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Motorola’s 2016 Moto X will “one-up” the LG G5 with a modular design

We’ve seen some confirmation of the 2016 Moto X in the last few weeks, but little to tell us much about the device. Motorola has been rather occupied with the Moto G4 and the Moto G4 Plus that the company will announce on May 17th in New Delhi, India, so perhaps priority is the reason behind the 2016 Moto X information delay. And yet, the 2016 Moto X looks to be Motorola’s flagship this year outside the Droid Turbo 3 (which is a Verizon exclusive in the US).

Well, Motorola has taken a page from LG before with its leather backs in the Moto X Pure Edition from last year. Now, the company is back to enter the modular smartphone race with a modular 2016 Moto X of its own.

According to sources familiar with the matter, the 2016 Moto X has what some believed were 16 speaker holes at the back of the device. Now, we discover that they weren’t speaker holes at all, but rather, a dock connector that can be used to attach other modules to the 2016 Moto X. Motorola is calling its modules “Amps,” as opposed to LG’s “Friends” modules in the LG G5, and, in addition to the name, Motorola intends to make its modular smartphone design more elegant than that of the G5. There are at least 6 “Amps,” including a pico projector, rugged case with a wide angle lens attachment, a camera grip with flash and optical zoom, battery pack, and stereo speakers. The camera grip for the 2016 Moto X reminds us of LG’s own B&O (Bang & Olufsen) audio module, with the battery pack being detached from the camera grip. LG placed its battery pack, a mere 1,140 mAh, within the camera grip and called it the LG G5 Cam Plus. Motorola intends to do a wide angle lens attachment rugged case, which hints at the company’s desire to one-up the LG G5 this year.

The 2016 Moto X will come in two versions, one with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, the other a Snapdragon 652 processor. The high-end, “Vector Thin” 2016 Moto X will feature (in addition to the 820 processor) 32GB of storage, 3GB/4GB of RAM, a 5.5-inch, Quad HD AMOLED display, 16MP back camera with laser-assisted autofocus and phase detection autofocus (PDAF), and a 2,600mAh battery. It’s pretty disappointing that Motorola would give a smaller battery here, but perhaps the modules will make it easy enough to purchase a battery pack that can extend battery life. The more mid-range device, codenamed “Vertex,” will supply a 3,500mAh battery — making it an all too easy choice for those who end up having to purchase the mid-range device.

The Vertex 2016 Moto X will feature a 5.5-inch, Full HD (1080p) AMOLED display, 13MP back camera (instead of the 16MP of the high-end Moto X), 2GB of RAM (no 3GB or 4GB here), with a higher speed for its mid-range octa-core processor (2.4Ghz as opposed to the 2Ghz speed of the Snapdragon 820). The mid-range 2016 Moto X will also be compatible with the Motorola “Amps” modules, but we tend to think this device is targeted at a non-US market. Only time will tell.

Outside of this, we don’t know what else Motorola has in store, but Lenovo’s Tech World Event on June 9th will tell all.

If Motorola does intend to make a modular smartphone, is this something that you’d be interested in? Do you think that modular smartphones are the wave of the future, or is this just a passing fad that will die quickly? Do your thing in the comments.

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