Moto G9 Power review

GSMArena Team, 29 January 2021.

Android 10 with Moto spices

The Moto G9 Power boots a near-stock version of Android 10 spiced up with a bunch of Moto apps and tricks. The phone unlocks via the rear-mounted fingerprint scanner - it is plenty fast and mostly accurate (the thick case may get in the way sometimes).

Moto G9 Power review

The Moto G9 Power relies on gesture navigation via a single elongated button in the center. Swiping upwards takes you to the home screen, a swipe up with a pause brings out the recent apps menu, swiping on the pill (left or right) switches between the last used apps.

If you want Back, then just swipe anywhere from the edge of the screen. By the way, if you swipe from the bottom corners, you'll summon Google's Assistant.

If, on the other hand, you want to have the classic three-button navigation, you switch to it from Settings.

System navigation - Moto G9 Power review System navigation - Moto G9 Power review System navigation - Moto G9 Power review System navigation - Moto G9 Power review System navigation - Moto G9 Power review System navigation - Moto G9 Power review
System navigation

The Moto app offers a variety of smart Moto gestures for interacting with the phone - including a karate chop for toggling the flashlight on or off, twist motion to launch the camera app, three-finger screenshot gesture, accelerometer-based ringtone silencing.

Moto app - Moto G9 Power review Moto app - Moto G9 Power review Styles - Moto G9 Power review Styles - Moto G9 Power review Styles - Moto G9 Power review Styles - Moto G9 Power review
Moto app • Moto app • Styles

There are also various personalization options, including Styles, where you can change various system icons and layouts, choose between different shapes, fonts, and colors.

Moto Gestures - Moto G9 Power review Moto Display - Moto G9 Power review Peek Display - Moto G9 Power review Attentive display - Moto G9 Power review Gametime - Moto G9 Power review Gametime - Moto G9 Power review
Moto Gestures • Moto Display • Peek Display • Attentive display • Gametime

Moto Display consists of just two options, and the more important one is Peek Display - the not-always-on display. It will display notifications and let you interact with them right there on the lock screen, plus it will wake up when you pick up your phone. Another feature, Attentive display, will keep the screen on as long as you are looking at it.

Moto G9 Power review

All of these aside, the rest is pretty much Android 10 as Google intended it to be. Google's apps handle the multimedia, too - you get Photos and YT Music. The G9 Power supports FM radio, and Moto has pre-installed a proper app for that.

Lockscreen - Moto G9 Power review Homescreen - Moto G9 Power review Folder view - Moto G9 Power review App drawer - Moto G9 Power review Task switcher - Moto G9 Power review Quick toggles - Moto G9 Power review
Lockscreen • Homescreen • Folder view • App drawer • Task switcher • Quick toggles

Everything else that comes pre-installed on the Moto G9 Power are all Google apps.

Photos - Moto G9 Power review FM radio - Moto G9 Power review FM radio - Moto G9 Power review
Photos • FM radio • FM radio

Performance and benchmarks

The Moto G9 Power is powered by the Snapdragon 662 - a midrange Qualcomm chip, made on an 11nm manufacturing process. It is quite similar to the Snapdragon 665 inside the previous Moto G8 Power, but with a refreshed connectivity options and DSP.

So, the SD662 packs an octa-core CPU in a 4x2.0GHz Kryo 260 Gold (A73 derivative) & 4x1.8GHz Kryo 260 Silver (A53 derivative) arrangement and an Adreno 610 GPU. The Moto G9 Power is sold in a single RAM and storage configuration - 4GB RAM and 128GB.

There is one key difference between the Moto G9 Power and Moto G8 Power - the new model has an HD display, while the old one had a Full HD panel. This means the G9 Power screen isn't that sharp, but it will run games much smoother than the G8 Power due to the lower pixel count.

Moto G9 Power review

Let's see what the benchmark scores tell us, shall we?

The processor performance isn't terrible, but obviously, there are faster phones in the same price bracket.

GeekBench 5 (multi-core)

Higher is better

  • Huawei P40 Lite
    1862
  • Redmi Note 9S
    1785
  • Poco X3 NFC
    1777
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 9T
    1775
  • Realme 7
    1681
  • Motorola Moto G9 Play
    1402
  • Poco M3
    1398
  • Motorola Moto G8 Power
    1394
  • Motorola Moto G8 Plus
    1385
  • Motorola Moto G9 Power
    1374
  • Realme 6i
    1349
  • Xiaomi Redmi 9 (Prime)
    1325
  • Realme 7i
    1318

GeekBench 5 (single-core)

Higher is better

  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 9T
    595
  • Huawei P40 Lite
    591
  • Redmi Note 9S
    570
  • Poco X3 NFC
    568
  • Realme 7
    536
  • Realme 6i
    388
  • Xiaomi Redmi 9 (Prime)
    362
  • Motorola Moto G9 Power
    315
  • Motorola Moto G9 Play
    314
  • Realme 7i
    312
  • Motorola Moto G8 Power
    311
  • Motorola Moto G8 Plus
    310
  • Poco M3
    308

The Adreno 610 raw performance isn't up to par. The offscreen tests are done in 1080p resolution, and it's obvious this GPU is rather weak.

