Motorola released the Moto G last week in Brazil and parts of Europe on Nov. 13, and will release the budget-friendly smartphone in the U.K., Germany, Mexico and France in the next few weeks.
Motorola has said that the second wave of Moto G releases -- in the U.S. and parts of Southeast Asia -- will see the low-cost successor to the Moto X release with Android 4.4 KitKat right out of the box. Motorola says the Moto G will see a January 2014 release date in the U.S., as the smartphone launches first around the world. This is in comparison to its predecessor, the higher-end Moto X, which was only released in the U.S.
The Moto G will cost $179 (USD) for 8GB of storage off-contract, $199 for 16GB and Motorola says some retail partners may even offer it for less. The Moto G will ship with removable back covers in lieu of the Moto Maker customization service that Motorola now offers for the Moto X through every carrier. Replacement Moto G back covers will be available in blue, red, teal, purple, yellow, white and black.
While the Moto G’s back cover is removable, the battery is not replaceable and there is no microSD slot for expanding storage. The Moto G will feature an Android experience similar to the stock version seen in devices like the newly released Nexus 5 and the Moto X. Unlike the Moto X, however, the Moto G will not have support for the always-on voice gestures of touchless control.
Like last year’s Nexus 4, the Moto G lacks support for high-speed LTE wireless service, instead opting for 2G, 3G and HSPA+ support. The Moto G also specs a 4.5-inch capacitive touchscreen at 720p HD resolution (720 x 1280 pixels) with 326 pixels-per-inch (ppi), matching the pixel density of the iPhone 5S. Covering the Moto G’s screen is the newest incarnation of Corning’s smartphone screen covering, Gorilla Glass 3.
The Moto G will run Android 4.3 Jelly Bean (and later 4.4 KitKat) on the Snapdragon 400, a new quad-core processor from Qualcomm clocked at 1.2GHz. Moto G will run apps with 1GB of RAM and has a five-megapixel main camera, along with a 1.2-megapixel front-facing shooter. Moto G will also support FM radio and comes with 50GB of Google Drive cloud storage.
Thomas Halleck is a technology reporter for the International Business Times, covering Google, wearables, product reviews, gadget news and more....