Moto G Stylus 5G and Moto G 5G (2022) Review: Middling Phones, Poor Camera

I forgot I reviewed a Motorola flagship phone last March. Heck, I forgot that Motorola even had it announced that. This could be because it seems to me that I would have gone through a series of forgettable Moto phones in a short period of time. Last December I tested the Moto G Power and the Moto G Pure, then earlier this year I tested the Moto G Stylus 2022 and the Motorola Edge +, and here we are with the Moto G 5G and the Moto G Stylus 5G, two new mid-range phones. These are too many business phones.

Aside from the recent Power and Pure phones, which are frustratingly slow, I always come to the same consensus with Motorola devices: they’re fine. If I had to use a single word, it would be average. These Android smartphones usually have good performance and good battery life, but competitors like Samsung and Google always offer better cameras, more features, and longer software support, so do not do it you need to buy a new phone every year or two.

But if I had to recommend a Motorola phone right now, it would be the new Moto G Stylus 5G. At $ 500, you get a decent balance between features and price. The cheaper Moto G 5G at $ 400 just makes too many sacrifices.

Power is key

Photo: Motorola

Both the Moto G Stylus 5G and the Moto G 5G have a fast performance that offer approximately a day and a half of battery life, thanks to its 5,000 mAh battery cells. It’s nice not to have to worry about recharging a phone each night.

The Stylus 5G runs on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 695 processor with 8 gigabytes of RAM, and the Moto G 5G uses MediaTek’s Dimensity 700 chip with 6GB of RAM. You’ll notice that the latter stutters here and there, with applications not starting how quickly, but neither of them gave me trouble running my usual list of apps and games day in and day out.

Uniquely, Motorola has increased the storage of these devices to 256 GB. The Moto G Stylus 5G goes a step further and includes a pre-installed 256GB MicroSD card, so you can effectively get 512GB of storage. (The Moto G 5G has a MicroSD card slot, but the card is not included.) This is almost the only area where Motorola has pushed the needle, as most phones in this price group include 128 GB of storage.

I like that each one has a capacitive fingerprint sensor embedded in the power button on the right edge and a wired headphone jack. I wish these phones weren’t that big. The Stylus 5G is the largest with its 6.8-inch screen, but the Moto G 5G’s 6.5-inch screen isn’t much smaller. The size combined with the fact that they both have slippery plastic backs makes them annoyingly difficult to handle with one hand.

If you can’t tell by name, these phones have 5G support. For the course, it’s the basic sub-6 type, which isn’t much faster than 4G LTE. It’s strange that Motorola is one of the few cheap phone makers that doesn’t seem to be able to incorporate 5G into its less than $ 300 phones when OnePlus, Samsung and Nokia have succeeded. Unfortunately, this is why these two new Moto G phones exist.

Also in the name is the word pencil, and yes, the Moto G Stylus 5G has one embedded inside; remove it from the bottom of the phone. It’s useful for scribbling and signing documents, and also for other things, I guess, if you like to use a pencil as an input device. (I do not.)

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