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Motorola Aura - Motorola Aura

By Sandra Vogel



Our Score:


Much of this could be forgiven on an entry-level handset, but here it is simply not good enough. And, to make matters worse, what you frame in the screen is not what you get in a picture. Even the manual states plainly that the round display means the viewfinder does not show the edges of a photo, and the reality is much worse than you could possibly imagine.

I framed the coloured dish so that it fitted right to the limit of the phone's screen. In the photo the dish is lost in its surroundings. Ditto the chair, which has surroundings you never normally see in my photo of it. And, because I must have had the phone slightly off square when framing the chair, the photo is tilted. The flowers were framed so that the three of them were at the far reaches of the screen, but in the photo there is a huge amount of unwanted imagery to their left and right.

The camera is a complete disaster.

Music playback is also a mixed bag. Quality is reasonable through the provided headset, though I do have to grumble about its microUSB connector to the phone itself, which is shared with mains power. Motorola provides a microUSB to mini USB converter so you can use an existing cable for PC connectivity. There is 2GB of built-in memory and no way to add more. Why, on a phone of this price, Motorola couldn't have fitted a microUSB slot and provided an 8GB card is a mystery.

Other software not already mentioned includes a calendar, clock, alarm, calculator, to do list, notes taker, a couple of games, voice recorder and video capture to 176 x 144 pixels.

Battery life is at least respectable. Motorola suggests you'll get 7.3 hours of talk and 400 hours on standby. I was still using the phone from its first charge after three days, but then I did not feel overly encouraged to exploit it hugely during the testing phase.


Motorola says it takes two weeks to produce the Aura and given the quality of the swivel and outer casing I don't doubt it. But, is it two weeks well spent? One could forgive Motorola for producing this phone if it had a big portfolio of handsets covering a wide range of price points and feature combinations. As it stands, though, the Aura is one of just a few currently available from Motorola and it smacks of a complete misunderstanding of what people are looking for in today's climate.

Carrier pricing updates & information supplied by WhistleOut


April 17, 2009, 5:09 am


I hate to be one of those guys, but the V70 and that toshiba had square displays inside a circular piece of glass (like the zen stone plus), so it might well be the first with a circular display.


April 17, 2009, 6:06 am

I should hate this phone. I know I should hate this phone. I should not even think about owning one. I should never look at this phone ever again, never read this article again, never contemplate, consider or muse over its sublime looks and lines...but...

I WANT ONE! (sorry, oh dear. Gets his coat and leaves)


April 17, 2009, 7:52 am

It's like the crew on the Titanic yelling, "Damn it people, we need more ice!"

Rok Krznar

April 17, 2009, 1:34 pm

I've got to say, the round screen strikes me as pretty remarkable. And as Will said, all past "round" displays were just masked rectangular screens...


April 17, 2009, 2:18 pm

Might be a crappy phone but it sure is stunning to look at. It also sure is for a very limited audience too considering the price tag, overall this is only a fashion statement.


April 17, 2009, 2:27 pm

for some reason i reckon the phone would be much more tempting if it were carved in brass,had a black and gold monochromatic display no camera, but a 32GB music player, real gauges that show battery life and signal strength. add a few well placed dents, a nice crack over the crystal covering the cogs, and give it an ancient rusting grinding sound to accompany the opening mechanism and this might just become the steampunk phone of the century.


April 17, 2009, 3:55 pm

Reminds me of the O Phone http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...

Tarik Bos

April 17, 2009, 6:13 pm

like anyone is ever going to buy a freakin motorola for that price:P


April 18, 2009, 2:24 pm

I heard that David Beckham actually contacted and spoke to Scotty of Star Trek fame with this phone, so it's far more than a conventional handset/metallic piece of junk to wow the hoi polloi with.


June 11, 2009, 3:30 am

I have this phone and no i do not or have not conections with motorola before i begin. The reason why i got it i live in a v poor 3g/2g reception for any network this phone has 5 bars on reception what ever, because at the end of the day i want a phone. My blackberry storm or tocco ultra would not work. Things i love, build quality, fantastic, screen quality awsome,call quality amazing,camera is very good for only 2 mega things i do not like text is a bit fiddly, takes a bit of getting used to the moto menus. I got this phone at a very good price, and if you think some people are paying £600 for a htc pro 2 etc , i would have this moto any day, it is beautiful and you cannot discribe the quality of the screen . 9/10 off me

Daniel Terci

September 30, 2009, 7:11 pm

I liked and still like very much the handset. It has an unique design and exquisite choice of materials with one disappointing flaw - see the cons.

I will buy it again at the same sky rocketing price just to know that it doesn't behave as the one I already have.

After 8 months of usage it looks like this





The Motorola Customer Service's answer regarding the problem I had was that the warranty doesn't cover it - even it behaved as a 20$ handset.


January 20, 2010, 7:41 pm

Iv got one, And I am not rich, I am at Uni, I work a 71 hr week at Manchester Airport/Cargo, Mummy and Daddy dont pay my way like some of these other bratts, I depended on myself ;) b

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