Here's Why the Nexus 6P is the Top Android Phone Today

This review originally ran on Oct. 26, 2015.

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(GOOGL)   (GOOG) new Nexus 6P is the terrific Nexus 5X's very big brother. In our view, the Huawei-made Nexus 6P is the best big Android phone we've tested. That could change, but for right now, the 6P does just about everything really well and some things better than any other phone.

Like the Nexus 5X, both cameras, front and back, are really terrific. So is nearly every feature we've tried. We especially like the fingerprint reader called "Google Imprint" located on the back It's easy to use, worked without a problem and appears difficult to circumvent.

In our tests, we found the battery to be good for a full day of powering the device. Alas, the new design isn't 100% perfect. While looking quite good, the new display is set to appear very, very vivid. Sometimes adding too much color to the screen. We found that adjusting the contrast and brightness helps to a degree.

The 6P is also smaller, thinner, lighter and much easier to hold than the 2014's Nexus 6 smartphone. In part, that's because there's no Motorola-style "hump" on the back of the new design. The 6P weighs a very manageable 6.3 ounces. Though the phone has an aluminum case (except for the plastic-covered antennas), the 6P never felt slippery, clammy or unwieldy.

the Nexus 6P has a screen slightly smaller that last year's Nexus 6. The 6P's new touch display measures 5.7-inches (2560 by 1440 pixels, 518 pixels-per-inch) and is protected by Corning's  (GLW) latest Gorilla Glass 4. The processor is a premium, 2.0 GHz, octa-core, Qualcomm (QCOM) Snapdragon 810 with a separate Adreno 430 graphics chip.

The 6P comes with 3 GB of RAM and either 32, 64 or 128 GB of internal storage. The cameras have been improved to 12.3 MP and 5 megapixels back and front - they're the same as in the Nexus 5X. The phone also includes the new Nexus fingerprint sensor on the back and the Android Sensor Hub. It's another, low-power processor that handles many small tasks without having to tap into the main processing chip's power.

New Nexus products always launch running new versions of the Android operating system and this is no exception. The 6P runs Android Marshmallow, which adds improved levels of refinement along with increased power management. Another new feature, "Google Now On Tap", can automatically search items related to whatever is displayed on the device's screen.

The 6P works on all major U.S. carriers. You can also take advantage of the new, low pricing (starting at $30/month) offered by Google's Project Fi cellular service. Technically, it's a combination of Sprint , T-Mobile and Wi-Fi/Voice-over-IP services. On this phone, Fi seemed to favor connecting to T-Mobile's cell towers.

Nexus 6P is available, unlocked, from the Nexus online store starting at $499 (with 32 GB) up to $549 (64 GB) and $649 for 128 GB of storage.

Overall Score: 9.0/10


To buy Nexus 6P accessories on Amazon, click here.

 


This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no positions in the stocks mentioned.

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