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Lenovo reveals new Moto flagships, including mod support (kinda)

Motorola Lenovo Moto Z

Lenovo had more phones to show off than a Project Tango device at its Tech World 2016 conference.

The Chinese firm peeled the curtain back on the latest Moto flagships too, in the form of the Moto Z and Moto Z Force.

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One notable “feature” is that the phones lack earphone jacks, using USB Type-C for audio instead. Want to use your legacy earphones? Then you’ll be relieved to know that Lenovo is including an adapter in the box.

Modify your phone with these cases

Both phones support Lenovo’s new Moto Mods feature, which are hardware add-ons for the device, essentially taking the form of a case.

The company showed off three Moto Mods, namely a battery pack, a case with an integrated projector and a case that packs a set of powerful speakers.

Got an idea for a Moto Mod? Lenovo has established an open architecture and tools so you can come up with your own creations.

“Through the new Moto Mods Developer Program, small developers to established enterprises will have the unprecedented opportunity to help build a complete ecosystem that maximises innovation and redefines the future of mobile,” the company said in a press statement.

Lenovo has also set aside US$1-million in equity funding for the people that create the best Moto Mod prototype by March 2017.

The Moto Z breaks cover

The Moto Z is the less impressive device of the two, packing some high-end internals into a svelte frame though. There’s a Snapdragon 820 processor, 4GB of RAM, 32/64GB of storage and a 5.5-inch 2560×1440 display for crisp visuals (at least on paper).

Lenovo is claiming 30 hours of “mixed usage” out of the 2600mAh battery, with the phone delivering eight hours of usage from 15 minutes of charging.

As for the cameras, you’re looking at a 13MP F1.8 main shooter (complete with OIS and laser autofocus) and a 5MP selfie camera with a flash and 1.4 micron pixels for better low-light performance.

A shatter-proof beast

The Moto Z Force is the more attractive option for mobile enthusiasts, packing the same Snapdragon 820 chip, 4GB of RAM and 32/64GB storage combination into a thicker frame.

However, the phone stands out thanks to its 5.5-inch 2560×1440 “Shatter Shield” screen, which is guaranteed not to crack or shatter, much like its predecessor.

Another feather in the Force’s cap is its 3500mAh battery, delivering 900mAh more juice than the standard Moto Z. Lenovo claims up to 40 hours of “mixed usage” and 15 hours of power from 15 minutes of charging.

The Moto Z Force also improves matters on the camera front, packing a 21MP/F1.8 main camera with OIS, phase detection autofocus and laser autofocus. Selfie fans have access to the same 5MP main shooter as the standard Moto Z (including the flash).

Otherwise, both phones have front-mounted fingerprint scanners.

The phones are expected to launch globally in September, but Lenovo (and Google, before that) hasn’t traditionally brought Moto devices to South Africa. So keep an eye on the Orange Store for these devices instead.

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