Huawei Y5 (2017) vs Motorola Moto C Plus for CommCare

We are about to purchase ~4,000 additional Android phones for deployment with CommCare in Guatemala. Our intended supplier has recommend either the Huawei Y5 (2017) or Motorola Moto C Plus based on our specifications. Both phones have similar specifications, although the Motorola comes with a removable Li-Po 4000 mAh battery (vs 3000 mAh non-removable battery in the Huawei).

Does anyone have feedback on either of these two phones, or similar models from the same manufacturers? We’ve had mixed results when using earlier Motorola models, although at least some previous issues seem to be resolved with the newer model (e.g. screen quality issues).

Thanks, Ray

Ray Brunsting, CTO, Tula Foundation / tula.org

Hi Ray,

I can’t speak to either of those two phones, but one big consideration that’s worth making is that in the very rare tests we’ve been able to perform with isolated variables (IE: Same phone, different OS), operating system version can have a surprisingly large effect on the performance of the app, so “in a vacuum” so to speak where two devices have identical printed performance numbers it’s likely that the higher android OS version device will perform better.

The performance of two devices with ~identical “specifications” from manufacturers can still vary wildly for other reasons, but in the absence of other information hopefully it’s helpful to have a way to break ties.

-Clayton

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Thanks for the feedback Clayton. It turns out that the suppliers has Motorola phones with 1 GB of RAM available, and not 2 GB of RAM. Know that, in general, 2 GB or RAM is better then 1 GB of RAM, do you have any info about the potential impact of less RAM on CommCare? For example, should we expect CommCare to require more RAM then the average Android app when storing hundreds to a few thousand cases? Ray

Hi Ray,

I deeply wish it was possible to use the metrics from device manufacturers (clock speed, core count, memory, os version) to make a predictable performance model, and I have attempted to do so in the past, but unfortunately those metrics can’t be correlated cleanly. In our baseline test model, for instance, on Android 6 we have examples of 1GB RAM devices with 4 cores @1300mhz outperforming devices with 2GB of RAM and 4 cores @1512mhz, with the faster device being from a less ‘prominent’ manufacturer (IE: “Name brand” also doesn’t necessarily give you the edge).

That being said, in our tests we don’t have any examples of devices with 2GB of memory which have fallen into our lowest performance tier. If I were selecting between OS version and Memory in your circumstance, I would opt for the higher memory device.

-Clayton

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