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Is the Motorola Moto G5S Plus a Best Buy smartphone?

If you’re on the lookout for a new smartphone, our latest mobile phone reviews include both the cheap and pricey, and other models somewhere in between. Among them is the Moto G5S Plus, a mid-range handset from popular household name Motorola. It has a large 5.5-inch screen, two 13Mp lenses on its rear for recording 4K videos, and it looks and feels premium – impressive considering the phone’s price.

But does this Motorola option reach the dizzying heights of Best Buy stardom? Find out by reading our full Motorola Moto G5S Plus review[1]. Elsewhere from our latest batch of reviews is a model that has the best battery life for call time we’ve ever seen.

Unfortunately, there’s also a Don’t Buy in the mix – for which, as we go on to explain, there are plenty of reasons to avoid. Mobile phone reviews[2] – discover the best handset for you, whatever your budget.

LG V30

The LG V30 has an enormous six-inch Quad HD+ OLED touchscreen to help make colours pop and detail look sharp. The curved glass rear and narrow bezels make the phone look the part, too – the screen fills most of the front of the device.

It’s packed with fancy features to tempt you to part with your cash, such as facial recognition and dual rear cameras. But we’ve seen pricey smartphones fail to deliver on the basics, such as battery life and camera quality – does this GBP600 handset really have what it takes to earn our seal of approval? Head to our full LG V30 review[3] for the answer.

Nokia 6

At GBP200, the Nokia 6 costs a third of the price of the LG V30, which means it has fewer features.

But could it be the perfect choice for buyers on a budget? We found its large 5.5-inch nice and clear. But can its 16Mp rear camera takes photos and videos you’ll be happy to share on social media?

And how long will it last before running out of juice? Read our full Nokia 6 review[4] to find out more.

EE Hawk

The EE Hawk has some pretty decent features for its GBP140 price. Its fingerprint sensor means you can unlock the phone in a jiffy, and it has NFC-capability, which means you can use it to make contactless payments via Android Pay.

Is the Hawk a high-flyer, or is it one you should scuttle past in the shops? Read our full EE Hawk review[5] for everything you need to know.

Alcatel U5

The Alcatel U5 costs just GBP90 to buy outright, which is a refreshing break from the raft of new smartphones that may as well cost you both your arm and your leg. It has a removable battery, a feature lacking in more expensive phones.

We like phones with removable batteries because it’s easier to both diagnose and fix any battery-related issues. As you’d expect from a phone this cheap, the U5 is understandably light on features – but we’ve found sub-GBP100 phones that aren’t too shabby at all. Looking for the best cheap mobile phone?

Find out whether this handset is everything you’ve been looking for by consulting our Alcatel U5 review[6].

What makes a Best Buy mobile phone?

A smartphone has to excel across the board to earn our Best Buy recommendation. Here are a few of our key tests to help you buy the best:

A Best Buy smartphone easily gets through a day without needing a recharge, takes nicely detailed photos and keeps everything ticking over nicely. A Don’t Buy, on the other hand, will be painfully slow to use, take photos you’ll want to immediately delete, and will seemingly take pleasure in losing charge.

Make sure you end up with a smartphone you love by checking out our Best Buy mobile phones[7].


  1. ^ Motorola Moto G5S Plus review (
  2. ^ Mobile phone reviews (
  3. ^ LG V30 review (
  4. ^ Nokia 6 review (
  5. ^ EE Hawk review (
  6. ^ Alcatel U5 review (
  7. ^ Best Buy mobile phones (

Reviewed: Is the Honor 9 Lite the best budget mobile phone?

Honor, a child brand of larger company Huawei, has launched the GBP200 Honor 9 Lite. It is available right now in blue, black or grey. The headline feature is not one, not two, but four cameras – two on each side.

