Nothing Phone (2a) vs Moto Edge 40 Neo: The Better Stock Android Phone?

The Nothing Phone (2a) is finally here and offers a few upgrades over its predecessor, the Phone (1), which launched almost two years ago. However, one thing that it retains is the glyph lights and the brand’s proprietary Nothing OS, bringing a neat stock Android experience to its users. This directly pits Nothing Phone (2a) (review) against the likes of the Moto Edge 40 Neo, which delivers a stock Android experience and falls in the same price segment.

I got my hands on both devices here at the Beebom office and just had to see how Nothing’s latest offering fared against one of Motorola’s finest. So, if you have a strict budget of Rs. 25,000, which stock Android smartphone is your best bet? Let’s find out.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo: Specs At a Glance

SpecsNothing Phone 2aMoto Edge 40 Neo
Dimensions161.74mm x 76.32mm x 8.55 mm159.6mm x 72mm x 7.9 mm
Weight190 grams170 grams
ProcessorMediaTek Dimensity 7200 Pro (4nm)MediaTek Dimensity 7030 (6nm)
RAM/Storage8GB LPDDR4X/ 256GB UFS 2.28GB LPDDR4X/ 256GB UFS 2.2
Display6.7-inch FHD+ 120Hz AMOLED, 1084 x 2412, 394 ppi, up to 1300 nits peak brightness6.55-inch 120Hz pOLED Curved, 1080 x 2400, 402 ppi, up to 1300 nits peak brightness
Rear Camera50MP Main + 50MP Ultra-wide50MP Main + 13MP Ultra-wide
Front Camera32MP32MP
VideoUp to 4K at 30FPSUp to 4K at 30FPS
Dual SIMYes; Does not support eSIMYes; Supports eSIM
Connectivity5G, Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.3, NFC5G, Wi-Fi 6E, Bluetooth 5.3, NFC
PortUSB Type C 2.0USB Type C 2.0
Battery5,000 mAh5,000 mAh
Charging45W fast charging68W fast charging
IP RatingIP54IP68
SoftwareAndroid 14-based Nothing OS 2.5
3 years of OS updates
Android 13-based MyUX
2 years of OS updates
For a more detailed comparison, visit Beebom Gadgets

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo: Software Experience

Without beating around the bush, let me get straight to the point and first talk about what you are here for. Which of these two smartphones delivers the best stock Android experience?

See, for starters, both the Nothing Phone 2a and Moto Edge 40 Neo come with no bloatware out of the box, which is a plus point in this segment, but Nothing one ups Moto’s MyUX skin in three things.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo software page

First up, the optimization of the Android 14-based Nothing OS 2.5 (read our review) on Phone 2a is just off the charts. Animations feel a lot more fluid (wait till you see the AOD transition in the lock screen), whether you are jumping from one app to another or using split-screen.

Secondly, there’s the obvious advantage of software updates. Motorola has an infamous track record of backing out from providing major OS updates, let alone rolling them out timely.

Meanwhile, Nothing may be new to the market, they have already crafted an excellent track record of rolling out timely updates. Moreover, being a baby brand, they have a lot to prove, and hence, you can rest easy knowing that your Nothing phone (2a) will get the promised updates.

I mean, even the Nothing Phone (1) has received the Android 14 update. Meanwhile, despite being out for months now, the Moto Edge 40 Neo has not received it yet. Neither has the brand provided a specific timeline for rollout.

Not to mention, you get only 2 years of OS updates and 3 years of security updates with the Moto Edge 40 Neo. Whereas, the Nothing Phone 2a will get 3 years of OS updates and 4 years of security updates.

Thirdly, while the Moto Edge 40 Neo does not come with any bloatware as such, it does have this widget on the home screen that shows you ads. You can remove it, of course. But, something to note nonetheless. There are also preloaded apps like Facebook and LinkedIn which you can uninstall, but the Nothing Phone 2a does not come with any such apps either.

