1. David Alfredo's Avatar
    LENGTHY POST WITH INTERESTING INFORMATION COMPARING DEVICES BELOW

    - I've had MotoG3 8/1 GB for two months and even upgraded to Marshmallow and reverted back

    - I've had MotoG3 16/2 GB for three weeks now also upgraded to Marshmallow and also rolled back to 5.1.1 (purchased since my mother needed a replacement and I gave her my 8/1)

    - Both of them have Samsung EVO 32 UHS1-class 10 SD cards for music, photos and videos (all apps installed in internal storage)

    *** User experience

    Regarding the "best buy" version (8 GB storage / 1 GB RAM), there's really no concern here, the device operates smoothly with no lag (maybe one millisecond lag here and there every 3 days) and is capable to match more powerful devices thanks to the great optimizations from Motorola/Lenovo, everything is smooth, fast, stable, reliable, no bugs, no unexpected behavior, amazing battery time is really another strong point.

    Same can be said about the 16 / 2 version, also smooth with no issues at all and exactly same great battery time (2-3 days with moderate usage) despite having to "power" an extra RAM chip. If anything this version is considerably "snappier" than the 1 GB RAM counterpart which is already snappy.

    *** Performance

    ** MotoG3 8 GB storage / 1 GB RAM


    With the usual apps installed (most common Google apps, social media apps, music, browsing and some games) the performance is generally great but with some caveats

    - Opening apps is a bit slow for some of the big apps such as Facebook when they're not cached / in memory.

    - Some apps suffer a bit from the 1 GB of RAM, for example the new Google Photos when browsing collections of large pictures and also Google Maps is a bit slow too, also Chrome is not good at keeping more than one tab in memory, which is understandable.

    - When the device really needs the memory for some other app in the foreground it can potentially shut down services in the background such as the noise reduction service from Motorola, causing it to restart and it takes a long while (best action here is simply restart the phone)

    - 5.1.1 and Marshmallow are trying to cache as many OS & system services as they can so with only 1 GB of RAM the memory is constantly being juggled around.

    - Gaming performance is ok, loading screens are not great but also understandable considering the free memory.

    - When Facebook (full app, not lite) is installed the device is affected when opening apps, not much slower but a tad slower.

    - Multitasking is OK, not great at all but really good for 1 GB of RAM and certainly much better than 95% of 1 GB phones out there, I had Facebook + one tab of Chrome + WhatsApp + Camera + Dialer with no refreshing, if you add something extra such as a game or Google Play Music then refreshing will happen.

    ** MotoG3 16 GB storage / 2 GB RAM

    with the same apps installed as the 8/1 version...

    - Opening apps is instant, it's the first thing you notice in this 16/2 version

    - Performance issues I had on some apps such as Google Photos / Google Maps are completely gone, don't know if it's optimization or simply the extra RAM, they simply run much, much better. Chrome loads pages faster and keeps more on memory, this was expected with 2x RAM of course.

    - OS caches a lot of system services in RAM (taking usually double RAM the 8/1 device used for the OS) and it won't shut down any service in the background, both 5.1.1 and Marshmallow starve for RAM and the more the merrier, one example is HDR, 16/2 is much faster at processing HDR pics even with the same CPU, reason being the service used by the OS to compute the final image is cached in the device and there's no need to call for it into memory and then run it. Apps are cached in full and not partially as with the 8/1 device, so the memory is not being assessed and tinkered with constantly.

    - Gaming performance is definitely better, loading screens are much quicker and performance a bit increased, all thanks to assets cached in the device.

    - When Facebook (full app, not lite) is installed the device is NOT affected when opening apps, seems like whatever resources Facebook wants it can find them on the 16/2 device.

    - Multitasking is better as expected, you won't see the Google Keyboard refreshing / reloading any more, there is not drop in performance with a lot of apps open, I can have Facebook + 3-4 tabs of Chrome + WhatsApp + Camera + Dialer + a game + Google Play Music and some more with no refreshing at all. Mind you that, for some reason, opening the native Motorola gallery or the Google Play store it will cause to shut down a random app in the background, I think this is GPU-memory related since there is plenty of RAM available for this to not happen, apart from that the 16/2 device sports amazing multitasking.

    - Bonus point: more internal storage = no fiddling with apps' cache anymore, just let it fill and manage itself, forget about it, with the 8/1 there's so little free storage you find yourself sometimes clearing cache here and there so the device is not below 1200 MB (1.2 GB) free storage (recommended for optimal storage read / write speed)

    - All in all the 16/2 feels like a yearly incremental upgrade compared to the 8/1 version, everything is ready to run and as fast as you expect, with zero lag. It performs on par and sometimes better compared to the Moto X my brother has, such an achievement considering it has much better battery time due to weaker CPU and screen resolution. After two months of 8/1 going into the 16/2 was such an eye-opener, simply amazing, good job on both devices but I can't recommend the 8/1 anymore if money is not a factor

    *** 5.1.1 vs 6.0

    **MotoG3 8/1 after upgrading to 6.0


    - I had a lot of bugs and issues with Marshmallow, some of them I could not fix by "wiping the cache partition" or even after a factory reset, the OS was snappy but not quite as snappy as 5.1.1, opening apps was faster but that's a change/feature in 6.0, the app is "partially" opened so it's brought faster to the foreground while the rest of the app (the part you don't see) is being loaded in the background.

