Power, design and a unique interchangeable add-on system put the Moto Z in a class all its own
Sure, the Moto Z is a formidable smartphone in its own right – it runs Android Marshmallow, has a beautiful 5.5-inch screen and a 30-hour battery, among other features we’ll get into. But the real stars of the show here are the unique and intelligently designed Moto Mods, a system of interchangeable add-on modules that literally snap onto the back of the smartphone, turning it into a movie projector, high-end camera or a boombox. No one’s quite pulled off the modular add-on system like this, and it makes for a killer device – here are a few reasons the Moto Z may be your next smartphone.
IT’S A GREAT SMARTPHONE
Whether you’re already a Fandroid or an iPhone user thinking of making the jump, the Moto Z is a solid device in and of itself. First, it’s impossibly thin – the thinnest premium smartphone in the world, we’re told, at just 5.19 mm. Cased in aircraft-grade aluminum and stainless steel, it’s durable. Plus, a water-repellent coating keeps it safe. Snap a changeable back-plate Mod to the device, too, for a whole new look.
Even without the Hasselblad Mod attachment (more on that later), the Moto Z’s 13-MP rear camera is more than competent, offering optical image stabilization and laser autofocus so your shots will be steady and crystal clear, even in low light. On the front, you’ll find a five-MP cam with a wide-angle lens, flash and a Professional mode for more shooting options, so don’t worry, your selfies are in good hands with the Z. And did we mention the video capabilities are top-notch? Take 1080p at 60 frames per second or stunning 4K at 30 fps, with video HDR for the best light distribution possible. It also shoots in slo-mo, too, because kids, pets and sports. All this fantastic imagery is played back on the Moto Z’s big, bright 5.5-inch Quad HD AMOLED display (2560 x 1440), coated in Gorilla Glass for strength.
Under the Hood
A premium device requires premium power, so the gang at Moto packed the Z with a speedy Snapdragon 820 processor with a 1.8 GHz quad-core CPU. Translation: play games, make and watch video content, browse the Web, get some work done and get the most of all the Mods we’ll be getting into below, all with the peace of mind that the device can handle it. With a 2,600-mAh battery, you’ll get 30 hours of usage, and with its TurboPower fast-charging feature, just a 15-minute top-up will net you up to eight hours of battery life.
Moto Insta-Share Projector
We’ve seen other smartphone projector add-ons, but none have pulled it off quite as successfully as this compact Mod for the Moto Z family of smartphones. First – and like with all the Moto Z Mod add-ons – you don’t have to turn the device off before attaching the Mod to it. Snapping it to the back is a cinch, with a light magnetic force pulling it into position. No matter what you’re doing on your device, browsing, watching YouTube videos, a hockey game via or a movie on Netflix, simply press and hold the projector button on the side, aim the picture at a wall or screen (if you have one, it would be best), focus up and enjoy the show. The picture can project up to 70 inches on any flat surface, and the Mod itself delivers one hour of viewing time before using your phone’s battery.
Hasselblad True Zoom
Photography enthusiasts will know the cachet that comes with the name Hasselblad. The famous Swedish makers of medium-format cameras are responsible for most, if not all, of the pictures taken during the Apollo 11 manned-mission to the moon in 1969. Whether you take your Moto Z there is your business, but adding the Hasselblad True Zoom Mod to the phone here on Earth will net you some equally stellar photos. The Mod adds 10x optical zoom (not digital zoom) to your Moto Z, so the resolution stays crisp and clear, with no pixilation. A built-in Xenon flash goes above and beyond standard smartphone flash capabilities, while added Hasselblad shooting and scene modes do the heavy lifting for you – whether it’s a portrait or landscape you’re after.
JBL SoundBoost Speaker
Any self-respecting music fan has a portable speaker with them at all times, and the name JBL is likely on their list of reputable sound-delivery devices. This Mod just makes the whole “fill the room with music” thing a lot easier. With Bluetooth speakers, pairing to your device isn't always so simple. Since the SoundBoost just snaps to the Moto Z, there’s no need – the connection is physical. The sound is full and surprisingly loud, plus you get 10 hours of listening time without using your device’s battery.
Incipio offGRID Power Pack
Coffee, an energy bar, a nice bracing splash of icy water on the face. Everyone needs a boost every once in a while, so why should your smartphone be any different? With the Incipio offGRID Mod in your backpack or purse, just snap it to the Moto Z to add up to an additional 22 hours of life to the phone. It’s sleek and slim, and doesn’t add any bulk to the device. There’s even wireless charging via an optional charging pad.