Moto Z Force review

A seriously ambitious and shatterproof Android phone

Moto Z Force review
Moto Z Force review

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In the past, Moto has had a difficult time keeping up with the camera sensors and imaging software built into its competitors. But if the Moto Z Force is any indication, the company is headed in a very good direction.

For starters, the Z Force comes with a more capable rear-facing camera than its thinner Z counterpart. Compared to the Z's 13MP camera, we have a 21MP sensor here, with the same surprisingly wide aperture of f/ 1.8, and a slew of helpful features to make your photos pop, like optical image stabilization, dual LED flash and laser autofocus. However, it bests the Z's camera with deep trench isolation, a technique to squeeze even better quality images out of the hardware.

Moto Z Force

Motorola has again included the ability to trigger the camera app with two flicks of the wrist. It's nice to have extra options, but nothing beats tapping the power button twice from sleep to boot into the camera app.

The main takeaways from a week with the Z Force and its camera is that it's Moto's best camera yet. It's particularly good at taking pictures in low light and besting my main phone, the Nexus 5X, at every photo opportunity in terms of overall image quality. It bests it in clarity, color accuracy and dynamic range.

The camera software has received an overhaul, too. Instead of relegating the main camera functions to a rather unintuitive dial in the Moto X Force, more of it lives on the main screen now and is more easily accessible. Moto also added a robust Pro shooting mode, which allows you to tweak the ISO, white balance, focal depth and aperture for each shot.

The 5MP front-facing camera is fairly capable, too, and does a fine job capturing in a variety of conditions. But, given the lower megapixel count and lack of image stabilization, it's best suited for video chats and quick selfies more than relying on it for a stunning portrait.

If you enjoy shooting video with your smartphone, the Moto Z Force can shoot 1080p video at a zippy 60 frames per second, and 4K resolution at 30 frames per second.

Flip over to the next page to take a look at some sample shots provided by the Moto Z Force's camera setup.

Cameron Faulkner

Cameron is a writer at The Verge, focused on reviews, deals coverage, and news. He wrote for magazines and websites such as The Verge, TechRadar, Practical Photoshop, Polygon, Eater and Al Bawaba.