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Moto G5 vs Moto G5 Plus: What’s the difference?

Moto G5 vs Moto G5 Plus: Lenovo launched the latest generation of its G family smartphones at MWC 2017 on Sunday, with the Moto G5 and G5 Plus, here’s how they stack up side by side.

Moto G5 vs G5 Plus: Specs at a glance

  Moto G5 Moto G5 Plus
Screen size 5-inches 5.2-inches
Screen resolution Full HD (1920×1080) Full HD (1920×1080)
Weight 145 grams 155 grams
OS Android 7.0 Android 7.0
Front camera 5-megapixels 5-megapixels
Rear camera 13-megapixels 12-megapixels
Processor Snapdragon 430 Snapdragon 625
Memory 2GB/3GB RAM 3GB RAM
Storage 16GB + microSD up to 256GB 32GB + microSD up to 256GB
Battery 2800mAh w/ rapid charging 3000mAh w/ Turbo Charging

Moto G5 vs Moto G5 Plus: What’s the difference?

The G5 lineup centres around three key experiences that Lenovo wanted to nail to entice users browsing the fiercely competitive affordable smartphone market: premium design elements, all-day battery life and powerful camera capabilities.

As with last year’s G4 twins, the G5 and G5 Plus exhibit similar design traits throughout although metal is a key component of the bodywork this time around, a material almost completely unseen on their plastic fantastic predecessors. The phones come in a gunmetal grey or pale gold hue, with a sandblasted metal back in both cases. Lenovo hasn’t skimped on the details either, with precision cut chamfers on each phones’ distinctive circular camera surround and metal hardware controls that feel substantial and satisfying to use. 

On the outside, the only hint at these phones more affordable nature is a colour-matched plastic band that skirts the edge of their backs, no doubt necessary to accommodate the antennas. It’s more accentuated on the smaller, more affordable Moto G5, which also adopts harder lines and sharper corners than the Plus, but such traits don’t make it any less comfortable to hold.

Both G5s also share in an unquestionably attractive Full HD IPS LCD. In both instances, they appear to be so vivid and offer deep enough blacks that you could be fooled into thinking that Lenovo has opted for AMOLED panels instead. At the very least, they look as though they’ll be able to tango with likes of Samsung’s 2017 A Series device on the visuals front come review time.

The smaller G5 sports a 5-inch display, whilst the G5 Plus rocks a 5.2-inch panel. In practice that makes both phones more friendly, ergonomically speaking, than the 5.5-inch display-laden G4s, which were great for enjoying media, but awkward to use one-handed; not to mention sharper on both accounts.

Moving to the software and in true Moto fashion, you’re presented with a near stock example of Android Nougat. Aside from the documented benefits of Google’s newest mobile OS, there are some small additional abilities present on both phones from Lenovo’s side of the fence. Quick launch gestures, as we’ve seen with previous G series handsets are intact, such as the ability to open the camera from sleep with a double twist of the wrist or activate the flashlight with a karate chop. To reinforce that premium attitude, the apps tray is now a swipe up on your main home screen, implemented in much the same way as you’d find on Googles Pixel phones.

Internally there are more obvious differences between these Gs, but despite different silicon initial impressions suggest you’d be hard-pressed to notice a disparity in real-world use; both the G5 and G5 Plus feel tightly wound through both navigation and app usage. Despite a larger battery, the Plus does benefit from faster 15W Turbo Charging too, which Lenovo says will give you six hours use from just 15 minutes charge time. That’s compared to just four hours use with the rapid charging tech on the vanilla G5. It’s also worth noting that both phones didn’t make the jump to USB-C, but that’s only a minor disappointment.

The G5’s main camera actually packs more pixels than the Plus’ 12-megapixel effort and now supports phase detection autofocus (PDAF), a feature previously reserved for the Plus line. In its place, the G5 Plus has improved autofocus too, with dual focus pixel technology and a dual LED flash (in place of a single LED as on the smaller G5). To round out the experience the Plus should bring superior low light performance to the table thanks to an impressively wide f/1.7 aperture and offers 4K video recording by way of its beefier processor and additional RAM.

Lenovo’s slated a mid-March launch for both the Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus, priced at £169 and £259 respectively, and we’re in little doubt that both handsets, like their predecessors, will cause quite a stir when they do touch down.

Read next: Our Moto G5 hands-on review and our Moto G5 Plus hands-on review

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