Motorola Moto G100 review

GSMArena Team, 31 March 2021.

Looks like AOSP Android 11, has a bunch of Moto mods

The Moto G100 follows Motorola's principle for offering a stock Android look, but with a fair share of in-house features on top. The latest addition is the 'Ready For' functionality which deserves its own section further below.

Motorola Moto G100 review

The majority of the proprietary features are arranged in the Moto app. The first category is personalization allowing you to choose the icon shapes, the quick toggles appearance, the accent colors and the font. There is also a wide selection of wallpapers, the same ones you'd find in the Google Wallpapers app, plus some Moto-specific interactive ones.

Moto App - Motorola Moto G100 review Personalization - Motorola Moto G100 review Personalization - Motorola Moto G100 review Personalization - Motorola Moto G100 review Personalization - Motorola Moto G100 review Personalization - Motorola Moto G100 review
Moto App • Personalization

Then come the gestures. The karate chop motion that turns on and off the flashlight is here, along with the twisting motion that launches the camera app. Both work even when the device is locked. The lift-to-unlock gesture works well with the face unlock as it unlocks the device as soon as you pick it up and look at the screen. A new addition is the swipe-to-split function that triggers the split-screen functionality.

A new one we don't remember seeing before is the Power touch. When you double-tap the power button, a shortcut menu appears where you can arrange apps, tools and even contacts for quick access.

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Gestures

The display-related features are Peek Display and Attentive Display. The former works as a second-best alternative to the Always-on display but with some added functionality. The screen lights up when it detects motion that's close to the phone or when you pick it up. Once you've received some kind of notification, you can tap on it and see the message itself and even interact with it from the lock screen. As for the Attentive Display, it's pretty self-explanatory - it disables the screen timeout as long as there's a face looking at the screen. Pretty useful when reading long articles, though you do probably scroll often enough for the screen not to lock anyway.

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Display

Since Android 11 brings some new features of its own, Motorola has added a 'What's new' section to get you acquainted with those. The one-time permissions allow you to grant access to certain apps to your storage, location, contacts, etc., only temporarily. You will be asked again when the app needs the respective permission once more when you use it.

Notification grouping is an effort to keep your notification shade tidy and focus on your conversations. Notification cards from ongoing conversations from your messaging apps will appear on top as high-priority compared to other app notifications.

Bubbles is one of the long-awaited features for messaging apps that Facebook's Messenger has had for years now. The apps that support the feature will prompt you with a notification in the form of a floating, interactive bubble. Tapping on it will open up the chart for a quick reply, just like Messenger.

Get to know Android 11 - Motorola Moto G100 review Get to know Android 11 - Motorola Moto G100 review Get to know Android 11 - Motorola Moto G100 review Get to know Android 11 - Motorola Moto G100 review Get to know Android 11 - Motorola Moto G100 review Get to know Android 11 - Motorola Moto G100 review
Get to know Android 11

Nearby Share with other devices running a recent Android version is also possible, making file transfers easier than ever.

And lastly, we have the updated power menu that now displays shortcuts to connected devices such as home automation or Chromecast through the Google Home app.

Lockscreen - Motorola Moto G100 review Homescreen - Motorola Moto G100 review Folder view - Motorola Moto G100 review App drawer - Motorola Moto G100 review Notifications - Motorola Moto G100 review Quick toggles - Motorola Moto G100 review
Lockscreen • Homescreen • Folder view • App drawer • Notifications • Quick toggles

Ready For platform

With the Moto G100, Motorola introduces the Ready For platform that enables you to use the phone as the heart of a big-screen setup for several use cases. By connecting a TV or monitor, you can get a Windows-desktop-like experience, play a game on your phone, display it on the external screen, or even have a big-screen video chat experience.

Official use case photos from Motorola - Motorola Moto G100 review Official use case photos from Motorola - Motorola Moto G100 review Official use case photos from Motorola - Motorola Moto G100 review
Official use case photos from Motorola

Motorola sells just the right accessory to facilitate the connection. It's called the Ready For dock and features a cradle where the phone plugs in and which can be rotated 90 degrees depending on your needs. The dock connects to a TV or monitor via the Ready For cable that's USB-C on the dock end and HDMI on the display end.

Technically, a mere cable connection will work just as well as the dock for connection purposes, but you won't be getting the benefits of the stand. The fatter HDMI end has an additional USB-C port for providing power to the phone, but that's optional - it'll work on battery power as well.

Motorola Moto G100 review

There's also the one-cable option - if you have a monitor with a USB-C port, you can connect the phone using a USB-C-to-C cable, and that will get you the display output while keeping the phone powered. In this scenario, you can plug in peripherals like a keyboard and mouse to the monitor. Otherwise, they need to be connected via Bluetooth to the phone.

Motorola Moto G100 review

If you don't have a mouse handy and your connected monitor isn't touch-enabled, the phone's screen can be used as a trackpad. In our test setup with a touch monitor, where we didn't need the trackpad, text input worked with an onscreen keyboard on the monitor. But if you have the trackpad on the phone enabled, a keyboard will pop up there when there's a need for text input.

