(Pocket-lint) - Motorola has just announced new versions of its Moto X and Moto G smartphones for 2014.

Both handsets have undergone design and spec upgrades to make them as impressive as they were when they launched last year. In fact these are more impressive, especially considering the prices have stayed low.

Here we're going to take a look at the affordable model, the Moto G, to see how Motorola has made this its budget phone for 2014. Last year it was £135 and this year it will start at £145 - what do you get for the extra tenner?

A design tweek

Motorola hasn't changed much on the Moto G in terms of design but it has made improvements. The speaker was previously just that, a single speaker. Now there are two for stereo sound which are front-ported for clarity all the time.

The 2014 Moto G last year measured in at 66mm x 130 at 143g but is now an enhanced 70.7mm x 141.5mm and 149g.

A larger screen

The next step in the design change for Motorola was to improve the screen. Since bigger is better these days the Moto G has been upgraded from last year's 4.5-inch display to a 5-inch screen.

Unfortunately that size increase hasn't also seen a resolution bump. You still get the 720 x 1280 IPS screen meaning a lower 294ppi this year compared to 329ppi last year. Both screens are also sporting Corning Gorilla Glass to protect against scratches or cracks.

Power maintained

A new phone apparently doesn’t mean a new processor where the Moto G is concerned.

Motorola has opted to stick with the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor running at 1.2GHz with Adreno 305 graphics at 450MHz. If it ain't broke don't fix it. This probably also allows Motorola to keep the price really low.

Storage is the same with 8GB and 16GB options as well as single SIM and dual SIM models.

Camera upgrades

The new Moto G camera has been upgraded over last year's model.

The new camera is an 8-megapixel rear facing snapper that features autofocus and an f/2.0 aperture lens. That's up from last year's 5-megapixel snapper with f/2.4, meaning it should perform better in low light.

The front-facing selfie camera has also been upgraded, from 1.3-megapixels last year to a 2-megapixel shooter in the 2014 Moto G.

The volume rockers can still be used to activate the shutter to take shots.


Like the Moto G of 2013 the new Moto G will have 2014's latest Android operating system pre-installed. That means it will ship with Android 4.4 KitKat.

Also Motorola has promised an Android L upgrade once it becomes available from Google towers.

Summing up

Motorola has managed to refresh the Moto G in the right areas so as to offer more while keeping the price low. The camera may have been slightly lacking in 2013 which should no longer be the case for the 2014 model. The screen size improvement may have been wanted by some but the drop in ppi may leave others less eager to snap up the 2014 Moto G.

Writing by Luke Edwards.