The Moto X Pure Edition is shaping up to be exactly what many wanted — a bigger Moto X with a decent camera. Here's how to use it better.
Motorola has gotten quite good at keeping its Moto X line nice and clean, with features that continue to make these phones a compelling alternative to Nexus hardware. The Moto X Pure Edition is a worthy successor to the phones that have carried this name before it, but like every Android phone not everything is spelled out for you in the tutorials, especially the things that don't quite work they way you'd think they should.
With that in mind, here's a quick collection of tips and tricks you'll want to get the most out of your Moto X Pure Edition.
The flashlight gesture only works for as long as you're holding it
Motorola has included several ways to activate and deactivate the flashlight on the Moto X Pure Edition, including a clever chopping motion that works even when the screen is off. You can double-chop to turn the flash on or off. But if you activate the flashlight this way and set the phone face-down, the flashlight will almost immediately turn itself off.
It's likely this is a way to stop your flashlight from turning on in your pocket and remaining on long enough to do harm. Once the sensors on the front of the phone detect the screen is against something, the flashlight turns off. If you turn the flashlight on from the quick settings menu, the light will stay on as long as you tell it to.
Now if only it'd do this if left face-up.
The Moto Gallery is still alive and well, so enjoy it
Despite Google Photos coming pre-loaded on the phone and asking for users to hand over compressed versions of all of their photos for free, Motorola's gallery app can still be a big part of the Moto X experience. In fact, even if you're using Google Photos as your primary local image manager, Moto Gallery is still working in the background to deliver clever things.
The two big things you'll see pop up, even if you've never opened the Gallery app before, are Highlights and Suggestions. Like previous versions of the app, Highlights stitch together photos and video captured during the day into a compelling story (like, um, Google Photos can do), while suggestions steps in to let you know when the phone captured a better image in between photos, just in case you want to save it instead of the one you just took.
Adaptive Brightness still takes some getting used to
Every Android phone ever has had auto-brightness controls of some sort, but you do occasionally run into some phones that don't do the best job in this area and a replacement app is needed. The Moto X Pure edition relies on Adaptive Brightness controls from Google's Android to handle brightness controls, and if you've never used this setup before you may be a little confused at first.
Instead of constantly polling the environment and guessing what brightness level you'd prefer, the Moto X lets you choose what brightness level is optimal with the slider and then adjusts from there. The idea is more to keep the brightness level at the same comfort level for your eyes regardless of environment, based on your input. This means if you crank the brightness all the way to 100% and walk into a pitch black room, the phone will never decide to drop the brightness down to 1%. It will always to re-create the experience you had when you set the bar in the first place.
A custom toast notification appears when you're on a Quick Charge 2.0 charger
We all know Quick Charge is the new cool thing in the world of keeping your phone charged, and Motorola has been leading this particular revolution with their Turbo chargers in the last generation of phones, but this year you get a nice new notification if you're connected to something that is giving you more juice than the average USB charger.
This message will say Turbo Charger Connected even when you aren't using the official Turbo Charger sold by Motorola, and that's because it's all based on the same Quick Charge 2.0 tech. When you disconnect from the charger, a separate toast notification will let you know that Turbo Charger charged your phone to a specific percentage, so you have a good idea of how much more battery you have. It's a small thing, but could make a big difference to anyone looking to get a quick recharge before walking away from a charger for a while.
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