Back in 2013, the Moto X broke open the unlocked smartphone market with a flagship-level phone that cost hundreds less than its competitors. But after lackluster sales of last year's Moto X Style and Pure Edition phones, it was once again time to reinvent Moto. So at its annual Tech World event, Lenovo introduced a new modular vision for the iconic phone brand: the Moto Z. Here's how both versions of the Moto Z stack up against its competition.


While both versions of the Moto Z come with 5.5-inch screens, the standard Moto Z features a super-slim 0.2-inch thick body for people who want something really sleek, while the thicker 0.28-inch Moto Z Force sports a larger 3,500 mAh battery and a Shattershield 2 screen, which Lenovo says should make cracked screens a thing of the past. However, unlike the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, Motorola's phone is not water resistant.

Around back, magnetic metal pins provide a connection for the Moto Z's biggest innovation: modular add-ons. At launch, Lenovo says its family of Moto Mods will consist of an add-on projector, powerful JBL stereo speakers, and battery packs co-designed by fashion brands such as TUMI and Kate Spade.

MORE: Find the Best Phone for Your Passion

However, there is one common feature you won't find on either Moto Zs: a headphone jack. So if you want to listen to music without using the Moto Z's small on-board speakers, you'll have to spring for wireless headphones or ones that use a USB Type-C connector.


With a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, 4GB of RAM and 32GB of onboard storage, the Moto Z should have no trouble keeping up with other big name phones. And with an expandable micro SD card slot, you won't suffer from a lack of storage either.

The one spec that looks a little worrying is the vanilla Moto Z's 2,600 mAh hour battery. Because while Lenovo claims the Z should last up to 10 hours on a charge, its battery size is 200 mAh smaller than the next closest competitor, the 2,800 mAh LG G5. Thankfully, it seems Lenovo has thought about keeping its phones topped, because the Z features fast charging tech that the company claims can restore 8 hours of battery life in just 15 minutes.

Aside from their battery size, the other major difference between the Moto Z and Moto Z Force is that the Force features a higher-res 21-MP megapixel camera versus the Z's 13-MP rear cam. So if you're looking for the sharpest, most detailed photos from Lenovo's new phones, the Z Force should be the clear winner.


With specs that match what you get from Samsung, LG and HTC's top-of-the-line phones, two different designs to help suit your tastes, and big 5.5-inch AMOLED displays, both versions of the Moto Z seem well-equipped to take on their competitors from Samsung, LG and HTC. If Lenovo's Moto Mods prove popular, we could also see a lot of imitators. However, you're going to have to be willing to live without a headphone jack.

But if you're hoping to get a Moto Z soon, you better be on Verizon, because the Z will be exclusive to Big Red until unlocked versions become available later this fall, the only thing we're waiting on is a price.

  • Our Top-Rated Smartphone Cameras
  • LG Believes In Modular Phones, But Will You?
  • Smartphones with the Longest Battery Life

Get instant access to breaking news, the hottest reviews, great deals and helpful tips.

Thank you for signing up to Tom's Guide. You will receive a verification email shortly.

There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.

No spam, we promise. You can unsubscribe at any time and we'll never share your details without your permission.