“You don’t understand. I could have had class. I could’ve been a contender. I could’ve been somebody.”
So goes one of the most iconic and quoted lines in Hollywood history – Marlon Brando in his role as a thug who collects money for a gang lord confronting his brother Charlie (played by Rod Steiger) as to why he did not let him do what he was capable of, which was incidentally, being a boxing champion.
And well, call us sentimental fools if you wish, but we had a similar sensation when Samsung launched its M series of devices yesterday, and particularly the M20, the better specced of the two devices (read our review here). For, while everyone mentioned the devices the M20 would be competing with ranging from the Redmi Note 6 Pro to the Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 to the RealMe 2 Pro (and even the Nokia 5.1 Plus and 6.1 Plus), one very able device was almost totally forgotten. And it was not for any real fault of its own. For it comes with a 6.2-inch full HD+ display with a notch, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 processor, 4 GB RAM, 64 GB storage, dual 16 and 5-megapixel cameras, a 12-megapixel selfie camera, and a massive 5000 mAh battery which charges quickly too. Want more? It is one of the few devices out there which has got updated to Android Pie and is assured updates for a couple of years. It is priced at Rs 14,999. Oh, and it comes from a very well known brand.
We are talking about the Motorola One Power.
The phone hit the Indian market in late September. Got a few reviews, most of which were generally positive. And then promptly dropped off the horizon, apart from the odd mention on Motorola’s own social networks.
We have really no idea why. For no matter how you look at it, the One Power had a lot going for it. In fact, actually still HAS a lot going for it. In our first impressions of the device, we had said that the device had given us more Moto G feels than the new Moto G itself had. And that was because it largely adhered to the principles that had made the Moto G the mid-segment Android front runner for quite a few years – decent hardware backed with clean software and a very affordable price tag. No, it did not quite pack the sort of bells and whistles that many of its competitors did in terms of design (its design was rather plain but solid) but it more than compensated with rock-solid performance and simplicity of use that was classic Motorola.
So the question arises as to why it has not just disappeared from general tech discussion, but even from consumer line of vision? Conventional wisdom indicates that Motorola preferred to focus on its “established” Moto G and Moto E lines of products last year, especially given their new glassy design, and slightly higher than usual price tags. There is also a conspiracy theory that goes that the Motorola One Power might have got less attention than it deserved because it was actually originally a phone from Lenovo (which owns Motorola, but is nevertheless a different brand and has different spokespersons and executives at some levels) – the P30 Note.
Whether a victim of intracompany politics or just good old plain marketing misjudgment, the stark fact is that the Motorola One Power perhaps ended up getting a raw deal. It had the specs, the performance and the price (a price that has been further reduced since its launch, bringing it below the Rs 15,000 point). And the few people who have it absolutely love it. Yes, the camera could have been better, but then cameras were never the forte of most Moto devices. And yet, it seems to have already been relegated to the tech background. It deserved better, we think.
It had the specs.
It had the software.
It had the performance.
It even had the price.
It coulda been somebody.
(Want to see the clip of Marlon Brando we are referring to? Here you go:)