A mid-range phone to consider
Sometimes, a premium smartphone is too expensive and an entry-level device doesn’t meet your needs. That’s when a phone like the Moto G Stylus 5G (2023) comes in handy. It has some impressive specs and unique features, and while it isn’t the best of the options you can get in the Motorola line, it’s worth considering as a decent, mid-range phone.
- Amazing display with high refresh rate
- Battery that lasts all day
- Extra loud speakers
- It comes with a stylus
- Not the best cameras
- Software support is limited
- It doesn't have an official IP rating
A perfect Galaxy compromise
Samsung Galaxy phones are among the most popular in the Android camp, and if you’re looking for an option that sits firmly in the middle of the pack, this is it. The Samsung Galaxy A34 isn’t the best Galaxy phone you can buy, but it’s not entry-level either. You get tons of high-end features for a palatable price.
- Ultra-bright display
- Very good battery life, adaptive battery
- Nice, modern design
- It doesn't have wireless charging
- There's no depth camera
- No stylus included
When it comes to the Moto G Stylus (2023) vs. Samsung Galaxy A34 5G, they are both great mid-range phones. Choosing between them, however, can be challenging. This is why we’re here to break things down and tell you what makes them different and the same, to help you decide.
Moto G Stylus 5G (2023) vs. Samsung Galaxy A34 5G: On the surface
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With a 6.6-inch 2,400 x 1,080 LTPS FHD+ screen that boasts a fast 120Hz refresh rate, the Moto G Stylus 5G (2023) is a solid phone for multitaskers. The phone is made of plastic and comes in Rose Champagne or Cosmic Black (with a slight blue-ish tint), but it’s nice and soft to the touch. Android Central’s Derrek Lee says in his detailed review of the phone that scrolling is “seamless and intuitive.”
On the back of the phone, a glossy camera housing protrudes slightly while the rear panel curves into the frame. The exterior is nice to hold in the hand, says Lee, and comfortable as well. But keep in mind that while it is supposedly water-repellant, the phone does not meet a specific water-resistant rating, so use it with caution by the pool or at the beach.
You’ll get up to two days of battery life with the Moto G Stylus 5G (2023) through the 5,000mAh battery and support for up to 20W fast charging but no wireless charging support. There’s either 128GB or 256GB of storage, expandable up to 1TB via an optional microSD card. Enjoy secure access through a built-in fingerprint reader as well as face unlock.
Audibly, you get dual stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos support, two microphones, and a 3.5mm headphone jack for connecting wired headphones (a rarity nowadays with new phones), as well as a USB-C connector. What really sets this phone apart, however, is that it comes with an integrated stylus, which is handy for jotting down handwritten notes, sketching, or simpler navigating without using your finger. It runs on Android 13 with Motorola’s My UX overlay for gesture controls and further personalization and customization options.
The screen of the Samsung Galaxy A34 5G is the same size at 6.6 inches, and it’s a Super AMOLED screen with similar resolution of 2,340 x 1,080. It has the same 120Hz refresh rate as well, making this another phone that can keep up with heavy multitasking or bandwidth-intensive tasks like gaming and video streaming.
You’ll get some funky finish options that might not be for everyone, like Awesome Violet, Awesome Graphite, Awesome Lime, and Awesome Silver. It’s a special “glastic” finish that Samsung describes as a thin layer of glass placed between two layers of plastic. The advantage here, according to Samsung, is that this allows the phone to be lightweight (it’s just a smidge lighter than the Moto G Stylus 5G (2023)) but also looks more expensive than it is. There is a top-notch at the top of the screen, which is worth noting for those who find that design annoying.
The Samsung Galaxy A34 5G, which runs on Android 13 as well with Samsung’s One UI for further personalization, does not come with a stylus, but you could theoretically use one with it. It has the same 5,000 mAh battery and rated battery life of up to two days with average use. It also has an Adaptive Battery feature to help optimize battery life, and it supports fast charging as well, up to 25W, so you might be able to get back up and running a bit more quickly with this phone. It also does not support wireless charging.
This phone is also slightly more durable than the Moto G Stylus 5G (2023), meeting IP67 rating for water and dust resistance. But this means limited submersion at a shallow depth for a short period of time. Bottom line: it’s not fully waterproof, but a quick drop in the pool shouldn’t harm it.
For storage, you get the same 128GB or 256GB, with expansion up to 1TB via an optional microSD card. You also get Samsung Knox Security and can create secure folders to store encrypted files, and easily share contents with other compatible Samsung devices via Quick Share.
|Header Cell - Column 0||Moto G Stylus 5G (2023)||Samsung Galaxy A34 5G|
|OS||Android 13 (My UX)||Android 13 (One UI)|
|Colors||Rose Champagne, Cosmic Black||Awesome Graphite, Awesome Violet, Awesome Silver, Awesome Lime|
|Screen Size||6.6 inches||6.6 inches|
|Screen Resolution||2,400 x 1,080||2,340 x 1,080|
|Screen Type||LTPS FHD+||Super AMOLED|
|Processor||Snapdragon 6 Gen 1||MediaTek Dimensity 1080|
|RAM||4GB, 6GB||6GB, 8GB|
|Storage||128GB, 256GB (expandable up to 1TB)||128GB, 256GB (expandable up to 1TB)|
|Memory Card Slot||Yes (up to 1TB)||Yes (up to 1TB)|
|Camera||50MP main, 8MP Ultra-Wide, 16MP Front||48MP, 13MP Front, 8MP Ultra-Wide, 5MP Macro|
|Speakers||Stereo Speakers||Stereo Speakers|
|Battery||5,000 mAh||5,000 mAh|
|Wireless Charging Support||No||No|
|Water Resistant||Repellant (no rating)||IP67|
|Size||6.41 x 2.9 x 0.36 inches||6.35 x 3.07 x 0.32 inches|
|Weight||202 grams||199 grams|
These two phones are almost identical in many ways. But delving deeper, you’ll notice a few differences that might help make your decision between them easier.
