Moto G100 - key specs
Dimensions: 168.38 x 73.97 x 9.69mm
Screen: 6.7 inches
CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 870
GPU: Adreno 650
Rear cameras: 64MP, 16MP, 2MP
Front cameras: 16MP, 8MP
Battery: 5,000 mAh
OS: Android 11
For this Moto G100 review, it’s first worth pointing out that you don’t just buy into the phone here. You buy into what comes along with it, that being its Ready For system. Ready For is a platform that allows you to expand your Motorola phone onto any TV or display, I’ll go deeper into that later.
Motorola is one of the most trusted, dependable smartphone manufacturers out there. Every year, they bring out well-priced smartphones with top-notch features and decent specs, so they’re a regular when it comes to T3’s guide to the best cheap phones.
Moto G is one of their most popular series offering good performance alongside a quality camera. Here at T3, we’ve previously been impressed by the Moto G 5G Plus which offered a fantastic screen and mid-range processor, as well as 5G for those on a budget. Marking the 10th handset of the series, the Moto G100, claims to be their most powerful G-series phone yet, but it’s also their most expensive.
I’ll get down to the nitty-gritty in this Moto G100 review and will cover everything you need to know about it.
Moto G100 review: price and release date
The Moto G100 will be available soon in the UK and Australia, but there's no news of a US release at the moment. It will set you back a respectable £450 which is roughly $620 or AU$820.
Moto G100 review: design and display
The Moto G100 is a big phone, it has a 6.7-inch display and measures 168.38 x 73.97 x 9.69mm, it’s thicker and wider than a lot of other phones, so this may not be the handset for someone with small hands. Holding it in one hand, my thumb couldn’t reach the opposite edge of the screen. Adding to the overall clunky feel, the Moto G100 is heavy too, weighing 207g. You get the choice between two colours, iridescent sky and iridescent ocean. I saw the iridescent sky, from some angles it shimmers in blue and from others, purple. If you are after a funky phone that will catch people’s eye then the Moto G100 will definitely do that.
Having such a big LCD display will make for fantastic viewing, the resolution sits at 2520 x 1080 FHD+ making it look super clear, it supports HDR10 and it has a 90Hz refresh rate. Although it won’t offer the absolute smoothest experience there is, for a more affordable phone it’s pretty good going. With an 85% screen-to-body ratio, the bezels are slightly thicker than other handsets, but you soon get used to it. In the top left corner of the screen, are two hole punch cameras, the main selfie camera and an ultrawide too. On the back, the square camera notch has four lenses, three of which have a shiny blue border around them. Motorola has done a good job at making them look the part, while not having them stick out too much.
On the sides of the phone, you’ll find a dedicated Google Assistant button, volume controls and the fingerprint sensor which doubles up as a power button, it’s placed way too high up the frame so wasn’t the most convenient way to unlock the handset. There’s also a USB-C charging port and 3.5mm port.
In the box, you don't just get the usual phone, case and charger, you also get a dock and Ready For cable. There are also a clear protective case included.
Moto G100 review: camera system
Motorola has packed in a 64MP main lens, 16MP ultrawide, 2MP depth sensor and a TOF (Time-of-Flight) scanner, as well as a 16MP main selfie camera and an 8MP ultrawide front camera. Having six cameras does seem to be a little overkill but actually, after seeing the quality of the photos, it makes sense. Motorola isn’t known for having great cameras on their handsets, but this one manages to take quite good photos considering.
You can see from the photos in the gallery below that the images are bright with vibrant colours and a good balance between light and dark areas. The ultrawide lens did a good job of fitting more in without losing out in quality, and the 10x digital zoom wasn’t so bad either. One thing that the Moto G100 struggled with, were photos in low light. They hardly picked up any detail, didn’t do much to brighten the scene and they looked massively grainy.
It’s not winning any prizes for the best smartphone camera, and if you look really closely, you can see that the level of detail isn’t anywhere near on par with the best smartphones you can buy. However, for someone who just wants to be able to take quick shots that look decent enough, this will work just fine.
When it came to video, the Moto G100 can shoot in 6K UHD at 30fps, 4K UHD at 30/60fps, FHD at 60/30fps), in slow motion FHD (120fps) or HD (240fps) as well as being able to shoot ultrawide videos in 4K and FHD. In giving video recording a go, I found they came out looking very shaky, even when I was stood still.
Moto G100 review: hardware, features and battery
Using the high-end (but not highest end) Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 processor and the Adreno 650 GPU, alongside 8GB RAM and 128GB storage, the Moto G100 claims to have ultra-powerful performance. Its Geekbench 5 scores match up to much more expensive handsets like the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 5G. It scored 971 in single-core and 2879 in multi-core. I must say, it did feel fast and didn’t suffer any lag while gaming. With 5G support, you’ll get super-fast web browsing, if your area has access to it. And it has Wifi 6 to keep the speeds up when you’re at home too.
Running on Android 11 without many significant tweaks, it’s a pleasure to use and feels close to a pure Android experience. Naturally, being Motorola, they have added their own little touches including gesture controls like swipe to split (the screen) or pick up to silence.
Now looking towards the 5,000mAh battery - over two hours of video on full brightness, the Motorola G100 dropped by 16% so for a full charge, you would get about 12.5 hours of video playback. It’s likely that the powerful processor and high refresh rate contribute to such an average battery life.
The Ready For functionality comes hand-in-hand with the Moto G100. By hooking up the phone to a TV or monitor, you can extend it into a desktop experience. I’m not convinced it will replace laptops but it’s a nice idea. You will even be able to use a Bluetooth mouse and keyboard with it, if you don’t have one, the phone can double up as the trackpad. Stream shows, get some work done, feel more immersed in a video call or play your games on a bigger screen, though you’ll need a controller for the latter. Best suited for productivity like creating documents or checking emails, it offers similar functionality to something like Samsung DeX, but through a wired connection.
Moto G100 review: verdict and price
Having such a high-end processor, as well as shipping with the Ready For dock, means that this is less of a budget phone and more of a mid-range device. For those who will make use of it for work or play, it could be well worth it, but for others, it might be off-putting.
Focusing purely on the handset, it really does deliver on speed, so will be good for those who use their phone a lot. You can take decent enough shots and despite being a little on the clunky side, the Moto G100 does have a great aesthetic as well as a clear bright, display and decent battery life too.
Overall from this Moto G100 review, the key takeaways are that it’ll be good for those who don’t want to spend a fortune on a new phone, but who also need versatility and fast performance.
Moto G100 review: also consider
If you are looking for a smartphone that can be expanded into a desktop view, you should also consider Samsung phones. Starting from the Galaxy S9 and the Galaxy Note 8, their phones support Samsung DeX which wirelessly extends the phone onto a TV, monitor or computer.
For those who are more focused on having an affordable phone with impressive performance, it could also be worth considering the Apple iPhone SE (2020) or the Google Pixel 4a.
- Check out the best Android phones