Motorola’s G series phones have since long served as polished, stock-android (almost) alternatives to ‘disruptive’ phones from Xiaomi and others that are known to undercut the competition. Off late, Moto has shifted to the same aggressive stance and is offering more hardware for value price – and that’s what the new Moto G60 and Moto G40 Fusion are about.
Here we will be discussing the ins and outs of the Moto G40 Fusion and offers some alluring specs like Snapdragon 732 and 120Hz refresh rate display for a starting price of just 13,999! Is it a phone that you should buy? We’ll answer that and more in our Moto G40 Fusion review.
Moto G40 Fusion Unboxing
The G40 fusion box has all basic accessories, except for the pre-applied screen protector. Here’s what you’d get in the box:
To start with, the Moto G40 Fusion is almost identical to the G60 in terms of design and built. It’s a chunky phone that weighs 225 grams and isn’t as comfortable to hold and manage as, say, the competing phones in the Realme 8 series and Redmi Note 10 series.
The camera array juts out, the 9.8mm thickness notwithstanding. And the case cover bundled in the box doesn’t even out the hump either. However, there are metallic rings lining all three rear sensors that should help keep scratches at bay.
The glossy back and the side frame are both polycarbonate and don’t exude a premium finish or feel. Motorola is one of the rare few brands that retain rear-mounted fingerprint readers in 2021. This is fine since many people find the rear-positioned sensors to be more consistent with unlocking than the side-mounted capacitive readers that are currently in trend.
The sizeable 6.78-inch IPS LCD panel supports a 120Hz high refresh rate and the UI seems well optimized to handle the extra smoothness. During the review period, we set the display to 120Hz, but there is also an Auto mode that switches refresh rate based on the screen content to conserve battery.
The screen lacks AMOLED contrasts and deep blacks but is HDR compliant and HDR performance for YouTube is good enough for the price. There are three color profiles to choose from – Natural, Boosted, and Saturated – of which the Natural mode targets sRGB color space and was our preferred choice. The display is slightly reflective but gets bright enough to be legible under direct sun.
The phone has a DRM L1 certificate but unlike on the Moto G60, we couldn’t manage to stream HD content on Prime videos.
Moto G40 Fusion review: Performance and Software
Rating: 4 out of 5.
Performance and software are aspects where the Moto G40 Fusion aims to stand out. It’s powered by Snapdragon 732 octa-core chipset paired with LPDDR4x RAM and UFS 2.1 storage. The chip doesn’t support 5G, and if you are willing to let that slide, this is one of the best configurations available in and around the 15K segment.
We did not face any issues with random day-to-day usage. There weren’t any random stutters or app crashes, switching between apps was smooth and efficient, and the software isn’t overly aggressive when it comes to pushing the apps out of the memory.
Our experience with gaming wasn’t as impressive. Call of duty mobile supports High graphics and Max frame rate, but the janks and jitters didn’t go away until we dialed down to Medium graphics and high frame rates. Games like Asphalt 9 ran relatively better. Benchmark scores are at par with what we usually see on SD 732 phones:
Moto G40 Fusion Benchmark Scores
Geekbench 5.1 single core – 480
Geekbench 5.1 multi-core – 1370
PC Mark Work 2.0 – 8107
3D Mark Wildlife – 1118
Androbench Random Read – 153.29 MB/s
Androbench Random Write – 134.30 MB/s
We didn’t face any major issues with call quality and connectivity. 4G carrier aggregation is not supported, though. Other options include dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, Dual SIM VoLTE, VoW-iFi, GPS, and NFC. The audio from the mono speaker at the bottom is loud and reasonably clear.
As usual, Moto sticks to a clean near-stock Android experience with useful customizations sprinkled throughout. This is a light and efficient skin that will appeal to minimalists and to generic folks alike. There are no ads or bloatware or third-party prompts hogging the limited notification shade – and that’s truly worth appreciating in the affordable segment. Motorola further assures of Android 12 version update and 2 years of security patch updates.
It must also be mentioned that Stock Android used to be a bigger advantage until a few years back as against the current scenario. It’s still widely appreciated by enthusiasts but by now most custom interfaces from Chinese brands have dialed back on their annoying bits and have evolved to be in line with global taste. Google has also been gently nudging OEMs to adopt more of its apps and feeds and this has ultimately led to improving the experience for consumers.
Moto G40 Fusion review: Camera Quality
Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
Compared to the Moto G60, the G40 fusion replaces the 108MP primary camera with a 64MP shooter and the 32MP front camera with a 16MP selfie snapper. The other two rear cameras remain the same – 8MP wide-angle camera and 2MP depth sensor.
In proper daylight, the primary camera takes really good images. Details are sharp and colors are close to natural.
Indoors and in low light, the performance falters. Due to pandemic imposed restrictions, we could not compare the results to the 108MP sensor on the Moto G60. Below is a comparison of the same subject shot in proper daylight and indoors under artificial light.
The wide-angle camera can be used to capture a wider canvas at the expense of some details and quality. It can also capture decent macro shots.
The portrait camera does a fine job of detecting subject edges and background blur.
The selfie camera doesn’t make the skin tones look artificial and does a great job in proper lighting.
The G40 fusion supports 4K video recording @30fps and 1080p videos at up to 60fps. The quality of video footage is above average.
Overall, the G40 Fusion does well in proper daylight but isn’t very dependable in tricky indoors or lowlight settings – And I guess that’s an acceptable flaw for an affordable phone.
Moto G40 Fusion review: Battery
Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
The 6000mAh battery is yielding a screen-on-time of around 8 hours which is enough mileage for us to last for around 2 days. Motorola bundles a 20W charger in the box, which isn’t all that fast. Charging from zero to 100 percent takes around 2.5 hours.
Review verdict: Should you buy Moto G40 Fusion?
The Moto G40 Fusion gets a few things right and misses the mark with a few. The biggest draws remain its clean and minimal software and capable performance hardware – and that leaves little reason to side with the slightly expensive G60.
The camera performance is good enough for daytime photography and there is 120Hz smoothness on a routine IPS LCD panel. The biggest peeve points are its chunky design and lack of proper fast charging support.
In comparison, the Redmi Note 10 Pro and Realme 8 Pro offer AMOLED screens and more exciting hardware but you will have to live with relatively bloated software. These are also more expensive. If you don’t mind ‘Big’ phones, the Poco X3 and Poco X3 Pro are also worth considering for a superior gaming experience.
If you are limited by a budget of under 15k, the Moto G40 fusion is worth considering. If you are willing to spend a little more, look hard at alternatives before making up your mind.
Editor’s rating: 3.5 / 5
Reasons to buy
Decent performance hardware
120Hz HRR display
Audio jack and Card slot (Hybrid)
Reasons to not buy
Thick and heavy
Slow charging speeds
Moto G40 Fusion FAQ
What is the SAR value of Moto G40 Fusion?
SAR Value head is 0.85 W/ kg, Body-worn SAR is 1.3 W/ kg
Does Moto G40 Fusion support HD and HDR streaming on Netflix and Prime?
The phone has DRM L1 certificate, but HD streaming didn’t work on our review unit.
Does Moto G40 Fusion support AR Core for Google objects?
No, AR core is not supported.
Does Moto G40 Fusion support auto-call recording?
No, it does not.
Out of 128GB, how much is free on Moto G40 Fusion?