Moto G Stylus 5G (2023) vs. Samsung Galaxy A34 5G: Power and performance
The Moto G Stylus 5G (2023) is powered by a Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 processor and runs Android 13 with Motorola’s My UX. It tops out at 6GB RAM, which is a little less than you’ll find in the most premium phones today (and less than the highest end iteration of the Samsung Galaxy A34).
It’s all about the phone cameras nowadays, and this one won’t disappoint. You’ll get “very respectable photos” from the 50MP camera system, says Lee, which includes Ultra Pixel Technology that Motorola claims works to let in more light, ideal for low-light situations. Indeed, Lee says you’ll get bright, colorful, and detailed daylight photos that feature great contrast and dynamic range. But Lee did experience some limitations with night photography, even when he was using the dedicated night mode. The system also includes an 8MP ultrawide, macro vision, and depth camera and a 16MP front camera for taking decent selfies.
There are tons of shooting modes to help you adapt to different situations, like night vision, macro vision, portrait, panorama, and pro mode with long exposure. You’ll find some unique ones, too, to help you shoot compelling photos, like face beauty, auto smile (so the shutter triggers only when the subject is smiling), gesture capture, and selfie animation. Google Lens integration is also included along with macro mode, as noted. For moving videos, you can take slow-mos, time-lapse, hyper lapse, and more.
As noted, the built-in stylus is a plus if you plan to do things like take lots of notes, edit photos, draw, sketch, copy and paste text, mark up screenshots, or if you simply prefer a stylus versus finger for daily navigation. There’s also Google Assistant. It should be noted, for voice control, asking queries, and more.
Powered by the Media Dimensity 1080 chip, Samsung ups the ante with the option of 6GB or 8GB RAM, so you can expect that it might run a bit more quickly with the latter version and be more responsive for gaming, videos, and multitasking.
What about the cameras? The Samsung Galaxy A34 5G actually has cameras with specs that are slightly less robust than the Moto G Stylus 5G (2023), including a 48MP main camera, 13MP front, 8MP ultra-wide, and 5MP macro. Since we haven’t reviewed this particular phone, we can’t speak to its performance compared to the Moto G Stylus 5G (2023). But you can likely expect typical Samsung photography results, and its Galaxy line is known for taking wonderful photos.
Note that you also get unique camera features with this phone, too, including auto framing, photo remaster to reduce blur and noise object eraser, and an AI tool. The Samsung Galaxy A34 5G won’t rival Samsung’s higher end Galaxy devices, but for taking photos you can share with others and post to social media, it will do just fine.
Moto G Stylus 5G (2023) vs. Samsung Galaxy A34 5G: Which should you buy?
If there ever were a toss-up between two very similar smartphones, it would be between the Moto G Stylus 5G (2023) vs. Samsung Galaxy A34 5G. They go toe-to-toe in so many departments, making it tough to choose between them.
If you want to go on specs alone, opt for the Moto G Stylus 5G (2023). It’s not only the newer of the two phones, introduced three months after the Galaxy A34 (though both are current devices introduced in the first half of 2023), but it has a slightly higher-res screen, can accept more optional memory should you want to store tons, and has better cameras. Let’s not forget the included stylus.
But there are a few reasons you might want to go with the Samsung Galaxy A34 5G instead. It offers more RAM if you opt for the higher-tier variant. It has an IP rating for water resistance, which can provide greater peace of mind if you prefer not to use a bulky waterproof case when you’re on the beach or by the pool. And it comes with a slightly faster-wired charger in the box. You can use a stylus with the Samsung Galaxy A34, but you would have to buy one separately, and the process wouldn’t be as seamless.
It's really a tough battle between these two. You’re best going with the Samsung Galaxy A34 5G if you have other compatible Samsung devices, like another person in the family with one or a pair of Galaxy earbuds, so you can enjoy the seamless connection among them. It’s also the better choice if you are considering upgrading down the line: you can get familiar with the Galaxy interface and One UI before upgrading to a more premium phone if you plan on doing so in the future. Otherwise, in terms of affordability, specs, and added features, the Motorola G Stylus 5G (2023) offers great value.
If neither of these phones sounds right for you, consider one of the other best Android phones under $400.
Good for productivity
Given the included stylus, fast processing power, decent cameras, and expandable storage, the Moto G Stylus 5G (2023) is a good mid-range phone for work, school, and a bit of entertainment in between. It’s a solid, relatively affordable phone that won’t break the bank but still offers premium features.
Join the Galaxy
A perfect entry into the Samsung Galaxy smartphone space, you can familiarize yourself with both Android 13 and Samsung’s One UI as well as how Galaxy devices seamlessly work with other compatible Samsung products with this phone before upgrading (if ever) to something higher end.
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Christine Persaud has been writing about tech since long before the smartphone was even a "thing." When she isn't writing, she's working on her latest fitness program, binging a new TV series, tinkering with tech gadgets she's reviewing, or spending time with family and friends. A self-professed TV nerd, lover of red wine, and passionate home cook, she's immersed in tech in every facet of her life. Follow her at @christineTechCA.
Samsung a34 has better camera in dxomark ranking on 92 place. Moto is on 84 place.Reply
Dimensity 1080 is better than Snapdragon 6.