Pros: full HD display, latest hardware, stock Android 4.4 OS, price
Cons: sluggish camera, average battery life
Bottomline: Nexus 5 is a pure delight and ranks as one of the top smartphones in the market this year. LG has done it again; the product is a sure value-for-money. If an iPhone or Windows Phone device is not your cup of tea, then the exus 5 is a must have.
Google launched its Nexus 5 smartphone globally and much to our surprise, the company redeemed itself for the mistakes it made with Nexus 4 in India by bringing the latest Nexus much earlier than last time around (almost one year).
The stock Android 4.4 KitKat version is the best way to differentiate between the experience on a Nexus device and other vendor branded devices. The latest Nexus 5 therefore is no different, and gives the experience that Google wants to offer to users on Android.
LG has flourished under the stewardship of Google for its Nexus devices, enabling it to iron out the flaws they've had in their previous smartphones. With Nexus 5, LG has taken the expectations to a whole new level.
So what's all the hoopla about Nexus 5 you ask? For starters, it sports a 5 inch Full HD display, runs on the latest stock Android 4.4 KitKat OS, packs in a 2.2 GHz Snapdragon 800 CPU with 2 GB RAM and then the usual culprits--8 MP rear and 1.2 MP front cameras, plenty of connectivity options and a 2300 mAh battery.
Not the most good looking smartphone, but it's a definite step up from the glossy looks of the Nexus 4. That said with Nexus 5, you get a well-built sturdy device that comes with Corning Glass 3 display. During our usage, we found the display to be effective and even after some rough treatment the display refused to wither down. The full HD display is bright, crisp and offers a colorful viewing experience. At 130 grams, the phone is a hair lighter than the Nexus 4, which weighs 139 grams.
The other change in Nexus 5 is the placement of speakers, which are now more conventionally placed at the bottom unlike at the rear as was the case in the Nexus 4. Stock Android version has its hits and misses. The performance is smooth but we did miss some applications that should have been pre-installed. One really interesting thing is that Hangout is the default app for messaging and SMS. So one has to install an SMS app from the Play Store to get standalone SMS capability. Camera is a big improvement over Nexus 4, but it's still well short of other major devices in the market, most notably the Nokia Lumia 1020. But for the pricing, Nexus 5 offers images of credible quality. Imaging capability in real time is sluggish and the auto-focus and clicking images is not the smoothest ride though.
Battery life on the Nexus 5 is average and during normal usage, which we define as 2 hours of web surfing, messaging, 3 hours on Wi-Fi, 3-4 hours on 3G and 1 hour of gaming, the smartphone lasted for little over half a day. Nothing to really boast about, but manageable. Google Voice feature deserves a mention, as it stands out for its effectiveness and accuracy. It's quick, effective and informative with any information delivered in no time.
In terms of raw performance the Nexus 5 scored 21754 on Antutu, 7813 on Quadrant, 13402 (Unlimited) on 3DMark and 1353 on Vellamo HTML5. The Nexus 4 on the other hand scored 16440, 4245, 7075 (extreme) and 1159 respectively. It clearly indicates that the Nexus 5 is a far better performer.