Motorola launched four new Moto G7 handsets and pretty much crystallized the perils of the smartphone industry for premium brands like Samsung and perhaps even Apple.
The company, owned by Lenovo, has delivered budget devices with solid specs in recent years. The Moto G family is exhibit A for the premium phone/affordable price movement.
Motorola rolled out the Moto G7 Plus, which has a 16MP dual camera system, AI and camera software to help you land good shots. The device available in Brazil, Mexico and Europe in mid-February. The price tag: €299.99.
The Moto G7 also comes with solid specs and will be available in the US. for $299. There's also a Moto G7 Power device, which has a 5000 mAh battery, strong specs and a price tag of $249. The Moto G7 Play will run $199.
CNET has the rundown and initial takes of the devices, but all you really need to know is that the Moto devices will have an updated pure version of Android at prices that almost make an annual upgrade a no brainer. The Moto G has been CNET's top budget pick consistently.
Now we all know about the peak iPhone rap. Apple's latest results were still mind-boggling in terms of revenue and profit, but we're at peak iPhone. Tech buyers are stretching out devices and holding back their wallets as $1,000+ phones proliferate. There's also a solid refurbished and used phone market emerging.
But Apple isn't likely to be clubbed by Motorola even though it has its challenges:
- Apple starts selling refurbished iPhone X handsets, but they're not cheap
- Apple iPhone sales: Global shipments 'down by millions' in Q1 2019
- Apple CEO on iPhone sales drop: 'Yes, I do think that price is a factor'
- Apple reports iPhone revenue decline of 15 percent in Q1
Samsung is a different story. Samsung will roll out the Galaxy S10 family this month and with it will come prices that will be decidedly higher than what Motorola just outlined. The Moto G7 family may not be the most premium device, but for most of us it'll do just fine. Samsung may not be able to innovate its way into a price/value equation that makes sense.
- Samsung Galaxy S10: Everything we expect
- Samsung mobile marks lowest profit since 2016 battery debacle
- Phones to expect at MWC and beyond: Galaxy S10, Honor View 11, Nokia 9, and more
From an economic and market perspective, the Motorola G7 refresh isn't technologically disruptive as much as it is financially. And that's bad news for the likes of Samsung.