This is the day of the new Nexus devices, the LG Nexus 5X and the Huawei Nexus 6P. Google is giving us two devices this time around with the Nexus 5X being the more mid-range smartphone and the Nexus 6P a little more high-end as well as the higher priced device. Nexus devices were never ‘leading edge’ devices – their main purpose is to showcase Google’s new operating system untethered by any manufacturer’s own UI and there second purpose was to allow the masses to afford the device. This all changed last year when Motorola made the Nexus 6 with a 6-inch QHD display, the best Qualcomm processor available, 3GB of RAM, a better camera, dual front-facing stereo speakers, a great build, wireless charger, water resistance and a large 3220mAh battery…along with a $649 price tag.
This sent Nexus lovers into a tailspin, and they felt Google turned their backs on exactly what a Nexus device stood for and the Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P is their journey home, if you will. Let’s take a look at the new Nexus smartphones and see just how they stack up to some recent flagship devices. The Nexus 5X is a solid entry from Motorola, built with a metal frame and a plastic body. The Nexus 6P with its full metal frame and all-metal backing is the more premium of the two and should stand up quite nicely with the others in this comparison.
Checking out the specifications in several areas, we will compare the two new Nexus smartphones against the other four devices. Please remember the pricing of these smartphones – it is not possible for a $380 device to have the same quality as a $550 device…but not everybody needs a QHD display or the fastest processor, while others only use their camera for a contact picture or selfie.
Let’s first take a look at the displays on these six devices and see how they stack up against each other. When it comes to the new Nexus devices, we have an example of each technology – the Nexus 5X uses a 5.2-inch FHD LCD display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels and 424 pixels-per-inch (PPI). The Nexus 6P has a 5.7-inch QHD AMOLED display with a resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels and about 515 PPI. The Samsung Galaxy S6 has a 5.1-inch Super AMOLED QHD display with 577 PPI. The LG G4 has a 5.5-inch QHD LCD with 538 PPI. The new Moto X Pure Edition has a large 5.7-inch QHD display with 520 PPI – this size matches the new Nexus 6P. The HTC One M9 is a 5-inch FHD LCD display with 441 PPI.
Five of the six devices use some model of the Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, while one, the Samsung Galaxy S6, uses their own Exynos 7420 processor. The new Nexus 5X uses the model 808 hexa-core processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB or 32GB of internal memory and no means to expand that memory. The Nexus 6P uses the most powerful model, the 810 octa-core processor v2.1, 3GB of RAM, 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of internal memory and no means to expand the internal memory. The Samsung Galaxy S6 uses a homegrown Exynos 7420 octa-core model with 3GB of faster DDR4 RAM and a choice of 32GB, 64GB or 128GB of faster UFS 2.0 flash memory and no microSD card slot to expand. The LG G4 bypassed the Snapdragon 810 and instead went for their 808 hexa-core processor with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal memory, however, it does offer expansion via a microSD card slot. The new Moto X Pure Edition has a large 5.7-inch display, matching up nicely with the Nexus 6P. It too has 3GB of RAM and offers up 16GB, 32GB or 64GB of internal memory, but also has a microSD card slot to expand that memory. The HTC One M9 went with the Snapdragon 810 octa-core processor – the original model that had some overheating problems. It uses 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal memory and you can expand it via a microSD card.
The camera area is a tough item to nail down – it is almost impossible to tell which camera is better only by specifications as the design and software make a lot of difference. We know from professional testing and reviews that both the Samsung Galaxy S6 and LG G4 cameras are top-rated.
The Nexus 5X starts with a 12.3MP sensor, adds Laser autofocus and a dual LED flash, but no OIS. It sports a 5MP front-facing camera (FFC) for selfies and video chatting. The Nexus 6P also uses a 12.3MP sensor, Laser autofocus, dual LED flash and no OIS and a rather large 8MP FFC. The Galaxy S6 has a 16MP sensor with autofocus, flash, OIS and a large f/1.9 aperture and LIVE HDR. It also has a 5MP FCC came with the f/1.9 aperture, wide-angle and Live HDR for great low-light shots. The LG G4 also uses a 16MP sensor, Laser autofocus, OIS and a large f/1.8 aperture. It uses a large 8MP FFC with the large f/1.8 aperture. The new Moto X Pure Edition has a very large 21MP sensor and autofocus, dual LED flash, no OIS and a 5MP FFC. The HTC One M9 has a large 20MP sensor with autofocus, dual LED flash, OIS and a 4MP FFC.
The battery is an important and integral part of a smartphone and a big reason whether or not we like a device. Today’s manufacturers are constantly making refinements in the design of the display, processor and memory to put less strain on the battery and naturally, they are working on designing better batteries that last longer and charge faster. All of these devices, including the Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P, all have a quick or rapid charge battery, allowing you recharge the battery in much less time.
The Nexus 5X has a 2700mAh battery and the Nexus 6P jumps to a 3450mAh battery, which should last much longer than the Nexus 5X. The Galaxy S6 has a 2550mAh battery and is the smallest of the bunch, but still will outlast some of the other devices. The LG G4 and the new Moto X Pure Edition both have a 3000mAh size battery. The HTC One M9 uses a 2840mAh battery. The LG G4 has a removable battery, while the rest all have non-removable batteries.
A few extra notes regarding this comparison – both, the Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P have a fingerprint sensor that will unlock the device as well as allow you to make mobile payments via Android 6.0 Marshmallow and Android Pay. The Galaxy S6 also has a fingerprint sensor that is PayPal certified and Samsung Pay ready (unless you are with Verizon). The LG G4, the Moto X pure Edition and the HTC One M9 do not have fingerprint sensors. The Moto X Pure Edition does have a nano-coating for water resistance and the HTC One M9 has dual front-facing speakers with BoomSound. The two new Nexus devices will be running Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) and the rest are running 5.1 and the HTC One M9 is running 5.0.