Skip to main content
  2. News
  3. 2015
  4. September
  5. Google new Nexus phones prove it's all about the software

Google new Nexus phones prove it's all about the software

Google new Nexus phones prove it's all about the software

Tomorrow will see Google release its new Nexus phones on the world.

For the last five years, it has chosen this time of year to bestow us with a new Nexus handset, and hint at where Android is going.

In 2015, though, for the first time Google will unveil not one, but two new handsets.

The Nexus 5X will be more affordable, with a 5.2-inch HD screen, 13-megapixel camera and either 2GB or 3GB of RAM.

The Nexus 6P is the flagship. It's expected to sport a slightly smaller screen than last year's Motorola-made Nexus 6, measuring up at 5.7 inches. But with 3GB of RAM under the bonnet, it'll be just as powerful.

lg nexus 5 2015 leak

Like the 5X, it's thought to have a fingerprint scanner and USB Type-C port. Both phones are also thought to have better cameras than their predecessors.

Let's hope so, anyway – this is one area where Nexus devices have floundered, especially compared to the iPhone.

But perhaps what's most telling is what isn't new. The 5X – like the Nexus 5 – will be made by LG, so will look almost identical to its two-year-old handset.

The 6P will be made by Huawei, so will look quite different to the Nexus 6, but the changes are mostly cosmetic.

As with the iPhone 6S, the main innovations are all in the software.

Thankfully, Android 6.0 Marshmallow brings many new features to the fore. The most exciting of which is Google Now on Tap.

huawei nexus 6p camera

This extends its Now proactive personal assistant into every aspect of your phone – and, in turn, your life. It looks at what's on-screen, and takes the relevant actions.

In one demo, a Google spokesperson played a Skrillex song on their phone and asked Now, "What's his real name?" Now gave the answer, without having to be told what was playing or even what the question referred to.

Mention a restaurant in a text message to a friend, and Now will let you see the place's ratings and opening hours from within the text message.

Google is looking to make fingerprint scanners standard across Android, so Marshmallow will support the tech.

It will also support better voice interaction. App developers can now build voice control directly into their apps. Speak to the app, and it'll even speak back to you.

android marshmallow google

Battery life will also be extended thanks to Google Doze. This is a deeper sleep mode that kicks in when you haven't used your phone for a while. It consumes less power, meaning your battery will last longer.

Like the 6S, the handsets are a minor upgrade rather than a full reimagining. But with better battery life, an enhanced personal assistant and more voice controls, there's still plenty to look forward to.

One final word on the pricing. Nexus devices used to be dirt cheap, and offer the best value of any Android gadgets. Last year, that all changed.

The Nexus 6 was bigger, bolder and pricier than its forebears. It cost £369, which, while more affordable than some flagships, isn't cheap by anyone's measure.

The new handsets are expected to be similarly priced. The 5X should cost over £300, and the 6P even more. We'll know for sure in just over 24 hours.

back to top