After the launch of the original Moto X, Motorola became something of an unsung hero in the smartphone game, offering users the choice to create their own smartphone, allowing them to express their own taste. With stock Android and a refreshing approach to included features and software design, Motorola has steadily gained a following of users that enjoy their way of doing things, and now they're back with the latest Moto X. Similarly to last year's Moto X, the Moto X Style has grown in size once again, to a fairly sizeable 5.7-inches, which may or may not turn users of the original Moto X (those who will be coming up to the end of a two-year contract looking to upgrade).
In terms of design, it looks like Motorola has stuck with the metal frame and curved back they perfected with last year's Moto X. However, it appears that the metallic dimple below the camera has gone, and beens stretched into a sort of center panel for the rear of the device where the camera, Motorola logo and flash are to be found. A key design feature of the 2014 Moto X was of course the flash ring around the camera, so it'll be interesting to see how existing users react to this design choice. Elsewhere, Motorola have kept the two speaker grills (which are now stereo speakers) on the front, which will allow for some accents with Moto Maker, and there's also now a front-facing flash to go along with that 8-megapixel front-facing camera. With a wide variety of Moto Maker trims, including three different metal trims and the return of leather and wood and new Silicon options.
There's a 5.7-inch, Quad HD display here, which is a lot larger than previous models, but Motorola is saying that this is physically no larger than an iPhone 6 Plus and not much larger than the Galaxy S6 Edge. Motorola is packing this with a 3,000 mAh battery and a TurboCharger 25 which makes it the fastest-charging smartphone in the world. Powering all of this is a 1.8 Ghz Snapdragon 808 hexa-core CPU as found in the LG G4, and there's a comfortable 3GB of RAM working here as well.
On the software side of things, Motorola has stuck with stock Android yet again, this time around it's the latest Android 5.1.1 Lollipop. This is one of the main reasons Android fans have been pulled toward the Moto X since the original, and it's nice to see that a purchase by Lenovo has had little to do with the direction of the company. Motorola haven't forgotten about their special sauce however, and this time around they've improved upon Moto Active, Moto Voice and their gestures as well.
One are that Motorola has really bought their A Game with is the camera, which DxOMark rank among the top three smartphone cameras out there. The 21-megapixel f/2.0 rear-facing camera is capable of 4K video recording, it has a dual flash and a ton of other features. The same goes for the front-facing 5-megapixel 87-degree wide-angle lens, and both are super-quick and easy to use.
Only time will tell how existing Moto X owners will take to the slightly tweaked and larger design that Motorola have introduced with the Moto X Style, but those looking for a smartphone with some thoughtful software features, a subtle yet unique and customizable design still have an excellent choice in Motorola's latest. They've stuck with stock Android, allowing for a more fun and colorful experience with Android Lollipop than the dark KitKat of last year's launch. Motorola have also promised universal 4G LTE support in North America as well as a price that will be $200 - $300 less than its competitors, available in 16, 32 or 64GB storage options.