GFX Manhattan ES 3.1 (offscreen 1080p)

Higher is better

  • Realme 7
    34
  • Huawei P40 Lite
    34
  • Poco X3 NFC
    33
  • Redmi Note 9S
    30
  • Realme 6i
    16
  • Motorola Moto G9 Play
    13
  • Motorola Moto G9 Power
    13
  • Motorola Moto G8 Plus
    13
  • Motorola Moto G8 Power
    13
  • Poco M3
    13
  • Realme 7i
    13

GFX Car Chase ES 3.1 (offscreen 1080p)

Higher is better

  • Huawei P40 Lite
    21
  • Realme 7
    20
  • Poco X3 NFC
    19
  • Redmi Note 9S
    18
  • Realme 6i
    9.4
  • Motorola Moto G9 Power
    7.2
  • Poco M3
    7.2
  • Motorola Moto G8 Plus
    7.1
  • Motorola Moto G8 Power
    7.1
  • Motorola Moto G9 Play
    7
  • Realme 7i
    7

The Moto G9 Power doesn't have a 1080p screen, though, so it does much better when running HD graphics on its HD screen. In fact, it offers nearly as much power as the popular Poco X3 NFC phone and its Adreno 618 GPU under a 1080p screen. This means the Moto G9 Power will do well in gaming, provided you don't expect flagship-grade smoothness.

GFX Manhattan ES 3.1 (onscreen)

Higher is better

  • Realme 6i
    31
  • Huawei P40 Lite
    30
  • Realme 7
    28
  • Poco X3 NFC
    27
  • Motorola Moto G9 Play
    26
  • Motorola Moto G9 Power
    26
  • Redmi Note 9S
    26
  • Realme 7i
    25
  • Motorola Moto G8 Plus
    12
  • Motorola Moto G8 Power
    12
  • Poco M3
    11

GFX Car Chase ES 3.1 (onscreen)

Higher is better

  • Huawei P40 Lite
    18
  • Realme 7
    17
  • Realme 6i
    17
  • Poco X3 NFC
    16
  • Redmi Note 9S
    15
  • Motorola Moto G9 Play
    13
  • Motorola Moto G9 Power
    13
  • Realme 7i
    13
  • Motorola Moto G8 Power
    6.6
  • Motorola Moto G8 Plus
    6.5
  • Poco M3
    5.9

The lower screen resolution is probably why the Moto G9 Power scores better than the Moto G8 Power with a similar chipset. Anyway, the G9 Power got an average AnTuTu score - it surely isn't among the leaders, but it's not around the bottom of the chart either.

AnTuTu 8

Higher is better

  • Huawei P40 Lite
    325777
  • Realme 7
    292828
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 9T
    288732
  • Poco X3 NFC
    283750
  • Redmi Note 9S
    254000
  • Realme 6i
    202275
  • Xiaomi Redmi 9 (Prime)
    201829
  • Motorola Moto G9 Power
    182875
  • Poco M3
    177904
  • Motorola Moto G8 Power
    173607
  • Realme 7i
    172933
  • Motorola Moto G9 Play
    170064
  • Motorola Moto G8 Plus
    168699

So, the Moto G9 Power has a feeble chip, but it behaves quite well under the 720p screen. The phone isn't that fast, and you can sometimes feel the interface tripping over its feet - it's not particularly laggy, but it just doesn't feel fast and responsive. But we've seen phones like the Poco M3 (with its Full HD screen) behave much worse when it comes to UI responsiveness, let alone gaming.

If you tune your expectations accordingly - it's a €180 phone after all - we think you'd find the Moto G9 Power performance acceptable, if not good enough. And it earns some extra points for being able to run games rather well.

Finally, the Moto G9 Power has excellent cooling, and it never gets warm and never throttles. In fact, it scored a 99.9% stability score on the Wild Life 3D Stress Test by 3D Mark, which is great.

Reader comments

  • Tjaveri

It was performing so well, suddenly it failed to get charged up.service center guys can't locate the problem.within 9 months it's gone!

  • Anonymous

Happened to mine after a few months. Fixed for 25GBP in local phone shop

  • General Zod

Problems being reported about suddenly not being able to charge these and them dying. I can verify this as I have a dead one after 20 days.