Hardware & Design
The white version of the Motoluxe is set for release in May. For now, the black version has a nice, rubbery feel on the back of the body. The classic, sober visual style may not be the most amazing thing you've laid eyes on, but it's still a nice-looking device. And despite the big 4-inch screen, it feels good in the hand and weighs a mere 125 g.
The display has good colour accuracy, although the contrast could be higher.
Either really cool or ostentatious, depending on your tastes, the (very) large LED on the bottom left of the screen flashes every time you receive a message or push notification (on Facebook, for example) and when the battery is low on juice.
Interface & Navigation
Motoblur—the interface that all of Motorola's Android phones have used to date—is no more. It's been sacked for MotoSwitch. According to Motorola, MotoSwitch allows you to find the contacts you interact with the most more quickly. The interface has great graphics, and it does indeed take less time to access your favourite contacts, whether you interact with them primarily via phone call, text, e-mail, or social networking sites. The apps you use most often also get priority.
The homescreen has been given a makeover, with six large icons for features such as messages, photos and phone calls.
The Motoluxe may not boast a dual-core CPU like the hottest smartphones on the market right now, but its single-core processor provides relatively smooth navigation (although it's naturally a step behind the likes of the iPhone 4S and Galaxy SII). Having several apps running in the background never really slows the phone down.
The interface is definitely not one of the fastest on the market, but if you've never owned a super-fast smartphone before, you won't necessarily notice the difference. But given the results of our graphics tests, there's no use trying to play the latest power-hungry 3D video games on it, because the machine just won't be able to handle them. You're better off sticking with Angry Birds.
Despite an 8-Megapixel camera, the Motoluxe doesn't belong in the pantheon of unrivalled photo-phones. It just goes to show that pixels aren't everything. The images are generally very noisy, especially toward the darker end of the spectrum. Compared to the GS2, the Lumia 800 or the iPhone 4S, the photos lack detail due to a slight blurring of the image. As colours go, the Motoluxe's camera is closer to that of the iPhone, which also tends toward the red. The king in terms of colour accuracy is still the Lumia 800.
Motorola Motoluxe in the Photo Face-Off
The Motoluxe is limited to VGA and doesn't support HD video. Videos don't come out particularly smooth and the rendering sometimes lacks precision, but it will do just fine if all you want to do is capture a moment with family or friends and then watch it on the phone.
When you're online, you basically have to zoom out with your fingers to see the full page. So, naturally, you need to zoom back in to read smaller text. It's too bad there's no native resizing option. We should also mention that scrolling and zooming aren't particularly smooth on the Motoluxe, which noticeably struggles with sites that contain a lot of content.
As for battery life, the Motoluxe hardly lasts a day, which places it in the lower average for smartphones of its kind.