Moto Edge 40 Neo widget that shows ads
Moto Edge 40 Neo has a home screen widget that displays ads

Next, we have the haptic feedback of the two phones. For me, personally, haptic feedback plays an important role in creating a good user experience. The Moto Edge 40 Neo’s slightly harsh haptic feedback is all over the place when interacting with different elements in the UI.

For example, there’s a continuous heavy vibration when going through apps in the recent apps section, which felt annoying to me. On the other hand, the Nothing Phone 2a does not go overboard with vibrations and unnecessary haptic feedback. It offers the right amount of haptic feedback finely tuned with the OS and hits the spot with it.

All of these things combined made using Nothing OS on the Phone 2a an absolute charm, thereby delivering a superior software experience.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo: Box Contents

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo software page

Now that we have wrapped up the most important bit of this comparison, let’s move on to all that you get in the retail box. Honestly, the Nothing Phone 2a does not have a lot to offer in this regard.

Apart from the phone unit itself, a SIM ejector tool, and a Type-C to Type-C cable, the unboxing experience is pretty bland. So yes, no charger or case in the box, which is a bummer.

On the other hand, Motorola went all the way on offering as much as possible for the money that you shell out. From the charger and Type-C cable to even a good quality case and the SIM ejector tool, there’s everything you need for your device. So, there’s no need for you to go running looking for additional accessories for your device. The Moto Edge 40 Neo easily bags the win here.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo: Design

Let’s talk about the design a bit. I have with me the Black variant of the Phone 2a and the Caneel Bay (Blue) variant of the Moto Edge 40 Neo at the Beebom office. Now, do note that the Edge 40 Neo’s back panel is made out of vegan leather.

So, as soon as I pick the two phones up, I immediately love the in-hand feel of the Edge 40 Neo. It’s a lot more grippy and feels way more premium compared to the Nothing Phone 2a’s polycarbonate (industry word for plastic) back. This also means that you can easily use the Edge 40 Neo without a case, while the Phone 2a not so much.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo back panel design

But, when you flip the phones and take a look at the rear panel, the Nothing Phone 2a stands out in terms of sheer design. The Nothing-trademark transparent back is always a treat to the eyes. On top of that, the Glyph lights further elevate the design statement of the phone, although you may not use it as much. I turn off the glyph lights more than than not.

Nothing Phone 2a Glyph Interface

Additionally, both the devices sport a plastic frame, with the Nothing Phone 2a offering a matte finish, hence, making it feel slightly better in hand. Moreover, I also like the button placement on the Phone 2a better. You get to see the power button on the right, with the volume rockers on the left. Whereas, the Moto Edge 40 Neo crams all the buttons on the right side of the frame.

Other port placements are similar for both, with the SIM card slot, speaker grille, microphone, and the Type-C port at the bottom. Meanwhile, the receiver for both acts as the second speaker, and there’s the other microphone at the top of the frame.

Furthermore, with the Nothing Phone 2a’s buttons being made out of aluminum, they feel solid to operate. On the other hand, the Moto Edge 40 Neo’s buttons feel wobbly. However, you should know that the Edge 40 Neo boasts an IP68 rating for dust and water resistance. The Phone (2a) pales in comparison with its IP54 rating.

Moving on, the camera module placement on the Phone 2a is also very well thought out. The phone lay on its back on my desk as I used it, and there was zero wobbling. The Motorola Edge 40 Neo, on the other hand, suffers from wobbling due to the top-left placement of the camera module.

Then again, the Edge 40 Neo’s 170-grams sleek body is just so easy to hold and carry, as compared to the 190-gram Nothing Phone 2a, which is also boxier. So, although the Nothing Phone 2a comes with a practical design, the Edge 40 Neo takes the win for its premium in-hand feel. But it’s totally subjective, and you might like the transparent glyph-laden look better.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo: Display

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo display comparison

Moving on to the display, the first thing I noticed was the bezels. The Nothing Phone 2a’s uniform bezels on the flexible AMOLED 6.7-inch FHD+ display looked better. The Moto Edge 40 Neo’s curved 6.55-inch FHD+ pOLED display also looks very premium. It also adds to the in-hand feel by making it easier to hold and navigate with one hand.

