The Moto G has been Motorola’s most popular phone, and with good reason. It features top-quality specs at a competitive price. However, it was unclear if the Moto G would continue now that Lenovo has taken over reigns of the company. The latest rumors say yes, which would put the phone in its fourth generation.
As noted by an Ars Technica report, because of the way that smartphone cycles work, this will likely be the first Moto G release that Lenovo has actually had a say in. Lenovo purchased Motorola back in January 2014, but didn’t take control of the company until October 2014. Products made by those at Lenovo didn’t instantly start being sold with the Motorola brand though — it would have taken a few months for Lenovo-designed products to start being sold with the Motorola name, and the 2016 Moto G was likely well in development by that time.
Here’s everything we know so far about the 2016 Moto G.
Related: Motorola Moto G (2015) review
Processor and specs
Motorola has just begun teasing what we assume to be the Moto G, boasting a device with a better camera, battery life, performance, and security.
The teasers themselves seem to take a comedic look at missing persons, with different characters having gone missing because of problems they’ve had with their devices. Presumably, all these problems will be solved by Motorola’s next phone, because it’s specs will be better.
Take Annie, for example, who seems to have gone missing after taking a blurry “groupfie.” Yep, groupfie. This teaser hints that the selfie camera on the next Moto G should be much higher resolution than before.
— Moto India (@Moto_IND) April 28, 2016
There’s also 22-year-old Sam, who ran away when his dad went through his browser history. Thankfully, the new phone will have better security, so he can visit all the “hubs” he wants without his parents snooping.
— Moto India (@Moto_IND) April 29, 2016
Some specs for the device were leaked in mid-April, thanks to Twitter user Roland Quandt. According to Quandt, the “Plus” in the name will refer to a higher spec device rather than a larger one — both the Moto G and Moto G Plus will feature a 5.5-inch display. Quandt also says that the Moto G Plus will feature a 16-megapixel rear-facing camera. However, the Moto G will only have a 13-megapixel sensor.
Photos and renders of the Moto G4 Plus have proven elusive so far, but a listing online phone retailer Zauba may give guidance on what hardware to expect. According to the listing, the G4 Plus sports up to 3GB of RAM and either a 13MP or 16MP rear-facing camera. It’s reportedly got laser autofocus, NFC connectivity, and a fingerprint sensor too — unexpectedly premium accouterments on what’s expected to be a midrange handset.
According to Quandt, the devices will start with 16GB of storage, and will be available in either black or white — it’s not known if customers will be able to use Moto Maker to create their own color variation.
Release date and pricing
Motorola has sent out invites for an event on May 17 in New Delhi, India. It could likely be for the rumored Moto G4 and G4 Plus, but the company hasn’t offered any additional details.
Previously, when Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing spoke at Lenovo Zuk Z2 Pro in Beijing, he said Motorola will hold an event on June 9, but did not divulge exactly what Motorola will show off. He did mention the new product will be “exciting.” So it’s unclear what exactly Motorola will be showing off on each respective date.
According to Roland Quandt, the Moto G will cost 240 euros and the Moto G Plus will be 280 euros — that’s around $270 and $315, respectively. If true, that would be a pretty significant price jump over last year’s Moto G, which starts at $180.
Will there be two versions?
Based on the most recent rumors, it seems likely that Motorola will release two versions of the Moto G called the Moto G4 and the Moto G4 Plus. Of course, this may change before the release, especially considering the fact that LG already has a smartphone called the G4. It’s possible that G4 is an internal name that refers to the fact that it’s the fourth iteration of the Moto G.
A newer design
The best look we’ve gotten at the device so far comes in the form of a render from notorious leakster Evan Blass in mid-April. If accurate, the render shows a pretty drastic design change for the Moto G, showing off a square-shaped home button, which would replace the bottom speaker. Some rumors suggest that it will also function as a fingerprint scanner, similar to the Touch ID button in recent iPhones. It has also been rumored that this home button will only be available on the Plus version of the device.
— Evan Blass (@evleaks) April 19, 2016
A video that reportedly shows off the new Moto G was uploaded to YouTube in mid-April. Interestingly enough, the device in the video does not include the square home button, suggesting that perhaps it’s the standard version of the Moto G rather than the Plus version. The device has well-rounded edges and is quite a bit larger than what looks to be a Moto X. The leak appears to confirm reports that the screen size of the device will be around 5.5 inches.
The video also seems to answer some questions we have about the software on the phone. While it was all but certain that it would run Android, many worried that Lenovo would depart from the near-stock version of Android Motorola devices have favored in the past. It seems as though the next Moto G will stick with nearly stock Android, if the brief glimpse we got of the home screen on the device in the video is anything to go by.
A few pictures that supposedly show the next-generation Moto G have also been leaked on French site NoWhereElse. On the back of the phone we can see a camera array that looks similar to previous versions of the Moto G, but has two extra holes that must be for camera sensors of some kind.
Of course, these are just rumors for now, so keep in mind that none of this is official yet.
We’ll keep you updated here with news and rumors about the Moto G as they break.
Updated on 05-09-2016 by Kyle Wiggers: Added G4 Plus leak from phone retailer Zauba.
Updated on 05-02-2016 by Christian de Looper: Added teasers from Motorola India account.
Updated on 04-28-2016 by Julian Chokkattu: Added in May 17, 2016, as a possible announcement date for the Moto G.
Updated on 04-21-2016 by Robert Nazarian: Added in June 9, 2016, as the possible release date for the Moto G.
Updated on 04-20-2016 by Christian de Looper: Added info about leaked video and render from Evan Blass.