If you haven’t already read our review of the Moto Z2 Play itself, make sure you head on over and do that – it should be right below this post. After that, make sure you read below and get out thoughts on one of the best modular solutions available for smartphones right now; the Moto Mods from Lenovo and Motorola.
JBL Soundboost 2 mod
It works just fine. Sound gets plenty loud and the quality is on par with a stand alone Bluetooth speaker in the same or similar price range. My only concern is the use case. If the presumed use of the external speaker is at a party or beach or someone’s backyard BBQ, the thought would be that you put your phone with the speaker down, and let it sit. But what happens when you want to take pictures at the party? What happens when you want to take a video of the beach bonfire? What happens when you want to text the address of the BBQ to some of your other friends? You can do all of those things but with a speaker attached to the back, you’d have to do it a lot more carefully.
And that’s where my concern begins and ends. Otherwise, the ability to slap on a speaker that plays loud clear music thru your phone without draining it down to dead (because the speaker has its own internal battery) is pretty darn cool.
- Sean P
Sound quality is good and it’s easy to pop on and use. My main issue is that your phone becomes a giant brick with this mod attached and isn’t really user friendly anymore. Given the cost, a dedicated bluetooth speaker would seem a better alternative.
Style shell with wireless charging
In terms of the design esthetic, a style shell is almost mandatory. It fills in the missing space between the camera hump and the back of the device nicely, and makes the phone much more comfortable to hold in the hand. It’s almost like a defacto case for the phone, but then also adds the ability to wirelessly charge the phone (which is worth it in and of itself) I have the device sitting next to me on my desk right now with one of the Style shells on, and it is now able to sit flat and charge at the same time. At $39.99, for the functionality it brings, it adds a bunch of value. There are even a few different different styles to choose from.
- Sean P
It works well, but this functionality should be built into the phone natively. I take umbridge with needing a $40 add-on for wireless charging. I do like that it makes the phone sit flat and fills in the camera bump, but I don’t like that I can’t use a case with it attached.
Turbo power battery pack mod
The design of the exterior of this mod looks and feels great. The thickness it adds is a tradeoff for what amounts to having a full external battery attached to your phone. You have a two options with it, when engaged: allow it to rapid charge your phone from whatever level, back to full as quickly as possible, or use it to keep the batter topped off at 80%, something that is called “efficiency” mode.
I found the standard battery life of the Z2 Play (and ability to turbo charge using the stock charger) more than sufficient for my day to day needs, and something like the turbo power back mod would come in most handy for those road warriors who spend long periods of time traveling or away from an outlet. I’m not sure if that is a big enough market to make this mod worthwhile however.
- Sean P
The battery life of the Z2 Play is stellar, I don’t see much of a need for this. It adds considerable bulk and thickness to the device and again makes it impossible to use a case. With this on the phone could probably last damn near a full week, but having to charge the normal battery every other day isn’t much of a chore.
Motorola would have been much better served making the Z2 Play thicker to the cover the camera hump and filling that extra space with more battery capacity and native wireless charging.