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Moto X Play is a 5.5-inch, budget-minded globally-targeted smartphone

Moto X gets a bigger-screened, budget-minded follow-up. Get all the details here.

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Phones keep getting bigger. The original Moto X had a 4.7-inch screen. Last year's Moto X jumped to 5.2 inches. And now the Moto X Play, announced today as part of a handful of new Motorola phones, goes to 5.5.

It's not even the biggest Moto X: the step-up Moto X Style is 5.7 inches, approaching last year's 5.9-inch Nexus 6. But the X Play is meant to be the comfortable mainstream: affordable, stylish and not too extreme. But its specs are definitely a cut above last year's already very good Moto X. Motorola promises it will cost "$300-$400" less than premium smartphones in the market (but didn't offer an actual price).

The Moto X Play will be available in 55 countries starting in August, a month ahead of the step-up Moto X Style. But there aren't any current plans for the X Play to be released in the US: instead, Motorola chose to emphasize the Moto X Style and Pure Edition, coming in September. But for global markets, the X Play could be a really nice step-up alternative to the Moto G.

The Moto X Play has a 1.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 processor, and 2GB of RAM. It's got a water-repellant coating. The full-HD 5.5-inch display is 1,920x1,080: perfectly good, but nothing crazy like the Quad HD resolutions on recent Samsung phones (or, the Moto X Style). The rear camera's been bumped up to 21 megapixels, with a new dual LED flash that color-corrects. The also-improved front-facing camera's 5 megapixels, wide-angle and also has flash for low-light situations (if you can bear flash in your face).

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The best news? A microSD card, at last, to go with either 16 or 32GB of onboard storage. The Moto X didn't have one last year, and Motorola/Lenovo's finally come to its senses.

The 3,630mAh battery with quick charging capabilities will last a full two days on a charge, according to Motorola, besting the Samsung Galaxy S6 by 42 percent (of course, we'll determine that in battery tests).

Sounds great, if it's reasonably priced. More to come when we get some hands-on time.

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