The Good The Motorola Moto G7 has a sleek, modern design, dewdrop display, decent dual rear cameras, turbocharging, durable battery life and an almost spare version of Android 9 Pie, making it worth every penny.
The Bad One speaker is just good low-light photography and overall video quality is not fantastic, and the phone costs $ 50 more than last year’s Moto G6.
The Bottom Line The Moto G7 is the best budget phone we’ve tried.
It’s easy to replace with flagship phones like the iPhone XS, Pixel 3 or Galaxy S10. Each has a state-of-the-art design and many features, but they also have a high price tag. Even value-oriented Apple and Samsung phones like the Galaxy S10E and iPhone XR will give you $ 750. That is why it is undoubtedly impressive that the Motorola Moto G7 ($ 200 on Amazon) only costs $ 300. It offers the best balance of design, features and price in almost any phone on the market today.
The Moto G family of phones has a history of being full of thoughtful items, attractively priced. Over the past two years, the Moto G5 Plus ($ 170 on Amazon) and the Moto G6 have shown us how good a budget phone can be. And this year’s Moto G7 continues in the same direction, similar to the Moto G6’s body and has extended battery life, faster processor and larger display.
I’ve been using the Moto G7 for the last few weeks and it’s clearly the best budget phone right now.
The Moto G7 costs $ 50 more than last year’s Moto G6, which is a significant increase, but I think all the improvements are worth it. The Moto G7 is also on sale now. Google sells it for $ 249 when you activate your phone on GoogleFi . And the $ 30 coupon goes down when you buy it directly from Motorola.
And since we’re talking about Moto, don’t forget to check out ours Verizon 5G real-time testing with Moto Z3 using 5G Moto Mod.
The larger screen inside is slightly larger than the case
The Moto G7 looks somewhere. Like the G6, the Gorilla Glass 3 front and rear give it a slim, contemporary feel. But the G7 is worth the reward for making it so easy to cover with fingerprints. It sits there for OnePlus 6 ($ 279 on Amazon) or Galaxy S9, as much as it attracts spots. Seriously, see CSI and Law & Order.
While the Moto G6 had a 5.7-inch display, the G7 was able to fit a 6.2-inch display into a body of a similar size. Dew-drop trimming helps bring the screen closer to edges that are thinner than the iPhone XR. The display has a nice contrast and looks good in most situations. You definitely don’t like the likes of midrange or premium phones.
The corners on the screen are much more distinct than the tiny ones on the Moto G6. And although most apps adapt to them, sometimes like when I play PUBG, the game fills the bottom two corners of the display but has a black bar at the top. It’s a little weird, and if you’re sensitive to things like that, it can get you crazy.
The fingerprint scanner is moved from the bottom of the screen to the back. Its position is easy to find and use. The tiny Motorola logo on the fingerprint scanner is cute.
Moto G7: Cheap never looked so good
In addition to the Motorola name on the bottom front of the phone, the Moto G7 has an attractive design. It has both a headphone jack and a USB-C port. Below is one speaker that used to play in Louis Prima’s kitchen when I was making dinner, but it often sounded tinny. And the Moto G7 has an IP54 rating for dust and water resistance. You can’t dip it, but a little syringe should be fine.
Dual rear cameras, 4K video and slow motion on the phone for $ 300
There are dual rear cameras (12MP main camera and 5MP depth camera). They will not compete with the likes of Pixel 3, iPhone XS or even the more modest OnePlus 6T. But the Moto G7 offers a solid C-camera experience – and it’s not a snitch. The cameras are impressive for $ 300, especially since they can shoot 4K videos, portrait stills and slow motion video. Overall photos from the G7 have decent image quality. But Motorola seems to adhere to Samsung’s belief that brighter photos are better. It also matches the test of the blind camera that Marquez Brownlee did in December, when people were mostly pushing brighter photos as best pictures.
HDR certainly enhances photos in most situations. But live viewing can be frustrating to use because it shows low-quality photo previews that don’t look like the final HDR picture, which almost always looked better. You have to trust the Moto Mojo stones very much every time you hit the descent. It seems the culprit here may be the processing.