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Desktop view

Another use case is for video calls, where you can use the phone's camera to capture yourself and an external display to see the other participants. We couldn't get the phone to use the rear camera for an actual call, though it does work for recording a video message within Duo. In any case, having the two selfie cameras does allow for extra versatility.

Video call - Motorola Moto G100 review Video call - Motorola Moto G100 review Video call - Motorola Moto G100 review
Video call

The third major Ready For use case is for gaming on a bigger screen. You connect an external controller and run the game on the phone, with the obvious benefit being the larger display for gameplay.

Synthetic benchmarks

The Moto G100 is packing some serious processing power in the form of a Snapdragon 870 chipset. A second rehash of the SD865 (there was also the SD865+), the SD870 comes with even higher CPU clocks and its prime core goes all the way up to 3.2GHz. It's the next best thing after a Snapdragon 888, and those are (normally) hard to come by for Moto G100 money.

Motorola Moto G100 review

In the single-core CPU test in GeekBench, the Moto G100 posts excellent numbers, a notch below the 865+-equipped Galaxy Note20 Ultra and Zenfone 7 Pro. The Moto is ahead of the bulk of SD865 and SD865+ devices we've tested, and even beats the SD888 Oppo Find X3 Pro, though that's more the Find's fault since the OnePlus 9 with an SD888 is notably ahead of the Moto G100.

GeekBench 5 (single-core)

Higher is better

  • OnePlus 9
    1129
  • Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G
    1091
  • Asus Zenfone 7 Pro
    996
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G (Snapdragon)
    988
  • Motorola Moto G100
    950
  • vivo X50 Pro+
    930
  • Oppo Find X3 Pro
    926
  • OnePlus 8
    919
  • Xiaomi Poco F2 Pro
    916
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
    906
  • Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
    901
  • OnePlus 8T
    893
  • Galaxy S20+ (120Hz, 1080p)
    886
  • Huawei P40 Pro
    780
  • Oppo Reno4 Pro 5G
    615
  • OnePlus Nord
    610
  • Motorola Edge
    586
  • LG Velvet 5G
    586

Under multi-core loads, the Moto G100 isn't quite as competitive, but let's not forget it's the absolute top-end chipsets above it in the chart. SD765 handsets stand no chance, not in single-core and not in multi-core.

GeekBench 5 (multi-core)

Higher is better

  • OnePlus 9
    3629
  • Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G
    3476
  • vivo X50 Pro+
    3411
  • OnePlus 8
    3399
  • Xiaomi Poco F2 Pro
    3332
  • Oppo Find X3 Pro
    3316
  • Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
    3311
  • Asus Zenfone 7 Pro
    3302
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
    3296
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G (Snapdragon)
    3294
  • Huawei P40 Pro
    3197
  • OnePlus 8T
    3126
  • Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G
    3091
  • Realme X7 Pro
    2997
  • Motorola Moto G100
    2860
  • Galaxy S20+ (120Hz, 1080p)
    2703
  • OnePlus Nord
    1953
  • LG Velvet 5G
    1905
  • Motorola Edge
    1862
  • Oppo Reno4 Pro 5G
    1805

In Antutu, the Moto G100 places around the middle of the pack, beating the Exynos Galaxy S20+ and the SD865 Galaxy S20FE, but losing to the OnePlus 8T (SD865) and the Zenfone 7 Pro (SD865+).

AnTuTu 8

Higher is better

  • OnePlus 9
    715196
  • Oppo Find X3 Pro
    656467
  • Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G
    622276
  • vivo X50 Pro+
    621433
  • Asus Zenfone 7 Pro
    602934
  • OnePlus 8T
    576625
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G (Snapdragon)
    571312
  • OnePlus 8
    564708
  • Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
    563961
  • Motorola Moto G100
    556137
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
    543986
  • Xiaomi Poco F2 Pro
    538221
  • Realme X7 Pro
    510317
  • Galaxy S20+ (120Hz, 1080p)
    500114
  • Huawei P40 Pro
    496356
  • Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G
    435166
  • Oppo Reno4 Pro 5G
    317139
  • OnePlus Nord
    312794
  • Motorola Edge
    305989
  • LG Velvet 5G
    297372

With the above numbers in mind, it's worth pointing out that the Moto G100 is hitting above its weight in the GPU benchmarks. Sure, the early-2021 crop of handset outperforms it, and the SD865+ Galaxy Note20 Ultra manages to snatch a narrow win, but that's pretty much it.

