BARCELONA—With all the new 5G phones here at MWC19, it might have been easy to forget the first 5G device announced. Motorola's Moto Z3 5G Mod, announced last year, is a sizable "backpack" that snaps onto the rear of its midrange Z3 phone to add 5G Verizon connectivity. And Motorola wants to make it clear that it's here, it was first, and it'll have the best battery life.
"When LTE came out in 2010, consumers were lucky to get half a day of battery life, and with our 5G Moto Mod we think we solved [that,]" Doug Michaud, Moto's head of product operations said.
The Mod apparently doesn't have an X24 thin LTE modem as Motorola said it did in August, it has a whole Snapdragon 855 chipset along with its X50 LTE modem.
"It's really a full computing system," he said.
That means the Mod matches the features that Qualcomm has described more recently than August. It has Qualcomm's Power Save, a feature announced on Monday that turns off blocked antennas to save battery by lowering the phone's radio power. And it has dual connectivity, which will combine 5G and LTE networks to achieve speeds faster than either of them alone.
Most of Motorola's sales in the US aren't with its flagship Z line, though, but with its less expensive G and E lines. Michau said that while Moto is focused on the Mod at the moment, the company sees a future not too far away when 5G will be available up and down product lines. LTE took about four years to get to lower-cost phones, Michaud said; 5G will come more quickly.
"You're going to see some devices in the next couple of years at that mid-tier price point," he said.
Source/Credit: PC Mag