Motorola have been making phones for what seems like ages now – and they’ve built of quite the reputation along the way. Their Moto brand offers phones for all kinds of budgets, with the E series sitting firmly at the lower end. The Moto E3 is still a good phone though – and it’s a real steal, as long as you’re only looking for a phone to handle the basics.
A lot of budget phones have a pretty clunky design, but the Moto E3 is a refreshing departure from that. Its smooth edges fit snugly in the hand and give it a real sense of style. It feels sturdy, too – making you less worried that it’ll break at drop of a hat. In a really rare move for a budget phone, the E3 has a splashproof coating – a feature that even some higher end phones lack. It’s obviously not designed for a dip in your local pool, but it should withstand spills and light scratches – and it’s a lovely touch.
The screen, too, is quite good for a budget phone. It’s large, bright and colours show up really nicely. It’s quite low on the resolution side, though, so you’ll find that text and images are noticeably less sharp than they would be on higher end phones. But for a budget handset, there’s certainly not too much to complain about.
The same goes for the E3’s camera set-up, with an 8 Megapixel main camera and 5 megapixels on the front. The rear camera picks up colours quite nicely and is capable of some good shots in daylight. The front-facing camera is fine, too and should handle selfies and video calling without too many problems. In low light, though, neither camera will perform too well – and zooming in to take a picture can leave your image looking cloudy. If that’s an issue – and you’re willing to spend a little bit more, we’d happily recommend the Sony E5.
The Moto E3 also has good battery life and should be able to last all day on a single charge. It’s not designed for more intensive tasks, though, so if you’re multi-tasking or playing power-hungry games, you’ll soon find the power bar running down. But it’s certainly more than adequate for a budget phone.
The Moto E3 does make some compromises though – most noticeably in terms of power. It’s nowhere near as fast as a higher end or mid-range phone, which can be frustrating if you’re used to a phone with a more powerful processor. That’s not to say it’s too slow for basic tasks though – you shouldn’t have any major problems taking pictures or browsing the web. And it’s certainly quicker than a lot of other phones at this price point.
The E3’s also made compromises with its built-in memory, which at 8GB, probably won’t be enough for most users over the long term. But it’s not all bad, since you can expand the E3’s storage with a MicroSD card. They’re pretty cheap – and popping one in couldn’t be easier. So if a compromise had to be made, we don’t mind it being a smaller internal memory. And if you’re willing to pick up a MicroSD card, it won’t bother you, either.
It might sit at a low price point, but the Moto E3 earns high marks from us as a budget phone. Yes, it’s only designed to handle the smartphone basics, but it handles them very nicely. It does compromise on power and memory, but this isn’t a phone for anyone who needs plenty of speed, or oodles of on-board memory. Instead, it’s a reliable, budget-friendly all-rounder. If you’re only interested in the basics – but you want them done well – then this is the phone for you.