Motorola PHOTON 4G User Reviews
Overal user rating
The overall rating is the average of all user reviews, while the overall alternatives are the ones that has been listed most.
Camera7.4/10Multimedia7.3/10Internet6.8/10Call quality8.5/10Battery6.2/10Reception8.1/10Display8.2/10Build quality8.7/10Text input7/10Everyday usage7.4/10UI speed6.3/10
Post new review
Please note that each user review reflects the opinion of its respectful author and not of Phone Arena.
posted on 17 Mar 2013, 01:46 (Posts: 202; Member since: 14 Mar 2013)
Moto photon 4g
sarge77 has owned it for more than one year before publishing this review
Love this phone for my first dual core I have alot of fun. It has great reception havent had alot of problems that others have besides the texting issue kinda buggy. The battery for this is isnt at all enough to last you 3hrs of internet usage. Display has good viewing angles no complaints playing movies, videos work great without any problems 1080p which if you have 2.3.5 is supports it but not sure why if playing that high quality videos is slow motion maybe 5fps. Oh yeah has 1080p video recording.Build quality 10/10Reception 9/10Call quality 8/10Internet 9/10Multimedia 9/10Camera 9/10UI speed 8/10Everyday usage 9/10Text input 5/10Display 9/10Battery 4/10
- quality of the phone is great
- pictures look good
- 1080p is choppy
- texting has some issues kinda buggy
- battery is poor best way to out it is buy mutliple batteries and keep them all charged and swap them out
0 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 05 Feb 2012, 13:07 (Posts: 76; Member since: 03 Feb 2012)
Yankchef has owned it for less than year before publishing this review
I have had this phone now for about 6 months now and thought it would be a good time to write a review!
The wireless radios in this are absolutely awesome! Even in really rural locations i could still get a signal, but it would drop calls in said locations. Browsing the internet is a real pleasure! the duel core processor helps load pages extremely fast, perfectly suitable for loading full pages as well and not just mobile sites, with a good 4g or wifi it is almost as fast as my laptop.
The camera is ok, when compared to others out there in the top end spectrum it doesnt measure up and I would say this is one of this devices biggest limits. I will say that the duel led flash makes a great keychain flashlight replacement! Ui is ok, this is my first android so i do not have a base for comparison, I have swapped it out for ex launcher pro and am much much happier with the results overall, speed and battery life as well as overall functionality have been increased dramatically. The webtop function seems cool, but i have not used it yet. I do really like the zumocast software/unlimited data combo. It makes an sd card pretty much useless.
Text input stock is alright, issue I have found is installing aftermarket keyboards (slideit/stock gingerbread kb etc) I love how they work but they lag when trying to search so i have gone back to stock as it loads instantly when i press on a search query.
The display i actually like, it adjusts the brightness automatically and does so extremely...Build quality 9/10Reception 10/10Call quality 10/10Internet 9/10Multimedia 9/10Camera 6/10UI speed 9/10Everyday usage 10/10Text input 8/10Display 8/10Battery 7/10
- Wireless Radios/World Phone
- Separate HDMI Port
- Motorola exclusive Zumocast/Webtop
- High end Video playback is choppy
posted on 09 Jan 2012, 17:23 (Posts: 506; Member since: 07 Aug 2011)
305Bucko has owned it for less than year before publishing this review
in short AWESOME radios 2g/3g/4g/ wifi bluetooth ALL get great reception and range. Call quality always good with motorola. Ugly color rendering on screen with low spectrum of color range. Camera may be 8MP but I've seen 3.2MP with same quality.Build quality 9/10Reception 10/10Call quality 10/10Internet 9/10Multimedia 10/10Camera 8/10UI speed 10/10Everyday usage 10/10Text input 10/10Display 7/10Battery 8/10
- WORLD PHONE!!!
- WIFI distance
- display colors are poor
- display refresh is slow
- camera is meeeh
- its bulky yet battery is not amazong
2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 07 Sep 2011, 04:34 (Posts: 7; Member since: 02 Sep 2011)
VERY Pleased with this phone!
M-Walsh has owned it for less than month before publishing this review
The responsiveness of the phone is excellent. No lag time at all. The screen is beautiful - very clear and not oversaturated like Samsung's AMOLED screens which seem a bit harsh and cartoonish. One reviewer mentioned that the kickstand opens in the wrong direction but in fact it works fine in BOTH directions (as mentioned in the instructions) so if you're plugged into the charger or HDMI port the phone still supports itself.
