So I've now had my Moto X for just over two weeks. Time for a follow up review on it. (You can read the first one here.)
First off, Moto Assist and Touchless Control. Last time I wrote about these they each got their own paragraph, this time they're being combined. Why? Because they work best when used in tandem, especially when driving. No one likes people who text and drive, yet the majority of people do it. (You're likely lying if you say you've never done it yourself.) I personally hate using my phone in the car, even for calls. I'm curt and tend to hang up fast on people if I have to answer my phone while driving. No exceptions to the rule. Mom? "I'm driving. I don't like talking while driving. Bye!" Lady friend? "I'm on the road, I'll call you later." Bestie? "Go fuck yourself, I'll call you when I'm not driving asshole." And so on and so forth. Moto Assist knows when you're driving, if you activate it for that, and will read aloud incoming text messages (after you say "listen") and then ask if you'd like to send a reply (assuming you haven't set it to auto reply with "I'm driving, text you when I'm not"), before reading back the reply to you (to make sure it got it right) and then sending upon confirmation of its accuracy. This is basically Touchless Control working here.
Motorola Connect. Wow. Just wow. I mentioned last time how you can use a Chrome extension to basically use your phone while on your laptop without actually having to touch your phone (in a non-Touchless Control related manner that is). It works beautifully. Every time you launch it it'll take a minute tops to sync your messages and as they come in you get a notification on the right side of your taskbar and you can reply either in window or in its own pop out window. It'll then sync the messages to your phone, so if you need to get up and go you'll be able to pick up where you left off easily on your phone. Add to this the fact that I use Hangouts for my SMS/MMS needs and I'm pretty much in tune on my computer entirely with my phone, even for incoming calls. Hangouts will pop up a notification faster through its own notification than the Motorola Connect extension. (It also helps that I'm always listening to music on my JayBird BlueBuds X headphones and I'll hear a beeping sound that lets me know I have an incoming call.)
Active Display. Everything I said it was last time, incredibly useful and doesn't murder your battery. A quick look and I'll immediately know if there's something happening on my phone without having to fully wake it up. Made a bit redundant thanks to Motorola Connect, but hey it doesn't hurt to have this kind of capability when I'm not stuck in front of a computer. Particularly useful when I'm at home. I just glance at my phone and I'll see it "breathing" if there's something that needs my attention. I also like that you can set it to "sleep" at night, so between a certain time it won't be light up and disturbing you. I'm big on my sleep, since I suffer from insomnia I try and enjoy it when I can catch a few zzzz's. A ringing phone or a lit up screen pisses me off to no end at night. My room is dark enough that any light is immediately noticeable to me, so this is an incredibly useful feature for me. Besides, after a certain time unless you're someone really important I'm likely not going to respond anyway.
On top of this, here's a few other things worth mentioning.
The camera. Wow. Compared to the Nexus 4's camera, it's a huge difference in quality. I also like the wrist shake twice to launch the app, even from a locked screen or with the screen off entirely. Quick wrist shake and I can take a few pictures quick, fast and in a hurry. It's so useful and so intuitive I do it without even thinking about it now. I was actually asked by my boss about the latest and greatest Google phones and the N5 and Moto X were the two I mentioned, but the first thing he wanted to know was which one took better pictures. The Moto X hands down is the winner in that regard. Pictures look amazing, to my not so discerning eye. But your mileage may vary. I also like how intuitive the settings menu is on the phone and the fact that it's easily accessible with just one hand and just your thumb. More OEMs need to follow Motorola's example on this.
Also, it's worth mentioning that this uses the stock launcher, but not the Google Experience Launcher. However, you can use custom launchers without affecting any of the Moto software. Particularly Touchless Control. Meaning you can add even more to your phone. I personally prefer the Google Experience Launcher thanks to the swipe right to access Google Now, but I can just swipe up (sort of) from the Home button and access it just the same. I've personally installed Nova Launcher on the phone to make some UI changes (as far as looks go) within the apps page. (I also have Nova Launcher Prime installed, for a few more features and tweaks to be enabled.) Mostly just to get uniformity across the icons using an icon pack (Click UI to be exact) and adding a "page" for all the Google apps on their own. Also to sort some of the things I have into Entertainment, Games and Icons/Wallpapers. I'm staying stock beyond those few minor changes.
The other thing worth mentioning is I threw a case and screen protector on my phone. I prefer being safe rather than sorry, especially with my devices. I had to get used to my phone being smaller than my previous Nexus 4, but adding a slightly bigger non-slim case to it has helped significantly. It "feels" bigger now because of it, to the point that my mind has basically decided "it's the same size as your old phone". I went with the Pro Shell Case (by Incase). Mostly because it provides more protection than a regular slim case, but also because it's clear and I can show off the custom signature on the back (that reads "bangishotyou"). For the screen protector I went with the Shock Absorbing Screen Film Protector by Power Support. A bit thicker than normal screen protectors, but it gives me comfort to know it can handle a hit. (Although it does have the negative effect of requiring more effort when pressing on the edges of the screen to get it to recognize the touch. A worthwhile trade I feel, as it doesn't detract from use in any significantly noticeable way.)
Beyond that there's nothing worthwhile to mention. It's basically a stock Android phone with a few useful hardware and software tweaks that really make it more like a Nexus+ type of device. I really still have a hard time believing I only paid $378 and change for this amazing phone. Oh, in related news Motorola has extended the promotion for $70 off, it'll be good for another two days (and ends on February 22nd). So if you're in the market for a new phone and can afford it, I highly recommend this one over all others. I'm even thinking of getting a second one in the next week or so. Although this time I'm definitely going to go with a non-Moto Maker version. I'll be getting the GSM Developer Edition version. Also, for what it's worth, this is the first phone I've had in years that I haven't wanted to unlock the bootloader on, flash a recovery and then root. Pretty much says it all, this phone is perfect as is. (But I'll get the Developer Edition to do all that fun tinkering stuff on. I mean I can't not root a Moto X. Lol.)
If there's any questions or comments or additional information needed or whatnot, just leave a comment.