During my testing, I also liked the color reproduction of the Moto Edge 40 Neo better. There’s a noticeable difference, probably due to the Edge 40 Neo’s display supporting the DCI-P3 color gamut. The Nothing Phone 2a takes the lead in terms of brightness levels, though.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo display quality

Although Nothing claims the peak brightness to be 1300 nits, our Lux Meter got a reading of 1750 nits in some scenarios. This offered more comfort when viewing the screen outdoors.

In addition, you also get to see a faster 144Hz refresh rate on the Moto Edge 40 Neo, with options to specifically engage 120Hz, 60Hz, or just put it on auto. Meanwhile, the Nothing Phone 2a does not offer a 90Hz refresh rate option. You can only shuffle in between 120Hz, 60Hz, or the auto option.

However, you get better Gorilla Glass 5 protection on the Phone 2a. On the contrary, the Edge 40 Neo offers NEG protection on top. Then again, being a glass AMOLED, the Phone 2a requires that protection. Whereas, the Edge 40 Neo’s plastic OLED may scratch easily but is less likely to shatter during accidental falls.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo: Cameras

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo cameras

In terms of cameras, both phones feature dual rear camera setups. Getting a bit technical, the Phone 2a features a primary 50 MP Samsung ISOCELL GN9 sensor with OIS. The secondary sensor is a 50 MP Samsung ISOCELL JN1 ultra-wide sensor. At the front, you have a 32 MP Sony IMX 615 selfie shooter.

In contrast, the Moto Edge 40 Neo includes a primary 50 MP OmniVision OV50A with OIS and a secondary 13 MP SK Hynix HI1336 ultra-wide sensor. Additionally, there’s a 32 MP OmniVision OV32B sensor at the front. Now, let’s see how these two cameras fare against each other:


The Nothing Phone 2a captures way more natural-looking images, while managing the shadows and highlights well. As you zoom in, you will notice how the Phone 2a retains details significantly better than the Moto Edge 40 Neo.

From what I noticed, the Edge 40 Neo not only lacks sharpness and details, but it also suffers from unstable white balance tuning. The pictures often showcase slightly unnatural colors and fall flat as compared to the Phone 2a. See the shadows and highlights in this comparison:

Even with human subjects, the Phone 2a delivers more realistic skin tones and better details. The lighting is also well maintained on the Phone 2a, whereas the Edge 40 Neo darkens the image.


At night, I noticed the exact same problem. If you take a look at the samples I took, the Moto Edge 40 Neo has dimmed the orange lighting on the exteriors of the house a bit. When you scope in, the details are missing too. Whereas, the Nothing Phone 2a has retained the details and natural colors of not just the lighting, but everything around.

However, I did notice a bit of lens flare on the Nothing Phone 2a’s shots. Also, it slightly blows out the highlights in some instances.

Front Camera

When using the front camera, the Nothing Phone 2a maintains natural skin tone with good details across the shots, and the Moto Edge 40 Neo over-sharpens the images. However, the colors are good enough on the Edge 40 Neo’s front camera. The good thing is, in portrait mode, the edge detection is great on both phones.


As for videos, both the Nothing Phone 2a and Moto Edge 40 Neo can record up to 4K @ 30 FPS videos using the rear camera. However, the Edge 40 Neo can do so using its selfie shooter as well, while the Nothing Phone 2a is capped at 1080p 60 FPS.

Then again, the Edge 40 Neo can’t capture at 1080p @ 60 FPS from its front sensor, so there’s that. But, both the phones can capture 1080p videos at 60 FPS through the rear sensor.

