Readers like you help support Android Police. When you make a purchase using links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Read More.

While a flagship smartphone has to hit all the notes to justify a sky high price tag, mid-range devices have a little more flexibility. The more affordable a product is, the more you'll need to compromise on what you want out of your phone. On paper, the latest Moto Edge is a solid compromise — a big, fast display; a thin and light chassis, and a massive battery. But with so much competition in the budget smartphone space, nailing the right mix between affordable and impressive can, as this phone reveals, really be a challenge.

While a flagship smartphone has to hit all the notes to justify a sky-high price tag, mid-range devices have a little more flexibility. The more affordable a product is, the more you'll need to compromise on what you want out of your phone. On paper, the latest Moto Edge is a solid compromise — a big, fast display; a thin and light chassis, and a massive battery. But with so much competition in the budget smartphone space, nailing the right mix between affordable and impressive can, as this phone reveals, really be a challenge.

Motorola Moto Edge (2022) render on a white background
Source: Motorola
Motorola Moto Edge (2022)
7 / 10

Six months after it first hit store shelves, Motorola's midrange phone from 2022 is cheaper than ever. But even at its near-constant $350 sale price, the Edge just can't compete with similarly priced products from Google, Samsung, and in some cases, even OnePlus. That said, if you're looking for a device from outside those companies, the Edge's lightweight build and large display might be enough to win you over.

MediaTek Dimensity 1050
6.6" FHD+ (2400 x 1080) OLED Display, 144Hz
5000mAh, 30W wired, 15W wireless
Operating System
Android 12
Front camera
32MP (f/2.45)
Rear cameras
50MP (f/1.8) main, 13MP (f/1.5) ultrawide, Depth Sensor
  • Thin and light design
  • Big and fast display
  • Constantly on sale
  • Already suffering from poor update support
  • No meaningful water resistance is an accident waiting to happen
  • Cameras don't feel particularly versatile

Availability and network


The 2022 Moto Edge is available unlocked through Amazon, Best Buy, and Motorola's own website. Although it sports an MSRP of $600, the device is almost never sold at this price — even at launch. Throughout 2023, the phone has been sold for less than $500 at Amazon consistently, with prices at all three retailers dropping as low as $350 while I prepared this review.

As usual for Motorola's smartphones, the Edge is compatible with all three major US networks and their MVNOs. However, compatibility doesn't guarantee a perfect experience. I'd recommend checking out Motorola's support page for the Edge to see how your carrier performs, but some networks (including AT&T) do not support 5G on this phone. I've been using a T-Mobile MVNO during my time with the Edge and had no issues with fast, 5G data speeds.

Design and display


The latest Moto Edge is about as utilitarian a design as you'll find on store shelves today. Nearly everything about it is unoriginal, almost like it's an amalgamation of every modern smartphone trend. A big, speedy display? Check. A thin chassis with a camera bump on the back? Check. The total lack of a headphone jack? Friend, you best believe that's a check.

For as uninteresting as the Edge's design is, I also found myself enjoying holding it in my hand. Sure, I wish the overall phone was just a bit smaller — again, this feels like an attempt to capture as many market trends as possible — and the plastic frame does feel a bit cheap in the hand. But at 170 grams, it's also one of the lightest phones I've held in a long time. Seriously, I don't remember the last time I wasn't aware of the device taking up space in my pocket, but despite its maximized footprint, I routinely had to pat my jeans down to ensure the phone wasn't left behind.

I also like the frosted plastic on the unit's back. The company calls the color "mineral gray," but to my eyes, it's more of a muted navy blue in bright light. It's not fully resistant to fingerprints and smudges, but compared to glossy phones from the likes of Google or OnePlus, it stays perfectly comfortable in your hand without feeling too greasy.


While the Moto Edge can't totally escape feeling a bit cheap, it does get the basics right. The buttons are plenty clicky and the plastic chassis only starts to flex under extreme pressure. Its camera bump is relatively thin and unobtrusive, causing just a touch of unbalance when the device is resting on a table. Still, I would've preferred to see Motorola make this phone just a touch thicker, eliminating the elevated bump altogether — it feels particularly unnecessary here.

The 6.6-inch OLED display is a perfectly average panel in 2023, and I mean that as a good thing. It's sharp enough, fast enough, and bright enough to satisfy most shoppers. If you're picky about refresh rates, though, I'd recommend locking it to 144Hz, as I saw the Edge dip into 60Hz on auto mode more than I would've liked. And as usual, the default "Saturated" display mode just looked a bit too extreme to my eyes. " Natural" does a good job reducing this effect, and a color temperature slider lets you tune things to your liking.

The bezels surrounding the screen are pretty standard for a device in this price range — a little on the chunky side, but comparable to the Pixel 6. At the very least, they're relatively proportional, without too much of a massive bottom chin like on cheaper options. As usual, I'm thrilled about the flat display here, as it made gripping the phone without a case much easier.

Other hardware and what's in the box


Keeping in line with other sub-flagship smartphones, Motorola uses an optical in-display fingerprint sensor, rather than embedding one in the power button. I usually prefer this, even over the rear-mounted sensors of yesteryear, but the Edge's sensor is way too low on a screen this size. Even with fairly large hands, unlocking the phone really requires me to stretch my thumb, or to readjust how I'm holding the device in my hands. The sensor itself is accurate and fast enough, but I never quite felt comfortable using it.

