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Moto G5 Review

We review the budget smartphone from Motorola, the Moto G5, with a 13mp camera, and fingerprint sensor.

| Moto G5 in Camera Phones

Moto G5 Review: Moto G5 (1)

The Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus, are part of Moto's entry-level Android smartphone range. The Moto G range started off as a budget option, proving that you could get a good smartphone for not a lot of money, and as the years have gone on, the phones have improved in quality, and increased in price. The Moto G5 features a 5inch screen, 13mp camera, has a fingerprint sensor, and is available for around £159-169.

Moto G5 Features

Moto G5 Review: Moto G5 (3)

The 5th generation of the Moto G, the G5 comes in two versions, the Moto G5, and Moto G5 Plus, here we go over the main differences between the models, along with the previous versions, the G4 and G4 Plus, and the newer version, the G5S. Confused yet? 

Moto G4 Moto G5 Moto G5S Moto G4 Plus Moto G5 Plus
13mp f/2.0 13mp f/2.0 16mp f/2.0 16mp f/2.0 12mp f/1.7 
5mp f/2.2 selfie camera 5mp f/2.2 selfie camera 5mp f/2.0 selfie camera 5mp f/2.2 selfie camera 5mp f/2.2 selfie camera
5.5inch screen (1080p) 5inch screen (1080p) 5.2inch screen (1080p) 5.5inch screen (1080p) 5.2inch screen (1080p)
FullHD video FullHD video FullHD video FullHD video 4K video capture
- Fingerprint sensor Fingerprint sensor Fingerprint sensor Fingerprint sensor
Dual LED flash LED flash LED flash Dual LED flash Dual LED flash
16/32GB 16GB 32GB storage 16/32/64GB 32GB storage


The amount of memory (RAM) and storage you get varies, depending on how much you're willing to spend, and the smartphone can be configured on the Moto website. The Moto G5, from Amazon UK, features 3GB RAM, and dual SIM support, which is generous, although the 16GB storage may seem a little limiting, depending on how many apps, photos, videos or music you want to store. With 16GB, you only actually get around 10GB available, as a lot is used by the phone, so if you can, going for a 32GB version may be better. You can expand the storage with a MicroSD card.

The Moto G4 and G5 series is said to be "water repellant" which means that it's not waterproof, so you should avoid water if possible. The Moto G3 was actually water resistant, which was nice.

The phone is running Android v7.0 and the pre-installed software is limited to some of the more essential apps. This gives you more space for your own apps, and makes the phone responsive in use. The camera will record FullHD video, and there is a high-speed video mode available as well. 

Moto G5 Review: Moto G5 (4)

Key Features

  • 13mp camera sensor
  • f/2.0 aperture
  • Phase detection auto-focus (PDAF)
  • LED flash
  • 5mp f/2.2 selfie camera
  • 5inch screen, 1080p resolution, Gorilla Glass 3
  • HDR shooting
  • FullHD video
  • ISO100 to ISO3200
  • MicroSD card slot
  • Fingerprint sensor
  • Removable 2800mAh battery
  • Available in grey or gold

Moto G5 Handling

Moto G5 Review: Moto G5 (5)

With a 5inch screen, the Moto G5 has a fairly compact body for a modern smartphone, as most tend to have larger screens. The fingerprint sensor is at the bottom and this can be used to unlock the phone once you've registered your fingerprint(s) with it. Unfortunately, it doesn't double as a home button, so that the screen space is still used by the home and other buttons. 

The combination of metal back and plastics gives the phone a more premium feel, and the design is quite clean, with just a "moto" logo at the top. 

On the side is the usual unlock / power buttons, and volume controls. The power / unlock button has a texture making it easier to find. There's a headphone socket on the top, and a MicroUSB socket at the bottom (not type-C). 

An AnTuTu Benchmark score of 44621, along with a GeekBench score of 601 (single-core), and 2481 (multi-core) means it's not particularly fast, scoring a lower score than the HTC U Play. However, despite these scores, general use of the phone, including web browsing, seemed quick enough. The phone is running Android 7.0.

The screen is bright, but viewing it outdoors in bright light can be a bit tricky at times as it's quite reflective. 

Moto G5 Review: Moto G5 (8)

You can use the touchscreen to set the focus point, and pressing the photo button on the right-hand side will bring up the shooting modes, which includes:

  • Professional mode
  • Slow motion
  • Panorama
  • Video 
  • Photo

The Professional mode lets you manually adjust a number of different settings including metering, white balance, self-timer, ISO, and exposure compensation. You need to access the Professional mode to access full camera settings. Otherwise, the photo app is quite basic but does give access to autoHDR which will help give better dynamic range in tricky situations. 

You can also quickly access the camera when the phone is locked by shaking or twisting the phone in your hand. The camera has quick shooting and is able to take a photo quickly after being unlocked. 

Moto G5 Review: Moto G5 Battery

Battery life - Battery life is rated at 2800mAh which is quite good for an entry-level smartphone. As the battery can be removed, you could always take a spare with you if you think you're going to run out of power. 

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