- Mike Prospero , Tom's Guide
The Moto Z Play is the phone to get if you never want to worry about running out of juice.
- Jason Cross , GreenBot
It won't win any speed contests, but nice design, epic battery life, and an affordable price make this phone a winner.
- Modular accessories
- Multi-day battery life
- Vibrant screen
- Clutter-free UI
- microSD support
- Fingerprint scanner
- No optical image stabilization on camera
- Fingerprint scanner placement
The Moto Z series brought the Moto line into the world of modular smartphones. With Lenovo’s latest release--the Moto Z Play--they’re hoping to bring modular access to the mid-level market.
Does this dialed back version still hold the magic reviewers loved about the Moto Z and Moto Z Force? Let’s see what they are saying!
The Moto Z Play features a glass and aluminum design that reviewers all loved. unlike the previous models, the Z Play includes a 3.5mm headphone jack. Some reviewers mentioned that a lack of curved edges made one-handed use harder. Many also questioned why the fingerprint reader couldn’t double as a home button.
The back of the phone features the series’ modular accessory connector at the bottom for use with Moto Mods. Phone scooped summed up design opinions well, saying, “Absolutely nothing about the Z Play suggests it is less refined than the Z and Z Force. If anything, the glass surfaces make it look even more polished. It is a really nice piece of hardware.”
Flipping around front, you’re greeted by a 5.5-inch 1080p AMOLED panel. Reviews were stellar for display quality with the typical color saturation comments. Fortunately, Lenovo includes color profile options to tone things down if you prefer.
Lenovo scales back performance a bit from the higher priced offerings for the Z Play opting for an Octa-core Snapdragon 625 processor and 3GB of RAM. Talk Android noted, “For the most part the device holds up extremely well for everyday tasks.” You’ll also find 32GB of internal storage and support for microSD cards up to 2TB to ensure you can keep your favorite media and apps on-hand with plenty of room for snapping pictures.
The 16MP rear camera fell just short of greatness for many reviewers. While the laser and phase detection autofocus ensure a fast picture taking experience, lack of optical image stabilization led many to have issues with fine details. However, reviewers love the quality of low-light and night images. Reviews were equally positive on the 5MP front-facing shooter. GreenBot tested the camera and said, “Despite the occasional grainyness and limited dynamic range common to more affordable phones, you can get some really nice shots with the Moto Z Play.”
The star of the phone for most reviewers was the battery. Clocking in at 3510mAh, the Moto Z Play features the largest battery in the series. Paired with the mid-tier specs, reviewers were getting two and three days on a single charge. Phone Scoop noted, “There's no question the phone can go from breakfast on Day 1 to bedtime on Day 2 with a solid reserve still in the battery. I was never able to fully deplete the battery during my tests over a week's time.” Add in support for Turbo Charging with the included cable and wall adapter and you should have little worry about battery life with this phone.
Overall, reviewers found the phone a great value. The biggest complaint didn’t come from the phone itself but the sheer amount of bloat installed on the Verizon-locked version of the handset.
Reviews (8.2/10 Avg. rating)
A multi-faceted smartphone
Competitive edge in pricing and performance
Trims the flagship phone’s specs for a more affordable asking price
Outstanding battery life, fast processor
One of the better smartphones out there today
Lenovo leads the charge
The Moto Z Play is the most affordable modular smartphone on the market. If this concept interests you, then it could be a cheaper option than the LG G5. However, I remain skeptical of this first generation of mods. Although the Lenovo system is ingenious, its first mods did not convince me. Worse still, its prices are discouraging. Fortunately, if you put the modular aspect of the smartphone aside, the Moto Z Play is a good smartphone that stands out for its long battery life. This advantage becomes one of the best arguments for purchasing it. Lenovo has found a way to market a modern... Full review
A tempting mid-range option
The best smartphone battery yet
Gorgeous modular phone at a mid-range price
High quality build, great performance
Like already the Moto Z, one of the main features of the Moto Z Play is its expandability via Moto Mods. These modules will be supported for at least three device generations according to Lenovo. However, buyers have to dig deeper into their pockets at first. Even if this might be considered senseless, looking at the Moto Z Play is recommendable: With its frugal and nevertheless sufficiently fast Snapdragon 625 SoC, it achieves a very long battery life, the screen convinces with high contrasts and good viewing angle stability, and the casing made of a metal-glass composition feels first-rat... Full review
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