Motorola opted against including a microSD card slot or a headphone jack on this device, which I still see as a huge miss. I know many of us — myself included — have long adopted these changes on flagships, but I really prefer to see companies keep these options on lower-cost devices as much as possible. I know that probably sounds a little backwards, asking for more features on cheaper phones, but giving budget-minded customers the choice to stick with wired headphones or to add additional storage later on just makes sense.


Alongside the SIM card slot and the USB-C port, you'll find a bottom-firing speaker. The Edge does support stereo sound with the help of its earpiece, but don't expect to be impressed. It's fine for podcasts and YouTube videos, but I found movies and music just sounded too tinny to be enjoyable. The phone does get plenty loud, but you'll want an external speaker or a pair of headphones for extended listening sessions.

Honestly, the biggest flaw in Motorola's hardware here is an unseen one. This device is only IP52-certified, a massive step below phones like Samsung's Galaxy A54, which is rated IP67. I'm not too concerned about its dust protection — it's just one step below the maximum dust-tight rating and should, for most users, be more than enough.

Water resistance is another story, though. It's certified against water droplets falling at an angle, but that's it. I took some of my photo samples in the middle of a classically-rainy March day in Buffalo, and frankly, I couldn't help but feel a bit concerned about this phone's odds. Forget spills, showers, and dunks — all three are likely to kill this device. It's a huge miss from Motorola, especially in this price range.


A quick accident on a springtime walk could end it all.

In the box, you'll find the phone itself, a USB-C to USB-C charging cable, and the usual round of paperwork. As is increasingly usual with all devices these days, you'll need to supply your own charger.

Software and performance


I'm not sure the last time I felt so split on an OEM's software, but Motorola's experience here has really divided me. On one hand, some of the Edge's enhancements are just that — worthy elements that make Android feel a little more magical. On the other hand, there are some serious flaws in Moto's UI, to say nothing of its update support.

Let me start with the good, because despite us being a decade out from most of the company's best software decisions, many of the ones that stuck around are as fantastic as they were in 2013. I quite like Moto's Peek Display — calling it "always-on" would be a misnomer, since you need to tap the screen to activate it. It looks a little dated to my eyes, but it also provides you with a full glimpse of your notifications, along with the ability to jump right into an app by sliding the icon down to the fingerprint sensor.

The vast majority of Moto's software remains closely aligned with the Pixel experience, caught somewhere between basic stock Android and Google's own hardware. That's a good thing, as are elements like the custom widgets for the time and weather. Thanks to Android 12, dynamic themes are fully supported, pulling colors from your wallpaper to deck out the keyboard, the quick settings menu, and various other apps.

And I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Motorola's motion shortcuts, like a quick twist to open the camera or a quick chop to activate the flashlight. These are fun, useful features that I wish more OEMs would adopt.

Okay, so what don't I like? Well, as much as I enjoyed Peek Display, using it while media is playing can be a headache. The playback bar is far too easy to accidentally touch — annoying if you're listening to a song, but absolutely unacceptable if you've got a podcast playing. Once, while grocery shopping, I unknowingly skipped ahead nearly 45 minutes in an episode without realizing it, and figuring out where I'd last left off was headache-inducing.


It's way too easy to drag that playback bar, and you can't disable this screen while keeping the AOD enabled.

And we need to address the elephant in the room: updates. Motorola's achilles heel was bolstered a bit last year, with the company promising to deliver three major OS upgrades with four years of security patches. On paper, that's great, but a couple of small problems keep me from praising the company.

First and foremost, I don't believe them. Motorola has reneged on promised updates before, and even if the company is true to its word here, it's impossible to trust it on these agreements. It's easy to imagine the Edge getting left behind on Android 14, with that final Android 15 update simply never arriving in just a couple of short years.

Does everything look

Second, where are these updates? One of the advantages to being late reviewing this particular mid-range phone is the ability to look at its state six months after launch, and frankly, things don't look good. Not only has Motorola failed to provide an update to Android 13, but much of my time with the phone was spent running the December security patch. Only after finishing my first draft did I receive a new update, bringing me February's fixes two months late. In a world where Samsung and Google provide timely updates, and even OnePlus can maintain its bimonthly schedule, it's simply not enough.

As for performance, I did spot some stutters in regular use that made me question just how well the Dimensity 1050 powering the Edge was holding up. App reloads weren't an issue, but I did see some pretty frequent stutters across the OS, far more than I would've expected on a relatively new device. I don't think these hiccups will bother most users, but it's worth pointing them out anyway.


Unless there's a "G" on the back of a device, I don't think most people expect mid-range or budget smartphones to capture particularly impressive shots. To that end, the Moto Edge's cameras are about as average as you'd expect, taking totally serviceable shots in bright environments.

I went on a walk on a particularly rainy day through my local park — the one that scared me about this phone's ability to survive in a rainstorm — and, aside from boosting the brightness a bit too much for my liking, the images it captured looked pretty accurate.

