Moto G84 5G Review: Doing budget phones right

The Moto G-series from Motorola has been the company’s forerunner in the Indian market since Android came into being. Arguably the most popular smartphone from Motorola in the Android era, the Moto G-series of smartphones are still here and are still offering a good value for money. 

The Moto G84 5G is the latest from Motorola’s budget series and the smartphone offers quite a lot under the Rs 20,000 price tag. We get a nice vegan leather back with a Pantone colour, which gives a premium in-hand feel. The smartphone is also lightweight, and the pOLED display looks vibrant from the moment you set eyes on the device. But is the smartphone any more than just aesthetics? Let’s find out in our review of the Moto G84 5G:

DESIGN 

The design of the Moto G84 5G is as good as it gets for a sub-Rs 20,000 smartphone. We get a very premium in-hand feel, along with a lightweight build. The vegan leather back makes the smartphone feel very nice in your hands. Plus, the super lightweight build makes holding and using the Moto G84 5G very easy to use and carry. I measured the smartphone’s weight and it came out to be just 170 grams, making the Moto G84 one of the lightest smartphones in this range.

With the premium and lightweight build, we also get flat frames on the Moto G84, which looks good, but there is a set of users out there who prefer a bit of curves since having that makes the grip much easier and the in-hand feel becomes all the more seamless. 

Apart from the premium look and feel, the Moto G84 5G has other things going on for it. In the sub-Rs 20k segment, the Moto G84 5G also offers an IP rating. The smartphone is rated for IP54 water resistance, meaning that it can survive splashes of water. Furthermore, there is a 3.5mm headphone jack which has become more of an “enthusiast” level feature by now. 

Overall, this is a very good design from Motorola. The Moto G84 5G is in-line with Moto’s design language, the Pantone colour of the year adds to the whole leather back lightweight aesthetic, and there are useful features like IP54 rating and a 3.5mm headphone jack. 

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DISPLAY

Coming to the display, this is a very nice and vibrant 6.5-inch 10-bit pOLED panel with a 120Hz refresh rate. The display is very good. Of course, given the AMOLED technology on offer, the Moto G84 5G’s display has punchy colours. The blacks are deep and colours are vibrant, which does take away from the true-to-life feel of this display, but makes it appear more vibrant – something most people prefer with their displays. 

The display on the Moto G84 5G is rated at a peak brightness of 1,300 nits. However, I put that to test using a Lux Meter and the maximum luminance the Moto G84 5G showed was 926 nits on a plain white screen. This is good, given that the 926 number isn’t too far off with the 1,300 nits which is usually the number for the brightest pixel on a display.

This display is also quite responsive with the 120Hz refresh rate. During my usage, I never felt like the display was slow. Throughout screens, the Moto G84 5G felt super slick and super smooth while scrolling. 

This is a very good display. We don’t usually get AMOLED displays in the sub-Rs 20,000 segment but Motorola has not only given us a pOLED display, but a very good one at that. It is vibrant, it is bright, and it is super responsive. Good stuff. The only thing I didn’t like is that the  smartphone is not able to play Ultra-HD 4K content on YouTube or Netflix, but that is a chipset limitation as the Snapdragon 695 chip doesn’t support 4K playback.

Performance and battery of the Moto G84 5G are also decent. The smartphone is powered by a Snapdragon 695 chipset paired with 12GB of RAM, which is the highest we have seen on any Snapdragon 695-powered smartphone so far. The extra RAM makes things much better here, meaning you can keep more apps open in the background, and there is more breathing room in case users want to push the Moto G84 5G’s performance a little extra. 

In benchmarks, the smartphone is right up there with some of the most powerful devices in this range. On AnTuTu, the smartphone came ahead of pretty much every sub-Rs 20,000 device barring the Samsung Galaxy M34 5G and iQOO Z7 5G. Further, on Geekbench 6, the Moto G84 5G scored 911 points in the single-core test and 2052 points in the multi-core score. This is again on the higher side in the budget segment, but comes behind recently-launched smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy M34 5G and the Redmi 12 5G, which are cheaper than the Moto G84 5G. 

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In GPU-based tests, the Moto G84 5G again beats out most smartphones under Rs 20,000, but comes behind the Samsung Galaxy M34 5G. In GPU-based tests, we ran 3D Mark Wildlife and GFXBench on the Moto G84 5G, and the smartphone passed with flying colours in both GPU-based tests.

While we are on performance, it is important to mention software and I will say this again, Motorola’s Android skin is one of the cleanest, closest-to-stock Android skins out there. My experience with Motorola’s MyUX has always been seamless and smooth. There is no bloatware, no unnecessary data collection. It is very barebones and I like it. This time around, Motorola has, however, added a few features and most of them are quite useful. For example, this time around we get Moto Secure, which is a secure folder that duplicates your apps in a password protected folder.

Now, while Motorola has one of the cleanest and smoothest Android software out there, the number of updates is disappointing. With the Moto G84, Motorola says that users will get only one software update. As the smartphone is running on Android 13, buyers will only get a single OS update to upgrade their Moto G84 5G to Android 14, along with three years of security updates. So yes, you may get a clean experience but you only get it for one extra OS update so that’s not good.

With the Moto G84 5G, we get a dual rear camera setup with a primary 50-megapixel shooter and an 8-megapixel ultrawide angle lens. Like other things on this smartphone, the camera performance is also good on the Moto G84 5G. The images from the main sensor are good in terms of capturing details and have a very good dynamic range. 

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Most times, I was impressed with the images that this camera can put out. Before clicking the image, you will find the viewfinder to be rather dull and the colours are washed out. However, once the image is clicked and the camera algorithms do their thing, the images are sharp and vibrant and do not lack detail. At times, the smartphone blows up the colours, making things look a bit too tinted (like the last image of the sky where it is making everything a bit too blue).

The wide-angle shooter is also decent. The images aren’t as vibrant as the primary shooter, and the wide-angle shots have the colours and shadows are kind of dull around the edges of the image. 

The portraits are also nice. The only thing I didn’t like here is that the Moto smoothens the skin on subjects, which makes faces look a bit un-real, but overall, the portraits are just fine and the edge detection is also on point. 

Overall, this is a pretty decent camera setup and those who purchase the Moto G84 5G will hardly feel the lack of anything when using this camera. 

VERDICT

The Moto G84 5G is a very complete smartphone. It does everything and does it well. For a sub-Rs 20,000 devices, it offers a lot. We get a premium design, a stunning pOLED display, and a very good battery life, all for a price of under Rs 20,000 in India. 

There are limitations, given the Snapdragon 695 chipset as we can’t record 4k videos or there is no HDR playback due to the underpowered chip, but that isn’t something a lot of sub-Rs 20,000 users will demand. What they will demand are things like display, camera, and battery and for all this, the smartphone performs quite well. 

I personally really liked the Moto G84 5G. From the way it looks, to the way it performs, to the software – everything on the smartphone is pretty much on-point. If it weren’t for the disappointing update cycle, I would go as far as saying that this is the best smartphone under Rs 20,000. 

Fuente: Digit

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