Share this Story

Moto G “Google Play Edition” Arrives on Google Play Starting at $179

The Moto G just popped up on Google Play as a “Google Play Edition” with a starting price of $179 for the 8GB model. This is the unlocked GSM model (should work on both AT&T and T-Mobile), so no, you can’t buy it and try to take it to Verizon or Sprint. From reading the description, it appears to be exactly the same as the regular unlocked GSM Moto G, except that it should be running even closer to a 100% stock build of Android than the phone already was.

Again, we aren’t exactly sure what differences you’ll see from this over the regular version, but the listing does say it’ll run the most recent version of Android. Then again, Motorola has been on top of its update game lately, so that’s not even necessarily something different. But hey, if you want a phone that says “Google Play Edition” on the box, here you go. If anything, this is only helping Motorola spread the word about its ultra-affordable smartphone with a “premium” experience.

We went hands-on with the Moto G some time ago, so if you are curious about this device and it’s ridiculously low price, be sure to check out the video below.

You can also pick-up the 16GB model for $199.

Play Link

Cheers Maxwell, @B3RTOD, and @kentoe!
  • jmo1685

    Anyone know if the Boost Mobile version of this would work with a sprint line? Just wanting a decent phone to hold me over till my upgrade, seems weird this got released for Boost before Sprint.

  • BrothaDave

    Great as a backup phone at the very least. $200 for the 16gb is a good deal

  • michael arazan

    Verizon is an @sshole’s idea of an @sshole

  • avantra

    As some have already mentioned please note that the Google Play Edition is the Global GSM version and not the US GSM version. You may have speed/coverage problems in some areas with T-Mobile since there is no AWS band in the Global version.

    As described on the Motorola website regarding the GSM versions of the Moto G:
    Global GSM model: Optimized to work with 3G (UMTS/HSPA+) networks when roaming outside the US.
    UMTS/HSPA+ up to 21 Mbps (850, 900, 1900, 2100 MHz)

    US GSM model: Optimized to work with 3G (UMTS/HSPA+) networks when operating inside the US. 3G coverage may be limited when roaming outside the US.
    UMTS/HSPA+ up to 21 Mbps (850, 1700 (AWS), 1900 MHz)

  • Michael

    “except that it should be running even closer to a 100% stock build of Android”. NO. It runs Moto’s version of Android just like the Nexus line runs Google’s, and the Glaxay line runs Samsung’s. Different takes on the same base but none are 100% stock.

  • lamb

    So can one buy this and use it as one would with an ipod touch no problem?

    • Alex


  • Dan

    No 1700mhz spectrum? Hmm,..

  • jstew182

    I bought a couple of these as xmas presents and noticed that the Tmobile version only shows 3g and not 4g when connected to HSPA+. Anyone know if this is what its supposed to show? (Yes I know it doesn’t have LTE but even my Nexus 4 showed 4g when connected to Tmobile HSPA+)

    • Scott

      I have the same thing. I actually talked to Moto support and they said it’ll only say 3G. If you go into the status page under settings you actually see it’s connected to HSPA+. Appears to just be an interface choice to show 3G.

      • jstew182

        Awesome. Thanks for the reply. I will have to check the status page next time I see the relatives. Thanks

  • JP

    $200 ipod touch 16gb alternative with cellular capabilities and 2 years of updates?

    Take my money!

  • PSU_DI

    NO!!!! I just bought this phone from moto 2 weeks ago. Ugh. If I knew this was around the corner I would have waited. I have both the Nexus 5 and the Moto G, and I have to admit that the G blew away every expectation I’ve had for an entry level device.

    • Alex

      Same here. It seems to me the regular Moto G is pretty much stock and I’m very happy with it. Great battery life and since I’m used to an old iPhone 3GS, great performance, too!!!!!!!!!!

  • Cael

    And I was told that a Google Play Edition Moto phone wouldn’t happen because it’s so close to stock.
    Haters gonna hate.

