$200 Smartphones: Moto E, G with LTE, and LG Volt

Motorola on Tuesday took another step toward lowering the cost for high-function smartphones with the Moto E, the third member of its Moto product family after the $399 Moto X and $179 Moto G. The Moto E smartphone will retail for $129 without a contract.

Motorola also introduced a 4th phone, an LTE-enabled Moto G, with a microSD card slot for $229. The 4G Moto G has the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor and screen as the Moto G, with a 5-megapixel camera and the latest version of Android, 4.4.2 KitKat. It’ll be on sale “globally” in late May.

Part of the company’s strategy to get more affordable smartphones in more hands, reports C/Net.

The Moto E has a 4.3-inch display and a slower dual-core Qualcomm chip, the Snapdragon 200 processor with up to 1.4GHz, compared and is missing a front-facing camera, but has the same all-day battery, customizable back cover and the same rear camera and Gorilla Glass touchscreen as the “G”. It also has dual-SIM capabilities in certain markets such as India and Brazil, allowing customers who have multiple carrier accounts to switch between services.

Comparable phones at that price often come with older versions of Android or lower quality components such as slower processors or cheaper glass.

Meanwhile, both Virgin Mobile and Boost Wireless now carry the $179 LG Volt, an Android 4.4 smartphone that uses Sprint’s Spark service. The tri-band LTE network – currently available in only 24 cities — promises faster mobile broadband speeds by using different wireless frequencies depending on the activity.

The $179 LG Volt is a mid-range Android phone with a 4.7-inch display, Snapdragon 400 processor, and 8-megapixel camera. It comes pre-loaded with a number of new apps including Next Radio, an app that uses the phone’s local FM radio tuner. The app gets song and artist information (and probably tracks your advertising demographics).

A digital FM tuner plays music with far better S/N than analog FM. HD Radio is the trademark for iBiquity’s in-band on-channel (IBOC) digital radio technology used by AM and FM radio stations, using a digital signal embedded “on-frequency” immediately above and below a station’s standard analog signal.

The Volt also includes an IR port for remote-controlling TVs and stereos, and LG’s Quick Remote software.

See: Clip Radio: Connecting Terrestrial Radio to Smartphones, Radio Station Tour, World Radio Day, Digital FM Comes to Smartphones.

Posted by Sam Churchill on .

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