Is the Moto E4 the Best Cheap Phone Yet?

There are plenty of good phones for less than $200. But how about $69? The Moto E4 is one of the most aggressively priced phones on the market, giving you decent specs for the money.

Here's a quick look at what you get and the pros and cons.

Credit: Motorola

(Image credit: Motorola)

Moto E4 Specs

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Price$129 (Unlocked) $69 on Verizon
OSAndroid 7.1.1 Nougat
Display5 inches (1280 x 720)
Cameras (Back/Front)8 MP/ 5 MP
CPUSnapdragon 425 quad-core
Storage/microSD16GB (9GB usable)/Yes
Battery2,800 mAh
Size5.7 x 2.8 0.37 inches
Weight5.3 ounces


The Moto E4 gives you the latest version of Android in Android 7.1.1 Nougat, which means you'll be able to access Google Assistant with ease. You should also expect fairly swift performance from the Snapdragon 425 processor, as the software is pretty close to a stock experience.

The display isn't very sharp at 720p, but the 5-inch screen is decently sized for the price. The affordable iPhone SE, for example, has a much smaller 4-inch screen. We do like that you get a fingerprint sensor.

Moto E4

Although we like to see a battery capacity of 3,000 mAh or more, the 2,800 mAh battery inside the Moto E4 has a rated usage time through Verizon of up to 24 hours. We would expect the phone to last more than 10 hours on our web surfing test, but we'll have to see how it performs in our full review.


Even at such a low price, we're really not fans of buying any phone with just 16GB of onboard storage. In fact, according to Engadget, the Moto E has only 9GB of usable storage out of the box due to how much room the OS and included apps take up.

Fortunately, there is a microSD card slot that supports cards up to 128GB of storage.

As for the 8-MP camera, Engadget's Chris Velazco had some issues with the exposure during his hands-on time. The Pro mode seemed to help, which has manual controls, but you shouldn't have to use that.


If you're looking for a super cheap phone, the Moto E4 looks like it's worth considering, but it faces competition from a couple of other cheap Motorola phones. The Moto E4 Plus ($179), which will be available soon, offers a sharper 13-MP camera, bigger 5-inch screen and very large 5,000 mAh battery.

Then there's the Moto G5 Plus, which can be had for as little as $184.99 (if you're an Amazon Prime member and don't mind lockscreen ads) and really impressed us in our review. That phone boasts an excellent 11 hours of battery life and it offers a 5.2-inch, full HD (1080p) screen. Stay tuned for a full review of the Moto E4.

Mark Spoonauer

Mark Spoonauer is the global editor in chief of Tom's Guide and has covered technology for over 20 years. In addition to overseeing the direction of Tom's Guide, Mark specializes in covering all things mobile, having reviewed dozens of smartphones and other gadgets. He has spoken at key industry events and appears regularly on TV to discuss the latest trends, including Cheddar, Fox Business and other outlets. Mark was previously editor in chief of Laptop Mag, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc. Follow him on Twitter at @mspoonauer.