Among the tier-I smartphone manufacturers, no other brand seems to have gotten the mid-range sorted like the way Motorola has. The company that heralded the future of the mobile phone almost 45 years ago has seen a lot of ups and downs in its mobile phone business. But while the likes of Samsung and Apple are busy trying to make their premium segment smartphones like the Galaxy S9 and all the recent iPhones, the Lenovo-owned Motorola bets big on its mid-range smartphones especially the Moto G series.
The first generation Moto G was the phone that helped Motorola make a comeback of sorts into the smartphone game. Almost like pulling the brand out of the oblivion of being forgotten forever. Ever since the Moto G, there has been no looking back for Motorola and after a successful Moto G second generation through Moto G5, now in 2018, Motorola has launched the 6th generation of the Moto G called the Moto G6 series. The series comprises of three phones the regular Moto G6, the top-end Moto G6 Plus and the more affordable Moto G6 Play.
All three phones look essentially identical to each other, except they come with differing specifications. But while Motorola has launched the phones officially in the UK and some other markets, it is yet to launch it in one of its biggest markets – India.
India has grown to become one of the creamy layers for many smartphone OEMs especially so for Chinese brands like Xiaomi. The brand which began selling its smartphones in 2014 with a very small user base, has now grown to become the largest selling smartphone brand in the country – thanks in part to its Redmi Note series which directly competes with the Moto G lineup.
While last year it was the Redmi Note 4 going head-to-head with the Moto G5 and G5 Plus and later the Moto G5S and G5S Plus, this year Motorola will have to face fiercer competition from the Redmi Note 5 Pro. The smartphone has almost all the ingredients of being called the mid-range king and it already wears the crown with pride. But Motorola can still shake up the mid-range market and disturb the sanctity of the Redmi Note 5 Pro's dominion.
Although Motorola hasn't yet launched the much-awaited Moto G6 series in India, it is expected to do so in the next month (i.e. May). But the Redmi Note 5 Pro has already secured some loyal customer base because it has been on the market for nearly two months now. However, there are some loyal Motorola fans who are waiting for the Moto G6 to launch. But is it the right thing to do? Is waiting for the Moto G6 worth it or should you go and buy the Redmi Note 5 pro instead?
To answer that, we should first know what our requirements are. Let's take a quick look at their specifications.
Moto G6 Play vs. Moto G6 vs. Moto G6 Plus vs. Redmi Note 5 Pro: Specifications
|Moto G6 Play||Moto G6||Moto G6 Plus||Redmi Note 5 Pro|
|Display||5.7-inch HD+ (1440x720p) IPS LCD, Gorilla Glass (unspecified version)||5.7-inch Full HD+ (2160x1080p) IPS LCD, Gorilla Glass 3||5.93-inch Full HD+ (2160x1080p) IPS LCD, Corning Gorilla Glass 3||5.99-inch Full HD+ IPS LCD, Gorilla Glass (unspecified version)|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 octa-core @ 1.4GHz||Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 octa-core @ 1.8GHz||Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 octa-core @ 2.2GHz||Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 octa-core @ 1.8GHz|
|Rear camera||Single camera: 13MP with f/2.0 aperture, PDAF||Dual camera: 12MP + 5MP with f/1.8 aperture and PDAF||Dual camera: 12MP + 5MP with f/1.8 aperture and PDAF||Dual camera: 12MP + 5MP with f/2.0 aperture and PDAF|
|Front camera||8MP with LED flash||8MP with LED flash||8MP with LED flash||20MP with f/2.2 aperture and KED flash|
|Android version/UI||Stock Android 8.0 Oreo||Stock Android 8.0 Oreo||Stock Android 8.0 Oreo||Android 7.1.2-bases MIUI 9|
As you can see from the quick specification comparison table above, the Moto G6 Play and the Moto G6 are no match to the Redmi Note 5 Pro in terms of the processor. However, the Motorola G6 Plus comes close with a Snapdragon 630 SoC, but it is still a little low-powered than the SD 636 in the Redmi Note 5 Pro.
In terms of the camera's all three Motorola smartphones have the exact same 8MP front-facing camera with a dedicated LED flash, whereas the Redmi Note 5 Pro features a 20MP selfie shooter. We would have liked a bigger selfie camera at least on the Moto G6 Plus.
Nonetheless, the rear cameras on the Moto G6 and Moto G6 Plus are the same 12MP + 5MP setup which has a lower aperture than the identical 12MP + 5MP setup of the Redmi Note 5 Pro. This means the Motorola G6 and G6 Plus will have better low-light photography at least on paper.
Apart from that, the battery capacity on the Moto G6 and G6 Plus is also smaller than that of the Redmi Note 5 Pro and the Moto G6 Play which come with massive 4000mAh power cells.
From the specs sheet, we can ascertain that Motorola is aiming to cater to a very diverse user base with the Moto G6 series, with the Moto G6 Play aimed at the first-time buyers and the Moto G6 and G6 Plus targeted towards the more mature smartphone user. But the Redmi Note 5 Pro delivers a solid package overall.
Aesthetically speaking, the design of the Moto G6 series seems more appealing, especially with the glass back panel and the circular rear camera module. The Redmi Note 5 Pro with its vertically aligned dual rear camera setup looks like a rip-off of the iPhone X from the back – albeit without the glass back.
Moto G6 series vs. Redmi Note 5 Pro: Price
Another thing to keep in mind is the pricing. Motorola has always charged a slight premium for its G-series compared to similarly specced phones from the Chinese brands. This may be due to the Motorola brand name and the slightly better build-quality that Motorola has on offer. We suspect that the Moto G6 series too will be priced higher than the Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro – at least the Moto G6 and Moto G6 Plus, if not the lower-specced Moto G6 Play.
The Moto G6 series price starts from $199 (approx. 13,200) all the way up to EUR 299 (approx. Rs 24,300). The Moto G6 Play's price starts at $199 (approx. Rs 13,200) for the 2GB/16GB variant, while the Moto G6 starts at $249 (approx. Rs 16,500) and the Moto G6 Play tops them all at EUR 299 or roughly Rs 24,300.
So as you can see, the Moto G6 series isn't going to be cheap. However, we expect Motorola to launch the phones at slightly lower prices in India considering the competition. Then again, the Moto G6 Plus -- which is the closest competitor to the Redmi Note 5 Pro -- won't be less than Rs 18,000 – Rs 20,000. But despite this the Moto G6 series looks more premium, so the heavier price-tags are a little understandable.
So is it wise to wait for the Moto G6 series?
Having said that, the Redmi Note 5 Pro is still hard to get your hands on, because of the so-called "flash-sale" model through which the phone is sold in the country. But if you are planning to buy one then go ahead and try your luck. However, if you are planning to wait for the Moto G6 series get ready to shell out a little extra.