The Moto G8 Plus and G8 Play are official: specs, price and release date

The Moto G8 Plus and G8 Play are official: specs, price and release date
Are you looking all confused at your calendar, wondering if we somehow jumped to 2020? Well, so were we when we found out Motorola is launching the first Moto G8 devices already. The Moto G7 family came out in February this year, so naturally, we didn’t expect any Moto G8 phones before the start of next year. Lenovo (the company behind Motorola smartphones) seems to have other plans, however, and the first pair of G8s is already here: The Moto G8 Plus and the Moto G8 Play. We’re not ones to complain about new phones coming out, so let’s take a look!

Moto G8 Plus: More cameras, more speed, more battery!


One thing about the Moto G8 Plus becomes apparent right out of the gate: this is not some slight refresh of the earlier 2019 model. That might not be as obvious when you look at the front of the new phone, the display is barely 0.1 inches bigger and there’s still a waterdrop notch, although this time its curves are bit more tucked-in. Motorola appears to have removed its name from the bottom bezel which we applaud as it gives the new phone a cleaner look.


On the back, the circular camera bump is gone, replaced by, hmm… a reverse exclamation mark bump? Regardless of the shape, the new camera module appears to have impressive four cameras, but there are only two traditional ones. At the top is a 48MP lens with Quad Pixel technology and under it is a 16MP Action Cam, as Motorola calls it, with an 117 degrees field-of-view, so basically an ultra-wide camera. On there is also a 5MP depth sensor and the Laser autofocus module.

The front-facing camera gets a big bump as well, the one on the Moto G8 Plus has a 25MP sensor compared to the 12MP one of the G7 Plus. Now time to take a look at the main specs and how they compare to those of the Moto G7 Plus.

Motorola Moto G8 Plus vs Motorola Moto G7 Plus

Display

Display size

6.3 inches
6.2 inches

Resolution

1080 x 2280 pixels
1080 x 2270 pixels

Aspect Ratio

19:9
19:9

Pixel density

400 ppi
405 ppi

Technology

IPS LCD
IPS LCD

Screen-to-body

82.43 %
81.52 %

Hardware & Performance

System chip

Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 SM6125
Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 SDM636

Processor

Octa-core, 2000 MHz, Kryo 260, 64-bit, 11 nm
Octa-core, 1800 MHz, Kryo 260, 64-bit, 14 nm

GPU

Adreno 610
Adreno 509

RAM

4 GB
4 GB LPDDR4

Internal storage

64 GB
64 GB

OS

Android (9.0 Pie)
Android (9.0 Pie)

Battery

Capacity

4000 mAh
3000 mAh

Charging

Motorola TurboPower
Qualcomm Quick Charge 4, USB Power Delivery, Motorola TurboPower


The main takeaways from this table are:
  • The faster Snapdragon 665 is replacing the 636.
  • RAM and storage remain the same.
  • The battery capacity is now impressive 4,000mAh

That last change should bring a significant boost to the Moto G8's battery life. The phone did gain 12g from it, but we'll exchange some extra weight for hours of screen-on-time any day! What's even better is that the Moto G8 Plus comes with an 18W TurboPower charger in the box so filling that massive battery in a rush is no problem.

What's disappointing to see is that the phone will be running Android 9 out of the box, but hey, at least the headphone jack is still there! 

Somewhat in the shadow of the Moto G8 Plus comes the humbler G8 Play.

Moto G8 Play: welcome to the big boys' club


Until now, the Play version of the G series was relatively compact, the Moto G7 Play came with a 5.7-inch display. Not any more! The Moto G8 Play has a 6.2-inch display, making it almost identical in size to its Plus brother. Unfortunately, what hasn't changed is the resolution of the display, which is only 720p and at that size, it will be more obvious than ever that Motorola has made a compromise with the display. On the bright side, the notch has been reduced to a waterdrop one as well, so the device looks more up to date. 

On the back, the styling is similar to the Moto G8 Plus. The cameras are downgraded but you still get pretty much the same lineup. You can check how the two phones stack up in the table below with the Moto G7 Play added as a second reference point. 

