Motorola's Moto G budget phones keep edging closer and closer to the kind of premium styling and components of flagship phones – and the Moto G7 Plus looks like the best example to date.
With its teardrop notch, sleek glass-and-aluminium design, and improved camera setup, this £269 phone looks and seems a lot better than you'd expect for the price. And that's kind of OnePlus' shtick too, albeit at a higher level. The company keeps delivering flagship-level phones that trim a couple of nice-to-have features in favour of a much better price point.
Design: Hardly worlds apart
Thanks to the new teardrop notch design of the Moto G7 Plus, it's actually pretty close to the overall aesthetic of the OnePlus 6T. The teardrop itself looks a little deeper on the G6 Plus, and the phone has more bottom bezel – but considering the price difference, they're darn close.
Both also have curved glass backing (albeit with a matte finish on the 6T), with the Moto G7 Plus featuring a larger, circular camera module while the OnePlus 6T keeps its own module pretty compact. Overall, there's a smidge more polish for the OnePlus 6T, but they are pretty close overall.
Screen: Similar, but different
You'll get a large 1080p display on both sides of this comparison, but there are key differences. The Moto G7 Plus screen comes in at 6.2in and is an LCD panel, while the OnePlus 6T is a bit larger at 6.42in and is a Super AMOLED panel.
Whatever your preference on size, there's no doubt that AMOLED panels typically look better than their LCD competitors. With deeper blacks and improved contrast, they pack more of a punch. But the Moto G6 Plus' 1080p LCD looked very good, so we expect much the same for its successor.
Camera: Too early to tell
The OnePlus 6T's dual-camera 16-megapixel/20MP setup is very good, but not quite as excellent as some of the pricier flagships out there. With good lighting, you can get some fabulous shots, while nighttime shooting doesn't match up to the top competition. Even so, it's great for the price.
That's pretty much what we said about the Moto G6 Plus last year – that it had the best camera in its price range. And now the Moto G7 Plus bumps up to a 16MP main sensor with optical image stabilisation, and a 5MP sensor alongside for depth.
We haven't gone hands-on yet, but if it's the best camera on a lower-mid-range handset, how far can that be from a pretty good camera on a cheaper-than-most flagship? Honestly, we can't wait to find out.
Performance: Won't be close
Here's where OnePlus 6T has a clear advantage: the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 chip is a flagship beast, while the Moto's Snapdragon 636 lands square in the mid-range.
We suspect that you'll still get pretty zippy performance with Android 9 on the Moto G7 Plus, but the OnePlus 6T has a fair bit more muscle for gaming, multitasking, and other myriad tasks. That said, the Moto G7 Plus ought to have enough power for most users' needs.
Battery and perks: Mixed bag
The OnePlus 6T has a pretty beefy battery inside, at 3,700mah, while the Moto G7 Plus opts for a more modest 3,000mAh. That might earn you a few extra hours of uptime with the OnePlus 6T, or better resilience against high-performance games and apps. Neither phone supports wireless charging.
You'll get double the internal storage on the base OnePlus 6T, at 128GB, or you can pay more for a 256GB model. Meanwhile, the Moto G7 Plus just starts with 64GB… but you can augment that with up to 512GB via cheap microSD cards. Frustratingly, OnePlus doesn't support those.
The OnePlus 6T also has a very new and flashy perk with its in-display fingerprint sensor, while the Moto G7 Plus sticks with one on the back of the phone. It's really just a matter of preference, as both do a fine job of recognising your biometric signature, but the OnePlus 6T's option definitely has a premium allure to it.
Also, the Moto G7 Plus has a 3.5mm headphone port, while the OnePlus 6T scrapped it this time around to boost the battery and add the in-display fingerprint sensor. Your call on whether that was a smart move or not.
Initial verdict: An intriguing showdown
We won't know for sure until we get hands-on with the Moto G7 Plus, but these phones seem potentially close in a few key ways, albeit with a couple of possibly larger differences between them.
But this might be the largest of all: the price. At £269, the Moto G7 Plus is nearly half the price of the £499 OnePlus 6T. The OnePlus 6T is our pick for the best phone that isn't within shouting distance of a thousand quid (the £899 Huawei Mate 20 Pro is our overall fave), but anyone on a budget might be able to justify saving £200+ and going for the Moto G7 Plus instead.
We'll have a firmer, more insightful verdict once we complete our review for the Moto G7 Plus, but suffice it to say, it's an incredibly promising handset at a supremely tempting price.