Motorola has been doing well in the budget segment for years. And that is quite clever. Every year Motorola does the same trick by releasing great budget devices for a reasonable price. There is a danger here. Motorola must keep innovating to stay ahead of the cutthroat competition. You can read in our extensive test whether the Motorola is able to do this trick again.
Motorola Moto G9 Plus review
We have already been able to test a lot of devices from Motorola’s Moto line. Each version convinced us again, the Moto G Pro won a place at the DroidApp Awards. For a number of years, Motorola has managed to thrive in the budget segment. Nowadays Motorola has to compete with other brands that score strongly in the budget segment, the competition is fierce. In this review we extensively test whether Motorola has a winner with the Moto G9 Plus.
Motorola delivers the Moto G9 Plus in a rectangular box with the well-known logo of the manufacturer and the name of the device. When we open the box, in addition to the device and some booklets, we also see the 30 Watt fast charger, a USB-C cable. What is striking about this cable is that it is a cable with a USB-C connection on both sides. If you have an older laptop or PC, you may need an adapter to connect the device to your laptop or PC. Motorola also includes a transparent cover. Handy, so you can get started right away without purchasing a cover first. Of course, a pen is also included to open the SIM drawer.
Design, display and interface
What immediately stands out about the Moto G9 Plus is that the device is very large. The screen is no less than 6.81 inches in size. Thanks to its size and the large 5000 mAh battery, the device weighs quite heavy, 223 grams to be precise. If you’re used to a smaller smartphone, it takes some getting used to. Motorola has again done its best in the field of design, the smartphone is neatly finished and also has a beautiful appearance.
So we find the large screen at the front. This screen is Full-HD with a round recess in the top left corner in which the 16 megapixel front camera is incorporated. The quality of the screen is fine. Easy to read on sunny days and in the dark the brightness can be dimmed sufficiently. Motorola has placed the speaker above the screen. At the top is a 3.5 millimeter connection to which you can connect your wired headset. On the left side we find the SIM card slot with a button below to activate the Google assistant. We regret that this button cannot be set for other actions.
The USB-C connection is placed at the bottom together with the speaker. The right side offers space for the on and off button. This button also serves as a fingerprint scanner. The volume keys are placed above the on and off button. On the back, the camera unit is placed in the top left corner.
As is known, we are happy with the way Motorola equips in terms of software. The manufacturer delivers an almost stock Android version on the smartphones with some extra useful options that are really an addition to Android. The Moto G9 Plus is also equipped with the Moto app. In this app you determine which options you want to turn on or off. Don’t like the addition of Motorola? Then you just turn it off.
As far as we are concerned, that is also what Android stands for; allows the user to choose which functions he or she wants to use or not. Moreover, with Android 10 you have the option to further customize your device. You can choose a certain font and the shape and color of the icons. There are some themes preinstalled, but you also have the option to design and apply one yourself. The home screen can also be adjusted to your own taste, but we would have liked this a bit more extensive.
Communication and multimedia
A smartphone is of course there to communicate. And that goes well with this Moto. Conversations are fine, at least the sound quality. We therefore did not receive any complaints from the conversation partners about the sound quality during the test period. An additional advantage is that you can store two SIM cards. However, this is at the expense of an SD card. Calling, texting (or RCS chatting) and typing messages are done with the standard apps from Google.
Because the device is equipped with WiFi 2.4 GHz and WiFi 5 GHz and of course 4G, surfing the internet is fast. You can surf the internet on the Moto G9 Plus with the Google browser, Google Chrome. In addition to WiFi and 4G, the device also has Bluetooth 5.0, GPS, NFC and even an FM radio. To listen to the FM radio, you need to connect a headset every 3.5 millimeter connection. This headset acts as an antenna.
Thanks to the large screen, the Moto G9 Plus is also well suited for multimedia. The quality of the screen is excellent and the device is also fast enough to play games. It is true that not all settings can be set to maximum with heavy games, but that is not necessary for a device in this price range. We think it is a pity that the device does not have stereo speakers, like its predecessor the Moto G8 Plus. The sound from the speaker could have been a little better.
Camera: photo and video
Motorola has given the Moto G9 Plus no fewer than four cameras. The main lens is a 64 megapixel lens and has an aperture of f / 1.8. In addition, there is an 8 megapixel wide-angle lens with an aperture of f / 2.2, a 2 megapixel macro lens and a 2 megapixel depth sensor. These last two lenses also both have an aperture of f / 2.2.
