After having tested (and approved) the Moto Edge 20 and Edge 20 Pro, it's now the turn of the Lite version to go through our labs. The opportunity to see if this more affordable model keeps the same qualities as its big brothers.
Determined to (re)make a place for itself among the tenors of the industry, Motorola is showing a growing ambition on the smartphone market. That's the impression left by the Moto Edge 20 and Edge 20 Pro, which offered a very good experience for a reasonable price. This Edge 20 Lite closes the gap by trying to occupy a price segment that is just as competitive.
Ergonomics and design
At first glance, we feel that this Moto Edge 20 Lite shares the DNA of the other two models in its range. With dimensions of 165.9 x 76 x 8.3 mm and a weight of 185 g, it is as imposing as the Pro model and will be felt in the pocket. It is therefore a smartphone that is not intended for smaller hands. Its large 6.7-inch panel occupies more than 87% of its front, which is appreciable. On the back, the plastic coating tends to retain too many fingerprints. This is certainly the case with a good number of mobiles, but we would have preferred a less shiny treatment.
Like its big brothers, this smartphone has a photo island that stands out quite clearly on the back and does not facilitate its use when placed on a table. For the rest, we will have to make do with an IP52 certification (dust resistance), which is unfortunate, but hardly surprising. The certification is indeed rare on its price range and the models of Oppo, Realme and Xiaomi also do without it. On the other hand, the fingerprint sensor located on its edge is responsive, although placed a little high.
The Moto Edge 20 Lite offers a drawer to insert a microSD card and thus expand storage. Among other good news, we note the presence of a 3.5 mm jack port on the bottom edge. On the connectivity side, the Edge 20 Lite is 5G, NFC and Bluetooth 5.0 compatible.
The 3.5 mm jack in question is quite convincing. It offers a reasonable dynamic range (102 dB), a fairly high power (128 mVrms) and a low level of distortion (0.002%). However, the crosstalk could have been more controlled (-69 dB). This is not a smartphone for audiophiles, but it will suffice for listening to music on public transport. Like the rest of its family, the device only hosts a mono speaker and the sound is not really convincing. The power is correct, but the set tends to saturate quickly.
The Edge 20 Lite offers a beautiful 6.7-inch Oled screen in Full HD+ definition (1080 x 2400 px), capable of displaying one million colors (and HDR10+ compatible). The panel can refresh the image up to 90 Hz. It is also configured as such out of the box, but it is also possible to select the 60 Hz mode to save energy.
Oled technology, the screen displays an almost infinite contrast and zero remanence. The touch delay is a little higher than average (72 ms), although this is not really felt in use. The maximum brightness reaches 689 cd/m² and the panel remains readable even in the sun. An excellent point despite the fact that the minimum brightness (4.8 cd/m²) is a bit high for night viewing. The reflectance is in the average of smartphones (46.4%).
Out of the box, it displays a color temperature of 7797 K and a delta E of 4.2. The whole is too cold. A passage in the display settings and the choice of Natural Color mode can find better values, but without doing as well as the Edge 20 and 20 Pro.
Thus calibrated, the delta E falls to 2.6 and the temperature to 6900 K. It is therefore much better. The mid-range smartphones have made good progress on the subject and its three competitors are slightly better. No worries though, the panel is very pleasant to use on a daily basis.
Motorola opted for a MediaTek Dimensity 720 5G SoC coupled with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of expandable storage via microSD. On our viSer testing protocol, it scored a good overall score of 86. The Motorola Moto Edge 20 Lite does particularly well in multitasking and offers a smooth experience even in sustained use. In this respect, it even outperforms the good Realme GT Master and Oppo Find X3 Lite. A very good point.
Alas, this is not at all the case with video gaming, where it stands in last place here. The Mali-G57 MC3 chip still managed to run our test protocol at an average of 42 fps. So you'll have to make some concessions if you want to indulge in some really heavy-duty games. No worries for lighter titles, but you'll understand, this is not a smartphone for gamers.
The Moto Edge 20 Lite packs a triple rear camera sensor consisting of a 108-megapixel wide-angle lens that opens at f/1.9, an 8MP ultra-wide-angle lens (f/2.2), and a macro module (f/2.4). The main module may offer great definition, but it doesn't always correlate with better quality. We'll compare the device to the recent Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 5G NE, which did well in the exercise.