The phone is very solid and the soft touch back doesn't show fingerprints and won't slip from your hand. Reception is excellent - side by side with an Epic 4G the Photon 4G showed 5 bars to the Epic's 3. Could be just a difference in how the display is calculated but MOTO has always been known for the high quality of their radios. Coming from an LG Sentio I'm still getting used to the large size but my eyes and fingers appreciate the added acerage and the tapered corners make it easy to use with one hand.
Products always improve and today's best is tomorrow's junk but I think that the Photon 4G certainly qualifies as state-of-the-art.
and if you will buy this smartphoneBattery 9/10Display 10/10Text input 8/10Everyday usage 8/10UI speed 9/10Camera 8/10Multimedia 10/10Internet 8/10Call quality 10/10Reception 10/10Build quality 9/10
- Screen is beautiful
- Phone is very solid
- Reception is excellent
- Battery life has been great so far
- Speaker volume is loud and clear
- Phone is slippery, and easily dropped
7 out of 9 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 12 Aug 2011, 20:16 (Posts: 114; Member since: 28 Mar 2011)
Photon 4G review
TOdoubleD has owned it for less than month before publishing this review
I've been using the Motorola Photon for 2 weeks now, so I figured it's long enough to write a review. Our relationship started out very good, but has declined pretty fast. I have to rate call quality low because on several occasions, I wasn't able to make a call without doing a battery pull first. Not a real good if you're trying to make an emergency call. I also had an issue where the person I was calling, couldn't hear me until I did a battery pull. Honestly a 5 is being generous.
Build quality is pretty good, although I thought Motorola could've done a better job with the battery cover. I'm also not a big fan of the corners being cutoff, but that's more of a personal preference.
The UI is where I really think this phone falls behind. It does lag a bit, but the biggest problem is, there's just nothing there. If your a fan of Vanilla Android, you may like it. But if your a fan of the HTC widgets like I am, you'll probably not like this. When you have to download multiple apps to make your phone do something other stock phones do, there's a problem.
The Camera is OK, average just like most phones. One other disappointment is the keyboard on the Photon is horrible, definitely plan on getting a different keyboard.
My last comments are on the display and battery life. First the display, not a big fan of the pentile display, screen door effect is a problem on all these new Motorola phones. Battery life is pretty good for me, but it's about usage.Build quality 9/10Reception 9/10Call quality 5/10Internet 8/10Multimedia 8/10Camera 8/10UI speed 6/10Everyday usage 7/10Text input 6/10Display 7/10Battery 8/10
- Build quality,
8 out of 13 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 24 Nov 2013, 19:58 (Posts: 0; Member since: 24 Nov 2013)
samschiede has owned it for more than one year before publishing this review
i like this phone, i got it when it first came out and it was top of the line then and still works now. i broke the speakers a few months ago and now i have a new phone, but i still actively use this one as an ipod and for doing stuff that could screw up my new phone. the kickstand is nice, and probably one of the best features. it is still pretty good despite being over a year oldBuild quality 8/10Reception 6/10Call quality 8/10Internet 7/10Multimedia 8/10Camera 7/10UI speed 7/10Everyday usage 9/10Text input 10/10Display 8/10Battery 5/10
- matte plastic
- 1gb ram
- small battery
- poor wifi antenea
- smudgy screen
posted on 27 Sep 2013, 15:39 (Posts: 0; Member since: 27 Sep 2013)
First smartphone, the Motorola, Photon, Sprint: Durable, consistent, great, overall phone!
jessemobileguy has owned it for more than one year before publishing this review
First off this Motorola, Photon, on Sprint, was my first smartphone. Prior to this I have had very low end feature phones on Straighttalk, 2009; then switched to Sprint.
Thats when I found my friend, the Photon! For a dual core, it was fast, then at one point, I went hog wild on the apps! Having some fun on autoraps, etc.
Point about my character, I am hard, on things, so it took a beating from me. I live in Colorado, where it snows, and the first year and 3 months, I had him encased, in a, Defender, by Otterbox.
I accidently, dropped him, and have been suffering since. But guess what, after the drop, he survived, no hardware damage and it was from a 3-foot drop, on concrete.
Also, water was introduced to him as in a quick drop, with a non-water proof, case on. And once bare, it had dropped from my back-pack, into a sink of running water.
Both times, I immediately, took him apart and dried, him (my Photon), out.
After each incident, no problems. Except I have a cracked screen,......my fault.
Overall, I feel Motorola, gets a two thumbs up, in a very durable, piece of machinery, it felt rugged.