Considering its low price, and some pretty impressive specs elsewhere, this certainly raised some eyebrows. Samsung’s Galaxy S8[1], released in 2017, brought the idea of an almost-all-screen front panel to the mainstream, and the move was slated as something we’d see on more high-end models. But, less than a year later, the arrival of the 9 Lite shows that the idea can be transferred over to cheaper models.

The 9 Lite has a large, 5.65-inch screen. Honor has made it twice as long as it is wide, to aid one-handed use, something which we’d also previously only really seen on pricier options. We’ve already been hands on with the new budget-friendly phone: see what we think of it in our Honor 9 Lite review[2].

Plus below, we compare the 9 Lite’s specs with mid-range options from Motorola, Samsung and LG.

What’s this about four cameras?

We’ve seen and increasing number phones with two rear-camera lenses, but we’ve not seen a handset with two on the back and front. That is, until we laid our hands on the Honor 9 Lite. On both front and back, there are 13Mp and 2Mp lenses.

The theory goes that these will capture exceptional detail, colour and depth. Plus they let you play with depth-of-field effects. This means you can really draw focus to your desired subject by blurring out its surroundings, for an arty shot.

But dual cameras don’t guarantee great photography. Indeed, it would be better to have one fantastic camera lens than two poor ones. We’ll be sending the Honor 9 Lite to our test lab as soon as possible to dig deeper into its camera quality, to find out whether it really does give you top-quality shots.

Browse the best of the best in our guide to the top smartphones of 2018[3].

Huawei Honor 9 Lite vs Motorola Moto G5 Plus vs Samsung Galaxy J5 (2017)

The Honor 9 Lite might pique your interest if you’re looking for a smartphone without spending more than GBP600 on the latest Apple or Samsung flagship models. But it’s by no means the only budget-friendly mobile to consider. See the table below for a comparison of how the Honor 9 Lite compares with two other popular mid-range options: the Motorola Moto G5 Plus and Samsung Galaxy J5 (2017).

Huawei Honor 9 Lite[4] Motorola Moto G5 Plus[5] Samsung Galaxy J5 (2017)[6] Price GBP200 GBP200 GBP230 Screen size (inches) 5.65 5.2 5.2 Weight 149g 155g 160g Dimensions(H x W x D in mm) 151 x 72 x 8 150 x 74 x 8 146 x 71 x 8 Rear camera 13Mp + 2Mp 12Mp 13Mp Front camera 13Mp + 2Mp 5Mp 13Mp Battery size 3,000mAh 3,000mAh 3,000mAh Total storage 32GB 32GB 32GB

The Honor 9 Lite has a larger display than the Moto G5 Plus and Samsung Galaxy J5 (2017), but it’s not that much larger overall – and it’s lighter.

They all offer 32GB of total storage, plus they each have a 3,000mAh battery underneath the hood. But our full tests of the Moto G5 Plus and Galaxy J5 (2017) revealed battery life differences. How long the battery life stretches to depends on other factor than its size, such as processor efficiency.

To find out whether the Motorola and Samsung models are worth considering, head straight to our fully tested reviews of the Motorola Moto G5 Plus[7] and Samsung Galaxy J5 (2017)[8].

GBP200 sounds like a bargain for a phone with decent specs – see what it’s up against in our guide to the best cheap mobile phones[9].


  1. ^ Samsung’s Galaxy S8 (
  2. ^ Honor 9 Lite review (
  3. ^ top smartphones of 2018 (
  4. ^ Huawei Honor 9 Lite (
  5. ^ Motorola Moto G5 Plus (
  6. ^ Samsung Galaxy J5 (2017) (
  7. ^ Motorola Moto G5 Plus (
  8. ^ Samsung Galaxy J5 (2017) (
  9. ^ best cheap mobile phones (

Is the £150 Motorola Moto E4 Plus a Best Buy bargain?

We’ve just tested and rated two Motorola smartphones – the Moto E4 Plus and Moto Z2 Play – plus the Sony Xperia XZ1 Compact. Do any of them deserve a place on your shortlist? With the seemingly never-ending barrage of pricier and pricier smartphones, it’s easy to forget that you don’t need to spend lots of money on your next mobile phone.