Some photos show signs of moiré, a ripple effect that appears on patterns or textures. Photos taken in low light can look picturesque with all the noise correction of the Moto G7.
There are a lot of fun modes: portrait mode, time lapse, cinematography, and color removal. It also has a Google lens that displays relevant information about objects, landmarks and animals in photos taken with the camera.
Portrait mode works overall, but sometimes there are problems with the ribs. Fortunately, you can change the focus point and the amount of blur after the fact to really take portrait photos.
If you are a big shooter, the G7 won’t be for you. The videos look good in good light, but they suffer from noise and limited dynamic range. The videos are oversaturated. But if you want to occasionally record a fun moment with your friends or something magical that your baby does, this phone is more than capable.
For more pictures and camera features of the Moto G7, check out this gallery:
Moto G7: These photos were taken with a $300 phone
But here’s an interesting wrinkle. If you are smart enough to install the Google Camera app (Gcam apk), which is essentially the camera app used on the Pixel 3, you will be rewarded. The results are eye-opening. Photos taken with the Google Camera application on the Moto G7 have more detail, dynamic range and better colors. They’re still not as good as the Pixel 3, but with this app, the Moto G7 goes from C to solid B for stills.
Take a look at two photos of my cat. In a photo taken from a native Moto G7 camera attachment, the fur details look hazy and sharp. In a photo taken with Google Camera, its fur has a lot more detail and dynamic range. Below are the crop photos.
The selfie camera is normal. There is an automatic smile setting where it won’t take photos until everyone in the frame smiles – this also works on the rear cameras. This function did not work well, but it allowed me to take some pictures of me and my friends. Selfie photos, especially people’s skin, were often unsaturated. There is also a portrait mode on the front camera that produces decent results.
Although I have criticism of the cameras, keep in mind that this is a $ 300 phone.
Android 9 Pie and Snapdragon 632 processor
The Moto G7 runs Android 9 Pie with multiple settings, which is good if you’re a stock Android fan. The overall experience is simple and straightforward, which makes the Moto G7 so appealing. There are also all the interesting shortcuts that Motorola adds. Twist your wrists to open the camera – my favorite way to open the camera on any phone. Put the Moto G7 face down to start the Do Not Disturb mode. There is one Nav button that adds a small strip at the bottom of the screen that you can press, hold, or swipe to start different actions. There is always a screen where you can put your hand on the display to see the time.
Moto G7 supports The call screen feature found on Pixel phones , which allows you to track calls from an unrecognized number through Google. A live transcript of the conversation is displayed. The idea is to minimize the number of working calls you receive.
The Snapdragon 632 processor makes the Moto G7 much faster than the Moto G6. In everyday use, I didn’t notice any delays or stuttering in the animations or programs that were opening.
I’ve played several games on the Moto G7, including Alto’s Odyssey and PUBG (in low quality mode). I was amazed at how well the phone handles graphics in Alto’s Odyssey, and the fact that after playing at PUBG, which cost about an hour, the phone was barely heated.
The Moto G7 gives you even longer battery life
Probably my biggest complaint about the Moto G6 was its battery life. In our tests, the G6 lasted 9 hours and 51 minutes, playing looped video in Airplane mode. The Moto G7 on the other hand lasted 12 hours 51 minutes. This is an improvement in 3 hours.
The Moto G7 does not have wireless charging, but it can be quickly charged with the Turbopower charger. The phone took 25 minutes to go from 2% to 48%.
Moto G7 vs G7 Play, G7 Power and G7 Plus
In addition to the Moto G7 I tested for this review, Motorola also makes three more choices. There is Moto G7 Plus which is not for sale in the US but adds better rear cameras, optical image stabilization and a faster processor. The Moto G7 Power it’s all about this battery. It has a 5000 mAh battery as opposed to the 3000 mAh in the Moto G7. And then Moto G7 Play is a paired Moto G7 that starts at $ 200.
For an in-depth comparison of the Moto G7 family of phones see this CNET article .