Media wise, again hooray, I was very, pleased at which, the speed this small phone/mini-computer, aka smartphone, could do. Very pleased indead. I also believe that the android system is a superior format, for todays, needs and wants, of the consumer. I usually buy Motorola cell phones, but have always been attracted to the design quality of the Samsungs. I've been in...Build quality 10/10Reception 10/10Call quality 10/10Internet 10/10Multimedia 10/10Camera 10/10UI speed 7/10Everyday usage 10/10Text input 9/10Display 9/10Battery 7/10
- Durable and rugged
- Good voice commands
- Kick stand built in!
- Speakers on the back
posted on 29 Jun 2013, 13:05 (Posts: 0; Member since: 29 Jun 2013)
Bang for Buck
AbdullahTahir has owned it for less than year before publishing this review
Photon 4G is my 1st Android phone. I have used Nokias before and was not particularly interested in buying a Motorola. For me the price must match the relative value/usability of the phone, I've never thought of purcahsing an iphone/Galaxy/HTC phone and frankly I never will, in this backdrop, the price that I got the Photon 4G was just too good to refuse.
The build quality is impressive on the phone. Metals have the essential characteristic of unwavering durability and toughness, personally I would prefer this on a phone rather than to boast only on the benchmarks on any phone. Photon 4G sports metal on sides and scratch resistant glass on the face, so it is was biggest selling point for me;
Metal Durability > Polycarbonate/Plastic Toyness.
The phone feels solid in the hand, has enough weight on it however it is not overbearing. I appreciate the metal used on the sides which conveys a serious aptitude of the phone, unline the toy, plastic feel of the Samsung/Nokia/HTC, phones this feels prime.
The other features that I like are the above par camera, simple UI, sound reception and excellent computing horsepower under the hood. I would also like to mention the pragmatic aspect of the kickstand on the back, making video calls and even listening to music is fun. Unlike some other reviews that I read I havn't encountered any software gliches on the phone.
I have installed quite a lot of applications for office use, camera related apps and other general productivity apps, all are...Build quality 10/10Reception 10/10Call quality 10/10Internet 9/10Multimedia 10/10Camera 10/10UI speed 9/10Everyday usage 10/10Text input 10/10Display 9/10Battery 7/10
posted on 16 Apr 2013, 16:42 (Posts: 0; Member since: 16 Apr 2013)
Major Motorola disappointment
kjmurphy has owned it for more than one year before publishing this review
The phone is sturdy without feeling bulky. It's sharp looking and the gorilla glass is great for resisting scratches. Unfortunately, there's nothing else good to say about this phone.
Features and usability are average at best. Typical Sprint bloatware doesn't help.
4G is horrible.
3G makes the slow phone seem even slower.
Poor speaker phone quality.
Swype is only ok, but touch is unusable. If you've ever had an iPhone, the Photon is Apples wet dream for Android.
Lack of support from Motorola and Sprint is amazing. Impressed that they managed to avoid class action suits on this one. Must be very few morons like myself who purchased this piece of dirt.
Not sure how long it will be before I even try a Motorola product - phone or otherwise.Build quality 5/10Reception 4/10Call quality 6/10Internet 3/10Multimedia 3/10Camera 4/10UI speed 6/10Everyday usage 5/10Text input 4/10Display 6/10Battery 3/10
- It hasn't shorted out in my pocket
- Motorola's bait and switch on the OS support. Come out with a year old OS and then never up date.
- Locking down the firmware - on top of not supporting upgrades.
- Sprint - need I say more?
2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 28 Mar 2013, 23:48 (Posts: 0; Member since: 28 Mar 2013)
Good On Paper, Bad In Person
sarah11 has owned it for more than one year before publishing this review
Allow me to preface this by saying that the ONLY reason I have had this phone this long is because I have been waiting for an upgrade. However, due to Sprint's poor service, I am switching to a different carrier altogether. This phone works well long enough for the 14 day free replacement warranty to run out. I have to restart my phone daily or it will not ring when I receive a phone call or message (even with the volume at full blast). Needless to say, using this phone as my primary alarm clock in the mornings has afforded me many hectic mornings when I sleep through the non-buzzing alarm. It forcecloses most apps, even with their "refreshers" and updates. I researched and researched phones prior to making this purchase, deciding that I wouldn't allow price to be a factor in my final decision. On paper, this phone seemed like all I could ever want. And I was absolutely right! It was all I could ever want in a phone made by satan. Please don't waste your money or you just might be the next person leaving a review just like this one and the ones before mine. *** I will add, I believe in Motorola and just purchased a different Motorola phone. Don't let this piece of crap cause you to avoid a brand that actually does make incredible products. They just fell asleep when the interns started making bad decisions on how to make THIS phone.Build quality 7/10Reception 10/10Call quality 10/10Internet 4/10Multimedia 7/10Camera 9/10UI speed 2/10Everyday usage 10/10Text input 7/10Display 10/10Battery 2/10
- Durable design.
