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Huawei Nexus 6P: Pure Android Marshmallow steals the show

Rahul R
Sr. Technology Reporter
Editors Rating

The Google Huawei Nexus 6P, upon its release in September 2015, captured our attention with its metallic outer body and its promise of offering a pure Android flagship experience. Also, the Huawei Nexus 6P runs Google’s more recent Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) operating platform which is an added advantage theoretically. However, we wanted to obtain a practical experience with the Huawei Nexus 6P so we managed to procure the smartphone to conduct a comprehensive review.

Here is how the Huawei nexus 6P performed in our tests:

Design and Display

The Huawei Nexus 6P impressed us with its full metal metallic outer body, and the sides are perfectly flat that enables for firm gripping in the hand.

Likewise, we could also grip the Huawei Nexus 6P firmly in the hand even when on the move without having to worry about the smartphone falling off.

At the right, there are all the essential keys that offer essential operation of the Huawei Nexus 6P. There is the newer USB-C port at the bottom end of the smartphone; at the top there is the headphone port which is unconventional and quite attractive as well.

As far as the rear end is concerned, we could make out the fingerprint scanner that is present on top of the Nexus logo. This aspect is a welcome addition as we could easily access the fingerprint scanner with our fingers neatly curved at the rear end of the Huawei Nexus 6P.

All the above design aspects add the premium look and feel to the Huawei Nexus 6P.

As far as the actual display is concerned, the Huawei Nexus 6P features a comparatively large 5.7-inch AMOLED capacitive touchscreen having resolution of 1440 x 2560 with pixel density of 519 ppi.

During our testing, the display of the Huawei Nexus 6P rendered comparatively sharp images along with richly highlighting all the essential colors. The Blacks are properly highlighted, whereas the white balance is near perfect.

The display of the Huawei Nexus 6P offered wide viewing angles, during our testing; when we tested out the smartphone outdoors, the brightness offered was not up to the mark but is still bright in comparison with similar range smartphones from other brands. We also found the Ambient Display functionality worked as expected. This functionality is custom-made when the phone is placed at a flat location like a desk.

Overall, we were impressed with the Huawei Nexus 6P’s display and the way images/videos were rendered on the screen

Processor and Memory

Under-the-hood, the Huawei Nexus 6P incorporates a 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 SoC comprising of a 1.55 GHz quad-core Cortex-A53 and 2.0 GHz quad-core Cortex-A57 CPUs along with an Adreno 430 GPU. A 3 GB RAM works in tandem with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 SoC.

When we used the handset, in a multitasking and multi app scenario, we could not experience any major glitches in performance and the instruction processing capabilities, save for minor lags which are purely dependent on the apps (and their credibility) that are launched at a particular point in time.

Even video streaming from Netflix proved to be a breeze. Stored multimedia files also played well relatively glitch free.

Even high-end games such as Asphalt 8: Airborne and Dead Trigger 2 ran in a hassle-free manner during our testing.

The Huawei Nexus 6P offers multiple internal storage variants viz 32/64/128 GB storage; there are fixed and cannot be expanded via an external microSD card.

Camera

A 12.3 MP adorns the rear of the Huawei Nexus 6P, along with an LED flash unit. We could capture fairly good shots of nature and wildlife in daylight. Even the 8 MP front camera (for the selfie generation) captures good snaps but these are restricted to daylight conditions (where there is plenty of light).

The important Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) camera functionality is conspicuous by its absence.

During our testing, the low-light photography offered was also fairly good; however, we could observe grains and external noise dominantly.

The rear camera offers recording of 2160p videos at 30 fps, and 720 p videos at 240 fps.

The front snapper also lets users capture 1080p videos at 30 fps.

Software

Huawei Nexus 6P runs on Google’s Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) operating platform straight out of the box. During our testing, Google Now came across as much improved. All major Android Marshmallow new features like Google Doze, Google Now accessible on tap, Predictive Input worked fairly well save for Android Pay which we did not test out.

We also checked out split-screen multitasking and during our usage, all the various apps sat perfectly in their places thus making the experience intuitive.

The stock Android experience also adds to the intuitive nature of Google’s Marshmallow.

Finally, the overall UI of the Huawei Nexus 6P came across as appealing considering the enhanced ease of use.

Battery

The Huawei Nexus 6P is powered by a fixed 3,450 mAh Lithium-Polymer battery.

During our usage, the battery life offered accounted for more than a day’s worth in case of regular usage (without running high-end games and with minimum video viewing). Streaming of videos consumed, from popular streamer services, nearly 10% of the battery juice (at different instances in time). Checking-out games consumed a further 20% battery juice (at different time periods), like usual.

During our testing, we could make use of the Nexus 6P’s fast charging (via its USB-C capability). On plugging-in the Huawei Nexus 6P for charging for around half an hour, we could observe the smartphone’s battery had acquired approximately 60% juice.

Verdict

The Huawei Nexus 6P is undoubtedly a worthy buy.

Pricing

In the UAE, the Huawei Nexus 6P costs a whopping AED 1,828. The price tag and the tech-specs of the smartphone are justified by the pure Android experience; but first-time smartphone users have plenty of other handsets to choose from.

Positives

Design, Android Marshmallow experience and UI, Camera

Negatives

Exorbitant pricing, battery backup could have been a tad better.