But, overall, I liked the rear camera’s video recording capabilities of both phones. Nothing Phone 2a takes slightly more natural-looking videos while handling the light better. However, the stabilization is equally good on both phones.

When shooting a video through the front cameras of the two phones, I noticed that the microphone quality on the Phone 2a was better.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo: Performance

When it comes to performance, Nothing Phone 2a is powered by the brand’s custom Dimensity 7200 Pro. As for the Moto Edge 40 Neo, it comes with the MediaTek Dimenisty 7030 under the hood. When it comes to sheer performance, the Dimensity 7200 Pro on the Phone 2a is slightly better. Read our Dimensity 7200 Pro vs Snapdragon 7s Gen 2 vs Snapdragon 782G benchmark comparison for detailed info.

With that out of the way, as always, I have divided this segment into three parts for your ease of understanding. So, here’s a quick rundown:


When it comes to benchmarks, the Nothing Phone 2a comes out on top with bigger numbers:

  • Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo Wild Life Stress Test
  • Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo Geekbench Benchmarks
  • Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo CPU Throttling Test
  • Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo AnTuTu Benchmark

Day-to-Day Usage

Being the stock Android budget beasts that they are, everyday tasks feel like a charm on both the devices. App opening times are great, RAM management is pretty good, multitasking is a delight, and the overall fluidity is the probably best that this budget has to offer.

Of course, the more optimized Nothing OS 2.5 ensures a slightly more seamless experience. But, the Moto Edge 40 Neo’s bloatware-free OS is no joke either and this is as clean as Android can possibly get in the price segment.


My gaming experience with both phones was pretty impressive too. Although the Dimensity 7030 lagged a bit behind on benchmarks, it did not fail to deliver an impressive gaming performance. I tried out Genshin Impact, CoD Mobile, and BGMI on the devices, and both the phones were neck and neck in terms of gaming performance.

Here’s a quick look at the maximum possible graphical settings that you get to see for these games on the two phones:

Genshin ImpactHigh Graphics: 42-55FPS
CoD MobileLow/Ultra Settings: 90FPS (Multiplayer), 90FPS (Battle Royale)
High/Max Settings: 60FPS (Multiplayer and Battle Royale)
BGMISmooth + Extreme Setting: 60FPS
HDR + Ultra: 40FPS

I also noticed how both the Nothing Phone 2a never got uncomfortably hot. Using our thermal gun at the Beebom office, I detected that Phone 2a lingers in the 38-40 degree range even when running benchmarks or gaming for extended periods.

Whereas, the Moto Edge 40 Neo can get quite warm, touching the 47-degree mark when running under full load for some time. But, that didn’t affect the gaming performance of the device one bit, which is good. One thing is for sure, neither of these phones will disappoint you when it comes to performance.

Battery Life and Charging

Let me get this out of the way — I was impressed by the battery performance of both of these stock Android phones. What impressed me even more was that the super sleek and lightweight Edge 40 Neo packs a big 5,000mAh unit inside. The Nothing Phone 2a is fueled by a 5,000mAh battery as well.

However, the Nothing Phone 2a offered more juice when pushing it through tasks like watching 1080p HDR videos on YouTube, streaming Netflix content, some regular multitasking, 2-3 ranked matches of CoD Mobile, about an hour of Genshin Impact, and even running some benchmarks.

In total, after all this, I got a screen-on-time of somewhere around 7.5 hours. That is more than the 5 hours of backup I got on the Moto Edge 40 Neo.

This is understandably due to the 4nm TSMC-made Dimensity 7200 Pro on the Phone 2a. On the contrary, Edge 40 Neo’s Dimensity 7030 is a 6nm chip. Hence, understandably, the Phone 2a is slightly more power efficient.

Charging is faster on the Edge 40 Neo though, thanks to 68W fast charging support. During my testing, I saw the device charge from 25% to 100% in around 30 minutes. Meanwhile, the Nothing Phone 2a offers 45W fast charging and takes about an hour to fully charge from 0 to 100%.

