The Moto G4 Plus has been a stellar device all along, packing a large 1080p display on board, and the software to match the crisp display. Moto launched a successor to this device earlier this year with an equally impressive display, albeit a little smaller in size. Now a lot of customers who purchased the Moto G4 Plus know fully well that it’s a mid-ranged offering. But that doesn’t mean you can upgrade every year. Unless you simply want the latest hardware, upgrading to a new device is foolhardy at times. But there are some situations where it might make sense to upgrade, and we’ll discuss a few such instances further in the article. For now, let’s see how the Moto G4 Plus fares against the successor in terms of hardware.
Moto G5 Plus vs Moto G4 Plus
Motorola Moto G5 Plus vs Moto G4 Plus budget phone spec comparison: should you upgrade?
Display & Design
The Moto G5 Plus comes with a 5.2-inch Full HD display on board, which is slightly smaller compared to the 5.5-inch display that we saw on the Moto G4 Plus last year. However, the smaller frame allows the smartphone to do so much more, especially with regards to single handed operation. There’s not much to differentiate in terms of display quality, as the Moto G5 Plus uses an LCD panel, much like the predecessor. The thickness is down as the Moto G5 Plus is only 7.7mm thick. It’s clear that the design of the smartphone has received particular attention this time around, which is a good ploy by Moto as most manufacturers don’t tend to concentrate a lot on the design of mid-ranged offerings.
The Moto G4 Plus uses a 5.5-inch Full HD display as we’ve already mentioned, and is slightly bulkier compared to the new variant. Even though the smartphone comes with a heavier exterior, it still houses a bigger display. So it ultimately comes down to user preference. Keeping the design and the display in mind, both smartphones are pretty much on par in my book. So if you like the bigger display and don’t mind the bulk, the Moto G4 Plus will do just fine. However, if you need prefer easy operation and don’t mind the smaller display, the G5 Plus is the way to go.
One might think that the camera on the Moto G5 Plus is slightly downgraded, but that’s not really the case. Even though it packs a smaller 12-megapixel sensor this time around, Moto has put in a lot of work into the device to make it a very capable camera phone. It comes with a f/1.7 sensor, which is pretty much up there with the best in the business right now. On the front, the Moto G5 Plus comes with a f/2.2 sensor on board, which isn’t exactly the fanciest selfie camera but will still get the job done pretty well.
The Moto G4 Plus is packing a 16-megapixel rear camera with an aperture size of f/2.0. This means that despite the camera being high on megapixel count, it’s not nearly as good as the Moto G5 Plus. Some of the best camera phones in the business today don’t have a massive megapixel count on their sensors. Most of the work is done under the hood with regards to aperture size and some software related features. So we think the Moto G5 Plus is well worth your money if the camera is all that you’re looking for in a mid-ranger.
Naturally, the Moto G5 Plus is expected to have some improvements in this area. The smartphone comes with the octa-core Snapdragon 625 chipset under the hood, which is by no means a high-end SoC but is pretty decent for a mid-ranger such as this one. The chipset comes with eight Cortex-A53 cores of 2.0 GHz each, promising pretty decent performance. The graphics aspect is handled by the Adreno 506 GPU here, which is a highly capable GPU for a smartphone such as this one. While the Moto G5 Plus surely won’t break any benchmark records, it’s no doubt a stellar handset in terms of raw power. The G5 Plus is available with 2, 3 or 4GB of RAM offering a variety of choices to the customers.
The Moto G4 Plus is packing the Snapdragon 617 octa-core SoC, which is no doubt a downgrade compared to the SD625. However, considering the fact that it’s a year old device, the Moto G4 Plus still performs pretty well. The SD617 comes with four Cortex-A53 cores of 1.2 GHz and four Cortex-A53 cores of 1.5 GHz. The chipset includes the Adreno 405 GPU. If we’re comparing the performance of the two smartphones, there is no doubt that the Moto G5 Plus will come out on top. This is not particularly a surprise as it runs newer hardware on board. But sometimes CPU power doesn’t determine the true performance of a device. Much like the Moto G5 Plus, this handset comes in 2, 3, and 4GB RAM variants.
Both phones are packing a 3,000 mAh battery under the hood, so one would assume that there’s not much to differentiate between the two handsets. However, battery performance is a lot more than just raw hardware. The Moto G5 Plus comes with a slightly improved hardware + software combination on board which should enhance battery life to a great extent. Further, it features a relatively smaller display, which means there are lesser pixels to crunch, ultimately resulting in a significantly better battery life overall.
We also have to factor in the CPU here, since it has a big impact on a smartphone’s battery life. Keeping this in mind, I would assume the Moto G5 Plus will have a better battery backup, but only marginally. You might need to juice up your phone if you use it heavily throughout the day. But if you only moderately use it during the day, you might be able to eke out a day or perhaps more from the smartphone’s battery. There’s no real advantage here, so we can’t adjudge a winner in this segment. You can’t go wrong with either device, really.
The Moto G4 Plus was sold in 16/32/64GB storage configurations. Further, the company even offered a microSD card slot for storage expansion, which was a very wise move on Moto’s part. It also comes with a fingerprint scanner embedded right under the front home button, which is where most manufacturers are opting to place these sensors of late. The phone was launched with Android 6.0 Marshmallow by default, and Moto is in the process of sending an update very soon.
The Moto G5 Plus features pretty much the same set of hardware as it comes in 16/32/64GB storage combinations, allowing users to further expand the storage with a microSD card. There’s Android 7.0 Nougat running by default here, assuring users the best experience in terms of software. Moto is traditionally known for its feature rich OS optimization, and the Moto G5 Plus is no exception. The fingerprint scanner is located on the front here as well. In terms of features, the Moto G5 Plus and the Moto G4 Plus are almost on par. But if you were looking to get a perfectly packed device, we don’t think you can do much better than the Moto G5 Plus right now.
Should you upgrade?
It’s no secret that the Moto G5 Plus is a newer and better version of the Moto G4 Plus. We would be very surprised if it wasn’t. But when we talk about upgrading from the Moto G4 Plus to the Moto G5 Plus, there are a handful of factors to take into account. Firstly, if you recently got the Moto G4 Plus, it doesn’t really make sense to upgrade this early in the cycle. But if you purchased it right after it was announced last year, you might want to consider switching after weighing the pros and cons of the successor. In most cases, the customers will probably be happy with the Moto G4 Plus, especially since the hardware changes don’t exactly justify an upgrade.
The one primary reason we feel people will want to upgrade to the new Moto G5 Plus is the camera. With a largely improved camera sensor, shutterbugs would surely consider the switch. We also have to consider the size of the device. As I’ve already mentioned, the opinion on the perfect smartphone size is divided right now. This is why most manufacturers offer two display sizes for most flagships. So if you’re looking for a power packed mid-ranger with a significantly improved hardware, the Moto G5 Plus is the device to own right now. However, if the camera or the new design isn’t really appealing to you, then it makes sense to stick with the Moto G4 Plus.