Anyway, my unprecedented quality time with the Nexus 5X is coming to an end. I’m not going to lie; it’s taken a fair amount of willpower to ignore the more expensive 6P also in my possession. But I feel very strongly that having a firmer grasp on this cheaper Nexus will help better ascertain its value, and whether or not the 6P is worth the extra cash.
First, though, here are my recommendations for anyone interested in the 5X.
2013 Nexus 5 owners:
The 5X is a no-brainer upgrade. Your RAM and storage options remain the same but you’re getting a significantly improved processor (even more so if you disable encryption). The camera is much, much better and you’ll quickly wonder how you ever did without a fingerprint scanner.
Build quality zealots:
The rattle in this 5X must be a one-off issue; of the many and varied reviews I’ve read no one has uttered a word about build quality issues. But if you did want something with a more premium feel then you’re probably not going to be too happy with the 5X—unless, perhaps, you get a premium case.
The Android update-obsessed:
With a Nexus you will always be first to run the latest and greatest version of Android, with the latest security patches as well. This is especially true now that Motorola seems to be dropping the ball on updates to their phones.
With the 5X’s small battery I’d advise travellers to wait until some suitable 3 Amp USB-C portable chargers hit the market. I’d expect to see them early on in 2016.
I’m also going to give modders a “hold” on the 5X. Six months from now I’ve no doubt there’ll be a plethora of custom ROMs to flash, with additional conveniences you won’t currently find in Google’s version of Android. And that asinine corruption warning on the bootloader has got to go. ಠ_ಠ
If you find yourself dismayed by the “bigger is better” trend in smartphones, if you have a bigger screen—that is, a tablet—waiting for you at home for games and media consumption, then the 5X may be exactly what you’re looking for. It’s one of the few remaining options in what seems like a dying breed of devices, a phone you can comfortably operate in one hand.
If you’re at all interested in the 5X try to find a dummy unit in your local Best Buy or carrier shop; once you hold it I reckon you’ll know straightaway whether or not it’s the smartphone for you.