Motorola Moto E: Hands-on first impressions

Announced at a media event in London, the Moto E is Motorola’s latest attempt at offering a premium and almost unmodified Android handset to the budget end of the smartphone market.


That was the aim of the Moto G last year, which went on to become Motorola’s most popular handset ever - and now the company is back to try again at an even lower pricepoint with the Moto E.

Read More - Motorola Moto G Review

The Moto E will be available in the UK and 43 other countries in the coming weeks, and is priced at just £89 unlocked and without a contract. The handset has a 4.3-inch screen and offers a similar design to that of the Moto G and even the flagship Moto X. All three phones share a premium matt finish on their backs - and the rear cover of the E can be swapped for one of nine different colours.


Motorola has given the Moto E a Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 dual-core processor clocked at 1.2GHz with 1GB of RAM, and although there’s just 4GB of internal storage, a microSD card slot means this can be increased by up to 32GB.

It’s difficult to judge a phone during these smash-and-grab handset launches and limited hands-on time, but our initial impressions of the Moto E are very good. The phone felt responsive and a device we’re sure those looking for a sub-£100 Android phone would be very pleased with.


Sharing a similar design and feel with the G and X gives the newest model an air of quality that is a welcome surprise at this price range.


At 12.2mm and 142g, the Moto E isn’t particularly slender, but you can’t expect an ultra-thin handset at this price point. Also in keeping with the bargain-basement price is the screen, which looks bright and clear, with an even backlight - but it’s 540 x 960 resolution and 256 per inch pixel density means it looks a little grainy compared to more expensive alternatives.

The phone runs Android 4.4 KitKat - something Motorola is keen to point out that some of its rivals from Samsung cannot do - and it looks almost exactly as Google intended, with very little changes from standard.


Around the back, you will find a 5-megapixel camera, but there's no flash. And there's bad news for selfie fans - no front-facing camera.

The Moto E is powered by a 1,980mAh battery, and although this may sound small, Motorola is claiming it’ll be good for all-day use - we’ll be sure to check this when we get a Moto E in for review, so check back soon for that.

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