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Motorola introduces the modular Moto Z
June 14, 2016, 1:17 pm
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Motorola, now owned by Lenovo, was also given stage time at its parent company's Tech World event last week to launch its modular phone the Moto Z, which uses backpack-like accessories to double as everything from a small speaker to a portable projector. 

The Moto Z will be available in two forms, Moto Z and Moto Z Force, with both having a new system for accessory add-ons called Moto Mods. The Mods attach to the back of the phone via magnets and provide a new look, improved audio, a projector, or other extra features.

The Moto Z has a 5.5-inch, quad HD AMOLED display; Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor with 4GB of RAM; 32 or 64GB of storage with SD card expansion; 13-megapixel camera with f/1.8 lens and optical image stabilization; fingerprint scanner; and 2600mAh battery. Moto is highlighting the fact that the phone is a scant 5.2mm thick without any Mod accessories attached and claims that it is the thinnest premium smartphone.

The Moto Z Force has many of the same features as the standard Z, but upgrades the camera to a 21-megapixel unit; the display to a shatterproof panel; and the battery to a 3,500mAh cell. As a result the Force is thicker than the Z, at a more pedestrian 7mm.

The Moto Mods attach to the Z or Z Force via four magnets and communicate with the phone through a series of pins on the back of the device. The company is supplying a single Style Shell Mod with each phone, which can be had in a variety of materials or finishes, such as nylon, wood, or leather.
Mods in various styles and capabilities will be available for separate purchase.

The SoundBoost Mod, which was built in partnership with JBL, is a speaker that expands the output of the device with two three-watt drivers and adds an extra 1,000mAh of battery capacity. If you're not interested in a speaker, but want longer battery life, the Power Pack Mod adds a 2,220mAh cell to the back of the phone. The Insta-Share Mod adds a pico projector to the phone and lets you broadcast your phone's display up to 70 inches wide at 480p resolution.

The Mods are integrated into the phone's software, so when a battery mod is attached to the phone, you can monitor the charge status of both the internal battery and the mod's cell. The SoundBoost Mod requires no pairing or set up — once it's connected to the phone, sound just automatically pipes out of its speakers. Mods can also be attached or detached on the fly and don't require the phone to be rebooted in between.

 

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