Nexus 6p

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Expert Review

Google’s Nexus line is the company’s equivalent of straight black coffee. Nothing added. Just a straight, unfiltered Android experience. Granted, some people like the additions that the various Androids OEM bring to the table. But everyone’s different and the customization options Google offers, even where there are none, is touted as the platform’s primary point of differentiation against Apple. This year’s flagship device that’s blessed from Mountain View is the Nexus 6P, which builds off last year’s Nexus 6. It is not, however, manufactured by last year’s Nexus 6 manufacturer, Motorola. This year Google is employing Huawei as its contractor.

If you like the Nexus line, the lack of skins, overlays and other customizations is probably why you bought it. This also means that most apps will work with the device. Google started the Nexus program as a means of providing reference devices to developers, and the lack of customization means that many developers continue to use the phones in this manner. The Nexus 6P stands on its own as an impressive smartphone. It screen is a very large 5.7 inches, even for a phablet, and with the increasing demands of data (whether its apps, photos, videos, or other information) the Nexus 6P comes in at usable capacities of 32GB, 64GB and 128GB.

Non-developers who just want an Android smartphone will have a 12 megapixel camera at their disposal. Like most premium smartphones released this year, 4K is the new video hotness (as1080p is so last year) even if most households don’t even have a 4K TV yet. Google’s also upping its security with an integrated fingerprint scanner with biometric security rolled into the latest version of its software, Android 6.0 "Marshmallow". Reviewers are very happy with its responsiveness it offers. To be fair, Nexus devices are usually among the first to get software and OS updates. Manufacturers having to modify software releases to work with their overlays and skins adds another layer of complication and time to when they can push their updates out.

Google made an interesting decision that may be lost on most users. Rather than outfitting Nexus 6P with a mini-USB port, the company instead decided to go with a USB-C connector, a new spec to the port. The cables are relatively new, but they are compatible with the current flavor of USB that are in use. If the USB-C port is used with other, like-equipped devices, the Nexus 6P could be used to power other devices (including a laptop) and could upload or download at 5Gbps.Rating: 4.5/5

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