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Motorola G Stylus 5G (2022) Review: A Great Mid-Ranger You Can Draw On

Moto G Stylus 5G 2022 AH Review
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Motorola is here to show that Samsung's not the only company that can make a stylus phone.

Motorola G Stylus 5G (2022)
$299.99
Rating
star star star star star_empty
Pros
  • Premium design
  • 120Hz display
  • Decent bottom-firing speaker
  • Stylus is sturdy and tough
  • Many ways to customize the software
  • Great battery life
  • Pretty good main camera performance
Cons
  • Pen accuracy could use some work
  • ultrawide camera needs work

Android Headlines was provided a Motorola G Stylus unit by AT&T. It was used for three weeks before this review was written.

There aren’t too many phones on the market with dedicated stylus’, and there’s a clear line between them. There’s the $1,099 Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra and there’s the $258 TCL Stylus. Android Headlines was given the opportunity to review a phone that’s in between these two handsets, the Motorola G Stylus 5G. Is this phone a worthy competitor to these other stylus phones? Let’s find out!

The Motorola G Stylus 5G has a familiar design, and that’s not a bad thing

Starting off with the design, Motorola decided to use the same premium materials for this phone that are used for its flagship phones. It shares the same design as the Moto Edge+ that launched earlier this year. The front has a flat display, but the back is clad in curved glass. The glass reflects and plays with the light in a pleasing way. Overall, it makes for a stunning-looking device.

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A welcome improvement over the Moto Edge+ is the position of the power and volume buttons. With the Edge+, they were up far too high on the device. That was only made worse by the fact that it was an extremely tall phone. On the Motorola G Stylus, the buttons are much lower and much more accessible.

The display is a nice LCD panel with 120Hz

Motorola has a thing about putting high-refresh-rate displays on its phones, even the mid-range ones. This is true with the Motorola G Stylus. This phone has a 6.8-inch LCD display with a resolution of 2460 x 1080. That’s pretty standard for most mid-range phones and even some flagships.

The colors and contrast are pretty nice, and that’s no small feat. We’ve all become accustomed to the colors and contrast that you get with OLED panels that it’s easy to forget about good LCD displays. There’s enough color and contrast with this panel to have a great viewing experience.

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This display also does a great job when it comes to sunlight visibility. I was able to see everything clearly even in the direct sunlight. You’ll only have an issue seeing elements if your phone is in dark mode. Even then, it’s not too hard. Overall, you won’t have any issues with the display on the Motorola G Stylus 5G.

The speaker is decent

When it comes to the smartphone experience, the speakers are an important part. The Motorola G Stylus 5G has a single-firing bottom speaker, and that was a bit disappointing when I found out.

However, the speaker is a pretty good performer. Up against phones like the Pixel 6a or Galaxy A53 5G, it doesn’t really stand a chance, but it’s good enough to defeat other mid-range phones.

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The sound is really full and punchy. The bass pops admirably without sounding too muddy. Also, the speaker handles vocals and the higher frequencies pretty well. You’ll hear a little distortion at the second-highest volume level. At the highest level, if you ever need it to be that high, the sound is powerful enough to fill the room pretty well.

Performance

It’s always easy to underestimate a mid-range phone, but this phone has been a good performer. It uses the MediaTek Helio G88 SoC, and that’s backed up my 128GB of storage and 6GB of RAM.

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While it’s not a flagship performer, you’re still able to do everything from browsing social media to gaming without much trouble. I did run into the occasional hiccup and stutter while navigating the software.

Gaming is also a good story

A big part of a phone’s performance is gaming, and I’m happy to report that you’ll do just fine with most of the games you’d find nowadays. Any 2D game will be handled perfectly well.

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Diving into the 3D world, you’ll start to see some stutters and lag, but not much. I loaded  Genshin Impact, Marvel Future Revolution, Dynasty Legends 2, and some other games onto this phone. While there were instances of stutters, all of the games were perfectly playable. The Processor handles the graphics like a champ, and I recommend using this phone for some serious gaming.

Camera

The Motorola G Stylus 5G comes with a pretty good camera package that’s good for quick shots. When it comes to the main camera, you’re going to have quality dynamic range to keep the shadows and highlights in check. Shots in well-lit environments come out with nice colors and good dynamic range.

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The ultrawide camera isn’t the best when it comes to overall detail. You’ll get a much wider field-of-view to capture more of the scene, but the details are non-existent. One picture I took of a bunch of trees did not turn out well at all.

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Low-light photography is a bit of a mixed bag. When the lights go down, we see the phone brighten up the scene pretty well. We see a fair amount of details retained in the picture, but there’s a bit more noise than You’d see with something like the Pixel 6a. Using the Night Vision mode the phone was able to boost the brightness of the photos even more, but as the lights got darker, it wasn’t able to focus on the subject. A good example of this is the controller in super low light. The phone was not able to find the focus at all.

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When it comes to the macro photography, I was able to get better results than with the Moto Edge+, honestly. The details came out rather soft in lower light, but it still managed to get pretty close to the subject. I’d say the macro photography is pretty strong.

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Battery

The Motorola G Stylus 5G is a really good performer in the battery department. I was always able to get through the day just fine with moderate usage. During the most intensive day, I was able to kill the battery after using the phone for about eight hours straight. That was with two hours of gaming, two hours of videos, two hours of social media, and two hours of using the camera. If you want a phone that can last the full day, then this phone is one to consider.

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Let’s talk about the stylus

Undoubtedly, one of the biggest parts of the experience will revolve around the stylus that’s housed in the phone. It sits on the right side of the phone and it comes out with a click. Taking the stylus out of the housing, I could feel that it was built sturdily. It’s made from metal, and that helps avoid accidental breaks.

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As for what you can do with the pen, you have a few built-in perks to help you utilize it. They’re really nothing to write home about, however. You have a tool to draw/write a note, take a screenshot, make a GIF, make a cinemagraph, make a live message, and a coloring book. You can assign different apps to the panel if you want.

The number of tools you get for the stylus and how many of the you can add to the panel is dwarfed by something like the TCL Stylus, admittedly.

As for the performance, it smoothly glides over the display without any hassle. The only issue has to do with the accuracy. It often gets confused when you’re trying to write or draw smaller items on the screen.

Should you buy the Motorola G Stylus 5G (2022)?

2022 brought a lot of competition in this price range. We have the Pixel 6a and the Samsung Galaxy A53 5G for instance. These phones are amazing performers, but they’re both more expensive than the Moto. This phone is a great performer in several departments. The screen is nice, the speakers are full, the performance is really good, and so is the camera. Also, we can’t forget the added utility of the built-in stylus.

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If you’re a Motorola phone user who’s looking for a great handset, then the Motorola G Stylus 5G is definitely one you should get. You can pick this phone up here.