The camera app is as we are used to from Motorola. Lots of options without making the app cluttered. Shooting photos is also nice and fast.
Now you can have a good camera on paper and a nice app to take photos, it is of course all about the quality of the photos. We can actually be brief about this. The quality of the photos is very reasonable for a device in this price range. The photos aren’t perfect, but you shouldn’t expect that either. When you zoom in with the camera app, the quality of the photo is significantly less. Against expectations, macro photos are also of reasonable quality. Usually macro photos with a lesser lens are also of lesser quality. Photos taken with the wide-angle lens are of lesser quality. Photos taken in the dark with the night mode on are, just like photos taken in daylight, also very reasonable. All in all, we are quite satisfied with the quality of the photos.
Below we have posted a photo of that we took with the Moto G9 Plus. If you want to see more photos, view the photo album here.
At the top right of the screen, Motorola has placed an opening in which the front camera is incorporated. This camera has a 16 megapixel lens with an aperture of f / 2.0. It may start to get a bit monotonous, but we are quite satisfied with the quality of the photos taken with the front camera.
Of course you also want to shoot a movie with your smartphone every now and then. The Moto G9 Plus is also perfect for this. You can shoot videos in Full-HD or in 4K. If you shoot in Full-HD, you have the option to do this at 60 frames per second and / or with an aspect ratio of 20: 9. Shooting with an aspect ratio of 20: 9 is also possible in 4K. The quality of the videos is sufficient. Colors render pretty well, maybe a bit on the faded side. We also noticed that the image is a bit choppy from time to time.
Performance and other possibilities
We can conclude that Motorola has again succeeded in creating a great budget device. The competition in this segment is fierce and some devices deliver just a bit more than the Moto G9 Plus. We have nothing to complain about when it comes to the processor. Motorola has equipped the device with the Snapdragon 730G. This is a great processor with a clock speed of up to 2.2 GHz. What we find slightly less is that the device is “only” equipped with 4GB RAM. Here we would have liked something more, 6GB for example. The storage space is again nice and spacious, 128GB. The memory can be expanded with an SD card, provided you are not using a second SIM card.
The fingerprint scanner is incorporated in the power button. This scanner works very quickly. Just a touch is enough to unlock the device. There are also two additional functions that you can set, pressing the power button twice quickly opens the camera and clicking the button twice opens a menu with shortcuts to apps or preset contacts.
You also have the option to unlock the device by means of face recognition. This also works quickly, but is not as secure as, for example, a pin code, for example, a warning is given when you set up the face recognition. Here you also have the option to set whether you want to unlock the device when you look at it or whether you still have to swipe up on the lock screen to unlock the device.
The Moto G9 Plus is equipped with a large battery of 5000 mAh. You have to do your best to empty the battery within one day. If you still end up with an almost empty battery, thanks to the 30W fast charger, this battery can be charged quickly. With intensive use and a large part of the day on 4G, you will have about 20 to 25 percent left at the end of the day. With less intensive use, you just have 50 percent left over and you can use one battery charge for two days.
Motorola proves once again that it can release a great smartphone for not too much money. The Moto G9 Plus is a real all-rounder, the device does not really excel at anything, but also has hardly any weaknesses, unless it is the speaker that we are less pleased with. The Moto G9 Plus is therefore a formidable competitor for the budget devices of Xiaomi and Samsung, among others. The screen is fine and so is the battery of the device. The speed is also fine, we hardly noticed any hitches during the test period. We are also pleased with the almost stock version that Motorola supplies on the devices. For less than 250 euros you have a very complete smartphone.
The Moto G9 Plus is for sale at Coolblue, Bol.com, Belsimpel, Mobiel and MediaMarkt.
Check out our dedicated product page for more news, specifications and prices.
Moto G9 Plus
- Design and ease of use – 8.5 / 10
- Camera – 8/10
- Speed and performance – 8.5 / 10
- Endurance – 8.7 / 10
- Value for money – 8.7 / 10
8.5 / 10
- Great all-rounder
- Good battery
- Fingerprint scanner
- Included 30W fast charger
- Speaker is less than its predecessor
- Motorola update policy
- Device is on the heavy side at 223 grams