DPReview smartphone reviews are written with the needs of photographers in mind. We focus on camera features, performance, and image quality.

The Moto X is the lovechild of the brief tryst between Google and Motorola that began when the search giant bought Motorola Mobility in 2012, and is now ending as Google prepares to sell the business to Lenovo. The handset expresses at least some of the innovation you’d hope would spring from such a union. It listens for your voice even when the screen is off, wakes up when you pull it out of your pocket, and tries to optimize its behavior depending on what you’re doing. Spec-wise, it’s capable but not particularly impressive: The emphasis is on usability over raw power. 

Google’s Nexus line earned a bad rap for lackluster camera performance that is just now turning around with the Nexus 5, and Motorola doesn’t have a track record of pushing the boundaries of mobile photography, so photographers may wonder what Google+Moto equals for imaging. There are suggestive hints. A double-flick of the wrist opens the camera app, and there’s some unusual hardware that promises improved performance in both bright and low light. But how does it shake out in the real world?

Read our full review of the Moto X’s camera to find out. Early reviews of the Moto X were critical of inconsistent camera performance; our review unit ran updated software designed to address some of those complaints.

Key Photographic/Video Specifications

  • 10 megapixel RGBC 1/2.6-inch 16:9 sensor
  • F2.4 lens
  • 1080p 30fps and video recording, 720p slow-motion mode
  • 2MP front camera
  • Auto HDR mode
  • Panorama mode
  • Gesture camera activation

Other Specifications

  • Dual core 1.7 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor
  • Coprocessors for continuous voice command listening and contextual tasks
  • 2GB RAM
  • Android 4.4 (KitKat)
  • 4.7-inch 1280x720 316 ppi AMOLED display
  • 16 and 32GB storage options
  • 2,200 mAh battery, non-removable
  • LTE 4G (some variants)
  • Range of custom color options

Our 8-page review

We've considered every aspect of the Motorola Moto X, with the mobile photographer in mind. We examined the user interface of the native camera app and its special features. We experimented with the camera's performance when taking stills and video, and had a play with the device's many special feature modes. Click any of the links below for more information of specific functions and continue to our conclusion for a final summary of our findings.