Nexus 5 vs Moto X: Comparing The Two Google Step-Siblings

The two of the most anticipated Android smartphones today are already out on the market: The Google Nexus 5 from LG and the Moto X from Google-owned Motorola. Both are considered as “flagship” devices from the Search Engine giant. Aside from having top-notch specs and features, both are shipped with the “plain version (no manufacturer customization)” of the Android mobile OS. In this entry, we’re going to compare these two smartphones based on experience.

Overall Look and Feel

When it comes to the design, LG gave us two options for the Nexus 5. It’s offered in black and white hues, with a near matte finish for its rear side. It is comfortable to use, even if it has a larger 4.96-inch screen. The industrial design of the smartphone is average without the glossy glass surface of its predecessor. The Moto X is slightly smaller with a 4.7-inch profile. But, it offers a rather stylish and colorful exterior. The front panel is offered in either black or white; and you can choose from over 18 colors for its back plate.
Even though we prefer the Nexus, it falls short from the industrial design of Motorola.

Viewing Experience

The Nexus 5 is slightly bigger than the competitor in terms of the display. It sports a full HD 1080p IPS LCD display, as highlighted by O2; while the Moto X boasts of a 720p AMOLED screen.
Both have a superb display resolution, but, having been well-acquainted with the two, we can attest that the LG’s IPS LCD panel is outstanding. Images are sharper and more detailed than any other smartphone out there. However, regarding the quality of colors produced, they tend to look a little bit washed out in the IPS panel. As for the Motorola device, its AMOLED display has a rich color palette, and warmer hues. Since AMOLEDs are basically LEDs (same technology used in most HDTVs), it produces lesser glare and near-mirror reflections when used in broad daylight. But, the whites here are rendered bluish and colors tend to appear over saturated than realistic.

Camera Shootout

Comparing their mobile cameras isn’t an easy task. Both of them can capture stunning photographs in a snap. The Nexus 5 may have the same 8-megapixel cameras as its predecessor, but, it now includes an HDR + mode. This configuration enables users to take photographs with realistic color temperatures even in low-lighting conditions. As an added feature, the Nexus also allows you to take multiple-angled shots in a single frame with its photo sphere feature.
Although pixel count doesn’t really affect the quality of images produced, the Moto X’s 10-megapixel sensor offers a significant edge over the other. It has more zooming capabilities and less pixilated outputs. Plus, it has a built-in slow-motion effect for videos, just like the iPhone 5s.
Ease of Use
The biggest surprise for us, being a fan of the Nexus line, is its lack of gesture-based controls. Don’t get us wrong – it’s very user-friendly and comfortable to use. However, it doesn’t have the touch-less control features of the Moto X. It doesn’t have the ability to listen for a specific voice command to wake the device, read and send an SMS, or engage in a hangout conversation.

Overall User Experience

Since the Nexus 5 packs a quad-core 800 CPU, no doubt that it runs more fluid than the dual-core Snapdragon of its competitor. If gaming and graphics qualities are the categories to consider, our first choice would still be the LG. Plus, it runs with the latest Android Kitkat version. The Moto X, despite being owned and controlled byGoogle, is still waiting to receive the Android 4.4 Kitkat in early 2014.
Overall, we have no complaints about the overall user experience of the two. They both feature the same battery life, the same storage options, and the same amount of RAM (2GB). It all boils down to the user’s choice and preference. Which do you prefer? Share your choice below.

About the Author

Taylor Jennings is a tech blogger and a regular contributor for Techie Doodlers. Being a dedicated Google enthusiast, he’s also hoping to receive his explorer edition of the Google Glass soon. Connect with Taylor via Twitter: @taylorj427.

1 Comment

  1. Tod

    December 19, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    Nice write up.

    I think the bigger picture (and the most-important reason I didn’t pick up the Nexus 5 after owning every previous Nexus model) is the ridiculous amount of feedback I’ve been reading about hardware and software issues.

    The Moto X might not have the most up-to-date specs, but it runs flawlessly, consistently, and reliably.
    I think it’s safe to say that reason we haven’t Kit Kat on the Moto X yet is because, given the reports we’ve been reading about the Nexus 5, it will ruin the overall bulletproof experience on the Moto X.

    For that, I personally choose the Moto X .

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