considering that it’s not difficult to get a phone that provides one at this price.

The G Play has two major shooting modes in the native camera app which are the photo and video. It has a portrait mode and few other additional ones, but night mode is absent.

In the outdoors, under good lighting, the 13-megapixel camera is good. The entire exposures are balanced, and the camera doesn’t do excess HDR-ing, which is good, but you don’t have to take a closer to notice details. Things don’t go well in less good light, and the G Play isn’t up to low-light photography. The selfie camera also has intense over-smoothing at its default “Face Beauty Auto” setting, but you can turn this off.

Moto G Play Battery Life

Moto G Play’s battery life is impressive. During the battery test, I was at the point of breaking ten hours of screen-on time over three days before the battery went flat. And that was undoubtedly due to the power-sipping nature of the Snapdragon 460, the 720p screen, and the massive 5,000mAh battery powering the phone — and it’s incredible. This battery life will last more than long enough for anyone.

Moto G Play Specs

Image Source: Android Authority
ChipsetQualcomm Snapdragon 460
Storage 32GB (microSD expandable)
Display6.5″ notched IPS TFT (1600×720)
Battery5,000mAh (10W USB Type-C charging)
Rear Camera13MP primary (f/2), 2MP depth/portrait
Front Camera5MP (f/2.2)
ConnectivityLTE (no 5G), Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac (2.4 & 5GHz), Bluetooth 5.0
Headphone JackYes
BiometricsRear capacitive fingerprint sensor
Misc“Water repellent design,” nano SIM
ColoursMisty Blue, Flash Gray
Dimensions166.59 x 75.99 x 9.36mm, 204g
SoftwareAndroid 10


Suppose your interaction with your smartphone is less complicated than people who spend hours glaring at the tiny glowing screen in their hands, moving between social media apps, and stressing the phone cameras to their limits. In that case, the Moto G Play is perfect for you. It’s available for purchase at $160.

Related posts