Motorola's Moto G lineup has long brought respectable performance and features down to an affordable price, with many of the same convenient software tricks that we've come to know and love from higher-end Motorola devices. Over the years, Motorola has begun to complicate its budget series with different variants under brands like Power and Play, but the result is the same no matter the suffix: a good phone at a great price.
The Moto G6 was a perfectly good phone for the money when it was released in early 2018, but two years later, it's time for most people to start considering their upgrade options. The Moto G Power is an excellent step up from the Moto G6 in nearly every way — particularly with regards to battery life and software updates.
Forsaken by a lack of updates
The Moto G6 has surprisingly great hardware for a budget phone of its time. Though it's built entirely out of plastic, the body doesn't creak or rattle, nor does it feel cheap or flimsy. The curved backing fits comfortably in the hand, and the 5.7-inch display upfront features a modern 18:9 aspect ratio, letting you fit more content on the screen at once. You even get dual cameras — a 12MP primary sensor and a secondary depth sensor, which aids in portrait mode shots.
As impressive as the Moto G6's hardware is, the Moto G Power is a step up in nearly every way. That's not surprising though, seeing as there's a two-year gap between the phones. The Moto G Power has much tighter bezels that allow it to cram a 6.4-inch display into roughly the same footprint as the G6, and upgrades to a 1080p panel versus the previous 720p offering.
The cameras have seen fairly significant improvements as well. With the Moto G Power, you now get three cameras: one wide, one ultra-wide, and one macro. Neither phone takes mind-blowing photos, but the G Power's various lenses allow you much more versatility for taking shots in different perspectives. The macro lens, while low resolution at just 2MP, allows for impressively close photos that the Moto G6 simply can't achieve.
|Category||Moto G Power||Moto G6|
|Operating System||Android 10||Android 9 Pie|
|Display||6.4 inches, 19:9 aspect ratio, 1080x2300 (399 ppi) resolution, IPS LCD||5.7 inches, 18:9 aspect ratio, 1080x2160 (424 ppi) resolution, IPS LCD|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 665, octa-core||Qualcomm Snapdragon 450, octa-core|
|Graphics||Adreno 610||Adreno 506|
|Memory||4GB||3GB / 4GB|
|Storage||64GB||32GB / 64GB|
|Rear Camera||16MP, ƒ/1.7, wide-angle
8MP, ƒ/2.2, ultra-wide
2MP, ƒ/2.2, macro
|12MP, ƒ/1.8, wide-angle
5MP, ƒ/2.2, depth
|Front Camera||16MP, ƒ/2.0||8MP / 16M, ƒ/2.2|
|Security||Rear-facing fingerprint sensor||Front-facing fingerprint sensor|
|Dimensions||159.9 x 75.8 x 9.6mm||153.8 x 72.3 x 8.3mm|
Of course, one of the Moto G Power's biggest advantages is its outrageously good battery life. Motorola outfitted the phone with a massive 5,000mAh battery and combined with the power-efficient Snapdragon 665 processor, you can get 2-3 days of battery life on a single charge. The Moto G6's 3000mAh was no slouch in its own right, but there's just no competing with the G Power's endurance.
There's also the issue of software upkeep. Motorola has long held a poor track record when it comes to timely updates, and the Moto G6 is still stuck on Android 9 Pie, more than seven months after the release of Android 10. The Moto G Power comes with Android 10 pre-installed, which comes with niceties like full-screen gesture navigation, and will almost certainly see longer software support than the G6.
That lack of continued software support, along with the incredible battery improvements of the Moto G Power, should be enough alone to convince you to upgrade from the G6. While the Moto G6 is still a good phone, software updates are crucial to both app support and security patches, and it simply won't receive them for much longer — if you get Android 10 at all, you should expect that to be the last update the G6 will receive. The Moto G Power is a great phone for the money, and an easy upgrade to recommend.
Clear upgrade pick
All-day battery (and then some)
The Moto G Power offers vastly more modern hardware, Android 10 software, and exceedingly good battery life. It's an easy and affordable upgrade choice coming from the Moto G6.
No more updates
Held back by dated software
The Moto G6 was a good value for its time, but with dated specs and an older version of Android that isn't likely to be updated any time soon, it's probably time to move onto a new phone.
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