Battery Life Testing and Camera Samples
On the plus side, Motorola has designed an incredibly slick UI for advanced photo controls. There's flash controls, HDR control, Slo-Motion control, Panorama mode, GPS on/off (for geotagging) and Quick Capture -- a unique feature that enables you to launch straight into the camera with two quick twists of the wrist. It's awesome for hopping into the camera when something spur of the moment is happening in front of you.
Photos in broad daylight turned out well, but dealing with confusing lighting scenarios is clearly not this sensor's forte. 1080p video capture was also above average (see our video demo on the first page of this review). If you're planning to use the camera just to snap moments for sharing on Instagram, you may not care about the extra noise incurred when shooting in low light, or the extra blur in photos taken as the sun sets. But, rest assured, this is no high-end sensor. It's one area of the Moto X that's decidedly middle-of-the-road.
On the battery front, there's a 2,200mAh Li-Polymer cell. Sadly, it's not accessible by the end user, so you can't just swap in a new cell if this one gets exhausted. That said, Motorola claims that it can last up to 24 hours for the average user -- no doubt a feat that is helped by a lower-resolution panel and a processor that isn't exactly on the cutting edge in late 2013.
In our tests, the phone managed to hold up to that. During average use -- daily texts, a few voice calls, hours of surfing, checking social feeds, having 4-5 accounts with Push notifications enabled, etc. -- we were able to stretch the phone's battery to around 23.5 hours. Heavier users will see that fall by a few hours, but still, that's impressive.