Each year, Google comes up with a new phone that offers users the best of Android. However, in 2015, the company decided to start a mobile network. This carrier, named Project Fi, runs on both Wi-Fi and cellular networks (with help from T-Mobile, Sprint, U.S. Cellular, and Three). The company even offers a handful of phones through Project Fi, making it a suitable choice for customers looking to get a Google-branded (Pixel) phone today. However, Project Fi also offers the Moto X4 Android One, which is exclusively available through its networks. Given that Moto and Google have been associated with each other in the past, this partnership is not particularly surprising.
Google Pixel 2 vs Moto X4
Interestingly, the phone was launched around the same time as the Pixel 2, which is Google’s flagship phone going into 2018. This phone has its own charm, given that it’s been built with Google’s design (made by HTC), reminiscent to the company’s Nexus lineup. Given that two similar devices are now available on Project Fi, customers can be hard pressed to pick a suitable option. This article will make your job easier. So without waiting any further, let’s compare the two Project Fi phones.
Google Pixel 2 vs Moto X4 best Project Fi phone comparison
Display and Design
Both phones come with a similar size, although the Moto X4 is slightly bigger with a 5.2-inch LCD panel while the Pixel 2 settles for a 5-inch AMOLED display. Both phones have a display resolution of 1920 x 1080. So technically, the Pixel 2 will have better pixel density in its display given that it’s smaller.
In terms of design, however, the Moto X4 definitely takes the cake here. It comes with a combination of metal and glass, which makes it somewhat of a fingerprint magnet, but definitely an eye catcher. The camera arrangement on the back is similar to Moto’s recent crop of smartphones, and will definitely strike a chord with the loyalists. The Pixel 2 leaves a lot to be desired given that it has a very clogged front panel, the massive top and bottom bezels don’t help either. The back uses the dual-tone color pattern that was used with the first gen Pixels, and is perhaps the only good thing about the Pixel 2 in terms of design. The Pixel 2 can be bought in Kinda Blue, Just Black, Clearly White colors while the Moto X4 is available in Super Black and Sterling Blue colors.
The Pixel 2 has one of the best mobile cameras going around right now, picking up from its predecessor from last year. The 12.2-megapixel rear camera sensor comes packed with OIS, along with a 27mm lens for a wide range of photo options. The front crams an 8-megapixel camera, which is more than decent as far as portraits are concerned.
The Moto X4 uses a slightly different arrangement of cameras as the rear panel consists of a 12-megapixel + 8-megapixel dual cameras with phase detection autofocus. The front comes with a massive 16-megapixel f/2.0 sensor which makes this the better option for selfies. If we’re talking about rear camera performance, however, it’s pretty hard to get past the Pixel 2 in terms of image quality. That’s not to say that the Moto X4 is bad, though.
This is an area of great concern for modern day mobile manufacturers. With each phone getting significantly better each year, to the point of making its predecessor obsolete, manufacturers have a tough time packing in the latest and greatest hardware year after year. Keeping this in mind, Google and Moto have been very wise with regards to onboard hardware.
The Pixel 2 comes with the octa-core Snapdragon 835 chipset, which is one of the best Qualcomm mobile SoC available right now. The Moto X4, however, takes a very balanced approach with the Snapdragon 630 octa-core unit, which is quite modest in comparison to the Pixel 2. Given that Moto is going for a budget/mid-ranged setup here, this isn’t very surprising. The Pixel 2 packs 4GB of RAM, which has become the norm in the industry while the Moto X4 comes with a modest 3GB RAM module.
Given the kind of features the two phones are packing, it can be said with certainty that they will definitely not disappoint the customers. The Moto X4 comes with Android 7.1 Nougat, although an update to Android 8.0 Oreo was promised before the end of 2017. The Pixel 2, however, comes with Android Oreo out of the box, and will be among the first devices to officially get new Android updates.
On paper, the Pixel 2 comes with a 2,700 mAh battery while the Moto X4 has a 3,000 mAh unit inside. However, when we look at overall battery performance, the Pixel 2 isn’t all that behind. In terms of web browsing, the Pixel 2 can come close to 11 hours and 9 minutes on LTE with the Moto X4 clocking a very decent 11 hours and 41 minutes on Google’s network. This suggests that the two phones aren’t all that different when it comes to battery life. The battery performance of each smartphone will differ depending on each user and his/her usage preferences. Keeping this in mind, it’s tough to call this round, but it seems like the Moto X4 has a slight advantage.
Water resistance has also become the norm in the mobile industry, with almost every leading mobile manufacturer carrying a water-resistant handset on their lineup. The Pixel 2 and the Moto X4 are no exceptions here. The Google offering comes with IP67 certification, while the Moto X4 has IP68 certification, making the latter slightly more powerful against water. To put it simply, the Moto X4 can last for 30 minutes in 1.5 meters of water while the Pixel 2 can run for 30 minutes in 1 meter of water.
The Pixel 2 comes in 64 and 128GB storage configurations with no microSD card slot for storage expansion. The Moto X4 comes with 32GB of storage which can be further expanded with the help of a microSD card. Advantage Moto X4.
The Moto X4 is definitely the cheaper option here as you would have expected. The Moto X4 Android One will set you back by only $399. The Pixel 2, on the other hand, is significantly expensive at $649 via Project Fi. Naturally, both handsets come unlocked, and can be used with any other network of your choice, so you won’t be forced to stick with Project Fi if you’re not satisfied.
While the two handsets were pretty much on par for the most part, the fact that the Moto X4 costs almost half of the Pixel 2 makes one think. Should you splurge on the $650 Pixel 2, which has a smaller display, but a vastly better camera, processor and RAM capacity? Or should you take the safer option and get the $400 Moto X4 Android One. Well, it really depends on what you want. If you’re looking to get the best of Android right now, you can’t do much better than the Pixel 2. But if the budget is a concern, the Moto X4 is a very good alternative as well.