Thoughts on my nexus 5, with some on my surface

From the backup vaults of David Whale’s email inbox, November 26th…

I’ve had my nexus 5 for…about two weeks now so I guess that’s long enough to consider it a part of my life, and me to be a reasonably adept user.

The only thing with writing this review and questions like “so as an android device do you like it?” is I don’t have a clue how the previous Android releases felt, so that’s my preface for anyone expecting “so from jellybean we improved this this and this”.

Good things

– The interface itself is great, everything’s intuitive and it’s easy to organise things the way I need them, and prioritise my apps. These are all regular features of a smartphone, but as none of these are in a Blackberry, this is new to me. I like the folders idea: don’t know if this was in jellybean but in KitKat you can drop apps on top of each other to form folders, so for example on mine I have “social” which contains facebook/twitter/linkedIn/snapchat etc, and various other folders.

– The camera’s awesome, I played with the focal length for a few days when I first got it – it’s so sharp! The photosphere mode I have yet to get the hang of, but the panorama mode’s pretty good. Video sound quality when I recorded Jools Holland wasn’t so good, but we’ll let it off, concerts are pretty loud and that was the first trial of that feature. [I’ll try and put some photos up in a moment]

– Android apps have plenty of functions and there’s literally an app for everything. Again, feature of every smartphone (excluding perhaps windows phone, but that’s decreasing gradually) but not really on Blackberry. I particularly like that OneNote and SkyDrive are on there and are really simple to use – microsoft unlike companies who produce stuff for Windows 8 don’t skimp out on the features. I say the last comment because I like being able to have both devices in sync, and whilst skydrive’s great, googledocs is much easier to share with other people and whilst the googledrive app on my phone is ace…there…well…there isn’t one on my surface. Yah. It sucks.

Another good thing I like about android is the fact if I don’t like gmail, or I don’t like hangouts, there’s another app I can download off google play to replace it. Again probably something most users of android are comfortable with, but consider yourselves privaledged…I’ve spent two years without any of this.

bad things

– I have to charge my baby basically every day. Not really a problem, I’m at work for most of it so I just remember to take a charger, but it stinks. I get a little obsessed with battery life thanks to my battery doctor app, moreso than I did with my berry. I guess it’s the pennance for having a smartphone that actually does something.

– I had no problem on my blackberry using it without any form of case. Probably a bad thing but I liked the tactile-ness of it, but with a nexus 5 the camera sticks out at the back, so if you put it down on the table and text it will wobble about. I was going to get a case anyway, but this accelerated the issue. (Case recommendation: spiegen clear hybrid case. The back’s clear so you can put your own artwork on the back, or leave it blank, and it’s not too chunky but feels sturdy. Pretty cool)

– When I first played music on my phone whenever I moved my headphone plug, like rotated it round, the music stopped…I think this may be the case pushing it out a little but nonetheless annoying. Additionally, trying to turn the sound up, there was (it may have remembered my preference now) a notification saying “are you sure you want to do this? this could damage your ears” which is probably Google trying to cover themselves, but still slightly annoying, particularly when your phone’s in your pocket and you don’t realise that’s why it’s not getting any louder.

Things I’ve noticed when using my phone and tablet together

– Apps on android are far more powerful than win 8. Nick says this is because win 8 has to prove itself, but still, frustrating. Google hasn’t even put out an official win 8 drive or youtube app out, and chrome is awful. This seems a poor way to repay Microsoft for putting out their apps onto Android with full functionality…

– There’s hundreds of nexus 5 cases out and the nexus 5 itself has only been out maybe a week before I bought it, was it? Surface pro 2 cases? haha, nope. There are a few, but one of the things I like about the surface is the kickstand, and whilst cases with tons of different positions are great, I want to still be able to use the stand. I found one I like but it’s a US seller sooo…and yes, the surface is tough enough to not need a case, however there’s several scratches on the back (many people have been finding the paint peeling on surface pro) and I want them covered up -_-

Overall it’s a really great phone, and definitely worth the price.


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