Speaker Output

Both the phones come with stereo speakers, with one speaker at the bottom of the frame. And, as mentioned above, the one is the receiver at the top. When it comes to speaker output, both phones are adequately loud. From rock and roll to some bass-heavy EDM, I played it all on both the Phone 2a and Edge 40 Neo.

Nothing Phone 2a offered a well-balanced audio profile in everything I played. Whereas, the Moto Edge 40 Neo’s speaker felt loud but lackluster. The output is slightly muffled and also on the shrill side. It just lacks the richness and depth in audio that I could get from the Phone 2a.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo: Connectivity

On the connectivity front, both phones are mostly similar with only a couple of small differences. While Phone 2a comes with Wi-Fi 6, Edge 40 Neo boasts Wi-Fi 6E. Besides that, both phones feature Bluetooth 5.3.

The good thing is that both of these budget phones bring NFC to the table. You also get adequate 5G bands on both phones; 13 5G bands on the Nothing Phone 2a and 14 5G bands on the Moto Edge 40 Neo. I also ran 5G speed tests on both devices using a Jio SIM. They turned up neck and neck results, and I can say that 5G connectivity won’t be an issue on either of them.

Nothing Phone 2a vs Moto Edge 40 Neo 5G speed test

Final Verdict: Which Should You Buy?

After putting the devices through this detailed comparison, I can say that both the Nothing Phone 2a and Moto Edge 40 Neo are excellent value-for-money stock Android phones. So, whichever you decide to go for, you won’t be disappointed, for sure.

However, where the Edge 40 Neo shines is that for Rs. 2,000 less (Rs. 22,999 for 8GB+128GB), you get all that you get the charger and accessories right in the box alongside the phone. Whereas, the Nothing Phone 2a (Rs. 23,999 for 8GB+128GB) brings nothing extra or free to the table.

So, you will have to invest either an additional Rs. 2,500 for Nothing’s 45W charger or get a cheaper alternative. Not to mention that you will need to pay extra for a case as well.

But, there’s a lot going for Nothing Phone 2a as the better stock Android phone. It excels in software experience due to the well-optimized Nothing OS 2.5, efficient and longer battery life, and even boasts a unique design.

On top of providing a richer unboxing experience, the Moto Edge 40 Neo features a more premium design, superior display color reproduction, and faster charging, as per my testing.

Then again, the Nothing Phone 2a bringing 3 years of Android updates over the Moto Edge 40 Neo’s 2 years is a big advantage. Especially since the Nothing Phone 2a already comes with Android 14 out of the box and will get to see Android 17. Whereas, the Edge 40 Neo comes with Android 13 out of the box and will only go up to Android 15.

In conclusion, your preferences will heavily determine which phone you should go for. If software experience, longer battery life, a bigger and brighter display, and a super unique design are what matter to you, go for the Nothing Phone 2a.

However, if a premium design with unparalleled in-hand feel, a curved display, faster charging, and a complete out-of-the-box experience, the Moto Edge 40 Neo could prove to be the better choice. So, which of these two stock Android champs will you pick? Let us know in the comments below.

comment Comments 5
  • Gordon says:

    Brightness of anything display is not measured accurately through any lux meter. Lux meter always measures higher than nits so overall lux it is not a true measurment

  • Kumar says:

    We’ll, you’re explanation is great… For 22k we’ll be getting Moto edge 40 neo with charger.. But nothing should provide the charger in this 25k price segment…

  • Rita Solanki says:

    There is one thing that alot people are not looking into moto edge is also offering e sim at a lower cost this is not available in many mobile phone…apart from those expensive models…

  • Mohammed Rafi says:

    I will go for Edge 40 neo.

  • Viv says:

    Except for the charger and case in the box, premium feel and curved display of the Edge 40 Neo, the Nothing 2a seems to have everything else better. But for some, that IP68 rating of the Moto might be a great deal already.

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