  • interstellarmind

    This is amazing. $180 and you get a very capable mobile device.

    We are rapidly approaching the point where mobile devices will become a ubiquitous part of our lives due to their immense affordability (a device that combines your TV, phone, reading library, stereo, pc/mac into ONE device). It sounds funny to say, but it really will be like who they use PADDs on Star Trek

    • Alex

      We already have reached that point and beyond. PADDs are more limited than our smartphones today.

  • YourFriend

    Still needs an SD card slot and then it would be perfect. Since Moto CEO Dennis Woodside admitted in interviews that he reads Droid-Life and especially looks through the comments (seriously, he does), we should spam the comments demanding Motorola return to putting SD card slots instead of forcing us into using cloud storage until they finally do. It’s at least worth a shot.

    • Matthew Rebmann

      I was upset about a lack of SD slot when I got my Galaxy nexus. I stopped caring about one year into that. 2 years after I got my Gnex I made the switch to my Moto X (back in November) I’m getting along just fine with 32gbs of storage. As long as I have at least 32, I don’t feel the need for more. I also understand people put a lot of music on their phones but I don’t think the majority of people need that much space

      • C-Law

        I had an s3, note 2, and s4 between my gnex and moto x dev edition. I never bothered to add an SD card to any of the 3 galaxy phones, and never needed to

      • YourFriend

        Just because you guys don’t need one doesn’t mean the rest of us don’t. Cloud storage sucks and with media files and apps getting bigger and bigger, a lot of us really need that extra storage. I like keeping all of my media files (pictures, videos, movies, music, etc.) on my SD card and have my phone’s storage for apps and maybe custom ROM/rooting files. Every tech critic criticized the Moto G and X for its lack of expandable storage, and 8GB runs out pretty quickly.

        • Matthew Rebmann

          I didn’t say everyone doesn’t need it but most people don’t as far as I can tell. I also said I need at least 32. I agree that 8 and 16gb is not even close to enough, you have no argument there. All of my friends though (who aren’t tech nerds) never seem to complain about 8 or 16gbs though. You are a tinkerer. I was a Tinkerer. We aren’t the majority.

    • Dennis Woodside


      • Philip J. Fry

        Not sure if serious……

  • global or US?

    i had a look on the spec sheet for google play devices, this one does not support the 1700 (its the global GSM model), so i don’t think it will fully work on tmobile.

  • Awesome. I know the original was close to pure Android, but it wasn’t and had Motorola software. I don’t want any of that on my phone. I want it pure and this delivers at the same price. Fantastic for me.

    • PSU_DI

      Moto Assist, is pretty neat, I can’t really recall any other moto software on the one I bought. The camera interface that moto has is also better than the stock one.

    • Alex

      The GPE still has the Moto Camera and the Moto apps

  • Dave Whyte

    I don’t see a huge difference between buying from Google or Moto except some of the Moto features baked in but what I see as a HUGE thing today is the fact that there is now a GPe phone from EVERY major (at least in US) phone manufacturer!

  • moelsen8

    can google play editions be unlocked with the standard “fastboot oem unlock”, or do you still have to go request a bootloader unlock code via the manufacturer or whatever?

  • guest

    how is this different from normal moto G? isn’t moto G basically stock android?

    • palomosan

      Well, it only means that you can get it at the Play Store in comparison to the Moto X which it’s only available on their website or through carriers.

  • Daeshaun Griffiths

    But but….I guess.

  • Steven02

    I just want a Moto X with the Nexus 5 dialer. I like the other Moto Changes.

    • C-Law

      There’s a rom for that on xda. It’s based on the stock rom, not aosp. Pretty sure it works with booylocked phones too using safestrap

  • DanSan

    god i f***** hate you sometimes verizon… wish i could get this on post paid verizon plan for my mom

    • Philip J. Fry

      Sometimes? 🙂

    • Scott

      Should be every minute of every day.

    • palomosan

      Verizon has this phone post paid at $99.00 in case you didn’t know.

