Mo­torola takes on big guns with dual cam­era and shat­ter-proof screen mod­els

Irish Independent - Business Week - - BUSINESSWEEK -

MO­TOROLA is mak­ing a fresh as­sault on the smart­phone mar­ket with a new Moto X4 model and the “shat­ter proof ” Moto Z2 Force.

The Moto X4 is the first midrange phone on the Ir­ish mar­ket to have a dual- cam­era sys­tem, now used by f lag­ship smart­phones such as Ap­ple’s iPhone 7 Plus and Sam­sung’s Note 8.

The 5.2-inch de­vice sports a 12 megapixel (f2) tele­photo lens be­side an 8-megapixel (f2.2) wide-an­gle lens on the rear of the phone. It re­serves the best res­o­lu­tion for the front­fac­ing 16-megapixel (f2) selfie cam­era.

That selfie- cam also has a new fea­ture that Mo­torola is call­ing a panorama selfie mode. It adds in lots of back­ground de­tail to your selfie in a sim­i­lar vein to a reg­u­lar panorama mode shot on most rear-fac­ing phone cam­eras. Mo­torola has also added ‘se­lec­tive blur’ to im­i­tate depth of field.

On the soft­ware side, the X4 has “land­mark recog­ni­tion” and “ob­ject recog­ni­tion”. Both fea­tures pur­port to recog­nise known land­marks or ob­jects, re­port­ing what they are back to the user.

The phone is also wa­ter re­sis­tant to an IP68 stan­dard and has a 1080p screen.

Bat­tery life is rea­son­ably good, with a 3,000mAh bat­tery un­der the hood. There’s a Snap­dragon 630 pro­ces­sor and 4GB of Ram pow­er­ing the de­vice.

Ama­zon’s Alexa is in­te­grated into the phone, al­though Alexa isn’t fully sup­ported in the Ir­ish mar­ket.

The X4 will cost €399 for a 32GB ver­sion and €439 for a 64GB ver­sion.

Mo­torola has also made a splash about its Moto Z2 Force, which it pre­vi­ously f lagged in the US. The high- end model has a screen that is “guar­an­teed” not to shat­ter or crack, no mat­ter how high the fall.

The Z2 Force has dual 12-megapixel cam­eras and all of the soft­ware fea­tures avail­able on the cheaper X4. It also has a very high-res­o­lu­tion 1440p quad-HD screen and a beefy 6GB of Ram backed up by the most pow­er­ful Snap­dragon (835) pro­ces­sor made by Qual­comm.

The Z2 Force is also one of the Mo­torola hand­sets that is com­pat­i­ble with the com­pany’s new ‘mods’. Th­ese, es­sen­tially, are dif­fer­ent rear cases that come with var­i­ous fea­tures and func­tion­al­ity.

An ex­am­ple of a mod al­ready in ex­is­tence is a ‘ tur­bopower charger’ that adds an ex­tra day’s bat­tery life to the phone. It’s a slim bat­tery-boost pack that also acts as a cover. An­other op­tion is a lightly chunky JBL speaker mod­i­fied to fit the back for the de­vice. The sound out of this is quite de­cent – eas­ily good enough to act an on-thego speaker at a desk or in a car.

Th­ese mod­ded cov­ers sim­ply snap on and off, us­ing built-in mag­nets. While the JBL speaker might be a lit­tle bulky to keep on the back of a phone that lives in your pocket, the tur­bopower cas­ing is not.

New mods an­nounced by Mo­torola in­clude a 360 cam­era and a gam­ing mod, which adds con­sole-like gam­ing but­ton con­trols on each side of the phone.

All of this pre­mium stuff makes the Z2 Force a pricey propo­si­tion, with Mo­torola tag­ging the Z2 Force at a lofty €799.

Both de­vices will be avail­able in late Septem­ber.

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