Should I Buy the MotoZ from Lenovo? – MotoZ Review

Lenovo Motorola Smartphone:

Lenovo Makes Smartphones now:

When it comes to the most popular and affordable smartphones available in South Africa, Lenovo and Motorola is not the brand that springs to mind. Imagine my surprise when I got the call to have a look at the MotoZ smartphone; a Lenovo powered Motorola smartphone.

It’s interesting.

Unlike a lot of smartphone brands hitting the market today in the booming economies of the first world, looking at an African market; basic functionality and price is king, more times than the brand itself.

We’ve seen this kind of success with the penetration of Huawei smartphones and devices in South Africa, the original investors of the price strategy locally; Blackberry and other now even the re-emergence of Nokia’s affordable smartphones. Price wins most of the time, but brands struggle to stick around if that’s all they ride on.

Motorola MotoZ Smartphone:

Customization and Optimization:

The MotoZ smartphone comes equipped with the ability to connect Moto Mods™, which connects to the back of the MotoZ through powerful magnets, connecting the two gadgets.

The Moto Mods™ currently available include a battery pack (Incipio offGRID™ Power Pack), a very appealing Moto JBL Soundbooster Speaker, a projector (An actual presentation projector!) and a powerful Hasselblad True Zoom camera add-on. You also have the option to change the back cover to something more your style, I admit a change from the common glass or steel popular in smartphones today is a nice change.

The device overall is quite light, which makes sense considering the mods you can add to it are quite heavy and add a lot of bulk to the phone. The option of removing the mods is fine, but where to put your mods without damage when you’re not using them? What about losing them too! I have a mini heart attack when I search for my phone every day before I leave to work, imagine five smartphone-sized devices!

I enjoy the customization aspect though, it’s interesting for a geek such as myself to have the ability to customize everything about the software of my phone and the hardware, giving me the ability to switch to focus on improving the quality of my Instagram photos, enjoying my Deezer mix anywhere in my flat or, in theory, presenting my work and ideas to my colleagues when I arrive at the office.

I see the appeal of this kind customization, though I’m concerned this impacts the mobility of the entire infrastructure and decreases its cost-effectiveness to the broader market that just wants a cost-effective smartphone.

Though if you’re like me and love all the gadgets, this may be perfect.

Moto Z Motorola Lenovo

Should you buy the Motoz?

Should I wait for the iPhone X and iPhone 8?

The Motorola MotoZ and Moto Mods’ recommended retail price are:

  • Moto Z Smartphone: R12,999
  • Moto Insta-Share Projector Mod: R4,699
  • Incipio offGrid Power Pack Mod: R1,199
  • JBL SoundBoost Speaker: R1,699
  • Hasselblad True Zoom Camera Mod: R4,299

In theory, if you were to get the full device package it may cost you well over most if every smartphone on the market now. The MotoZ smartphone itself is priced at what may be considered standard for a flagship device today. It’s still more affordable than the new iPhone (Unconfirmed but more than a Samsung) and Samsung S8 (R13 499).

Having the money is one thing, but as a committed brand consumer, I want to be assured that the smartphone brand I invest in will invest in me too; will I get more mod options later down the line, what about screen, body and mod repairs when needed (A concern and challenge I had with my Huawei Mate7).

Provided the brand and technical support is there, I’d love to invest in this smartphone infrastructure and it’s Android user experience. It’s time for a new technological experience.

Moto Z Technical Specifications:

Operating System
AndroidTM 6.0.1, Marshmallow
System Architecture/Processor
Motorola Mobile Computing System, including Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 820 processor
Memory (RAM)
Storage (ROM)
32GB/64GB, microSD Card support (up to 2 TB)5
  • 5.5”
  • 1440p Quad HD (2560 x 1440)
  • 535 ppi
  • Corning® Gorilla® Glass
Mixed usage up to 30 hours (2600 mAh) TurboPowerTM for up to 6 hours of power in 15 minutes of charging
SIM Card
  • Micro-SIM
  • Nano-SIM Dual-SIM available in Brazil, India, and China
Rear Camera
  • 13 MP
  • Laser Autofucus
  • Optical Image Stabilization (OIS)
  • Zero Shutter Lag
  • Color Correlated Temperature (CCT) flash with dual LEDs
  • f / 1.8 aperture
  • Professional Mode
  • 1.12um pixel
  • Quick Capture
  • Best Shot
  • Tap to focus & exposure
  • 8X digital zoom
  • Auto HDR
  • Panorama
  • Video Stabilization
  • 1080p HD video (60 fps)
Front Camera
  • 5 MP
  • f / 2.2 aperture
  • Wide-Angle lens
  • Display flash
  • Auto Night mode
  • Beautification software
  • Professional mode
  • Micro USB
  • 3.5mm headset jack
Video Capture
1080p (60fps), 4K (30fps)
  • Fingerprint reader
  • Accelerometer
  • Gyroscope
  • Ambient Light
  • Gyroscope
  • Hall Effect
  • Magnetometer
  • Proximity

*Sourced from