      • DanSan

        its for prepaid only in case you didn’t know.

        • Scott

          And needs to be on prepaid for at least 6 months. By that time you’ve paid for another Moto G.

  • droidrazredge

    I was just about to send in this article, I thought I was seeing things when I saw Moto G Play Edition. I had to do a double take! Congrats to Motorola for shaking up the Play Edition store and the Android OEM. With a GPE phone that means Motorola will get code much earlier and they will push updates much faster than what they are doing now. As for the Moto G GPE It might not have the top specs as the HTC, Samsung, and Sony Play Editions but I rather pay 179$ instead of the 649$ pricetag.

  • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

    Why?…… There’s nothing I would take with stock over the MOTO features.

    • Maxim∑

      The Moto G doesn’t have a AMOLED display,its missing a lot of the X’s features so a GPE edition shouldn’t effect it that much

      • Justin W

        Still, the remaining Moto features on the G are still useful.

        • Tony Byatt

          Aren’t they in the Play Store?

          • ddpacino

            Hmmmmmmmmmmm…… Good point!!!!

          • Travis Walls

            Even though they’re in the Play Store, what’s to say it’ll say they’re compatible with this device? Then again, if you get a GPE device, you probably know ways to get around that…

      • Carlos Poblano

        Motorola Assist and Motorola Migrate come to mind as some of my favorites

  • Dr_Buttballs

    I don’t know about Google but when I bought mine from Motorola they gave me free 2 day shipping. If Google doesn’t offer free shipping than this is something to consider if you want to save a couple bucks.

  • Dominick White

    Well will be getting this for my little brother, and consider he is in NYC, and no issues with T-Mobile coverage. Getting the 30 dollar plan as well

  • AbbyZFresh

    what’s the point of this?

    the phone already receive fast updates and it already 99% stock Android.

    • dreadfall

      The point is all GPE vendors get Android code even before they are released to public. so now updates will be much faster than 3 weeks.

      with this motorola get code much earlier and they will push update much faster than what they are doing now

  • Javier Rivera Carozzi

    The GPE phones have exclusive access to the new dialer, if I’m not mistaken. But you lose Moto Assist, so I don’t know. Google needs to start selling these devices in more countries. I’ve paid almost 700usd for an unlocked 32GB Nexus 5. And I’m not the only one

    • Tony Byatt

      The Play Store has the Moto exclusive apps for the Moto G GPE…

  • moelsen8

    i really don’t see the advantage or anything here other than exposure, i guess.

    • dreadfall

      the advantage is not to you, Its for motorola

      “The point is all GPE vendors get Android code even before they are released to public. so now updates will be much faster than 3 weeks.

      with this, Motorola get code much earlier and they will push update much faster than what they are doing now”

      • moelsen8

        like everyone’s been saying to you on androidpolice and androidcentral, and here, they’re already getting the code pretty quickly. they had kitkat updates out on the x before some nexus devices. you saying this is just to solidify that? are we setting up a moto nexus this year?

        • dreadfall

          yes, it is to solidify that… now imaging ATT/T-Mobile and Sprint getting update at the same time as Nexus(or even better, what if they get it the day new version of Android is released with new Nexus??)!!! They took a month and a half to get update.

  • Jérôme Besnard

    I don’t see the advantage over buying from Motorola since it is the same price. I would actually recommend buying from Motorola direct because the added software (Moto assist, transfer from old phone) is really useful. Only good thing I can think of: more exposure i.e. more advertising

    • Philip J. Fry

      But its a GPE

    • shooter50

      I would recommend never buying from Motorola because their customer service is worse than healthcare.gov

      • Matthew Rebmann

        I (unfortunately) got a Moto X with a defect in the front camera, there was some misshaped plastic in front of the lens. They gave me a new code to recustomize my X within 1 hour of finishing up with a call that wasn’t unreasonably long. They said to customize a new one, save the RMA number they also sent int he e-mail and to send my old Moto X back when my new one arrived. They didn’t make me send back my phone first and they even gave me two free accessories. I can’t say I have ANY bad feelings towards their customer service reps.