Motorola Moto G8 Play vs Motorola Moto G8 Plus vs Motorola Moto G7 Play

Display

Display size

6.2 inches
6.3 inches
5.7 inches

Resolution

720 x 1520 pixels
1080 x 2280 pixels
720 x 1512 pixels

Aspect Ratio

19:9
19:9
19:9

Pixel density

271 ppi
400 ppi
294 ppi

Technology

IPS LCD
IPS LCD
IPS LCD

Screen-to-body

80.76 %
82.43 %
76.72 %

Camera

Rear

Triple camera
Triple camera
Single camera

Main camera

13 megapixels
48 megapixels
13 megapixels

Features

Phase detection autofocus
Laser and Phase detection autofocus
Phase detection autofocus

Specifications

Pixel size: 1.122 μm
Aperture size: F1.7; Pixel size: 0.8 μm
Aperture size: F2.0; Focal length: 26 mm; Sensor size: 1/3.06"; Pixel size: 1.12 μm

Second camera

8 megapixels
16 megapixels
 

Features

Ultra-wide
Ultra-wide
 

Specifications

Aperture size: F2.2; Pixel size: 1.12 μm
Aperture size: F2.2; Pixel size: 1 μm
 

Third camera

2 megapixels
5 megapixels
 

Features

Depth information
Depth information
 

Specifications

Aperture size: F2.2; Pixel size: 1.75 μm
Aperture size: F2.2; Pixel size: 1.12 μm
 

Video recording

1920x1080 (Full HD) (30 fps), 1280x720 (HD) (120 fps)
1920x1080 (Full HD) (120 fps), 1280x720 (HD) (240 fps)
3840x2160 (4K UHD) (30 fps), 1920x1080 (Full HD) (30 fps), 1280x720 (HD) (30 fps)

Features

Time-lapse video, Hyperlapse, Digital image stabilization
Time-lapse video, Hyperlapse, Digital image stabilization
Time-lapse video, Hyperlapse, Digital image stabilization, Video calling, Video sharing

Front

25 megapixels
25 megapixels
8 megapixels

Video capture

1920x1080 (Full HD) (30 fps)
1920x1080 (Full HD) (120 fps)
1920x1080 (Full HD) (30 fps)

Hardware & Performance

System chip

MediaTek Helio P70
Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 SM6125
Qualcomm Snapdragon 632 SDM632

Processor

Octa-core, 2000 MHz, ARM Cortex-A73 and ARM Cortex-A53, 64-bit, 12 nm
Octa-core, 2000 MHz, Kryo 260, 64-bit, 11 nm
Octa-core, 1800 MHz, Kryo 250, 64-bit, 14 nm

GPU

Mali G72 MP3
Adreno 610
Adreno 506

RAM

2 GB LPDDR4
4 GB
2 GB

Internal storage

32 GB
64 GB
32 GB

OS

Android (9.0 Pie)
Android (9.0 Pie)
Android (9.0 Pie)

Battery

Capacity

4000 mAh
4000 mAh
3000 mAh

Charging

Motorola TurboPower
Motorola TurboPower
Motorola TurboPower


Notable changes compared to the previous Play editions:
  • New ultra-wide camera and depth sensor
  • MediaTek's Helio P70 replacing the Snapdragon 632. Performance should be quite similar. 
  • 4,000mAh on this G8 as well

It's admirable that features we're used to seeing on more expensive phones such as the ultra-wide camera are now found on devices as cheap as the Moto G8 Play. But once again, the massive battery is what users are likely to get the most benefit out of. The Moto G8 Play comes with a 10W charger which might not be as powerful as that of the G8 Plus, but it's still more than the 5W one Apple gives you with its $700 iPhone 11. 

Moto G8 Plus and Moto G8 Play price and release date


Here's the big bummer, however, Lenovo has no plans to release the Moto G8 Plus and G8 Play in the US. But don't despair! The company is yet to announce the regular Moto G8 and perhaps the Moto G8 Power, if the new lineup will consist of four phones once more. At least one of them is destined for the North American market, the question is only when they'll be released. 

In Europe, the Moto G8 Plus will cost 269 Euro (about $300) and will become available by the end of October. However, in Brazil, Mexico and India you can get it starting today. 

The Moto G8 Play is being released today Brazil, Mexico, Chile and Perú with other countries from Latin America to follow in the upcoming months. The price for it should be the equivalent of about 200 Euro (around $220). 

All things considered, the Moto G8 Plus is an awesome bang-for-your-buck proposition which is what the G line is all about. Easily recommendable to people that just want a smartphone that works and they don't want to spend a fortune on it. 

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1 Comment

1. ijuanp03

Posts: 630; Member since: Dec 30, 2014

I like the new look with no Motorola branding in front. Good job Motorola!

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