Nexus 5: A Phone So Nice I Bought It Twice

Nexus 5 in Red

This is a post for everyone still pining for a OnePlus One. For much of 2014 it seemed that every post I read about this thing was answered with a tsunami of invite requests. I was lucky enough to have some quality time with the OPO this past July, and you know what? I went out and bought another Nexus 5 instead.

This one’s in red, so it’s presumably faster. πŸ˜‰

Don’t get me wrong; the OnePlus One is, for most people reading this, an amazing value. But the more time I spent with it the more it became clear that, for me, the Nexus was the better choice.

Price

As Howard wrote in his review my $349 USD OnePlus One ended up costing me $479.06 CAD, whereas my second Nexus 5 dinged my credit card for a total of $467.86 CAD. With 64 vs. 32 GB of onboard storage you could argue that the OPO is the better phone, but hang onβ€”I haven’t even started my argument that it isn’t (necessarily).

Availability

The Achilles’ heel of the OnePlus One is, as we all know, that it’s almost impossible to get. This extends to OPO owners who want to share the love; it was almost a two-month wait for this new owner to score some invites to share here.

Meanwhile, in Canada at least, the Nexus 5 is still available factory unlocked from most of the major carriers (Bell seems to dropped it from their lineup); Koodo will even sell you the 16GB version in black for only a buck more than what Google charges, and with no extra shipping costs to worry about.

The availability issue extends to accessories as well. Cases for the Nexus 5 are available everywhere, from Amazon to eBay to my local Chinatown. There are some third-party OPO cases available online but not nearly as many. The WTF moment for me is the OnePlus bamboo cover, which is way too expensive and not even available. Will I need an invite for that, too…?

ROMs

Scarcity of handsets means that there’s just not the same selection of OPO custom firmware as there is for Nexus. The situation is definitely improving, though, and I’m pleased to report that my favourite ROM now has an official build for the OnePlus One.

But when it comes to Nexus, you’re definitely spoiled for choice.

Size

For me, it’s not so much that the OnePlus One is big (it is), but that the Nexus 5 is (again, for me) perfect. I don’t think that I’d want a phone any bigger and honestly, rumours of a phablet-sized Nexus have yet to stoke the fanboy flames within.

So you’re probably wondering why on earth I would buy another Nexus 5 when I already own one. Reasons include upgrading my girlfriend’s Nexus 4 to give her the gift of LTE, and also because my new one is red. πŸ˜›

The OnePlus One may prove to be a great bargain should you have the opportunity to buy it. I just wanted to point out that, 11 months after its release and on the cusp of the announcement of its successor, the Nexus 5 is still a pretty great smartphone in its own right.

5 thoughts on “Nexus 5: A Phone So Nice I Bought It Twice”

  1. My Nexus One died a while ago (the button on top stopped functioning) so I bought a Galaxy Nexus for $200 on craigslist (amazing value for what it does).

    Perhaps I’ll get a Nexus 5 second-hand if my current phone dies (or the much raved Moto g, whichever has lower price), although I’m a bit concerned about the irreplaceable battery on those devices (especially after being used for a long time). How’s your experience on that?

    The ones made by Chinese manufactures also look very interesting, but I’m not sure if there’s anything as good as moto g made by Chinese manufactures at the same price range.

    Another interesting trend is that the dirt-cheap-but-quite-capable Chromebooks (and also reasonably Linux-friendly*) can now run some Android apps. Are you also following these trends?

    *https://www.distroshare.com/distros/get/14/

    1. Hiya. Still listening to Dyscultured? πŸ™‚

      1. I was concerned about the non-removable batteries too, but as even my Nexus 4 is still in (limited) service, it hasn’t been an issue. Yet.

      2. I had my eye on a cheap Chromebook but it’s been discontinued. I think newer models with better processors are on the way. I would like to try one, though I don’t really have a need for it.

      3. I think another Chinese Android handset might be coming my way soon!

  2. > non-removable batteries…[not] an issue yet

    Cool, I’ll take a note on that.

    > Still listening to Dyscultured?

    Ha, until now I thought dyscultured had ended. Is it twice a month now? I’ll bookmark your site and add to the to the list of podcasts I listen to (my current favorites are “Biggest Problems in the Universe” by maddox and “Hello Internet” by CGP Grey.)

    1. Dyscultured is alive and well, but unfortunately without meβ€”I had to step back to focus on my daily posts for Howard Forums.

      Most of the podcasts I listen to are mobile-focused as well, but I’ll check out your recommendations when I get the chance!

      1. Ah, I liked your cosmopolitan tech culture related talks on the show, it’s a great loss for dyscultured!

        Doesn’t Howard Forums do that kind of podcasts? I’d definitely listen to it.

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