  • Ben Murphy

    I hate Verizon. But I love my unlimited and network coverage.

    • EdubE24

      I can’t seem to hate on Verizon. My coverage and unlimited data really are spectacular.

      • Brandon Golway

        I guess you don’t look at your monthly bill regularly….

        • EdubE24

          I have three lines of unlimited data, texting and we share 1400 minutes of calling. I keep one feature phone around to transfer my upgrades to and pay 160 a month. That’s seems really reasonable to me!

          • Brandon Golway

            Ok, you’re definitely an exception because my phone bill was $130 a month for about 600 minutes shared between my mother and I, 1,000 texts for me and unlimited for her. I had unlimited data on my smartphone and she had a dumb phone (samsung alias). This was with a 15% teacher’s discount.

            I pay $110 on T-Mobile for unlimited talk, text and data, the protection/upgradability of JUMP and the lack of a two year contract! If I was to pay for the S4 up front my bill would only be $90.

        • Dylan

          Some people think that expanded coverage is worth the premium.

      • michael arazan

        Once I lose unlimited I’m out, because I swapped phone upgrades with the GNex with a family member, my upgrade on my account now has me locked in for another 3 months even though I bought my gnex in Jan ’12 it’s not up till march.

        I’m wondering if there still are millions of Unlimited data users. Because vzw will not cancel unlimited and lose more than 5% of its customers in a mass exodus who will leave than stay for a price gouging tier data plan. VZW is making 120 billion a year gross, and 6 billion (5%) or more loss from people leaving would shake the share holders a bit. And now their challenge has been upheld over internet neutrality they can start charging us even more for websites we frequent the most and companies to have access to vzw’s isp.

        • Bootleg Zani

          Same here. Soon as they kill Unlimited Data I’m leaving Verizon. I already have my backup Nexus 5 on T-Mobile with the $30 prepaid plan.

  • dreadfall

    Nice, now Motorola get early access to Android code. updates will be much faster than 3 weeks(Moto X) now

  • Philip J. Fry

    Motos really been stepping up there game! Really proud of them here lately. Can you say GPE iPod?

  • samosa queen

    jkjsklsklskls NO WAY!!!

  • T4rd

    More GPE phones are never a bad thing!

    If only they worked on Verizon.. >-(

    • John Legere

      Well.,Verizon is like one of those MTV sluts. Has to have everything their way.

      • John Legere

        I must have offended a few fathers, oops

        • nate

          People probably downvote you because of your name. (You aren’t John Legere)

          • EdubE24

            Probably has more to do with his stupid comments…

          • John Legere

            Speaking of stupid comments. ….. ^^

          • EdubE24

            My comment was spot on. It’s not a down vote troll stalking you, you really just make dumb comments all the time!

          • John Legere

            Yeah, im sure that’s right. The truth is stupid. Whatever helps your nightly sleeping routine.

          • EdubE24

            And again…

          • John Legere
          • EdubE24

            See that was funny…

            1 up vote for you!

          • John Legere

            No, there’s downvote trolls. I just wanted to make fun of them

  • Sean Walton


    • Mort

      With a $70-4GB/mo plan. With a T-Mo or MVNO plan, you could make up the difference with the GPe in no time.

      • John Legere

        Or the $30 plan

        • Mort

          Did… did John Legere just reply to my comment?

          • John Legere

            No. Im his AI Twin .

          • Mort



          • Maxim∑

            yeah he won’t change his name back. Shortest jokes are always the best

          • John Legere

            Why should I? I can be anybody i want to be.

          • Cory_S

            Who was he?

          • John Legere


          • Maxim∑

            it was “StillStuckOnVerizon”

    • ddh819

      the verizon one is not “GPE”

      • John Legere

        Moto is close enough. Not sure why it matters on a prepaid phone anyways.