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Moto Z Play Unboxing and First Impressions

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Just a brief history guys.

Motorola was one of three popular smartphones in the country 15 years back along with Nokia and Ericsson (now Sony). When Samsung and Apple rose to fame with Android and iOS in tow, Motorola suffered massive loss of market share and eventually adopted themselves to Android as well. Motorola was divided into two – Motorola Solutions and Motorola Mobility. Google bought Motorola Mobility in 2011 and brought the company back on the map of presence in the US and Latin Americas. In 2014, Google sold Motorola Mobility to Lenovo but kept many of its patents. Lenovo maintained the management structure and the company is still holding headquarters in Chicago, Illinois like a separated entity.

When we learned about the news, we knew its a matter of time before Lenovo brings Motorola back to the Philippine market. And we were not disappointed. Earlier this month, Motorola or now Moto has made its grand return to the Philippines and brought in their latest smartphones to our market. They were so many that it completes the all price range from entry level to mid range to flagship. The Moto Z is the company’s current flagship but we got our eyes fixed on the Moto Z Play, it is the company’s contender for the premium midrange line.  We can’t wait a review unit so we decided to buy one yesterday. Come on guys, let’s take it out of the box!

Moto Z Play:

  • 2.0 octa core Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor
  • Adreno 506 graphics
  • 3GB RAM
  • 32GB internal memory expandable via MicroSD up to 256GB
  • 5.5-inch Full HD Super AMOLED display (1920 x 1080 pixels)
  • 16 megapixel rear facing camera with PDAF, laser autofocus and dual LED flash
  • 5 megapixel front facing camera
  • Dual SIM, Dual Standby
  • 4G/LTE, WiFi, Bluetooth, Fingerprint Scanner, USB Type C
  • GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS
  • 3,510 mAh battery
  • Android 6.0 Marshmallow upgradable to Android 7.0 Nougat
  • Price: P22,999
  • Status: Available at select MemoXpress and Silicon Valley stores

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What’s inside the box?

  • Moto Z Play unit
  • USB cable
  • Wall adapter with cable
  • Earphones
  • Wooden case Moto Mod (free)
  • JBL Soundboost mod (free until October 31)
  • SIM card ejector tool

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Our unit has combination of gold and white which makes the Moto Z Play a mixture of elegance and sophistication. It shouts premium all over with its metal and glass construction. It is also quite hefty at 165 grams. The reason for its weight is the beefy 3,510 mAh battery. We will be testing its endurance in the coming days.

Now let’s talk about the Moto Mods. This is Motorola’s vision of modularity which quite different from LG on the G5. Magnetic pins are found at the lower back that snaps on any supported Moto Mod. Putting it is very easy. Just place the mod at the back and it snap in. It won’t fall off or anything as it hold very well at the back. When you buy a Moto Z Play, it comes with a wooden case mod for free. The JBL Soundboost mod is free only with the Moto Z Play until today, October 31. Beyond it will be a separate purchase. But if you get a Moto Z or Moto Z Play through Globe which will be available soon, it will come with Moto Mods as a bundle.

Going through the software, Google purist will love the stock Android UI. Since Moto’s former owner, Google, is keeping the patents, expect more Moto phones with stock Android UI. The Moto Z Play is also eligible for an upgrade to Android 7.0 Nougat very soon. Motorola has also put is own useful tricks like gestures and actions. They are turned off by default but you can turn it on and you might find it useful.

Its a wrap guys! Pretty short, right? Honestly we have not explored the phone much yet and we have not installed any apps yet. Anyway, if you are gunning for the Moto Z Play, we think it is worth your look. But if you can hold a bit, please do wait for our full review as we bring the Moto Z Play to Vietnam as our travel buddy. 🙂