Motorola is great at cheap, reliable phones. The expensive stuff, not so much. Consider the brand's track record: Motorola built the high-end Moto Z and Z Force four years ago, which relied on snap-on accessories called Moto Mods to rise above a sea of smartphone sameness. Then that was it. Moto never bothered to make another flagship device that used them. More recently, there was the Razr, a stylish, expensive foldable that, for many reasons, couldn't live up to the hype.
What those phones lacked in polish, they made up for — partially, at least — in ambition and ingenuity. By comparison, the new, $1,000 Motorola Edge Plus feels conventional. It's a monolithic slab with a pretty screen, a crowd of cameras and the same horsepower you'll find in other similarly priced Android phones. Motorola didn't leapfrog the competition so much as sidle up alongside it. That's not such a bad thing this time, though. The Edge Plus has more foibles than a $1,000 device really ought to, but it's proof that Motorola can make a competent — if sometimes confusing — flagship phone.