Finally, the new Google Nexus devices pretty much sum up the flagship launches from all leading companies for the year 2015. Whatever explanation Google has, there is no denying that the company is following the on-going trend of releasing two phones – one for those looking for a larger display phablet and other for non-phablet friendly users. It also puts the company in line with its arch-rivals Apple and Samsung who’ve launched two flagships each this year.
The Huawei-built Nexus 6P is slightly higher end device with 5.7-inch AMOLED display with 2560 x 1440 pixels of resolution, Snapdragon 810, 3GB RAM, 3450mAh battery and built from anodised aluminium. On the other hand, the polycarbonate LG-built Nexus 5X comes with 5.2-inch Full HD display, 5MP front camera and 2700mAh battery. Both devices get the latest Android Marshmallow OS and the 12.3MP rear snapper.
Though there is no official announcement for India, Google has already listed the devices on the Play store revealing the price – the Nexus 6P starting at Rs 39,990 for the 32GB variant and the Nexus 5X starting at Rs 31,990 for the 16GB variant.
While these are definitely more polished and pure Nexus devices from Google’s kitty, the company has made it amply clear that Nexus is no more the budget-friendly category that you once looked forward to.
The Galaxy Nexus was priced somewhere around Rs 21,000 to 23,000 and then came the LG Nexus 4 that still managed to start at a price well above the 30k mark. With the Nexus 5, we saw the gradual jump in the price and since then there has been no looking back. Google still managed to get the Nexus 5 India pricing right as many flagships by companies like Samsung and others were were priced way over 40k and the company managed to wrap up under Rs 33,000. Well, we wouldn’t say the same for the not-so-famous Nexus 6.
The pricing has definitely been the bone of contention considering the history of the Nexus brand. Nexus launches used to be eagerly looked forward to once by buyers wanting cutting edge specs at affordable price points. ‘Now Google will launch its affordable phone package with superior specs,’ was an oft repeated sentiment among probable buyers.
While last year’s Nexus 6 may have disappointed many users, this year it could be rather worrisome for the Nexus brand itself. Yes, today, we have numerous Chinese options out there offering great specs at affordable prices. Looks like, Google didn’t take under consideration the competition it faces from these companies that run a forked version of its open OS, and churn out affordable devices offering superior specs. Considering the Nexus 6P has been built by Huawei, a Chinese phone maker itself, the Rs 40,000 price point for the base model may seem high for lot of people.
On trying to position Google’s new devices in the mobile market, the cheaper of the two, the Nexus 5X is priced at Rs 31,999. Those who are looking for a device at this price and are ready to let off the pure Android Marshmallow OS, will find more lucrative options offering almost equivalent or even better specs at more affordable prices. For instance, the OnePlus 2 sporting a 5.5-inch Full HD display, Snapdragon 810 coupled with 4GB of RAM, 3300mAh battery, 13-megapixel rear snapper and USB Type-C port is available at Rs 22,999 for the 16GB model and Rs 24,999 for the 64GB model. The difference in the base price is almost Rs 10,000 and that’s quite a lot of money. In fact the One Plus 2 comes with specs almost at par with the higher-end Nexus 6P priced at Rs 39,999.
Yes, the Nexus devices come from seasoned OEMs, run the latest Android iteration and will definitely get the future updates sooner than other competing Android devices; but Chinese vendors have been slowly upping their game over the years. The growing interest by people in companies like Xiaomi, OnePlus, Lenovo and others will vouch for it.
While the devices are great, Google seems to have got the pricing wrong, yet again. The question that needs to be answered is, is it worth paying such a high premium for pure Android handsets? This is a question best left for users to answer. Do let us know what are your thoughts on the Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P pricing in an age of Xiaomis, OnePlus’ and Lenovos of the world.
You can also find out how the new Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X stack against Samsung Galaxy S6 and Apple iPhone 6s.