- Excellent camera.
- Large display.
- Made by satan as a joke on the rest of us who bought this.
- See summary.
1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 21 Mar 2013, 11:50 (Posts: 0; Member since: 21 Mar 2013)
thatjamie has owned it for less than year before publishing this review
Already replaced the unit once - about ready to again. So disappointed with the performance of the Photon. Hard reset needed at least once a day, soft up to 3 times daily. Apps fail or lock often. Sad.Build quality 9/10Reception 7/10Call quality 8/10Internet 4/10Multimedia 6/10Camera 9/10UI speed 4/10Everyday usage 4/10Text input 5/10Display 9/10Battery 7/10
- Looks nice
- Cant keep up with tech
1 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 13 Mar 2013, 12:32 (Posts: 5; Member since: 28 Feb 2013)
Going going GONE!
green2u has owned it for more than one year before publishing this review
I had such high hopes for my first Android (coming off the failed Palm Pre). And while this phone started out well, soon it was in BIG TROUBLE and no amount of factory resetting helped the slowness going screen to screen, the failure of the touch screen, the slowness of loading a website. And the ultimate insult: Motorola failing to live up to their promise to upgrade the Android system (I now have applications that will no longer work). The camera is crap indoors. Call quality is decent but who calls anymore? Horrid battery life; I have a battery charger cord with me at all times. I cannot WAIT for 5/1/13 when I am eligible for a new phone. Motorola has seen the last of my business.Build quality 5/10Reception 2/10Call quality 9/10Internet 1/10Multimedia 1/10Camera 2/10UI speed 1/10Everyday usage 1/10Text input 6/10Display 5/10Battery 1/10
- Solid feel though a bit heavy
- I've dropped it several times and AOK
- After 6 months totally craps out
- Moto's broken promise to upgrade system
posted on 15 Feb 2013, 21:28 (Posts: 0; Member since: 15 Feb 2013)
orangon has owned it for more than one year before publishing this review
This phone is nothing but a lemon. It fails at every single thing I try to use it for. I mean everything. I have spent hours and hours looking at the spinning blue circle because I think that's about all this phone is good for, producing a spinning blue circle on the screen. Absolute junk.Build quality 9/10Reception 3/10Call quality 5/10Internet 1/10Multimedia 1/10Camera 8/10UI speed 1/10Everyday usage 1/10Text input 2/10Display 5/10Battery 1/10
- Crashes all the time.
- Too slow to use.
- 4G never connects.
- Sometimes battery drains in an hour.
- Can't use many android apps with this model.
4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 09 May 2012, 01:15 (Posts: 0; Member since: 09 May 2012)
Definitely not the S2!
soundexcess has owned it for less than month before publishing this review
I got this phone as a swap for my s2 which has now had major over heating issues, leading to failure twice. This was suppost to be an acceptable and comparable solution. In comparison it is slow unresponsive, a lot less intuitive than my S2 and general a pain in the neck to operate in comparison. I had high hopes that phone would be acceptable and more reliable solution than my S2. It feels more solid and has a better battery life. The overheating or battery life benefits though are not reasonable comparable as my now running wifi only S2 which has a screen crack and is still overheating is, pulls faster and more reliably my e-mail txt, alarms, calendar appointments etc. Than my fully connected photon with both wifi and 4G connected even when it is connected to the charging port so there is no possible power throttling issue for the photon so I have given every chance possible and it has just been an epic disappointment.Build quality 10/10Reception 5/10Call quality 5/10Internet 2/10Multimedia 1/10Camera 1/10UI speed 1/10Everyday usage 2/10Text input 2/10Display 9/10Battery 3/10
- It is though but it needs be as your going to want to chunk it.
- It looks nice, but so does a $5 dollar paper weight.
- The Display is good
- The camera may be good the phone it self was to slow use it though
- Clunky unintuitive UI
- Dismal battery life
- Slow text input
- Bad call quality
- Bad reception
- Multi-media yeah right you would be lucky to take photos at an effective speed with this thing
- Internet I could boot my laptop faster and check the things I need to faster.
- Over all a Disappointment and I am an nvidia fanboy and this thing still fails to impress.
