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Motorola Moto E officially revealed as £89 budget bargain

Tom Morgan
13 May 2014
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An incredibly low price but relatively high-spec internals could see Motorola's just-announced Moto E become the go-to smartphone for anyone on a tight budget

As predicted following a collection of specification and photo leaks leading up to the event, this morning's Motorola press conference was used to officially reveal the Moto E - the company's new £89 entry-level smartphone aimed at emerging markets and those on a tight budget, but who don't want to sacrifice features.

Motorola Moto E

Set to sit alongside the fantastic Moto G rather than replace it, the Moto E is a 4.3in smartphone with decidedly higher specifications than its RRP would suggest. For your money, you get a 1.2GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 processor, 1GB of RAM and the latest 4.4 KitKat build of Google's Android operating system, with a guaranteed update to the latest version when Google makes it available. Motorola is already the fastest third party company to roll out Android upgrades, even beating Google's Google Nexus 5 in gaining Kitkat updates for the Moto G, which bodes well for prospective Moto E owners.

Motorola doesn't usually tweak Android too much, preferring a stock experience, but will be adding at least one new app on top of the existing camera, FM radio and Migration apps already found on the Moto G. Motorola Alert will let you inform friends and family when you leave the house and when you arrive at your destination, send invitations to people with location data to make meetings easier, and trigger emergency alerts with automatic number dialling if you're ever in trouble.

The 4.3in screen has edge-to-edge Corning Gorilla Glass 3, coated with water- and smudge-resistant coatings for the best legibility and usability. The 960x540 resolution might not be High Definition as rumours suggested, but with a pixel density of 256ppi, it is still the sharpest display of any smartphone in its class.

The 1,980mAH battery should provide up to 50% greater battery life than comparable budget smartphones, with Motorola drawing attention to the Samsung Galaxy Fame in particular. We'll have to wait until we get one into the office to see how well it performs in day-to-day use, however.

Motorola Moto E

As with the Moto G, the Moto E will launch in a choice of colours that can be swapped out on the fly thanks to interchangeable back covers. Nine colours will be available at launch, with five additional grip shells adding extra protection and grip to the phone. Underneath, you'll find a microSD card slot for adding extra capacity - something most owners will surely want to do, as the 4GB of inbuilt storage won't stretch particularly far once you start taking photos or downloading music tracks.

Best of all, the Moto E will be launching in the UK this week, SIM-free and unlocked, for £89. We'll be taking a look at the handset later today to bring you some first impressions.

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