    - Multitasking was much worse, I could not mix Facebook in anymore, there was much more refreshing and reloading, performance remained the same even for above-mentioned problematic apps and battery time was not really improved, maybe 1-2% extra save at night when phone is in "sleep" mode, battery is the same when actually using the phone, this is not a bad thing for 6.0, actually tells us how awesome 5.1.1 is optimized.

    - I had a lot of issues accessing my data be it on the SD card or the internal storage, sometimes clearing data and cache for both "media" and "external media" system apps would fix it but after a couple of days issues are back and then you're just tired of them.

    - All in all, worse multitasking, some minor bugs that didn't get fixed after a "cache partition wipe" and the USB troubles made me roll back to 5.1.1 and my mother, who uses the phone as the name suggests, "a phone", couldn't be happier with it, the battery time is 4-5 days in her case even with some chat usage here and there, some camera usage and specially Google Now which she did learn to use and she is amazing at taking advantage of.

    **MotoG3 16/2 after upgrading to 6.0

    - I had the same bugs and issues with Marshmallow, also some of them weren't fixed after wiping cache, the OS in this case takes advantage of the extra RAM and it feels a bit snappier (marginally, almost not noticeable) compared to 5.1.1, loading time when opening apps was equal, maybe marginally faster, a marginally better user experience compared to the 8/1 device if we forget about the bugs.

    - Multitasking is exactly the same as with 5.1.1, nothing to say here, also battery time was improved by the same margin (1-2% extra in "sleep" mode after 8 hours of sleep), battery usage remains the same when actually using the phone as in 5.1.1.

    - I had the same head-aching issues accessing my data be it on the SD card or the internal storage, clearing "external / media storage data and cache" would fix it as stated above but after some days issues are back.

    - All in all, solid performance plagued with major bugs that can be fixed (WiFi battery drain) and minor ones that cannot, same multitasking and, sadly, once again the USB troubles made me roll back to 5.1.1... but I never missed any feature from 6.0, on the contrary, the stability and being capable of quickly transfer / move files from a PC was so good to have back, 5.1.1 is amazing on these devices and I will wait for 6.X.X to hit before trying to upgrade again, it's not really worth it.

    *** Final words

    If you're considering a MotoG3 do yourself a favor and get the 16/2 model, the hardware is held back by the 1 GB of RAM of the cheaper version in a lot of subtle and non-subtle ways, to me it's like night and day under some circumstances, also consider staying on 5.1.1 unless you really need some feature present in 6.0. Lollipop 5.1.1 is much more user friendly, stable and bug-free. You have all the reasons stated in this post that I hope I helped someone with. Kind regards.
    01-29-2016 06:23 AM
  2. itguyjax8430's Avatar
    If you're considering a MotoG3 do yourself a favor and get the 16/2 model, the hardware is held back by the 1 GB of RAM of the cheaper version in a lot of subtle and non-subtle ways, to me it's like night and day under some circumstances, also consider staying on 5.1.1 unless you really need some feature present in 6.0. Lollipop 5.1.1 is much more user friendly, stable and bug-free. You have all the reasons stated in this post that I hope I helped someone with. Kind regards.
    Great write up, thanks for sharing.
    David Alfredo likes this.
    02-03-2016 07:58 AM
  3. Maljunulo's Avatar
    I would much prefer to use a mature, stable and relatively bug-free version than the latest, buggy and problematical version.

    It appears to require about a year to reach that stage, then there is a new one out.

    I'm going to hang on with 5.1.1 (and put up with the annoying, nagging pop-ups) until 6 has finished its "shakedown" period.
    David Alfredo likes this.
    02-03-2016 02:24 PM
  4. David Alfredo's Avatar
    I would much prefer to use a mature, stable and relatively bug-free version than the latest, buggy and problematical version.

    It appears to require about a year to reach that stage, then there is a new one out.

    I'm going to hang on with 5.1.1 (and put up with the annoying, nagging pop-ups) until 6 has finished its "shakedown" period.
    I definitely concur 6.0 is not up to par with 5.1.1 at least when it comes to the build Motorola / Lenovo delivered to Moto G 2015 users. Maybe 6.x.x is a different story, then I will be first in line again to test it and hopefully keep it installed. External SD is major factor for me (I move data in and out all the time, movies, music, and some other stuff) and M is an aberration when it comes to managing SD, 5.1.1 does it swiftly and elegantly, not to mention apps such as Google Music are still bugged (maybe forever) and will never download to SD card...

    Also, the "upgrade pop-ups" went away after 10 days of disregarding them, I e-mailed support telling them to remove my IMEI from the upgrade database as I didn't want to upgrade again after rolling back twice to 5.1.1, they told me there was no need to remove my IMEI from the upgrade database and that pops-ups would go away after a couple of weeks (which they did), the only way to upgrade device now is going to settings -> check for update -> apply update.
    02-03-2016 02:53 PM

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