Let's just cut through all the crap, and clear the muddy waters. Maybe I can help you make a decision.
This year has presented some unique challenges for us Android fans. In the past, Google has been very consistent with releasing a new Nexus Device every year. It was easy because we didn't have a choice. This year, Google threw us a curve ball and released 2 new devices.
Now we have to choose between the "premium" phablet, or the "budget" phone. "The P stands for premium." That's what google told us at the conference, leading us to believe that the 5X was just a cheap substitute. Obviously Google wants to sell more of the 6P. It's the higher end device, and it's made in China, so it's got a high profit margin.
It left many people scratching their heads. Nobody should have to sacrifice specs just because they want a phone that has a smaller, more manageable size.
When you push aside all the specs, it honestly comes down to personal preferences.
I'll tell you why the difference in the specs shouldn't matter to you. Lately, it's been all about the big race. Who can cram the most cores in their processor, the most RAM in the phone, and the most megapixels in the camera. Don't get me wrong, those things matter....on most devices.
However, comparing a Samsung Galaxy Note 5 with a Nexus 6P just isn't fair. These phone go head to head in almost every way on paper. However, the Note 5 has a bulky resource hungry UI (touchwiz). So, the Galaxy eats up that RAM and Processing power. A vanilla/stock android experience with less RAM and a less powerful processor is going to give you similar user experiences.
With that being said, it still doesn't address the impact when comparing the 2 nexus devices. They are running the same OS and have notable differences on paper.
The 6P boasts a Octa-core processor and 3 GB of RAM and an ever so slightly better GPU
The 5X rocks a Hexa-core processor and 2 GB of RAM
What does that mean? Exactly jack. I have owned and used both devices. My Nexus 5X was just as zippy as the 6P.
My last phone was an LG G Flex 2. A highly underrated monster from earlier this year. Under the hood was the very same Processor as the 6P and 3 GB of RAM. I wrestled with going to 5X because I was losing that 1 GB of RAM. I ended up doing it anyway, and the 5X was WAAAAAAY more responsive than my G Flex 2. I was shocked...
It's like I said earlier. That G Flex 2 was not stock. It was running Optimus UX. LG's poor attempt at an overlay.
So, this is where we get back to our personal preferences.
The 5X feels light and hollow (some would say cheap). I happen to think the phone is beautiful. It's sleek, thin, and an easy to handle 5.2 in LCD screen that makes it easy to one hand. Both the new Nexus devices have the same camera. The battery on the 5X got me through an average work day most of the time, but whenever it didn't, I was able to top up in about 30-45 minutes thanks to USB-C quick charging.
The 6P is a monster. It's very large, and its aluminum body makes it heavy and slippery. The visor on the top rear of the phone houses the camera assembly and antenna. This makes the phone top heavy. Couple that with the slippery finish, and you could quite easily find it slipping through your hands. I can't really tell the difference in performance when starting or using apps between the 5X despite the extra processing power and memory. The screen is an AMOLED which is all the rage these days, but you can't really tell the difference unless you have the devices side by side.
If you like to use your device to play the latest and greatest mobile games then the 6P will shine. That extra memory, powerful processor, and better GPU will make a notable difference when playing those games.
If you want a smaller and more manageable device, don't let words like "budget" and "mid-tier" throw you off. The Nexus 5X is still a fantastic phone, and arguably one of the best on the markets.
I chose the 6P strictly because I was use to the phablet screen size. I still find myself pining for the sleek and light 5X, but I am very happy with my purchase. It's just up to you what you want. Don't look at the spec sheets. Think about what YOU want out of your phone.
Now wait a minute RJ....What about all the terrible things I'm hearing about the new devices. #bendgate (i hate that term)
So you want to be an "early adapter". You want the latest and greatest Nexus device, but you don't want to sift through all the reviews, and problems of the new devices. Then buy the Moto Nexus 6, and wait until next year.
Being an early adapter means, that you are taking a risk. No devices are perfect. There is no unicorn device that is perfect at the time of release.
With that being said...let me clear up this "6P Bending issue". It's not an issue. That guy that bent two of these phones with relative ease is a meathead. He is built like a tank, and very strong. If you havent seen his instagram, his pasttimes include flipping tractor tires and bench pressing sexy women. Not to mention, nobody is going to exert that much force on a phone during normal use. Square Trade did a test and found that it takes 170 lbs of force to break the device. That's a lot.
The back visor "shattering" issue, is something I am still researching. There have been a handful of people that have posted on reddit and show their rear visor spontaneously combusting. I'm not saying they are lying...but we also don't know the whole story. Sure, it could be legit. If it is, my money is going on the aluminum body with temperature fluctuations putting stress on the visor glass. I think that it would be easy to inadvertently break that glass and not realize it. After all, we spend most of our time looking at the front of the phone, not the back. Not to mention, it does protrude a little bit from the back, so when setting your phone down, the visor is the initial point of contact with the surface.
I am not going to test this, because I am not made of money and I stand firmly against Android Abuse. Until Google or Huawei admit to an issue, or until my phone spontaneously shatters, I'm calling BS on this one too.
The 5X has its own issue. Mainly, the screen. This one holds some stock. My 5x had a stuck pixel right out of the box. I hardly noticed it, and even when I knew it was there had to really look hard for it. However, I mentioned it to Google, and they sent me an RMA within an hour to replace the device. However, you will have a temporary hold on your credit card until they receive the other unit, unless you have a spare phone laying about.
Other users have complained about yellowing and discoloration of the LCD. There are pictures out there, but again, Google will take care of you on these issues.
I hope this helped you cut through that spec sheet and think a little more clearly about your device choices.
If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment, and I'll answer them!
Until Next Time!