Enter the Motorola Moto E4 Plus[1], which you can buy outright for GBP149. For comparison, the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 (64GB)[2] costs GBP869, while the iPhone X (64GB)[3] will set you back an eye-watering GBP999. Admittedly, the cheap Moto E4 Plus doesn’t have as impressive-sounding specs or as many features as top-end models.

But that doesn’t automatically mean it’s worse, or that it won’t perfectly suit your needs. Below, we cover a few key things about the cheap Motorola, and point you to our full review. We also explore the two other mobile phones that have passed through our latest tests – the Sony Xperia XZ1 Compact[4] and Motorola Moto Z2 Play[5] – and whether it’s worth spending big on your next smartphone.

Mobile phone reviews[6] – browse our reviews of over 100 of the most popular smartphones you can buy

Motorola Moto E4 Plus

The GBP149 Moto E4 Plus has a large 5.5-inch screen, which you’ll appreciate if you like to watch videos on your smartphone. It also has a metal body, to fool people into thinking it costs more than it really does. You can unlock the Moto E4 Plus with your fingerprint, which is an impressive feature considering the low price.

But does its 13Mp rear camera take photos you’ll be happy to keep, and will it last the day without needing a recharge? Take a look at our full Motorola Moto E4 Plus review[7] to find out whether this affordable Motorola is everything you’re looking for with your next mobile phone.

Motorola Moto Z2 Play

The back of the Moto Z2 Play is magnetised to let you attach modular add-ons, which you’ll have to buy separately if you want to use them. These include a projector, battery power bank, a speaker and more.

It also offers a generous 64GB of storage, and has built-in FM radio so you can tune into your favourite radio stations. You can pick it up for GBP350, but does it deserve a spot in your pocket? Find out in our full Motorola Moto Z2 Play review[8].

Sony Xperia XZ1 Compact

The Sony Xperia XZ1 Compact has the angular design commonly associated with the Japanese manufacturer.

It has a 4.6-inch touchscreen, which is noticeably smaller than many other smartphones you can buy – so you might consider it if you’re looking for a phone that doesn’t take up too much space in your pocket or bag. It runs on the latest version of the Android operating system: Oreo. Plus it has a 19Mp rear camera for taking photos and videos, and it should survive an accidental drop in the toilet bowl.

It’s the most expensive phone out of the three latest phones to go through our tough tests, costing GBP399. But is it the best of the bunch? Read our full Sony Xperia XZ1 Compact review[9] to find out.

Should you spend more on a smartphone?

2017 has seen the release of many high-profile smartphones costing more than GBP600, with some costing over GBP800.

But if you spend this much on a mobile phone, what exactly do you get in return? Spend big on a smartphone, and you should expect an impressive suite of features. For instance, the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 has an S-Pen, which is a stylus with which you write directly on the screen – handy for writing notes and quickly jotting down numbers.

And the much-discussed iPhone X has Face ID, which means you can unlock the phone with your face. Pricey smartphones should also have the latest processors, to let you do everything that little bit faster and more smoothly. Camera quality and battery life should also be exemplary – but we’ve found that that’s not always the case.

Head to our top five best smartphones for 2017[10], where we reveal the highest-rated phones from our tests – and we also highlight some of our cheapest Best Buys.


  1. ^ Motorola Moto E4 Plus (
  2. ^ Samsung Galaxy Note 8 (64GB) (
  3. ^ iPhone X (64GB) (
  4. ^ Sony Xperia XZ1 Compact (
  5. ^ Motorola Moto Z2 Play (
  6. ^ Mobile phone reviews (
  7. ^ Motorola Moto E4 Plus review (
  8. ^ Motorola Moto Z2 Play review (
  9. ^ Sony Xperia XZ1 Compact review (
  10. ^ top five best smartphones for 2017 (

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