Motorola has been on a phone launching spree in the last couple of months and once again, we have a brand new addition to the G series in India. Motorola has just launched the Moto G42, a new 4G smartphone that slots in between the Moto G22 and the Moto G52 (Review). Priced at Rs. 13,999, the Moto G42 is available in a single variant with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. Most of Motorola’s recent G-series offerings have managed to strike a good balance between competitive specs and pricing, so let’s see if the G42 continues this streak.
Motorola is banking on the Moto G42’s design to stand out from the competition and I feel its done a pretty decent job. The phone is 8.26mm slim and doesn’t weigh much at just 174.5g. This Atlantic Green colour that Motorola sent me looks quite distinctive and I like the matte finish of the phone’s frame and acrylic back panel. It’s only been a short while since I’ve been using it but so far, fingerprints aren’t much of an issue and the phone is comfortable to hold thanks to the lack of any sharp edges.
The buttons on the right side of the Moto G42 have good feedback but I felt the volume buttons are a bit hard to reach. The phone has stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos enhancement, a headphone jack and a dedicated microSD card slot in the dual-SIM tray. The raised camera module on the back of the Moto G42 has been redesigned a bit with sharper lines and houses three camera sensors.
The Moto G42 has a good looking AMOLED display with punchy colours and sufficient brightness. It’s a 6.4-inch panel with a full-HD+ resolution but unfortunately, it only has a 60Hz refresh rate. This shouldn’t be a problem if you’re upgrading from a phone that also has a 60Hz display but if you’re coming from a 90Hz screen, then the lack of fluidity in the system animations and scrolling can be jarring. Smartphone’s with 90Hz displays at this price aren’t uncommon either, which makes the G42 feel a bit inadequate.
A few highlight features of the new Moto G42 include an IP52 rating for dust and water resistance and a capacitive fingerprint sensor in the power button. The phone also supports carrier aggregation, NFC and FM radio. A Moto smartphone’s main appeal has always been its lean Android experience, and that’s no different on the Moto G42. The phone runs Android 12 with Motorola’s lightweight customisations over it. Motorola guarantees an upgrade to Android 13 and has promised three years of security updates for the G42.
The interface of the phone feels polished and runs smoothly in general. I did notice some stutter in the animations at times when accessing the notifications panel or when jumping between apps, but I’ll have use it some more to see if this is a persistent issue. Powering the phone is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 680 SoC which is fairly power-efficient chip and we have a rough idea of what sort of performance to expect since the Moto G52 uses it too. The Moto G42 uses a 5,000mAh battery and supports 20W fast charging. Motorola bundles the compatible charger in the box, along with other accessories such as a clear case.
The cameras on the Moto G42 seem pretty decent too, on paper. You get a 16-megapixel front-facing camera and on the back, there’s a 50-megapixel primary camera, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide camera, and a 2-megapixel macro camera. You’ll have to wait for the full review for my final verdict on how good they actually are.
The Moto G42 seems like a decent contender in this segment when you consider the long-term update commitment from Motorola and the pleasing design. However, I feel Motorola is going to have a tough time attracting buyers towards the G42, when the Moto G52 is available for just Rs. 500 more. It essentially has the same specs and features as the G42 but does a few better by offering a larger pOLED display with a 90Hz refresh rate, a lighter body, and 33W fast charging. The Redmi Note 11 is another strong competitor at this price with very similar features but with a better display and more RAM.
We will be putting the Moto G42 through our series of tests over the coming weeks, so don’t forget to check back for the full review.