Google unveiled the Nexus 5X to the world on Tuesday. The device joins a crowded market of supercharged smartphones, all pushing for ever increasing pixels and power. Two of the big names, the iPhone 6S and the Galaxy S6, are set to take the holiday season by storm. Has Google delivered a strong competitor?
The Nexus 5X houses a 12.3 megapixel camera with f/2.0 aperture. The iPhone 6S boosts the rear camera to 12 megapixels with f/2.2 aperture, with the Galaxy S6 packing an impressive 16 megapixels into a maximum f/1.9 aperture. The three devices have all been boosted to five megapixels on front, a possible sign of the proliferation of the selfie culture. Unfortunately, all of these specs can only give us a small insight into how the cameras compare. It won't be until we see some real-world comparisons that it'll become clear how the 5X compares in day-to-day life.
Geekbench scores allow us to better compare speeds cross-platform, with higher scores indicating better performance: The Galaxy S6 scores 1214 on single core and 4145 on multi-core, while the iPhone 6S scores an impressive 2490 on single core and 4332 on multi-core. Unfortunately, we will have to wait until the device launches to obtain proper Geekbench scores, but the LG G4 that uses the same processor scores 1113 on single core and 3187 on multi-core, which gives us an idea of what to expect here. Not terrible, but not blowing away the competition.
The Nexus 5X comes with a 1920 x 1080 screen, stretching 5.2 inches with a pixel density of 424 ppi. The Galaxy S6 features a 1440 x 2560 screen over 5.1 inches (a density of 577 ppi), while the iPhone 6S has a 4.7-inch 1334 x 750 screen at 326ppi. Leaving the disputes aside about how well the human eye can see differences in pixel density, the fact is that the 5X takes the crown on screen size. If you're looking for the biggest screen above all else, the 5X is your choice.
The Galaxy S6 and iPhone 6S both sport glass and aluminum-based designs, both slightly marred by antenna bands running through the metal. The Nexus 5X has no such bands, but comes in a cheaper-looking plastic case. Also of note: The camera bulge seems to now be cemented as part of modern phone design, most likely due to ever-decreasing device thickness. Make of that what you will.
Without contract, the base model 32GB Galaxy S6 costs $549, while the 16GB iPhone 6S costs $649. The 5X costs $379 for the 16GB and $499 for the 32GB, making this the budget-conscious choice. If you have money to splurge, you may be better off opting for Apple and Samsung. The Nexus is nice, and the specs are respectable, but it won't be the best money can buy.