GFX Manhattan ES 3.1 (offscreen 1080p)

Higher is better

  • OnePlus 9
    119
  • Oppo Find X3 Pro
    113
  • Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G
    111
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G (Snapdragon)
    94
  • Motorola Moto G100
    91
  • Asus Zenfone 7 Pro
    90
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
    89
  • OnePlus 8T
    88
  • OnePlus 8
    88
  • Xiaomi Poco F2 Pro
    87
  • Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
    87
  • vivo X50 Pro+
    85
  • Galaxy S20+ (120Hz, 1080p)
    85
  • Realme X7 Pro
    80
  • Huawei P40 Pro
    75
  • Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G
    74
  • OnePlus Nord
    38
  • Oppo Reno4 Pro 5G
    37
  • Motorola Edge
    34
  • LG Velvet 5G
    33

GFX Manhattan ES 3.1 (onscreen)

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G
    100
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G (Snapdragon)
    86
  • Motorola Moto G100
    79
  • Asus Zenfone 7 Pro
    78
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
    77
  • Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
    77
  • Galaxy S20+ (120Hz, 1080p)
    75
  • vivo X50 Pro+
    74
  • OnePlus 8T
    60
  • OnePlus 9
    60
  • Realme X7 Pro
    60
  • Xiaomi Poco F2 Pro
    59
  • Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G
    57
  • Oppo Find X3 Pro
    55
  • Huawei P40 Pro
    52
  • OnePlus Nord
    34
  • Motorola Edge
    32
  • Oppo Reno4 Pro 5G
    31
  • LG Velvet 5G
    29

GFX Car Chase ES 3.1 (offscreen 1080p)

Higher is better

  • OnePlus 9
    70
  • Oppo Find X3 Pro
    70
  • Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G
    66
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G (Snapdragon)
    57
  • Motorola Moto G100
    56
  • Asus Zenfone 7 Pro
    54
  • OnePlus 8T
    53
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
    52
  • OnePlus 8
    52
  • Xiaomi Poco F2 Pro
    51
  • vivo X50 Pro+
    51
  • Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
    51
  • Galaxy S20+ (120Hz, 1080p)
    50
  • Realme X7 Pro
    46
  • Huawei P40 Pro
    44
  • Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G
    43
  • OnePlus Nord
    21
  • Oppo Reno4 Pro 5G
    21
  • Motorola Edge
    19
  • LG Velvet 5G
    19

GFX Car Chase ES 3.1 (onscreen)

Higher is better

  • OnePlus 9
    58
  • Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G
    54
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G (Snapdragon)
    51
  • Motorola Moto G100
    47
  • Asus Zenfone 7 Pro
    46
  • Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
    46
  • OnePlus 8T
    46
  • OnePlus 8
    46
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
    45
  • vivo X50 Pro+
    43
  • Galaxy S20+ (120Hz, 1080p)
    42
  • Xiaomi Poco F2 Pro
    40
  • Realme X7 Pro
    40
  • Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G
    36
  • Oppo Find X3 Pro
    33
  • Huawei P40 Pro
    31
  • OnePlus Nord
    19
  • Motorola Edge
    18
  • Oppo Reno4 Pro 5G
    18
  • LG Velvet 5G
    16

GFX Aztek Vulkan High (onscreen)

Higher is better

  • OnePlus 9
    43
  • Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G
    37
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G (Snapdragon)
    34
  • Motorola Moto G100
    33
  • Asus Zenfone 7 Pro
    31
  • OnePlus 8T
    31
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
    30
  • OnePlus 8
    30
  • Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
    29
  • Xiaomi Poco F2 Pro
    28
  • Galaxy S20+ (120Hz, 1080p)
    26
  • OnePlus Nord
    13
  • Motorola Edge
    12
  • Oppo Reno4 Pro 5G
    12
  • LG Velvet 5G
    11

GFX Aztek ES 3.1 High (onscreen)

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy S21+ 5G
    43
  • OnePlus 9
    40
  • Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G (Snapdragon)
    34
  • Galaxy S20+ (120Hz, 1080p)
    32
  • Motorola Moto G100
    31
  • Asus Zenfone 7 Pro
    31
  • OnePlus 8
    31
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
    30
  • Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
    30
  • OnePlus 8T
    29
  • Xiaomi Poco F2 Pro
    28
  • OnePlus Nord
    13
  • Motorola Edge
    12
  • Oppo Reno4 Pro 5G
    12
  • LG Velvet 5G
    11

Overall, we're really satisfied with the Moto G100's performance. The Snapdragon chip inside is easily powerful enough to meet whatever you throw at it, with some comfortable futureproofing. It's also good enough to power an external screen with multiple apps running side by side. Intensive benchmarking sessions did result in some heat build-up and minor throttling, but neither is severe enough to be an issue.

Reader comments

The camera is surprisingly good in outdoor and indoor conditions especially for human subjects as it gives quite natural colours. The noise is also fairly well controlled in indoor pics (I also had the Xiaomi 10s with hmx main sensor which is a much...

  • Janski
  • 28 Mar 2022
  • kXk

Looking for good case recommendations. I searched all over eBay and Amazon and all I found was TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) and PC (polycarbonate) but nothing sturdy as you described. I also checked otterbox but they don't produce for this m...

  • Anonymous
  • 27 Feb 2022
  • pYc

Was going to get the G100, but then found that you can't have dual SIMs and microSD at the same time, which is plain stupid. The Moto G6 I want to replace takes all at once, which is what I want.