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Moto Z2 Force review

Expanding the MotoMods universe

Android 7.1.1 and Moto apps

Motorola isn’t a Google company anymore, but it uses stock Android with very few refinements, and the ones that are here, we actually like.

What is disappointing is that the Z2 Force does not come with Oreo out of the box. We will have to wait till the end of year before Lenovo releases the update to Google's latest version of Android.

The good news is that Android 7.1.1 presents some refinements if you’re upgrading from an older Android phone. The app drawer button is gone, but the drawer itself is still here. Just swipe up on the bottom tray of home screen icons. Nested notifications make the notification shade cleaner, too. Quick settings icons are now somewhat customizable.

You can summon Google Assistant by giving the fingerprint sensor pad an extra-long press. So, remember, that’s tap to go to home, long press to turn the screen on and off and longer press to initiate Google Assistant. It’s confusing for the first day but our muscle memory adjusted to it very quickly.

Other Moto shortcuts we liked include twist the phone twice to open the camera, karate chop twice to turn on the flashlight, and turn the phone over to activate Do Not Disturb. That’s ideal for meetings or dinner time conversations.

Specs and performance

Moto Z2 can be just as fast as any top-of-the-line phone. It comes equipped with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chipset that's present on most new Android flagship phones.

The Snapdragon 835 chipset is coupled with an Adreno 540 graphics chip, 6GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage. A microSD card slot lets you expand that, or alternatively, you can use the MicroSD slot to equip a secondary SIM card.


Matt Swider is Founder and Editor-in-Chief of The Shortcut.com. Formerly TechRadar's US Editor-in-Chief, he began his tech journalism career all the way back in 1999 at the age of 14. He's tested over 1,000 phones, tablets and wearables and commands a Twitter account of 1m+ followers. Matt received his journalism degree from Penn State University.