The newest addition to the One portfolio trains its sights on avid Instagrammers who love to shoot action videos.

Motorola One Action review Dedicated 16MP video cam immersive Cinematic display
Atom Smartphones Saturday, August 31, 2019 - 14:49

Different strokes for different folks. Motorola’s smartphone strategy, especially around its ‘One’ series devices seems to be centred around identifying specific market needs and addressing them with niche devices. A couple of months ago, we checked out Motorola’s One Vision that was built on two key selling propositions – an immersive screen with a 21:9 aspect ratio and lowlight photography. The newest addition to the One portfolio trains its sights on avid Instagrammers who love to shoot action videos. 

Moto takes a novel route with its rear camera. The primary lens on this triple cam is a 16MP dedicated video cam with an ultra-wide field of view. It doesn’t just let you shoot in ultra-wide mode but also in portrait mode. This is probably its most useful feature. Whether you use a mount or shoot with your hand, action videos are easier to shoot on vertical mode. The Moto Action essentially allows you to shoot vertically and play back those videos horizontally. Video results were quite impressive (for this price segment) in ambient light in our tests and were blur free too. A 12MP secondary lens and a 5MP depth sensor complete the rear cam. Lowlight images were quite noisy; Motorola assures us that a software optimisation to enhance lowlight photography is on the way. 

While lowlight results were very different on the One Action vis-à-vis the One Vision (with its dedicated lowlight mode), the display is identical. It’s the same immersive 6.3-inch IPS LCD display (1080 x 2520 pixels / 82.5% screen : body ratio / 432 PPI) with its unique 21:9 aspect ratio that Motorola calls a Cinematic display. Videos certainly play out really well on this display but its not easy to find Content that allows you take full advantage of this screen size. There are a few titles on Netflix, Moto will hope that this library expands soon. 

The One Action shares the same design pedigree as the One Vision. It’s one of the better looking devices under Rs 15,000 and comes in two new colour variants including a subtle denim blue (that we tested). The One Action opts for a polycarbonate back but that doesn’t take away from the device’s presence. In terms of hardware, it’s identical to its predecessor and is certainly not the most robust at this price point. At its heart is an Exynos 9609 processor with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of Internal memory (expandable up to 512GB).  Our tests revealed a similar performance as the One Vision, that should work for most average users. 

Battery life (3500 mAh battery) is average and should last you a day unless you end up binge watching. The device is bundled with a 10W charger. There’s no fast charging unfortunately; this smartphone takes longer than the One Vision to power up. The Moto One Action shines in the same areas as its predecessor. We like the build quality, the display and the cam (the video cam in this case). Motorola gets the pricing right for this feature set and yet it’s not an easy sell given the myriad options for consumers in the Rs 10,000 to 15,000 price band. 

The Motorola One Vision costs Rs 13,999 and comes in Denim Blue and Pearl White. 

Ashwin Rajagopalan writes extensively on Gadgets & Trends, Travel & Lifestyle and Food & Drink. He owns and manages Brand Stories, a creative Content outfit and, a premier lifestyle blog with a focus on short-format content. Instagram: ‘ashwinpowers’) 

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