Google Pixel 2 vs Moto G7
The Pixel 2 launched in October 2017, but the new one is still available on Amazon for $ 340. You get the same storage and better camera but smaller screen. The Moto G7 looks more modern than the Pixel 2. And the Pixel 2’s screen and plastic case show more scratches and wear than the Moto G7 glass case.
Google doesn’t have a headphone jack, but it’s difficult to pass for $ 340. If taking priority, I would go for the Pixel 2. Otherwise, the Moto G7 seems like a wise choice.
iPhone 7 vs Moto G7
The last few years have made it easy to cite the Moto G phone line as one of the best deals to buy. But obviously, if you’re used to iOS, one of the questions is whether the low cost of Android is justified.
Currently, the most affordable phone sold by Apple is the two and a half year iPhone 7 ($ 170 at Walmart) . It has a faster processor and a better camera. However, it costs $ 450, has a smaller screen, comes with half the built-in storage, and gets 3 hours less battery life in our tests.
As someone who has owned an iPhone 7 for two years, it’s hard for me to say that it costs half the price of the Moto G7. Of course, if your friends and family are on iMessage and FaceTime, the iPhone 7 is a smarter purchase. But if you can live without these services, the Moto G7 deserves your attention.
Specifications of Moto G7 vs Moto G7 Plus, G6, iPhone 7, Pixel 2
|Motorola Moto G7||Motorola Moto G7 Plus||Motorola Moto G6||Apple iPhone 7||Google Pixel 2|
|Display size, resolution||6.2-inch LCD; 2,270×1,080 pixels||6.2-inch LCD; 2,270×1,080 pixels||5.7-inch LCD; 2,160×1,080 pixels||4.7-inch; 1334×750 pixels||5-inch; 1,920×1,080 pixels|
|Pixel density||403ppi||403ppi||424ppi||326 ppi||441 ppi|
|Dimensions (Inches)||6.18×2.96×0.31 in||6.18×2.96×0.33 in||6.1×2.8×0.3 in||5.44×2.64×0.28 in||5.7x 2.7×0.3 in|
|Dimensions (Millimeters)||157×75.3×8 mm||157×75.3×8.3 mm||153.8×72.3×8.3 mm||138.3×67.1×7.1 mm||145.7×69.7×7.8 mm|
|Weight (Ounces, Grams)||6.07 oz.; 172 g||6.2 oz.; 176 g||5.9 oz; 167 g||4.87 oz; 138 g||5.04 oz; 143 g|
|Mobile software||Android 9.0||Android 9.0||Android 8.0 Oreo||Apple iOS 10||Android 9.0|
|Camera||12-megapixel, 5-megapixel||16-megapixel, 5-megapixel||12-megapixel and 5-megapixel||12-megapixel||12-megapixel|
|Processor||1.8GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 632||1.8GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 636||1.8 GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 450||Apple A10 chip||Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 835|
|Storage||64GB||64GB||32GB, 64GB||32GB, 128GB||64GB, 128GB|
|RAM||4GB||4GB||3GB or 4GB||N/A||4GB|
|Expandable storage||Up to 512GB||Up to 512GB||128GB||None||None|
|Battery||3,000-mAh||3,000-mAh||3,000-mAh||14 hour talk time on 3G, 10 days standby, 12 hours internet use on LTE||2,700-mAh|
|Fingerprint sensor||Back||Back||Below screen||Home button||Back cover|
|Special features||Water repellent with P2i nano-coating; TurboPower charging||Water repellent with P2i nano-coating; TurboPower charging||Splash-proof, 15-watt fast charger||Water and dust-resistant, Taptic Home button||Squeezable sides|
|Price off-contract (USD)||$299||300 euros, converts to about $340||$249||$449 (32GB), $549 (128GB)||$330 (64GB)|
|Price (GBP)||Converts to £231||Converts to about £265||£239||£449 (32GB), £549 (128GB)||Converts to £250|
|Price (AUD)||Converts to AU$421||Converts to about AU$480||AU$399||AU$749 (32GB), AU$919 (128GB)||Converts to AU$465|
Originally published April 3 at 3:00 pm upstream
Update, April 6: Added Google Call Screen Feature.