The same goes for daytime shots indoors, but once things start to get dim, I'm not sure I'd expect much out of the Moto Edge. Low-light shots aren't completely unusable like they might've been a few years ago, but don't expect Pixel or Samsung-level performance here. Overall, it's a perfectly capable lens, one that might be a bit more appealing if Google's A-series didn't exist. Alas.

Once you switch to the ultra-wide lens — or try to zoom in on a shot — you're in much worse territory. Motorola seemingly acknowledges the latter, as you'll need to use pinch to zoom to get a close-up of your cat. There's no 2x button in the app, and frankly, sliding my fingers across the screen felt inaccurate and finicky.


The camera bump gathers a ton of pocket dust, by the way. No matter how many microfiber cloths you own.

Whether it's set on 1080p or 4K, video quality was passable at best. There's a shake reduction option in settings — enabled by default — but it didn't help much with motion, and the microphone is pretty subpar. You can capture your kids' soccer game on it, but I wouldn't plan on becoming a TikTok sensation.

Surprisingly, the macro photo mode is actually fairly competent. It utilized the wide-angle lens to capture a closeup of a particularly messy breakfast sandwich that the main camera couldn't capture on its own.

Battery life

With a 5,000mAh battery, it should come as no surprise that the Edge's battery life is pretty impressive. Motorola claims users should expect two full days of use out of their smartphone, but I wouldn't quite go that far. In heavy usage, the Edge got me through a full day.

On one particular Sunday, the Oscars kept me glued to Twitter for much of the night, resulting in 2% remaining past midnight with about 7 hours of screen-on time total. On lighter days, I was usually retiring to bed with about 40% left in the tank. Not bad.

While no one should expect ultra-fast charging on the Edge, it does support 30W fast charging with 15W wireless charging. Considering the Pixel 6a doesn't even have wireless charging — and the Pixel 7a is rumored to be restricted to just 5W — that's pretty impressive.


Pixel-6a-review-renamed-with-dashes (19)

The mid-range field is chock full of choice these days, and while the Moto Edge is technically priced at $600 upfront, it's almost never been sold at that price. In fact, Amazon's price history shows the phone hasn't hit $500 throughout the first three months of 2023, with the phone currently marked as low as $349.

That means it's got plenty of competition, priced both above and below its usual MSRP. Moto's closest competitor is likely the Pixel 6a. Originally sold at $450, we've seen it as low as $250, and for that price, it's frankly a no-brainer. Since it originally shipped with Android 12, it has the same promised three upgrades as this device, plus an additional year of (timely!) security patches. Throw in a much better camera and a faster processor, and the Pixel 6a is clearly the better phone for most users.

Really, the only reasons to consider the Edge over Google's mid-range smartphone are the display and wireless charging. This 6.6" 144Hz panel absolutely dwarfs the 6a's, both in size and speed. And as I covered in the battery section, there's no wireless charging on Google's cheapest Pixel. The rumored Pixel 7a is likely to solve both of these issues, with a bump up to 90Hz and the addition of 5W wireless charging, but that's still a far cry from what you'll get on this phone.

A light green Google Pixel 7 with the camera bar in focus.

But, of course, there's also the Pixel 7. It shares an MSRP with the Edge, although we've only seen it drop as low as $450. Still, that's mighty cheap for a flagship smartphone, and it adds both 12W wireless charging — 20W with the Pixel Stand — and a 90Hz display. Throw in better performance, a much better camera, and a more premium design, and it's hard to say no to the Pixel 7, especially if it's on sale.

If you aren't interested in the world of Google, Samsung's Galaxy A54 is likely a phone to watch. It's the successor to the Galaxy A53, one of our favorite budget phones from last year. Much of what we loved about that device remains the same, with a slightly newer processor, a refined design, and — at least according to Samsung — better low-light performance. We have a review of the Galaxy A54 coming, but until then, if you can't wait for the device to drop onto store shelves, check out last year's Galaxy A53 for a similar performance.

Should you buy it?


At its original MSRP of $600, the Moto Edge is absolutely a no-go. Priced identically to the Pixel 7, it's impossible to suggest anyone pick up this phone over Google's latest smartphone, even if just for the software support alone. But since its launch, the Edge has constantly dropped to nearly half its original price, making for a much more interesting product. There's still plenty of competition in this field — including Google, with the Pixel 6a — but it does make for a more compelling argument.

Ultimately, the Moto Edge is a fine phone in its own right, but no matter how far its price falls, it fails to outshine the competition in one way or another. Samsung's recent A-series entries keep getting better and better, squeezing Motorola out of a space it once dominated. Even the OnePlus Nord devices continue to nail the absolute basics in a smartphone. I don't think anyone will regret their decision to buy a Moto Edge as long as it's on sale, but unless something about this phone really speaks to you, I'd suggest shopping around a bit first. You might find a device that wins over your heart, not just your wallet.

Motorola Moto Edge (2022) render on a white background
Source: Motorola
Motorola Moto Edge (2022)

The Moto Edge has only gotten cheaper since it arrived on store shelves last fall, but no matter where you fall on the price spectrum, there's probably a better option for you.