Motorola on Friday announced the Moto X and Moto G smartphones along with a range of interesting accessories. The new phones are significant updates to last year's models and will appeal to people seeking to make their phone their own. In addition, the Moto 360 smartwatch goes on sale Friday, and a novel Bluetooth headset responds to voice commands.
The smartphones are likely to be the last released by Motorola under Google's ownership, as the company's acquisition by Lenovo should be completed soon. Motorola built on the foundation it laid with the original Moto X and G and pushed them further up the smartphone ladder in terms of specs, performance, and appeal.
The Moto X can finally claim to be a true flagship. While last year's device was impressive in many ways, it failed to match the raw horsepower and specs of other flagships. Motorola has boosted the screen size from 4.7 inches at 720p resolution to 5.2 inches at 1080p resolution. It ships with a 2.5-GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor with 2 GB of RAM and either 16 or 32 GB of storage. Motorola also improved the camera from 10 megapixels to 13 megapixels. The front camera captures 2-megapixel images and 1080p HD video. The X has a 2,300-mAh battery, though Motorola didn't say how long it lasts (battery life was a weak point with 2013's phone).
Motorola took the design and materials to the next level. Last year's device features a plastic frame and customizable rear shells. This year's phone swaps the plastic frame for a metal one, and the range of available rear shells has been expanded to include leather. (Metal and leather? Yes, please!) Motorola's Moto Maker website allows consumers to customize their devices, which Motorola will assemble and ship directly to the designer.
The Moto X runs Android 4.4.4 KitKat without a user interface skin. Motorola said the X will receive all the latest Android releases as they are developed by Google. The Moto X was one of the first devices to adopt the "Hey, Google Now" catchphrase for waking and interacting with the phone. The new X lets users choose any catchphrase they wish. (Feel free to name your phone Angus.)
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