1 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 25 Mar 2012, 23:31 (Posts: 2; Member since: 11 Dec 2010)
Tomas has owned it for less than year before publishing this review
I have owned this phone 6 months. Previous Nokia 6265 and Motorola Startac. Best carriers in my area are CDMA. I did try an HTC MyTouch with keyboard on T-Mobile before settling on this USCellular Electrify/Photon--This phone has exceptional reception in a very small mountain/hilly area. As it turns out, there is no need for a keyboard on this phone. The Haptic sense keyboard has wonderful feedback. You can also use swype which is very fast with some practice. I actually use Google Voice which came with the phone setup. You just speak it, punctuate it, send it. Wow! I hate the monthly usage fee for internet, but I use it all the time--it is very good.Build quality 9/10Reception 10/10Call quality 9/10Internet 10/10Multimedia 10/10Camera 9/10UI speed 10/10Everyday usage 10/10Text input 10/10Display 10/10Battery 9/10
- Phone is definitely a keeper.
- Android requires some intuitiveness.
0 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 07 Nov 2011, 21:34 (Posts: 0; Member since: 07 Nov 2011)
oldbruns has owned it for less than year before publishing this review
After using most of US Cellulars Android phones, I'm completely impressed by this Motorola. There is so much this phone can do,and do well, you have to get your hands one one and try it. Thank you US Cellular for not picking up the iPhone.Build quality 10/10Reception 10/10Call quality 10/10Internet 10/10Multimedia 10/10Camera 10/10UI speed 10/10Everyday usage 10/10Text input 10/10Display 10/10Battery 10/10
0 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 11 Oct 2011, 01:55 (Posts: 0; Member since: 11 Oct 2011)
phone is okay
mommyof2 has owned it for less than 3 months before publishing this review
Phone is okay. I'be read some reviews on the call quality on the phone and personally that is the only thing I love about the phone. People can hear me on the other end perfectly and I can hear them perfectly as well. As for the camera, I was expecting it to be way better considering what this phone is cabable of doing. The camera seems to take pictures at a very poor quality in doors even with flash but when outside in the daylight it is good. The keyboard in the phone is horrible. I downloaded a new one as soon as I got the phone. The layout on the phone seemed to me looked like a fake phone so I downloaded a different them from the market and honestly after I did that phone runs 10x faster. I installer gingerbread 2.3 layout and keyboard. Works so much better. Other then that phone seems to be okay to me. Not what I was expecting from Motorola.Build quality 10/10Reception 10/10Call quality 10/10Internet 6/10Multimedia 7/10Camera 6/10UI speed 2/10Everyday usage 7/10Text input 4/10Display 7/10Battery 9/10
- call quality
- battery after new theme was installed
1 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Do you?Report
posted on 19 Aug 2011, 13:22 (Posts: 2; Member since: 19 Aug 2011)
It works as expected! What a change from a month from hell with HTC EVO 3D
GoBruins has owned it for less than month before publishing this review
It works as expected! What a change from a month from hell with HTC EVO 3D. I am new to the android OS and even though the HTC EVO 3D is crap...I loved the Andoid OS. Motorola appears to hide menu items and it is difficult to find operational procedures. At least that is my experience so far. Go Android!!!Build quality 9/10Reception 9/10Call quality 9/10Internet 10/10Multimedia 9/10Camera 9/10UI speed 9/10Everyday usage 9/10Text input 8/10Display 8/10Battery 8/10
- It actually works as expected
- It has a kickstand!
- steep learning curve from the HTC EVO 3D Android format
posted on 15 Aug 2011, 20:53 (Posts: 0; Member since: 15 Aug 2011)
Photon 4G - Great Phone
roller5435 has owned it for less than month before publishing this review
I recently purchased this phone for my wife and was very skeptical about buying any Motorola cell phones. Sprint and Motorola have a less than stellar relationship because of issues with some of their legacy handsets, but this phone washs away any doubt that Motorola can make a great phone. Have experience with HTC Hero and EVO, and Samsung EPIC 4G.
See Pros/Cons Below.
Overall, I am very impressed by Motorola's latest offering and excited to see that the Samsung Galaxy phones have some real competitiion. Great Product.
Build quality 9/10Reception 10/10Call quality 9/10Internet 10/10Multimedia 9/10Camera 8/10UI speed 9/10Everyday usage 9/10Text input 9/10Display 9/10Battery 9/10
- *Very fast and responsive feel
- *Great screen (even when comparing to the OLED on the EPIC 4G)
- *Build quality and styling is exceptional
- *Reception/signal strengh is excellent
- *Call quality
- *Battery life
- *Camera appears to underexpose in low light (camera on the Epic 4G is better)