Motorola's Budget Galaxy Note Gets Rebooted With Better Specs

The Moto G Stylus is one of the cheapest ways to get a phablet with a stylus if you don't mind the lack of 5G.

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A photo of a person using the Moto G Stylus
It’s always nice to have options in Android land, even if they’re mid-range.
Image: Motorola

Rumor has it Samsung is getting ready to reboot the Galaxy Note in the form of a Galaxy S22 Ultra with built-in stylus, but Motorola has a new option for those who want to draw on a screen but don’t want to pay Samsung flagship phone prices.

The new Moto G Stylus is the second generation of 2020’s debut of the phablet phone. It’s a 4G device, so you’ll have to consider last year’s year’s Moto G Stylus 5G if you want to log on to the new networks.

The main reason you’d choose the Moto G Stylus over Samsung’s offering is its affordable price tag. The Moto G Stylus is $300, making it an accessible phablet device for anyone craving a big screen and a stylus that can jot down notes (though you’ll want to use another app because Moto Note has some particularly disappointing reviews in the Play Store).

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The Moto G Stylus has a 6.8-inch edge-to-edge Max Vision Full HD+ display with a 90hz refresh rate. There’s a 5,000 mAh battery to accommodate that big screen with a promise of up to two days of battery life on a single charge.

A photo of the stylus popping out of the Moto G Stylus
The Moto G Stylus pops out just like on Samsung’s devices.
Image: Motorola
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On the inside, the Moto G Stylus has much less firepower than Samsung’s lineup (obviously, given the price). This smartphone fits squarely in the mid-range with its MediaTek Helio G88 processor and up to 6GB of memory. Storage space is a bit more forgiving, and you can get the Moto G Stylus in 64GB or 128GB variants. There’s also an expansion slot for an extra 512GB for separately storing music, ebooks, or some PDFs—you know, things you’d store on a phone with such a massive screen.

The Moto G Stylus comes equipped with a 50-megapixel main rear lens, with what Motorola calls Quad Pixel technology. It’s supposedly capable of delivering four times the low-light sensitivity of the sensor, resulting in a brighter, sharper photo in dark situations. In the fine print, Motorola explains, “The 50MP sensor combines four pixels into one, for an effective photo resolution of 12.5MP.”

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Additionally, the Moto G Stylus has a 118-degree ultra-wide-angle lens for expansive landscape shots, plus a Macro Vision lens for macro shots and a depth sensor to help blur out the background for portrait-style photos.

A photo render of the Moto G Stylus
The Moto G Stylus comes in several colors, including this nice blush pink.
Image: Motorola
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Annoyingly, the Moto G Stylus comes with Android 11 instead of the latest version of Android 12. Motorola has a track record of falling behind on essential software updates. Though the company declared support for Android 12 in December, it’s unclear when the Moto G Stylus would receive the update.

If you’re interested in the device, it’s available now at Best Buy, Walmart, Amazon, and Motorola’s website. Cricket Wireless and Consumer Cellular will carry the Moto G Stylus in the coming months.