The 2013 Motorola Moto X was something of a departure for flagship devices in modern times. The device was released in the summer of 2013 and offered a lesser specification compared with the contemporary flagship devices of the time. Instead of offering customers the highest specification chipset, a retina bleeding screen and an amazing camera, Motorola offered a modest, customized chipset featuring a dual core 1.7 GHz application processor, a modest 4.7-inch 720p AMOLED screen and a 10MP rear camera. Where the original Moto X had its appeal was in the software because Motorola had taken stock Android and added some of their special sauce. The Moto X offered always-on Google search, a smart way of sensing if the device was being driven somewhere, and an innovative way to highlight notifications in the shape of Moto Display. Motorola also worked on their antenna and microphone arrangements to ensure the device was first and foremost a good smartphone. It was an Android device for customers who didn’t care about impressive on-the-box specification, but instead for a device that went about its business quietly and efficiently. In some respects, the original Moto X was Android’s iPhone.
Successive Motorola Moto X devices have moved away from this virtuous appeal. By the time the second generation 2014 Moto X arrived, Motorola were using the same chipset as the competition. Other devices had or were close to matching Motorola’s always-on voice command and the perception was that many customers wanted a larger, higher resolution display for their flagship device. The third generation Moto X devices were closer still to the conventional upper mid-range and flagship models, until last week Lenovo and Motorola released the new Moto Z flagship smartphones. The Moto Z comes with the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 System-on-Chip, a QHD AMOLED panel and a super-slim 5.2 mm or 7.0 mm design depending on the model picked. Initially, the story was that the Moto X was being replaced but the Moto Z, although the company also hinted that the Moto X would indeed live on.
Details of a GFXBench test showing a Motorola XT1662 smartphone have now emerged and which could be the Moto X for 2016. The device as tested is based around a 4.6-inch, 1080p display and a MediaTek MT6755 chipset, also known as the MediaTek Helio P10. The P10 is one of MediaTek’s mid-range System-on-Chips, designed to balance performance with cost. It features an octa-core design clocked at up to 2.1 GHz as tested and is backed up by the ARM Mali-T860 GPU and 3 GB of RAM. There’s 32 GB of onboard storage, a 16MP rear camera, an 8MP front facing and it ships with Android 6.0. If this is indeed the Moto X, it appears that Motorola are re-positioning it closer to the mid-range and perhaps where the Moto X started.