Motorola Moto E and Moto G LTE
The Motorola Moto E follows Motorola's new philosophy of getting people off feature phones and onto low-cost smartphones, and it follows on from the success of the Motorola Moto G. The Moto E is a bit more basic than the Moto G, but priced at just $129 in the US and around €110 or £90 in Europe, the Moto E is definitely priced to sell.
Now, you'd think that you wouldn't get much for this amount of cash, but the Moto E has a pretty decent specification. It has a 4.3" 540 x 960 pixel display, a 1.2GHz dual-core CPU with dedicated GPU, 1GB of RAM, 4GB of onboard storage plus a microSD slot, there's a 5 megapixel camera on the back and the whole package runs Android 4.4.2 out-of-the-box, weighs 142 grams and packs a fairly large 1980 mAh battery.
If you are thinking that's a bit like smartphones were a few years ago, then you'd be right. It's not a million miles away from what was high-end in 2011, but at around one fifth of the price, and unlike an old smartphone this does run the latest and greatest version of Android.
Motorola Moto E All the usual Android features are here, such as 3.5G support, WiFi, GPS and GLONASS positioning, plus it has more unusual features such as interchangeable backs and an FM radio. The Moto E is somewhat water resistant and it also has a Gorilla Glass coating to protect the screen.
The pricing is extremely aggressive, and it pitches the Moto E directly against things like the relatively successful Nokia Asha range. Whether or not it will persuade users of flip phones and the like to migrate to a smartphone is questionable, but that is certainly the stated aim of Motorola.
Motorola say that the Moto E will be available in more than 40 countries with more than 80 carrier partners in the next few weeks.
Also announced at the same time is an upgraded version of the Motorola Moto G, but now with LTE support and a microSD slot. This transforms the Moto G into a much more serious handset. In the US it will be priced at $219 and will sell alongside the original Moto G at $179. This will also have similar worldwide availability to the Moto E.
Catering to the value end of the market is all very well, but Motorola desperately need something new at the high end. The Motorola Moto X for all its strengths isn't a patch on things like the Samsung Galaxy S5 or HTC One M8, although it is a lot cheaper. Perhaps Moto have something in store for the pricier end of the market?
Motorola Moto E
GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
UMTS 850 / 900 / 1900 / 2100 or
UMTS 850 / 1700 / 1900 (2100)
GPRS + EDGE + UMTS (3G) + HSPA + WiFi
4.3" 540 x 960 pixels
125 x 65 x 12.3mm / 142 grams
Yes (plus GLONASS and BeiDou)
24 hrs mixed use (1980 mAh cell)