It’s that time again but we are not refering to the festive season. Google has added two new smartphones to its portfolio – the LG Nexus 5X and Huawei Nexus 6P. No! we are not feeling tipsy or are hungover after the festive season, if anybody or anything is light, it is the Nexus 5X (probably the lightest of all Nexus smartphones). We got our hands on the phone which was launched in India at a starting price of Rs.31,999 (16 GB) and here is what we think of it:
What is good?
The first thing that struck me immediately after holding the phone is how extremely light it is compared to several others in the market. The plastic body helps in reducing the weight. The LG Nexus 5X is designed intelligently as well to look slimmer than it is. The dual-tone design gives it an elegant look. The simple design of the rear panel also adds to the design along with the fingerprint sensor.
The 5X comes with an HD display which is protected by Gorilla Glass 3 and there seems to be no problems with viewing angles. There are no complains here except expecting a regular touch up of the screen to clear smudges. Also, the screen comes with an oleophobic coating to help water drops slide.
The 1.82 GhZ hexa-core Snapdragon 808 processor, combined with a 2 GB RAM, makes the 5X a good performer – if not the best. The phone scored just 24 points below the Nexus 6P on Geekbench 3 single core performance which means that it can handle nearly as much load as the 6P. Multitasking along with Google Now on Tap activated was smooth and interestingly, the phone did not heat up while gaming for longer durations.
Coming to the shooter of the phone, the 5X has nearly the same rear camera unit as its other brother. Pictures taken with the camera were fast, accurate and detailed. The low-light photos managed to also get in good details due to the large pixel size. The front five-megapixel shooter performed good during video chats but was dependent on light conditions. We were also impressed with how quick both the cameras can take a photograph.
The Nexus 5X also comes with a fingerprint scanner which is very fast and responsive. The phone uses the latest Android Marshmallow operating system (OS) which allows storage of up to five fingerprints along with other features like doze mode, app drawer and Google Now on Tap.
Other features on the device include GPS-A with GLONASS, NFC, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, along with a host of sensors.
What doesn’t work for the phone?
Although the phone is light, the plastic body sounds alarm for the consumer. The body might take a bad hit on medium impact but should be easily replaceable both in terms of money and parts.
Heavy games lagged sometimes on the phone but otherwise were decent. Switching between heavy games also took some time. Although Google claims to have put in the best camera yet on these recently released Nexus smartphones, the front shooter struggled in extremely low light conditions.
Another problem with the phone is its fairly weak battery (2,700 mAH) which did not last throughout the day. It seemed fine till the time it was taking advantage of Marshmallow’s doze mode but on continuous usage drained fast. Gaming and continious Wi-Fi usage also put pressure on the battery. The good thing is that the phone comes with quick charging.
In addition, the new Nexus smartphones comes with a Type-C USB cable on both ends rendering it ‘un-chargeable’ via USB and power bank. A converter is needed for this.
Now comparing the phone with its rivals that come with stock Android, the Nexus 5X seems to be overpriced by at least Rs.5,000 to Rs.8,000.
Verdict: The LG Nexus 5X is a perfect light-weight companion for the average heavy user although improvements on its battery is needed. Also, the phone is overpriced if compared to rivals with stock Android experience as they have better processing power and performance. The only addition to the 5X is Marshmallow and its updates. If you are a Nexus fan or looking for a lightweight performer then the 5X is your choice.
Please Note: We have reviewed the 32 GB variant priced at Rs.35,990.
Full specifications: Hexa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 processor with Adreno 418 GPU | 2 GB RAM | 5.2-inch HD display (424 dpi) protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 3 | Android Marshmallow | 12.3-megapixel rear camera with laser autofocus and dual- LED (dual tone) flash with 1.55µm pixel size, geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, HDR, panorama | Five-megapixel front camera | 16/32 GB storage | 4G-LTE | Wi-FI | NFC | Bluetooth | 2,700 mAh battery
(Anirban can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)