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Moto X Style
A day after OnePlus launched its Flagship Killer, the OnePlus 2, the company suddenly has stern competition from Motorola after the US brand responded with the Moto X Style. This is the company's brand new flagship, but unlike previous entries in the Moto X series, this handset comes at an extremely affordable price and has specs to worry any other high end device, including the OnePlus 2.
Of course, Motorola knows a thing or two about delivering affordable smartphones and in many ways got the ball rolling with the Moto G (which incidentally now has a 3rd gen model). The Moto X Style marks the first time that the company is aiming a true flagship at an affordable price point, clearly being under the wing of Lenovo means the company can take a few more pricing risks.
In the past the Moto X has been a rather bland looking smartphone, even with Moto Maker in tow making everything all colorful and personalized. The Moto X Style looks nice as a standalone handset, coming in standard colors it still carries an aesthetic appeal and shows that plastic devices can still be sexy (in fairness LG has also shown that this year). While LG jazzed the G4 up with a leather rear plate, Motorola has opted for a rubberized soft silicon to give the Style a unique twist. And don?t worry, Moto Maker is still a pre-purchase option, so you can still have wood rear plates, funky colors, and just about anything else you want.
Elsewhere, Motorola has not followed the likes of Samsung and Sony by making its handset waterproof, although with a rating of IP52, the Moto X Style will take a few splashes with no problem at all. There are also two stereo speakers nestled away inside, offering a solid audio experience for music and video playback.
Moto X Style
Last year, the second generation Moto X was a mere incremental update over the original model and did not exactly inspire with barnstorming specs. The Moto X Style is different however and features the latest and greatest smartphone hardware. The handset ships with a massive 5.7-inch screen that now has Quad HD (1440 x 2560) resolution, while a 76% screen to body ratio means the new X is svelte enough but is not pushing the thinnest and most compact large screen devices out there.
We reported last month that Motorola would be avoiding Qualcomm's troubled overheating Snapdragon 810 processor in favour of the lower clocked Snapdragon 808. It is still a 64-bit chip, but is clocked at 1.8GHz maximum so there are no overheating issues. Again, this is something LG did with the G4 and while there are definite issue in performance for power users, it is obviously a compromise Motorola was willing to make. We imagine the X Style will perform similarly to the G4 and deliver pretty excellent speed and efficiency, but may start to wobble if you really want to throw a lot at it, which is something 99% of users would never do.
3GB of RAM will help the processor deliver top line performance and Motorola's typically light approach to Android will surely also help reduce any lag. The Moto X Style will launch with Android 5.1.1 on board, a near stock experience that is all but guaranteed to be at the front of the line when Android M launches later in the year.
Other specs include 32GB of native storage (a 64GB version is also available), and finally a micro SD card slot has been added, allowing up to 128GB of additional storage space. A 21 megapixel camera sits on the rear as the primary shooter, and it comes with all the bells and whistles we would expect from a flagship, including F2.0, phase-detection autofocus, and dual-tone LED flash. Around the front there is a 5 megapixel snapper that is ideal for selfies with its LED flash.
A 3000mAh battery will be keeping the lights on and Motorola has included its Turbo Charging software that allows 10 hours of mixed use from just 15 minutes of charge time.
A very appealing package indeed, and we would argue this is the first true flagship Moto X since the series launched in 2013. It is ironic that the most spec'd out iteration of this device is the one that will be more affordable, because Motorola says the Moto X Style will cost just $399 when it arrives in the USA as the Moto X Style Pure Edition, unlocked across all major carriers. The OnePlus 2 is $70 more affordable for its base model, but it lacks a Quad HD screen, a micro SD slot, and honestly the stability of Motorola.
The OnePlus 2 now has some serious competition from a company that has far more visibility with consumers, and while both are very good devices with stunning price tags, the Moto X Style will simply be easier to get with no awkward invite systems to navigate.