Nexus smartphones from LG and Huawei feature super-powered cameras, bigger battery, and Android Marshmallow
Google has unveiled the latest additions to its Nexus smartphones family, the Nexus 5X and 6P.
Made by LG and Huawei respectively, the new Nexus devices offer a range of new hardware and software improvements as Google revealed the most powerful Android-powered smartphones to date.
Available to pre-order now, the Nexus 5X and 6P will ship in the UK next month, starting from £249 and £449 respectively, and as with previous Nexus devices, are unlocked, meaning you can choose your own network.
The Huawei-made Nexus 6P (pictured left) is the larger and more powerful Nexus device, featuring a 5.7in WQHD, AMOLED screen that makes up nearly three quarters of the device’s surface. Built entirely of aluminium and measuring in at 7.5mm thick and weighing just XX, the Nexus 6P is powered by a 64-bit octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 v2.1 processor, 3GB of RAM, and either 32, 64 or 128GB of storage, all backed up by a massive 3,450mAh battery.
The Nexus 5X, the smaller of the two (pictured below), features a 5.2in display, and weighs in at just 136g, and is powered by a 64-bit Snapdragon 808 processor, 2GB of RAM and a 2.700mAh battery.
Both devices pack in an 8MP front camera with HDR+ capability, twinned with the “best camera we’ve ever put into a Nexus device”, according to Google’s VP of engineering, Dave Burke – a 12.3MP Sony-made rear camera featuring µ1.55 pixels, the largest yet, allowing brighter pictures than ever before.
The new camera will be able to capture 4K video, and will also allow recording of slow-motion video for the first time.
For the first time, the new Nexus devices feature a fingerprint reader. Located on the rear of the device to fit with the natural way of holding a smartphone, Google’s new Nexus Imprint sensor needs only a single tap to wake up, and is able to detect a fingerprint in just 600 milliseconds.
Android Pay is also enabled, with Burke noting that it takes just two taps to unlock the device using Nexus Imprint and opening up the payments system.
Both devices are powered by Android 6.0 Marshmallow, the latest edition of Google’s mobile operating system, which the company was keen to point out comes with a wide range of new features and services.
This includes Google Now On Tap, which offers the wealth of contextual information provided by Google Now to bring up extra information and actions without the need to leave apps.
There is also faster access to voice actions and search, new window and notification animations, and quicker homescreen scrolling and app search thanks to a new A-Z indexing system. Marshmallow also includes a new prediction engine which learns which apps you use the most and adopts the power and CPU usage accordingly.
Both phones also use a new “Android Sensor Hub”, which combines sensors such as the accelerometer and gyroscope into one chip, making it possible for the device to automatically detect certain activities such as running or cycling and start collecting data without drawing too much power.
Android Sensor Hub can also detect when the phone has been picked up and activate the low-power ambient display, which shows the date and time in a battery-saving mode which can then be woken up with one touch.
There is also USB-C connectivity, meaning that reversible charging cables can be used on the devices, which now charge faster than ever before thanks to a number of tweaks from Google’s battery development team.
Lastly, Google is throwing in a bunch of perks for anyone looking to pre-order the device, including a 90-day free trial of Google Play Music, and $50 Play Store credit for US customers. Google has also announced a new ‘Nexus Protect’ protection program, costing $69 for the Nexus 5X and $89 for the Nexus 6P, which provides two years of mechanical breakdown and accidental damage coverage, as well as getting an overnight replacement unit sent to you while your original is being repaired.
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