GFXBench T-Rex

Tech Advisor - - Re­view -

be­ing flat, some­thing we’ve not seen on any other phones re­cently.

Hard­ware

The Mo­tion is on the large side, mea­sur­ing 155.7x75.4x8.1mm with pro­nounced bezels. The 5.5in screen is just about man­age­able one handed, but it’s by no means a small de­vice. Luck­ily you can swipe down on the fin­ger­print sen­sor to pull down the no­ti­fi­ca­tion shade, but it’s not as in­tu­itive as with a rear-mounted fin­ger­print sen­sor.

The sen­sor it­self re­calls the Galaxy S6 and S7 in that it is a phys­i­cal but­ton rather than this year’s trend for static sen­sors. It’s not the fastest un­lock mech­a­nism on the mar­ket, but a sim­ple plac­ing of your thumb or fin­ger on the sen­sor wakes the phone promptly.

In my ini­tial use of the phone it has coped pretty well with all tasks con­sid­er­ing the mid-range Snap­dragon 625 pro­ces­sor found in the KeyOne and the Moto G5 Plus. 4GB RAM cer­tainly helps that, while it has 32GB of ex­pand­able stor­age up to 256GB for all your lo­cal me­dia.

Dis­play

The dis­play is a 1920x1080p IPS LCD with 401ppi, and looks vi­brant enough, but isn’t the bright­est panel out there. View­ing an­gles are de­cent but it does strug­gle a bit in bright sun­light.

Touch re­spon­sive­ness is de­cent, and the panel feels more rugged com­pared to the some­times flimsy-feel­ing KeyOne. The Mo­tion has slight light bleed on the top and bot­tom of the screen

that’s par­tic­u­larly vis­i­ble when it’s white, but that is com­mon­place on de­vices of this price.

You’re tap­ping di­rectly onto glass that is nan­odi­a­mond coated, a world first ac­cord­ing to Black­Berry Mo­bile. It’s there­fore not the in­dus­try-favourite Go­rilla Glass and con­sid­er­ing the prom­ise we ac­tu­ally picked up a small scratch on the first day of use.

It feels nicer to use glass though than some­thing like the plas­tic coated Shat­terShield on the Moto Z2 Force, but Black­Berry is say­ing the Mo­tion’s screen is an­ti­s­cratch rather than scratch proof, so it just about gets away with it.

Cam­eras

The cam­era is a 12Mp sen­sor with f/2.0 aper­ture and a dual LED flash. It’s also great to see 4K video record­ing at 30fps on a phone that costs un­der £400.

Re­sults are pre­dictably mixed, with bright sun­light be­ing the op­ti­mum shoot­ing con­di­tion (im­age 1). You need a steady hand too, as it’s easy to get blurry shots without re­al­is­ing un­til you view them en­larged. We also viewed some im­ages on a mon­i­tor to find they were bet­ter than the Mo­tion’s dis­play sug­gested.

So, we can’t rec­om­mend the Mo­tion’s cam­era for more than the odd point-and-shoot sit­u­a­tion, though it’s per­fectly ad­e­quate for so­cial me­dia pur­poses.

Bat­tery life

One of the head­line specs here is the phone’s 4,000mAh bat­tery, and it de­liv­ers on the prom­ise of two

days bat­tery life. Charg­ing hap­pens over USB-C and Quick Charge 3, though you have to un­lock the phone and se­lect boost mode when you plug in or it won’t charge as fast.

The Mo­tion breezes past three hours screen on time with at least 60 per­cent bat­tery left, and with medium to heavy use us­ing the phone as my main de­vice, We com­fort­ably got two full work­ing days from the Mo­tion, and only reached for the charger around mid­day on the third day. And if you’re won­der­ing, yes this is in­sane.

Of all the phones we’ve tested re­cently, only the Len­ovo P2 can match the Mo­tion for this kind of bat­tery stamina. It is no co­in­ci­dence that these phones share the same Snap­dragon 625 pro­ces­sor, but the P2 one­ups with its 5,100mAh bat­tery. The P2 is half the price, but a pain to get hold of in the UK, so the Mo­tion is a fine al­ter­na­tive.

Black­Berry Mo­bile re­lent­lessly po­si­tions its hand­sets in the busi­ness mar­ket as pro­duc­tiv­ity tools, and the bat­tery life is a key part of this. But if you are an avid phone user who needs four hours of screen on time out of a sin­gle charge for video and mu­sic then the Mo­tion is a phone to con­sider, but the mid-range pro­ces­sor means high level gam­ing isn’t pos­si­ble.

Per­for­mance

Oddly, the Mo­tion re­fused to run our nor­mal Geek­bench 4 bench­mark tests (same as the KeyOne) so we ran An­tutu and GFXBench tests to com­pare the Mo­tion’s pure pro­cess­ing speeds to sim­i­lar de­vices.

The phone is also IP67 dust and wa­ter re­sis­tant, the first ever Black­Berry to be so. This means it’ll

han­dle a down­pour or an ac­ci­den­tal sub­mer­sion with no is­sues. It’s another at­trac­tive ben­e­fit to pick­ing the Mo­tion over the KeyOne along­side the price and the in­crease in bat­tery life.

The Mo­tion did hic­cup a few times when we flipped be­tween apps, down­loaded them, or gen­eral tried to mul­ti­task like we might on a high-end de­vice. This is to be ex­pected, but as the Mo­tion is £399, it’s creep­ing to­wards that arena. The Moto G5 Plus per­forms very sim­i­larly as the bench­marks show, and costs just £199.99. At first glance, it looks like Black­Berry is charg­ing £100 ex­tra for the phys­i­cal key­board of the KeyOne, mean­ing un­less you’re ab­so­lutely set on that slice of typ­ing nos­tal­gia, the new Mo­tion will save you money and not com­pro­mise on any other specs.

Con­nec­tiv­ity and ex­tras

Call qual­ity is good, with a speaker that gets more than loud enough, and we used Blue­tooth head­phones and a Sam­sung Gear Fit2 Pro with no trou­ble over Blue­tooth 4.2. An­droid Pay (and other func­tions) are a go with NFC, too. Also wel­come are the in­cluded head­phones. They are above-av­er­age, in-ear buds in a slick black, but like the fin­ger­print sen­sor have un­sub­tle BB brand­ing.

Soft­ware

The Black­Berry Mo­tion ships with An­droid 7.1.2, and Black­Berry Mo­bile has con­firmed it will re­ceive Oreo ‘in the new year’ which is in­cred­i­bly open-ended, but good to hear. As with its pre­vi­ous An­droid de­vices, Black­Berry’s skin over Google’s stock UI is util­i­tar­ian un­like the play­ful ver­sions found on OnePlus and even Sam­sung de­vices, but you may well pre­fer this.

We en­joyed the wid­get fea­tures where you swipe up on an app to quick-view your wid­get of choice right on

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