An accessible smartphone for under $200

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Friday, 15 November 2013 14:37pm

Motorola has produced a smartphone that for $US179 carries all the accessibility features of premium models.

The Moto G, an Android phone, runs on Jelly Bean 4.3, but Motorola has stated that it will be upgraded to the most recent version, KitKat, in January. This means that the phone includes accessibility features such as Android’s built-in screen reader and screen magnifier. In addition, other apps can be installed to help you customise the phone to suit your needs.

While the accessibility of Android is still not quite that of Apple iOS, the significant cost difference makes Android phones an attractive option for many older people and those with disability. In October, Apple was criticised by Media Access Australia for releasing the “lower cost” iPhone 5C for $739. The most popular Android phone, the Samsung Galaxy S4, costs $699. The Moto G will have all the accessibility features of the Galaxy S4 for a fraction of the cost.

In September, Dr Scott Hollier wrote about his experience of customising cheaper Android phones to suit his vision impairment. He said, “It’s great that Android has now evolved to a point where the basic [operating system] is solid enough to do the essentials while apps are being released all the time to provide additional support.”


The Moto G is rolling out across the world between now and January. There is no information on an Australian release date.


8 GB model: $US179

16 GB model : $US199

The Moto G comes unlocked, meaning it will work with any SIM card. This is another factor which brings down the cost, as people will not have to sign up to potentially expensive contracts.

Full details about the Moto G’s specifications are available on Gizmodo Australia.

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