Main module: 108MP, f/1.9, 26mm eq.
The 108MP module takes advantage of pixel binning technology, which merges pixels (in this case, 9) to capture more light when it is missing. The phone therefore delivers 12MP shots by default. The same process applied to the wide-angle of the Xiaomi (by merging 4 px and not 9) delivers images in 16 Mpx.
In bright conditions, Xiaomi's smartphone takes the advantage. It offers more detail and sharpness than the Edge 20 Lite, as can be easily seen on portraits or tarot cards. Neither of them displays really fair colorimetry. The Xiaomi's shot pulls towards red, while the Motorola's looks a bit too yellow. The colors delivered by the latter seem washed out. It remains quite usable despite everything, but a step below its competitor.
At night, the observation is quite similar. The Xiaomi offers a more detailed and colorful rendering (see the test patterns below left). However, the digital processing and the contrast more accentuated of Motorola allows to better distinguish certain elements such as faces. The match is therefore less tight. Without shining, the Edge 20 Lite achieves a respectable rendering.
108 Mpx mode
It is always possible to choose the full definition via the settings. We isolated an area of identical size (0.90 Mpx) on each of the shots to compare the two definitions.
By day or night, the switch to full definition does not provide a significant gain compared to the default shots. The software processing does not bring a more detailed image. The smoothing is still quite present, especially in low light.
Ultra wide angle module: 8MP, f/2.2, 118
In bright conditions, the 11 Lite 5G NE offers a more pleasing rendering to the eye, although lacking sharpness. The Motorola terminal tries to compensate for the loss of details, which results in a strong digital smoothing with contrast. However, the result is mediocre.
At night, the Moto Edge 20 Lite fares better and several elements of the scene remain (roughly) legible despite a very present digital noise. It does not concede the blurred haze that makes the Xiaomi's image difficult to use.
Front module and video
The Motorola Edge 20 features a 32MP front sensor backed by a f/2.3 lens. By default, the module uses pixel binning to capture 8MP shots. The rendering is quite balanced and precise, even if you should not move too much during the capture. The sharpness is good, but the colors lack a bit of vividness.
The Edge 20 Lite can shoot up to 4K at 30 fps, and Full HD at 120 fps. The image is quite decent, even if the sensor has trouble handling high dynamics. The stabilization does its job well. The smartphone is not intended for videographers, but will do for a backup use.
Unlike the Moto Edge 20 and Edge 20 Pro which have a battery of 4000 or 4500 mAh, this Lite version opts for a 5000 mAh battery. We could therefore expect a good autonomy. It falls well, this model does not disappoint in this regard. On our test protocol viSer, it managed to last 19 h 42 min in 90 Hz mode. A very good result that allows the user to be a day and a half away from his charger. On this crucial point, the device does better than its rivals, even if the Find X3 Lite and the Realme GT Master are close behind. In 60 Hz mode, less energy consuming, it lasted 21 h 28 min, which is excellent.
Motorola delivers a 30W fast charging compatible charger in the box. It allows to refuel in 1 h 37 min. This is correct, even if its competitors are much faster (between 30 min and 1 h). However, we can temper the criticism given the general endurance of the device.
Our sustainability score allows us to determine the sustainability of the smartphone for both the consumer and the environment. It is based on the repairability index, durability criteria (protection index, standard connectors, warranty period and updates...) and an evaluation of CSR policies (Corporate Social Responsibility).
Interface & OS
The Motorola Edge 20 comes with Android 11 and runs on the My UX overlay. The firm made the right choice of a clean interface and the navigation strongly resembles that of a Google Pixel, which is very appreciable. Motorola insists that it is still possible to customize the experience through its overlay. This is particularly the case for the font size, the layout of the apps or the choice of colors and shapes for the icons. If you are a regular user of the Google OS, you will certainly not be lost.
The Motorola Moto Edge 20 Lite is a 5G smartphone that does its job well. We appreciate its great autonomy, its multitasking capabilities and the fluidity of its screen in everyday life. However, it is limited for gaming and lacks a little on the photo segment. It will have a hard time standing up to the fierce competition in its price segment, often with more powerful chips. But if you're looking for a mid-range 5G device and endurance is a priority, it might be right for you.