Midrange with pre­mium po­ten­tial

Moto M

HWM (Malaysia) - - UNLOCKED - by Ian Chee

To­day’s midrange smart­phones have in­her­ited the pre­mium looks of the high-end mod­els for quite a while, and it’s not all that dif­fi­cult to find one that’s clad in metal, and with fea­tures like fin­ger­print sen­sors. One such phone is the Moto M, which has a pretty apt name.

They say don’t judge a book by its cover, and the say­ing ap­plies to phones as well. The Moto M’s ex­te­rior would have you be­lieve that it costs twice its ac­tual price, but it’s where it is in the mar­ket not be­cause of its looks, but its in­nards. Housed in­side the ex­quis­ite metal body is a Me­di­aTek He­lio P15, a 2.2GHz octa-core SoC that’s sup­ported by 4GB of RAM and a 3,050mAh bat­tery. To­gether, they all work to power a 5.5-inch Full HD dis­play, a 16MP main shooter, an 8MP sec­ondary cam­era, as well as a fin­ger­print sen­sor.

The rear cam­era and fin­ger­print sen­sor rep­re­sent a sort of po­lar­ity on the back of the phone, as while the fin­ger­print sen­sor dips into the phone, the rear cam­era bulges out. This sort of de­sign meant that you’ll have to be care­ful where you set it down, but for­tu­nately, Len­ovo pro­vides a pro­tec­tive case that evens out the cam­era bump when it’s slipped onto the Moto M.

One trait of the Moto brand, de­spite go­ing through mul­ti­ple own­ers and names, is the near-stock An­droid OS that its phones come with. The same ap­plies to the Moto M. A caveat here is that the Moto M doesn’t get the lat­est An­droid 7.0 Nougat up­date, but with Marsh­mal­low al­ready so in­tu­itive to use, it’s just a mi­nor gripe of ours.

One ob­vi­ous thing that isn’t vanilla An­droid is the Dolby At­mos equal­izer for im­mer­sive au­dio and cus­tomiza­tion. If you’re on head­phones, it works very nicely, but the built-in speak­ers may not live up to your ex­pec­ta­tions on the vol­ume depart­ment.

Per­for­mance is pretty much stan­dard what you’d ex­pect from a He­lio P15, which is ba­si­cally the P10 clocked up. And with that, come scores like 463 on Sling Shot Ex­treme, 10,721 on Ice Storm Un­lim­ited, 3,553 on Work 2.0, 54,518 on AnTuTu, 4,513 on Quad­rant and 40.5 fps on Epic Ci­tadel. The sur­pris­ing and un­for­tu­nate re­sult we had was bat­tery life, rated only at six hours and 43 min­utes us­ing Work 2.0’s bat­tery life test.

The Moto M is the midrange phone that’s nice to look at and gets the job done.

The cam­era bump is pre­car­i­ously prone to dam­age, but for­tu­nately Len­ovo pro­vides a pro­tec­tive case for free.

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